The not-so-elusive queer female comics reader

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New Young Avengers title!

Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie are launching a new Young Avengers book as part of Marvel NOW!!!!

I am BEYOND thrilled.

I love Gillen’s writing, and I’ve particularly loved the way he’s written younger characters in Generation Hope and Journey Into Mystery.

I’ve been crossing my fingers that their new project would turn out to be  Young Avengers ever since Marvel released the one-word teaser that just said “Amateurs”.

It’s a somewhat revamped team, which I expected. After all, almost 1/3 of the team didn’t survive Avengers: The Children’s Crusade (*cries*). And so far I’m really liking the announced new team:

Billy Kaplan (Wiccan), Teddy Altman (Hulkling), Kate Bishop (Hawkeye), kid Loki, Noh-Varr (now apparently back to being called Marvel Boy), and Miss America Chavez, who’s the only character who I know nothing about.

I do wonder where Tommy is, considering the fact that of all the Young Avengers he was the one who least wanted to quit heroing at the end of Children’s Crusade. And I miss Eli too, and hope that the implied traveling nature of the book means he’ll make an appearance at some point.

I think keeping only three of the original Young Avengers was a good plan. I actually wouldn’t want the new incarnation of the book to read like the original team plus a couple characters. I love the original team passionately, but I think their arc together is done. And I want a book that gives them new places to go, rather than dwelling on the past and particularly the tragic end of Children’s Crusade. Also, I think the strength of Marvel team books has always been in the shifting memberships. Stories about characters with conflicting world-views and personalities who are forced by circumstances to learn to work as a team are my favorite type of superhero stories.

Honestly, this is kind of my dream book. Billy and Teddy are my favorite adorable queer superheroes. I have an enormous crush on Kate Bishop and think she needs to be in every book EVER. I don’t know what I’d do without my monthly dose of kid Loki, and I was so worried he’d disappear entirely at the end of the current Thor/Journey Into Mystery crossover event. Noh-Varr’s a character I didn’t expect to like, but completely fell in love with during his run in Avengers. His time with the Avengers ended quite badly, and I was really concerned that he’d been written out of the main continuity for a while.

Also, I really like some of what Gillen and McKelvie said in their interview over at Comic Book Resources

“Young Avengers” came up. I thought, “If I’m going to to do this book I want to do it with Jamie and Mike Norton.” And I wanted Matt Wilson on colors. I wanted Clayton Cowles who was our letterer on “Journey Into Mystery.” I wanted to make something that was completely beautiful and bespoke.

I looked at something like “Daredevil” and how aesthetically coherent it is. I don’t think I’ve ever done anything like that for Marvel.

The series I’m most loving right now all have very coherent and unique looks to them: Matt Fraction and David Aja’s Hawkeye, Kelly Sue DeConnick and Dexter Soy’s Captain Marvel and Kieron Gillen and a variety of artists on Journey Into Mystery. I’ve fallen out of love with the current storyline in Daredevil, but keep reading it because it’s just such a gorgeous book.

In this world the Avengers are almost civil servants or firemen or police. They work for the government and they’re this enormous organization. But at the core? The real core of the Avengers? It’s saving the world, because someone has got to, and that’s what “Young Avengers” is about. They’re called “Young Avengers” even though they’re not Avengers. This is fundamentally about the ideal. It’s about being a super hero. It’s about saving the world because somebody has got to do it.

Which, really, is what brought the original Young Avengers together in the first place.

After that “Young Avengers” will be set up as a device where you can go to any of the Marvel Universe locales where teen heroes live and work like the West Coast with the Runaways or the Jean Grey School. It’s a very wide ranging book in that way. For me it’s super heroism as a metaphor for talent and deciding what you want to do with it. There’s a line in my original proposal for this that the original “Young Avengers” book was kind of about being 16. This book is about being 18.

Seriously. DREAM. BOOK.

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