Friday, June 22, 2018 • Afternoon Edition • "*the sound you hear when PAC-MAN dies*"

Your Top Teams part 56

Written by Chris Mitchell on Thursday, July 09 2009 and posted in Features
We are now in the Top 20, just a few more till the Top 10. Weeeeeeeeeeee!!





21. The Runaways (94 points - 4 first place slots)

runaways.jpg"I bought this series because of a cover, and they have easily become one of my favorite teams out there, even if they didn't really view themselves as a team at first."

"In here just to make up the numbers, the title ran its course after the Pride arc was resolved, but the initial run showed great promise despite rough edges and a cast of teenagers talking like they were in their thirties. The early issues are already showing their age in references to their year of publication, then-current tv shows like West Wing, and a bizarre assumption that a generation brought up on the 1980s nostalgia of tv executives doesn't know what the A-Team is - but the trite ethnic/gender mix and contrived references to visual mediums instead of literature makes it a great mix of dumbed-down soap-operatics and genre-cannibalism that's tailor-made for people not used to the more dense reading experiences of pre-millennium comics or novels. Flawed, but not without charm."

I remember when the Top Modern List happened I got a lot of shit from a whole lotta you folks out there for now allowing this as a single unit. But, if I recall if you added up all the individual Runaway members on the list, the team came in like 11th place. They did better on that list it appears, but I am pretty damn sure you folks won't be complaining about this one, or will you?

When Alex, Chase, Gert, Karolina, Molly and Nico witness their parents ("the Pride") sacrifice a girl in an occult ceremony, the group runs off. As the story progresses, the children learn of their heritage and abilities, and steal resources from their parents, including futuristic gauntlets, a dinosaur, and a mystical Staff. Using these resources, they manage to remove their parents from their criminal hold of Los Angeles, but they lose Alex in the final battle, due to Alex's true loyalty to his parents. With the Pride defeated, the Runaways now vow to prevent other villains from filling in the void left by their parents. They eventually meet cyborg Victor Mancha and shape-shifting alien Xavin, and invite them to join the team. Right before the Runaways defeat a new incarnation of the Pride and Alex's resurrected father, Gertrude is fatally wounded.

In the Marvel Comics' 2006 crossover Civil War, the Young Avengers travel to Los Angeles to help the Runaways fight off the government. The two teams encounter Noh-Varr, who works for S.H.I.E.L.D. and attempts to capture the teenagers. When the Runaways are accidentally time-displaced in 1907, they encounter the deceased Runaway Gertrude Yorke's parents. After defeating the Yorkes and deadly gang war, plant-manipulator Klara Prast joins the Runaways' return back to the present. Upon returning from 1907, the Runaways find themselves in New York, where the Skrull Armada has invaded, seeking Hulkling. After being attacked, with Xavin pretending to be loyal to the Skrulls to protect her friends, they retreat away from the battle while Xavin helps Hulkling escape his pursuers. This was part of Marvel Comics' 2008 crossover, Secret Invasion.


20. Post CW Heroes for Hire-vengers (96 points - 1 first place slot)

newavengers-postcw.jpgOriginally part of Captain America's group of Secret Avengers during the Superhuman Civil War, this new unregistered group of Avengers opposed the Super Human Registration act and have found themselves hunted by the Mighty Avengers led by current director of S.H.I.E.L.D. Tony Stark. New Avengers became an unofficial group of unregistered superheroes opposed to the Superhuman Registration Act and moved in to the Sanctum Sanctorum under the protection of Doctor Strange before moving in to an empty apartment building owned by the Rand Corporation but leased in the name of Samuel Sterns.

Did I enjoy this run? No really, but it was a helluva lot better then the previous era which we have just seen. But seriously, Hawkeye/Ronin thing is just stupid as fuck. And I am not just saying that as because of my well know dislike for the character, I am saying this because it’s a damn stupid concept and it’s one of the main reason I shake my head at Bendis constantly. There is no one I know who can say this is a good concept, except for Twigglet and we all know his opinion when it comes to all think Bendis is moot and void.

So what else happened in this era? Well, the whole conspiracy thingie. And it bugged me how they all reacted, it just didn't seem right to me. So they find Elektra corpse and it’s a Skrull, so all of a sudden Luke Cage is accusing everyone is a Skrull. Why? I know they wanted to do the whole "Who can you trust?" gimmick, but his reaction, and the rest of the teams reaction for that matter was like over drilling the concept. Turns out Spider Woman was a Skrull, so his paranoia was warranted.


19. The Outback X-Men (98 points - 3 first place slots)

xmen-outback.jpg"Silvestri and Claremont were gold together, the Jim Lee era may overshadow this group but this was pure X-Men."

"I always thought this team was bigger, but after some research I was wrong. Some solid stories during this team's existence, which is why they made the list."

"Gateway for the win."

I love this group, fucking love them. So so so so so much shit happened in this era it was completely and utterly awesome. I do wish this group got higher up, or even in the Top 10 but alas they did not. But, I cannot complain about the Top 20, right? Well, I can, but I won't.

While in Texas searching for Forge, the X-Men battled the Adversary and appeared to die saving Earth on live television. The X-Men did indeed perish but Roma resurrected them, which resulted in them becoming undetectable by electronics. While improving public opinion on the heroism of mutants, their friends and family, including the New Mutants and X-Factor, believed them to be dead. The X-Men maintained this as a cover story to protect their family and friends from the retribution of super-villains, and relocated to the Australian Outback after defeating the Reavers, whose base they claimed. They would also take in Madelyne Pryor to protect her; she was abandoned by Cyclops, and being hunted by the Marauders. The X-Men made enemies of the Genoshan government after rescuing Jennifer Ransom in a covert ops mission on the island.

Soon, the X-Men were lured back to New York during the Inferno crisis. Madelyne Pryor was discovered to be a clone created by Mr. Sinister that a part of the Phoenix Force entered after committing suicide on the Moon. Pryor struck a deal with the demon N'Astirh to become the Goblin Queen out of anger at Cyclops. N'Astirh's intentions to sacrifice Nathan to allow demons to freely travel to Earth became apparent as his spells slowly converted New York City into a hellish nightmare. X-Men and X-Factor, after being pitted against one another, defeated the demon. Pryor was suicidal after learning of her origin, and killed herself in an attempt to bring Jean Grey with her. Jean survived, and absorbed the remaining Phoenix essence within Madelyne. This was the first time the X-Men were able to confirm that Jean Grey was alive.

Soon after Inferno when the X-Men returned to the Outback, Nanny decided she needed more children, and decided that the X-Men were perfect for the part. She targeted Storm and captured her and reverted her back to a child. While trying to rescue her from Nanny's ship Havok did and overpowered blast and blew the ship completely up, while Storm was still inside. Havok completely distraught thinking he killed one of his own.

Besides resurrecting the X-Men, Roma gave them a mysterious jewel called the Siege Perilous. The magical gem could enlarge to a giant portal. All who entered would be judged by higher powers, their good acts and ill deeds weighed, and be reborn in a new life without remembering their past lives. The X-Men found no use for the jewel during the Inferno, against the alien Brood, or when returning to the Savage Land. Curious, Dazzler used her powers to take a look inside the illuminated gem. She saw various alternate versions of herself before they were all murdered and merged into a single being that warned Dazzler everyone dies sometime.

Later the same day, a merged Nimrod/Mastermold attacked the X-Men. With only herself and Rogue left standing, Dazzler threw the Siege Perilous behind the Sentinel hoping her enemy would be sucked into the portal. While the portal appeared, the Nimrod/Mastermold anchored itself to the ground and grabbed Rogue as she tried to push it through. With no other choice, Dazzler blasted both of them into the gateway.

With Rogue presumed dead and other members leaving the team, the X-Men were down to only Havok, Dazzler, Colossus and Psylocke. Back in the Savage Land to rescue Polaris, Psylocke had a precognitive vision of the X-Men dying back in the Australian Outback and a bound Gateway pointing to the Siege Perilous. Worried about her vision, Betsy wasn't able to warn the others before Gateway teleported them back to the Outback.

Immediately sensing the Reavers approaching when they returned to Australia, Psylocke suggested using the Siege Perilous to escape as the X-Men were in no condition to face the deadly cyborgs. After a brief discussion, and telepathic convincing of Havok, all four mutants entered the gateway. As the portal collapsed back into a gem, Donald Pierce arrived and smashed the jewel to pieces.



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