In it’s first ever week at The Outhouse, the Review Group takes a look at Runaways #7 from Marvel Comics.
The Review Group is a collection of posters who get together each week to discuss comics and post our reviews for a comic that we each take turns selecting. Our thread can be found in The Outhouse’s Newstand forum and is open for anyone and everyone to participate in.
This week Sire v 2.0 had the pick and he selected Runaways #7 by Terry Moore, Takeshi Miyazawa and Christina Strain. This is the third time the group has covered an issue of Runaways and the third time we’ve reviewed a Terry Moore comic with each of those selections having been well received. All of that is in the past however as this time around reviews were mixed at best. Takeshi Miyazawa’s heavily manga influence take on the characters was a hot topic of discussion and Brian K. Vaughan and Adrian Alphona’s shadows still clearly loom large over their creation.
Enough of my rambling however, let’s see what the rest of the group had to say.
Review by Starlord
I haven't read this since Whedon's run because I've been collecting them in trades. Now I'm not sure if I'm going to pick up the next trade or not. This is not the Runaways I've been enjoying but I think part of that is the art. It's waaay to close to Manga for my liking. The characters feel slightly off from what they have been. BKV did it the best and Whedon gave a good attempt and for the most part, did well, but Moore and crew. Highly disappointing.
My score: 3
Review by thefourthman
Since, other than the boring by the numbers story, my big problem with this book is the art and not that it is bad, but just inconsistent with the artist work on the book before and with everyone else who has worked on the book, I offer the following quote from my review...
"When Alphona was working the book, Miyazawa seemed to be able to keep the characters in line with what the creator envisioned. With each arc on the book, Miyazawa has strayed further and further from the fusion of the original design and more in line with books published by Viz.
The style, in itself, would not be a bad thing, except consistency is lost. After Ryan gave the book a typical capes sheen at the conclusion of the second volume of the book and Ramos found his groove again at the onset of this third volume, there was no longer a cohesive style to the book. Just when Ramos’s super cartoonish style had grown on even his detractors, we get this issue."
You can read the rest of my review at http://www.brokenfrontier.com/reviews/details.php?id=2168
Review by 48THRiLLS
I dropped this a couple issues ago. I didn't hate it, just sorta tolerated it. The art was fine, I actually like Ramos. The story wasn't bad (except the evil shock jock, really? an evil shock jock?) I like Terry Moore, I was just not enjoying this book as much as I would like to.
I love how this issue opens up with the Wii stuff but it was pretty much downhill after that. The shock jock is still here and I was really hoping that would be wrapped up in the last arc and then the whole Airheads bit with the band at the radio station was kinda eh...The art in this ish is very manga influenced as other posters have stated and Mr. 4thman is right Chase did look like a girl but it didn't bother me too much but I do prefer Ramos but that is just me.
This book was okay but that is just not good enough.
STORY - 6
ART - 6
OVERALL – 6
Review by GLX
Writing-Fun issue. Everything felt right. Not BKV grade but great.
Art-Miyazawa, for the most part, did a great job. Art wise, the problem is with Strain. The colors are bit bright, at times.
Overall- 8* out of 10*
Review by Punchy
Story - I'm a big Runaways fan, the digests of Volume 1 were some of the first comics I picked up when I started getting into US books, and they really connected with me, since I was about 15 then. The Runaways (and me I suppose) have come a long way since then, creators Brian K Vaughan and Adrian Alphona have gone, and they are now on their 3rd volume, after a lackluster outing from Joss Whedon, Terry Moore took over the book, and it's been OK, pretty average stuff, entertaining, but it didn't seem to stand out in the way that the original Runaways did from the rest of the superhero genre. But I think this issue was a step in the right direction. Which is both a blessing and a curse, because Moore is leaving after this arc. This to me felt the most like the Runaways of old as any other issue, the focus was on the characters, and the 'villains' were off-beat and not anything any other team would face, the Runaways isn't the Teen Titans or the Young Avengers, and this issue conveyed this well. From the opening page, drawn in a Wii Sports style, this was fresh, funny stuff. I particularly liked the band who were dropped from their label and taking them hostage, it was humorous, but also a good way to fill the issue's action quota, and we also have the main plot, which is equally interesting, Val Rhymin (Howard Stern, yeah?) is not only a Radio Shock Jock, but also a wannabe wizard and super villain, and his plan is pretty ingenious, through the use of an ancient chant played in the background of a new song he'll be playing on the radio, he'll be able to turn everyone in LA who's had plastic surgery into monsters! That's pretty crazy stuff, and perfect for the Runaways, sure, monsters are nothing new, but the idea of turning those who have artificially made themselves more beautiful into creatures is a smart one, and it also serves as a commentary on the power media figures have over the general public, oooh, it's all multi-layered and stuff. So yeah, this is a solid issue, but it's still not as top-notch as the Runaways could be, but I don't think the fault lies with Terry Moore, it seems to me that the Runaways don't have a purpose anymore. They've defeated the Pride, and also the new Pride, what do they do now? Just wander around bumping into things? They aren't running away from anything anymore! And until the team has a purpose to keep going, and not just be there because it's a fan-favorite, the book will never reach the heights it once did. Maybe they should bring Alex back?
Art - This seems to have been a sticking point for other reviewers, but I have no problem with Miyazawa's pencils, he's been filling in since Volume 1, and also did the most recent Young Avengers crossover mini, and he fits the tone well, it's manga-ish, which gives the book a youthful feel, but it's also dynamic and striking enough to fit the super heroics. Mad props to colorist Christina Strain too, she's an integral part of Runaways, and her style is pretty distinctive here, bright and nuanced. Plus, the girls look nice.
Best Line - 'No! Don't shoot! I'm diabetic!' I don't know why, but that just tickled me. Very LA.
Review by guitarsmashley
I miss BKV and Alphona. And that made no sense at all.
Review by Young Neil
Runaways was one of the first few comics that I started to read when I first diverged from my 4 comic pull list of mostly X-Men titles. Runaways and Young Avengers were two titles that I tried that just had a different feel to them. And Runaways thanks to the amazing writing has stayed on my now much larger pull list to this day.
Now the problem with reviewing a book later in the week, means you end up either agreeing with everyone or contesting your point, however this week I just seem to be agreeing.
Ever since the end of Brian K Vaughn’s run has finished, the Runaways’ seem directionless and without cause. Joss Whedon’s run was good and would have been better if it had come out on time, but it was basically a “filler” arc. With Moore coming on and the re-numbering of the series, it would have been a perfect opportunity, to take a good look at the team, give them a purpose, a drive. This very much is Moore’s fault, I can’t find a single fault with his other work to date, but as a writer, it comes to you to make a book worth reading. I can’t believe this book has been reduced to Chase having a job, and some lame zombie/magic/villains.
Now the art itself is a high point of contention. I loved Miyazawa when he filled in on the old runaways volumes. I mean if it had to be a fill-in artist, I’m glad he pulled it off as well as he did. However now it feels like he just thinks he has free reign to redesign or slightly tweak the characters. I thought Chase was a girl, and victor looks like he’s come down with a nasty case of anorexia.
I always looked forward to the HC’s as I’ve collected this series, but I can’t even see me picking the next one up when it comes out. Runaways has gone from one of my favorite marvel books, to one that I couldn’t even be bothered reading.
Story – 4
Art – 4
A big fat 4 overall this week
Review by McKegan
This was the best issue of Moore's run so far, and that isn't saying much. I don't know if it was the loss of Ramos' hyperkinetic art, but the characters finally got some space to breath and be themselves and interact in a way familiar to long time readers. Maybe Moore's just getting comfortable with the characters, and his worse has been miles better than Whedon's crapfest, but this title is still lacking.
I would have dropped Runaways if it hadn't been this week's pick. Honestly, I think it might be time to put the book out of its misery. The book has been fairly aimless since BKV left. With no evil parents/grown-ups, there's little to differentiate this book from any other teen super group book. They've got nothing to runaway from, and about the only worthwhile conflict they have is with their grocery bill.
Review by amlah6
It's no secret that I'm a huge Terry Moore fan and over the course of his run on Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane, I became a Takeshi Miyazawa fan as well. Put the two of them together on one of my favorite series of the past couple of years and I'm bound to love it, right? Well, maybe love is a bit too strong a word, but I did like this a lot.
I'm not going to claim Moore's run on Runaways has been perfect, there have been a stumble or two but by the time we reached the end of his first arc I was enjoying his work just as much as I enjoyed any of the previous creators except for maybe the best of the BKV issues.
This comic is very much a transition piece to tack on an epilogue to the previous arc and set up the final two issues of Moore's run. I loved the characters playing Wii and the bit of interaction between Nico and Karolina. The transition to the fight at the Capitol Records building was a bit awkward on my first read through, but it was the most fun part of the book and had the best lines. Molly and Klara together are always good. When Val Rhymin was introduced in the first issue of this volume it was a very cringe worthy moment, but this issue made me hopeful that Moore can do something interesting with him. Bringing magic into the story with an acquaintance to the Minorus was a nice touch.
It's really surprised me to see how mixed everyone's reactions have been to Miyazawa's art this week. I absolutely love his work, especially when combined with Christina Strain's considerable talents as a colorist. Miyazawa's layouts always have a very natural flow to them whether he's doing talking heads or action sequences. The tone and feel of the art is just perfect for Runaways, I really wish Miyazawa would become the regular artist for the series.
As of press time, that gives Runaways #7 a rather unimpressive score of 5.25. It would appear the Review Group’s love affair with the Runaways has come to an end.
For further discussion about this issue and our reviews, feel free to join us in this week's thread (http://www.theouthousers.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=19308) found the Newstand forum where you are also invited to join the group by posting your own review.
Mr. Batman has the pick for March 4th and he has selected Superman: World of New Krypton #1 from DC Comics. Look for the new thread that will be available Wednesday morning to join in on the fun.
Superman: World of New Krypton #1
Written by James Robinson and Greg Rucka
Art by Pete Woods
Following the events of the "New Krypton" crossover, the Man of Steel has had to embrace his past to ensure humanity's future. And while a devastating armed conflict with Earth may have been averted, keeping the peace will be Superman's greatest challenge yet.