Marvel NOW! Review: Young Avengers #2 by Kieron Gillen and Jaime McKelvie


Written by:  Kieron Gillen
Pencilled by:  Jamie McKelvie
Inked by:  Mike Norton
Colored by:  Matthew Wilson
Lettered by:  VC’s Clayton Cowles
Published by:  Marvel Comics
Cover Price:  $2.99

Note: This review is for the digital edition of the comic, available via Comixology

Young Avengers #2 builds well on the success of the first issue, but this is not a problem-free comic. One problem I had with a lot of the Marvel NOW #1 issues is that the team books didn’t feature the team in any appreciable form, and Young Avengers was no exception. This isn’t solely NOW’s problem, it seems to be the way things are done these days, having the first issue be a series of short vignettes of each character. This book greatly streamlined that by keeping one group of characters the focus for the entire issue, but it is somewhat disappointing that we now have a team of three driving the plot without most of them even having run into any of the other people listed as team members in this volume of the book. I do feel that Hulkling and Wiccan are going to be the soul of this book and the early plot is likely to be driven by Loki, so of any characters, they are probably the best nucleus to eventually build the team around.

We pick up where we left off, with a bad idea of Wiccan’s dooming he and his paramour to being tormented by an extradimensional entity that resembles Hulkling’s mother.

Seemingly everyone in the world completely accepts said entity as being not only exactly who she claims to be but also 100% correct about everything. No one questions her, not even the Avengers who our intrepid heroes try to go to for help. This ends with Billy and Teddy getting stuck in an extradimensional prison of just totally blank space. At this point, some great art happens as Loki comes to Billy and Teddy’s rescue. Jamie McKelvie is great at working outside the frame, fantastic layouts here.

After freeing them, Loki expounds on the magic of bacon and the poorly chosen nom de guerre of Wiccan…oh, and also that he can help them, but they have to trust him completely. Hulkling and Wiccan decide to opt for Plan B, which is “Take Loki to Asgard, because he’s likely more of a problem than a solution.”

The writing was very good throughout. All the characters’ voices are unique, and Loki’s banter is top notch. The art, as stated, is also very good, with the two page spread of the prison break being the greatest part. The colors were very well done, vibrant when we’re dealing with the young members of the team early on then somber muted colors when dealing with Asgard and the surprise villain at the end. All in all, this comic definitely delivers and is a worthy buy, but beware that you’re only getting three of the team (and a quick mention of Kate at the end).

One of the most unique things about this comic is the packaging and marketing. It’s a comic about theoretically fresher, younger, and…I hesitate to say hipper, because that’s a pretty dated word…I guess “cooler” heroes than most books. Taking that to the next level, they market it with a quick punchline internet style of humor, including spoiler tags that are almost an afterthought and joking about what the solicitations usually contain. This is carried over to the catch-up page, which resembles a message board complete with silly user names and funny avatars. The credits page also has included something of a joke in both issues so far as well. While I find this funny so far, I think it has the potential to become unfunny quickly. It also will serve to severely date the comic in five or ten years, but then again, it’s a rare comic that doesn’t get dated to some extent and if this title is going to embrace and attempt to woo youth culture, this is probably the way to do it.

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