First blood has been drawn, one down 15 to go. The desperation is mounting, and the only question in the remaining heroes minds is, who is next?
Here is the summary from Marvel:
• ANNIHILATION’s Cammi vs. Deathlocket! • AVENGER ACADEMY’s Hazmat vs. Deathlocket! • Who the heck is Deathlocket? And who dies in this issue? • Plus: Who are the students of the Braddock Academy?
After the shocking ending to the first issue, the kids are now dealing with the fallout of Arcade’s actions and begin to realize the gravity of their situation. Some striking out on their own (Cammi), some mourning (Avengers Academy), & others leaving the area together (The mysterious Braddock Academy). This issue focuses on one of Hopeless’ new characters, Deathlocket, a young & innocent girl with mysterious cybernetic implants who has rocky starts with 2 of the other “contestants”. She accidentally attacks Hazmat when she tries to console her, and has a gun pointed in her face by Cammi, who oddly enough stops her from stepping on a mine (not the best way to start a death contest).
Dennis Hopeless gives a nice in-depth look at our central character. Giving her a tragic back story, and thrusting her in a situation with equipment she doesn’t yet know how to control. You feel bad for her as the story progresses as she is not used to the outrageous situations that others had found themselves in from time to time, textbook fish out of water. We also get some insight into the kids from the Braddock Academy, each with their own unique power sets, and a couple of them having familiar histories & lineages that older comic fans will recognize. Nothing too exciting happens, but that’s not the focus of this issue (and according to Hopeless the whole series), letting things cool down after the firt issue to allow the teens to realize the situation they are now in, with some character development and a couple stirring scenes, with the death in the issue happening very early on, and taking a backseat to the character development.
Kev Walker adds more definition to the pencils, drawing a couple stirring (and disturbing) scenes. There is only one real action scene, and really with the way the book is currently paced, that is all there needed to be. The one death in the issue, is drawn really well, with no real dialogue, instead allowing Walker to show the emotion of the moment, which he does quite well. A couple splash pages explaining Deathlocket’s origin are also done really well, showing her transition from a normal girl into a cyborg, with her design being done pretty well along with the Braddock kids.
Avengers Arena has the potential to be a real dark horse in the new Marvel reboot, with it’s methodical pace, and nice dialogue, this comic (while not a MUST read) is something worth checking out.
Review’s Note: This issues cover homage, Lord of the Flies