Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Runaways: Dead Wrong by Terry Moore, Humberto Ramos, Christina Strain and Dave Meikis

The Runaways are a group of kids brought together by an unusual coincidence: their parents were supervillains, and most of them were raised unaware of that fact. When they found out, it was by accident, and it completely changed their opinion of their parents, and of the group their parents made, the Pride. Separating from their parents, they discovered their own powers and fought back, defeating their parents.

But without anyone to care for them, they were just a bunch of teenagers, and they ran into problems from the authorities who wanted to stick them into homes, and their parents foes, not all of whom were heroes on the side of good. Their lineup changed as two of them died, and they were joined by a shapeshifting Skrull. Xavin, whom Karolina's parents betrothed her to at an early age, a girl who can control plants, Klara Prast, and Victor Mancha, who just happens to be a cyborg.

Now, Karolina, an alien whose race is called the Majesdanians is on the run from the members of her own race who believe that she has done their race as a whole a great injury. Before she can learn exactly what it is that she is supposed to have done, though, she and her friends go on the run once again. From New York City, they return to Malibu to try and take shelter in a house owned by one of their fabulously rich parents. But to live there, one of them is going to have to get a job. Maybe even more than one. And the house is guarded by security demons, which they take care of, but not without a fight.

The fight, though, attracts the attention of the Majesdanians, and in the local mall, as Chase gets a job with local shock rock radio celebrity "Uncle Val", someone who is extremely misogynistic and anarchistic. After they return home, they are attacked by the Majesdanian soldiers and team leader Nico uses her black magic powers to scatter them all over the planet, all except for one, a young man who Karolina talks to, and finds out that the Skrulls attacked Majesdane because of her parents, who gave the coordinates of Majesdane to the Skrull leaders.

Karolina already knew that, which is the reason that she was betrothed to Xavin and that later she agreed to the betrothal. She believed that their marriage would bring their planets and peoples closer together and be the path to peace. But while on earth, the children cannot be blamed for the actions of their parents, that isn't so on Majesdane, which is why the soldiers are trying to bring her in. Karolina knows that after the attack of the Skrulls, there are few Majesdanians left, so she asks why these soldiers are trying to bring her in, knowing she will fight to defend herself, but they see it as a matter for justice.

This saddens her but she still decides to try and defend herself. Meanwhile, Chase must deal with the fact that his boss seems to be able to make anyone do what he wants, as long as he asks them to do it- but Chase is immune to his power. But when tension within the team ramps up and nearly brings them to blows, Nico realizes that her spell affected everyone, including the other members of what was formerly their team, and she has to undo it somehow to get everyone pulling together again. But even if they do, can they defeat the might and determination of the Majesdanians and get them to let her off the hook for the actions of her parents? Or must she and her teammates go the extra mile to ensure that Karolina gets out from under the cloud that her parents actions have cast over her life?

I read the first few graphic novels starring the Runaways last year, and since then, nothing. So this was something new for me, since I'd missed a lot of stuff, but once I was into it and reading, it all came flooding back. Some of the characters are no longer there, and there is a new one that is apparently from the past somehow (Karla) in addition to Xavin and Victor, and how she joined, I don't exactly know.

Since most of the group are young teens, they have problems trying to look after themselves. Chase is the only one who can work legally, and none of them can access their parents accounts... or money. But life, and the past evil deeds of their parents keep coming up to smack them in the face, and this is no different, and now it's Karolina's turn to reap the fallout. But will the remnants of her people be willing listen to reason?

I actually liked the fact that the other Majesdanians don't have the same views on justice as most humans do. It made them more alien to have their own ideal of justice, and to stick to it and not be swayed by the views of humans. It may suck from Karolina's point of view, but why *should* aliens feel the same way about what is justice than humans? I felt it made the story. and like I said, It may suck from the view of Karolina and her friends, but it also made it harder for them, and they had to step up their game to compensate.

I really enjoyed this graphic novel. At this point, despite losing their parents (who were evil anyway), the team has had some pretty smooth sailing as regards to taking responsibility and having to live in a world where there are no adults to take care of them. Now is the time when the bills, so to speak, are coming due, and I am going to enjoy watching the kids deal with them. Highly recommended.

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