REVIEW: Champions #16 – “Champions Draft 2018”

Writer: Mark Waid
Penciller: Humberto Ramos
Colorist: Edgar Delgado
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
Price: $3.99
Release Date: 01/17/18
Rating: T+


Champions #16 Cover

Plot: With one member down, the Champions hold a membership drive. After speaking with several young heroes, the team gets several enthusiastic candidates. Meanwhile, the Vision family adjusts to it’s new situation.

Story: While this issue has two plots, it felt very balanced. The membership drive story did an amazing job introducing the new recruits. Plus the introductions do not make readers feel foolish if they never heard of a certain character before this issue. Meanwhile it’s not an easy transition for the Vision family’s new home life. Most of these scenes involve Viv adjusting to life without powers. Fortunately, neither one of these plots outshine the other. There’s a nice parallel between theses plots as both the Champions and Viv enter new chapters in their lives.

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Mark Waid does an excellent job capturing the characters’ voices. The scene where Spider-Man (Miles Morales) recommends Spider-Woman for membership is hilarious. When Miles describes her as his girlfriend from another earth, the rest of the team busts out laughing. This exchange was a funny take on the classic “girlfriend from Canada” situation. Also Waid does an excellent job showing Viv’s feelings in her caption boxes. While reading Viv’s words, the reader can easily feel her sense of isolation.

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Waid also does a good job showing the chemistry between the characters. While discussing which heroes to approach, the Champions feel like a friend group hanging out instead of heroes on the job. Plus the new recruits interacted with the current team very well. I enjoyed how Red Locust fangirled when Ms. Marvel asked if she wanted to join. Also Waid establishes the depth of the friendship between the current team. A good example is when Ms. Marvel says they cancel the membership drive if Viv does not approve or gets upset.

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Art: My only complaint with the artwork is how difficult it can be to distinguish the two Viv’s caption boxes. It takes the reader almost a minute to figure out which is which but thankfully they rarely speak on the same page. Nevertheless this issue still has awesome artwork. I enjoyed the shading when Viv is in her room by herself. Viv talks about how her powers connected to the internet so she could hear everything. Now she’s feeling alone and its starting to weigh on her. The way the scene is drawn shows Viv’s depression before she’s comforted by her father.

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The rest of the issue’s colors are awesome. When the Champions start recruiting, everything is brighter and optimistic as the team starts to expand. Also the facial expressions are on point, Humberto Ramos does an excellent job showing the excitement in the new recruits as they’re asked to join.

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Verdict: Champions continues to be one of Marvel’s best current titles. The team starts recruiting new members in an entertaining way while also sharing some laughs. Also Mark Waid does an excellent job telling Viv’s tale after her major changes from the last story arc. Overall, this is a fun title with great characters that everyone should be reading.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Champions #16 Rating