The Runaways have always been a step away from becoming their own legitimate superhero team.
Our favorite superhero teenagers have teamed up with a man named “Doc” to become Los Angeles’ defenders. They are fully fledged superheroes! Or are they?
Something that is cute about Runaways is that these characters have never really grown up. They ran away as teenagers from their evil supervillain parents. As the Marvel Universe has grown up around them, they have remained teens – and as teens, they are awkward as hell trying to be superheroes. They clearly aren’t that comfortable with it, but they also want to put their powers to good use. So why not team up with this guy, Doc? Seems harmless, right?
Oh, Runaways. When will you ever learn that everyone you encounter is trying to play you?
Let’s cut over to Gertrude for the moment. She is the only who is not in a superhero costume, because unlike the rest of her friends, she thinks this superhero team is bullsh*t. But Gertrude loves her friends, so she comes around to the idea and bonds with the team’s tech guy, Matthew, who lets her play around in his tech lab.
Gertrude being Gertrude, hacks into Matthew’s computer and discovers the true purpose of the superhero team Doc is building: To kill the superhero team and make them look like martyrs.
Gertrude is not having any of this, and there is a great moment where she hops onto a motorcycle with Old Lace in the passenger seat to go save her friends. This image is amazing.
The rest of the Runaways are unaware of what Gertrude has learned and they are working with Doc to stop an anarchist from wiping out a power grid. Doc sends Karolina in to attack, knowing full well that this anarchist has powers of her own that could kill Karolina.
Is Karolina in any real danger? Probably not. She’s an alien with really cool light powers. Also, this particular story is clearly not going to have any great baring on the Runaways’ stories. But it is fun, and it does present the idea that the Runaways can never quite be an actual superhero team, because even they will do wrong by them.
It’s interesting how the Runaways can’t catch a break, but it’s also very much like the real world. No, not everyone is evil, but it does display the passage of age in which a teenager has to go be an adult and everything is difficult. That is always the story of Runaways.