Champions under Eve Ewing has had consistently strong showings and issue #4 is no different, bringing several iconic X-Men into the fold and furthering the plot found in the Outlawed event.
The story picks up where we left off: Cyclops rescuing the Champions and declaring them under Krakoan protection. But there’s a catch: he lied. Apparently, Krakoa’s Quiet Council rejected Cyclops’ notion to give them amnesty, so he disobeyed them, invoking the name of Krakoa to get the kids out of the government’s line of fire. This is, without a doubt, some of the strongest writing Cyclops has ever had in the Krakoa era — and it’s found in the pages of Champions.
Since the current era started, Cyclops has randomly regressed as a character, thrust back into a marriage with a woman he wasn’t dating prior to this era, put back into the shoes of Xavier’s errand boy rather than the strong-headed leader who did what was necessary. It’s an odd role he’s suddenly reassumed, a far cry from the character who grew to found Utopia and lead a mutant revolution. Ewing’s Cyclops feels more in line with the leader type from Utopia, the man who refused the government’s wishes because what the government wanted was unjust. Cyclops isn’t a man who does what’s popular, he does what’s right — and that’s precisely the character Ewing has written, defying government orders to protect the Champions because it’s the right thing to do.
The Champions are the stars of the show, but Ewing makes a compelling case for writing an X-Men book with how she handles these characters. The bit of Cyclops trying on his old Champions uniform for “old time’s sake” is adorable and completely natural. Her Storm is regal yet fierce, a total scene-stealer — and so on and so forth. The X-Men are effortlessly tied in, their presence feeling completely organic without overshadowing the main team.
The kids’ fear for their current predicament makes sense, and it’s hard not to feel bad for them while reading this issue. The kids’ dynamic has never been better, featuring some great scenes like the one between Kamala and Sam in the Marauders’ hull.
Viv Vision’s treachery made many fans nervous when the preview hit, but Ewing assures fans their faith in her was not misplaced with this issue, having Viv’s actions be solely out of love. The scenes with Viv in Kansas are great, and Ewing works in some fabulous character work for her here.
Champions #4 features strong writing across the board, from the X-Men to the Champions themselves. Bob Quinn’s pencils get the job done quite nicely while Ewing continues to prove just how well she knows these characters.
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