Marvel NOW! (2016): GLA and Champions

On the 5th of July 2016, Marvel announced two new titles being published as a part of Marvel NOW! commencing this October (I believe). The Champions and the Great Lake Avengers. Both teams that pre-existed are being brought back, one with a new line-up of characters and the other with an almost identical character line-up.

Champions

The Original team was introduced in October 1975 and then ran until January 1978. The original team line-up was: Angel, Black Widow, Hercules, Ice Man, Darkstar and Ghost Rider. As can be seen by the cover above, none of the original members are in the new team. However, the new line-up fills me with pure glee.

For those who are less familiar with the Marvel Universe I will go through the line-up from left to right: Cyclops, Totally Awesome Hulk, Ms Marvel, Spider-man (Miles Morales), Nova and Viv Vision. I cannot convey enough how brilliant I think this line-up is. For starters, it has most of the big young heroes in current Marvel Universe. It also unites the major groups in the Marvel Universe which I love as well.

In addition, having them separate from the adult heroes allows them to have some limelight instead of being shadowed by the likes of Sam Wilson and Tony Stark. I’m aware the likes of Ms Marvel and Miles Morales are very popular characters but I believe that they deserve to be on a team where they can not only relate to their fellow members better but can also thrive better.

Not only is the team absolutely fabulous (My love for this line-up simply cannot be conveyed through words) but the man writing this series, for me, provides a promise that it will be given justice. Mark Waid is possibly my all-time favourite writer, (though he may be joint with G. Willow Wilson (Ms Marvel)) writing series like All-new All-different Avengers and Daredevil. I’m so glad that he is writing this title as it gives me confidence that it will be given the care it needs.

The more I look at the cover the more I fall in love with it. Expect to hear more about the new Champions from me in the next few months.

The Great Lakes Avengers

This team was originally introduced in issue 46 of the West Coast Avengers in July 1989. The team pictured above parallels almost exactly the original line-up back in ’89. Again, for those (and on this occasion myself with some of the characters) less knowledgeable on areas of the Marvel Universe here is the line-up, left to right: Doorman, Big Bertha, Flatman, Mr. Immortal and (I kid you not) a cardboard cut-out of Squirrel Girl.

My knowledge on the GLA is miniscule to the point that I knew they existed and I could name a few of the heroes on the team. Nevertheless, their return to the Marvel Universe filled me with a surprising amount of excitement (despite the fact that I have no real intention of collecting it). From what I can gather, the GLA are meant to be a more comedic Avengers team and in this day and age I think people need a laugh more than ever before.

I was particularly excited by the fact that not only were the GLA returning but they were also returning with their original membership (bar one (a cardboard cut-out doesn’t really count at the end of the day)). This is not only brilliant but equally rather heart-warming, paying tribute to Marvel’s older days. In releasing this series, Marvel, in a way, introduce their younger readers (like me) to an older team and also allows the older readers to see a team they are familiar with.

Even if I only pick up issue 1, I’m glad Marvel have brought back this classic team.

***

With October drawing ever closer (October being my assumed Marvel NOW! start month) Marvel are beginning to release more title teasers. I will try my very hardest to keep up with them and keep those of you interested as up-to-date as I can. If you have any thoughts on the new teams announced or equally any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments.

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