Y’know, something that seems to happen a lot in comics is that superhero teams will go through multiple iterations with varying members that switch in and out of the roster. The Justice Society, the Justice League, the Avengers, the X-Men, the Teen Titans, the New Warriors, etc. Now, a word that’s been going around a lot lately is ‘iconic’, specifically as it pertains to individuals bearing legacy hero aliases or variations of superhero teams. Ultimately, though, what it boils down to is which version you think of first. Like, for example, I love the idea of people like Sam Wilson, Miles Morales, and Kamala Khan taking up the names of Captain America, Spider-Man, and Ms. Marvel. Thing is, though, as much as I love it and hope they stick around for the long-haul, unless your first exposure to the Star-Spangled Avenger was the book All-New Captain America, you’re probably gonna think of Steve Rogers first before Sam Wilson. And that is in no way a knock at Sam, it’s just how it is. Steve has now had five individuals who have taken up the shield in varying absences and has always found a way to retake it every time, meaning that in his 74 year existence in comics, he’s spent the vast majority of it as Captain America, and is therefore likely to someday become Cap again. The movies don’t really help much there either, since Marvel always tries to have their comics reflect elements of the movies for the sake of new readers that got into the characters and stories through the movies, except in rare cases. Like, I don’t expect Carol Danvers to become Ms. Marvel again now that she’s got a movie in the works as CAPTAIN Marvel, so Kamala is probably safe in her current role.
Still, that raises an interesting question: Is there a universally accepted definition of who the most iconic versions of heroes and/or members of superhero teams are? Because every comic is conceivably someone’s first, so who knows? Maybe some people’s first exposure to Captain America is the Sam Wilson version? And hey, Free Comic Book Day is meant to get new readers on board with comics, so it’s entirely possible that the first version of the Avengers for some people is the one that debuted there, assuming they don’t watch the movies of course. Likewise, people who don’t read the comics and only watch the movies would think of that team of heroes as the Avengers first and foremost, and would probably be shocked to learn that Captain America wasn’t a founding member, Hulk left within a couple of issues and didn’t return until 2012, and Black Widow didn’t join the team until a full 10 years and 100+ issues into the Avengers’ history.
As such, here’s the question I pose to you all: Who do you think of when you think of the Avengers? Do you think of the original five founding members of Ant-Man, Wasp, Thor, Iron Man, and the Hulk? Perhaps Cap’s Kooky Quartet of himself, Hawkeye, Quicksilver, and Scarlet Witch? Maybe the A-Next team from the MC2 Universe, consisting of J2, Mainframe, Stinger, and Thunderstrike? Or maybe you don’t even think of one single version of the team, but rather different members that have been on various incarnations of the team, like Spider-Man, Vision, Wolverine, Luke Cage, or Doctor Strange?
So, basically what I want is for you to list the first five to ten characters you think of when you hear the word ‘Avengers’. Keep in mind, there is no wrong answer here. It all depends on who you think of. List them in the comments section below, and we’ll see who everyone thinks of, and if there are any universally considered iconic members of the Avengers. Ja né!
How Would I Rebuild The DC Universe From Scratch? – Teen Titans (Robin, Wonder Girl, Bunker, And More)
Well, welcome back to my own personal Put Up Or Shut Up moment for comics, How Would I Rebuild The DC Universe From Scratch. Granted, I may not be the best person to make such judgements, since apparently DC Comics is meant for 45 year olds, but this is just my own personal take on it. This time around, I thought I’d take a closer look at the members of one of my favourite superhero teams of all time, who I wouldn’t be surprised if I end up writing a fic about in the future…
Now, because a lot of these are known primarily for being Teen Titans, and/or for being sidekicks to other superheroes, not all of ’em have logos, so I’ll be using pictures. With that said, let’s start with who is usually considered the leader…
As I mentioned before, I’d naturally start with Dick Grayson as Robin. However, following his eventual transformation to Nightwing, I’d probably do as the Young Justice cartoon apparently did and skip over Jason Todd in favour of probably my favourite Robin of all time, Tim Drake. Now, that’s not to say that I would never involve Jason Todd, just not as Robin. Why? Well, for starters, I’m not exactly a huge fan of Jason Todd and what DC continues to try to do with him. Second, like I said, I prefer Tim Drake as Robin (and yes, he WAS Robin, I don’t care what anyone says. I don’t even mind calling him Red Robin, I just hate that DC insists he was never Robin). Now, would I put the mantle on others like Stephanie Brown and Damian Wayne later on? I dunno yet. Either way, though, Dick would be the leader of the team, though would often-times confer to this next individual…
I already covered most of what I’d do with Cyborg, but at the same time, I think I’d want him to act as a sort of mentor to the Titans. He’d be in charge of training them, putting together their base and equipment, etc. He might occasionally butt heads with Robin over leadership decisions, but otherwise would be friends.
Yes, I know that’s Donna Troy. Sorry to Cassie fans, and I MIGHT eventually show her some love too, but frankly, I just prefer Donna. As for her origin (hoo boy, Donna Troy’s origin), I’d probably just go with the story where she’s a mirror duplicate of Wonder Woman as a teenager, though I’d put her in the black costume with the blue stars. It’s just my personal favourite look for her. Otherwise, her role would be something similar to what Superboy’s was in the Young Justice cartoon, though with a better relationship with her counterpart. Finally, I think I’d want her to have a silver lasso as opposed to Wonder Woman’s golden lasso.
Y’know, much as I like to rag on Scott Lobdell from time to time, one thing I can thank him for is for intentionally making Bunker and his back-story completely angst free. And trust me, you have no idea how much I appreciate that, given the status quo of DC Superhero angst these days. So yeah, Miguel’s personality? Perfect. His powers? Pretty awesome. The only thing I’d change about him is his costume’s colour-scheme. I’d change it to violet and some other colour, like green or black. I just don’t like that sort of reddish-purple that goes down the middle of his mask and across the right side of his costume. Maybe it just bugs me because, in the comics, he’s on a team brought to you by the colours red, yellow, and brown, but it’s always bugged me.
Yeah, with enough characters in other colours, I can let Jesse Quick keep her normal red and yellow. 🙂 Also, as far as why I picked Jesse Quick over Bart Allen, it’s two-fold. One is that I already picked Wally West over Barry Allen to be The Flash, and two is that I’d want a more diverse team. After all, Jesse can not only tap into the Speed Force, but she also inherits her mother’s enhanced strength and stamina. As for her back-story, pretty much the same, minus the affair with her mother’s younger fiancée, because oh dear GOD that was stupid. Speaking of which, she’d also have the costume she wore in the earlier issues of The Titans, AKA Lewis Lovhaug‘s favourite comic book series ever. I just like it a lot, and find her other costumes to be kinda…eh.
No offence to Garth (in fact, far from it, I think I’d rather have Garth as Tempest), but Kaldur’ahm would be the Aqualad of this team, likely in his Young Justice TV show appearance (although I’d change the shade of red to a more orange tone) and power-set. However, to keep things from getting overly repetitive, I think I would kinda want him to be the sort-of Sixth Ranger member of the group (look it up on TV Tropes). Still, Kaldur would be the serious one, and would pretty much play designated driver to some of the antics the rest of the team might occasionally get up to.
Anyway, that’s it for the Teen Titans. Next time, I talk more about the villains, specifically who faces whom. Ja né!
- DC To Launch New Teen Titans Go! Digital Comic (goodereader.com)
- Week 31 2013 | Part 1 | Comic Reviews (cynsworkshop.wordpress.com)
- Exclusive: DC’s Villains Month Continues in TEEN TITANS #23.1 – Trigon (nerdist.com)
- ‘Teen Titans Go!’ digital comic, ‘Smallville’ shakeup announced by DC (digitalspy.co.uk)
- Batcow Joins DC Nation, New Clips from “Beware the Batman, Teen Titans Go!” (comicbookresources.com)
- Why Am I Still Reading More DC Then Marvel? (redblooms.wordpress.com)
- Why I Divorced the DC Universe (rtgomer.com)
- The Straight & Narrow (modernmythologies.com)
- Graphic Novels (#SFWApro) (frasersherman.wordpress.com)
- Franchises Collide When “Scribblenauts Unmasked” Invades the DC Universe (comicbookresources.com)