It’s been a long time since I have enjoyed a Marvel Comic book. It’s been even a longer time since I have enjoyed one as immensely as I have, with the current run of New Warriors, written by Christopher Yost. Christopher Yost confirmed the series cancellation today on Twitter and thanked everyone who gave it a shot.
The New Warriors have endured a lot since their creation. The New Warriors first appeared in Thor #411 and #412, in which Thor was fighting Juggernaut. Writer/Editor, Tom DeFalco created the team as Firestar, Marvel Boy, Namorita, Nova, and Speedball – and brought in an original character, Night Thrasher to serve as the team’s leader.
In 1990, Fabian Nicieza launched The New Warriors series, with then a fairly new artist, Mark Bagley. The first 25 issues of the New Warriors is, without a doubt, some of the best comic book writing in comics. Seemingly small, insignificant things all build up to an epic 25th issue of the series. Following that, the characters go on to endure some difficult choices – including getting involved in a war and choosing sides, both of which seem justified; a friend being raped, and how to deal with it; Marvel Boy endures physical abuse from his father, and accidentally kills him and decides to go to jail and not fight it; among an assortment of many other, very human, very deep, consequences and choices. This was not a book where Villain_A shows up and does battle with the heroes. This was a book about the heroes. And what they were going through.
Evan Skolnick picked up the series, after Fabian left with issue #53, and continued telling the story of the New Warriors, in a fashion that felt very smooth from Fabian’s run. The series went on to inspire a Night Thrasher limited series, then an ongoing series, as well as a second volume of the Nova series.
Jay Faerber brought us a second volume of The New Warriors, many years later. And while most fans of the series were torn, Jay gave us a unique spin on the New Warriors. Unfortunately, the series went through a number of different pencilers, and apparent battles with the editors behind closed doors, doomed the series, and it came to a short end after the 10th issue.
Zeb Wells later gave us the third volume, which most fans strongly disliked. Zeb made the New Warriors reality television heroes. The series was written with a heavy dose of comedic sense, that was further enhanced by Scottie Young’s cartoonish art. This series was used as the trigger point later, for Marvel’s massive event entitled “Civil War.” Unfortunately, in the process Night Thrasher, Namorita, and Microbe (who had been created for this volume’s version of the New Warriors), perished.
Kevin Grevioux was the next person to handle the New Warriors. He gave them a completely different spin, with only “Night Thrasher” returning as member of the New Warriors. Night Thrasher turned out to be Bandit. The rest of the New Warriors were former mutants who had lost their powers after the event of “No More Mutants” and used technology to “become super heroes.” The series suffered from pencils that made the character difficult to distinguish. The series, over all, was not one that was welcomed by New Warriors fans, and it wasn’t enough interest by the X-Fans (Mutants), who might have followed the book for the characters.
Then came Christopher Yost. For the first time, speaking for myself, I feel like I am reading the original volume of New Warriors. There is wonderful dialogue, plenty of action, amazing art. This has been the most enjoyable book I have read in years. This is why I read comics. And now Marvel wants to take this away.
And to thee, I say nay. We can make a difference. It’s near impossible, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth it. I’d recommend purchasing extra copies every month, and handing them out to friends, family, co-workers. And keep buying it – for the next four issues. If enough people do this, Marvel may see a rise in sales, and better yet – you may end up recruiting some new fans of the New Warriors.
Fight the fight.