All New Invaders with Kate (and Dan)

D: We’ve been reading a lot of “small scale stories” lately. Crime comics. Spy comics. Good stuff, but when I was a kid…

K: … Oh, here we go…

D: Shush, you. When I was a kid…

K: YAWN.

D: … I’m talking here! When I was a kid, comics were all big, multi-layered space stories, with multiple plot lines going at the same time! SUPER-DUPER-COSMIC-WOW type stuff! I kinda miss those stories.

K: Interesting. Since we started doing this blog in the last few years, those modern “smaller scale stories” are pretty much all we’ve read. It would be interesting to see a modern take on your classic super-duper-cosmic-wow tale.

D: Looks like Marvel was reading your mind. They’ve signed up DC mainstays James Robinson (Starman, Earth 2) and Steve Pugh (Animal Man) for the re-launch of the old INVADERS book.

::camera pans towards copy of ALL-NEW INVADERS #1::

K: ::looks sideways at the camera:: When did we get a camera?

D: Just go with it.

K: OK… Gimme the book. And make that camera go away.

K: This book has it all! Aliens, gods, Nazis, pie, fire! I can see why this type of story was all the rage when you started reading comics. There are so many layers, but not too many that a new-ish reader like me won’t get lost.

D: The Invaders was originally the name of Captain America’s first team back in the far-flung days of WWII. Captain America! Bucky! The Sub-Mariner! The Original Human Torch! Toro! The Invaders!

::starts throwing red, white, and blue confetti::

K: But I thought Bucky died. You can’t fall from a moving train in the mountains and survive. Didn’t you tell me that he was one of the few comic characters that died and remained dead. Bucky doesn’t get rebooted. Ever. You said. YOU SAID!

D: That was the Movie-Bucky Death. The Comic-Bucky Death was Bucky blowing up on a plane while Cap fell to his icy slumber in the English Channel. Duh. And I told you the truth. Bucky was the sacred cow of comic reboots. You just didn’t do it. But Ed Brubaker had other ideas. And it was a great idea! You see Bucky didn’t really die. The Russians kidnapped him, brainwashed him, and turned him into The Winter Soldier, the Super-Spy Assassin. Now he lives in the shadows because he is wanted for his past crimes.

K: But Bucky is so not the focus of issue number one. Robinson makes Jim Hammond, the Original Human Torch, the main guy, er… robot… in the book. He’s living a quiet life in rural Illinois, repairing cars, and eating pie.

D: I like pie.

K: Don’t we all.

D: Then an alien-lady shows up at the auto repair shop and everything goes sideways. We learn that during World War II, when the Invaders were in full swing fighting bad guys, the super-team had a show down with the Nordic Goddess of Death, Hela.

K: Her name is Hela-lame.

D: ::rolls eyes:: I’m going to ignore that comment. See, this is where the Story. Gets. Big. The blue lady is a member of the alien race known as the Kree. Along with the Shi’ar, the Kree are some of the most powerful races in the Marvel Universe. We know something big is on the horizon when our story opens with the death of Fang, a member of the Shi’ar Imperial Guard. The Kree are often times seen in the Avengers books. And the X-Men hang out with the Shi’ar all the time. And now Robinson is bringing in Hela from the Thor book? This is going to be a Big, Big Story.

The Nazis were using a powerful device to control the Goddess of Death, but the Invaders snatched the device from the bad guys, broke it into three pieces, and hid those pieces.

K: And the blue-skinned alien-lady wants those pieces. She invades Jim’s memories to find the location of the last piece that she needs to finish reassembling the device. Once the super-controlling device is put back together…

D: Bad things will happen. Really bad things.

K: Way to get all wordy, dude.

D: Sorry.

K: So let’s summarize: We’ve got a flammable robot living in Mayberry, giant blue alien chicks with hammers, repressed (robot) memories coming to the fore, and the Sub-Mariner held hostage by a giant green head with tendrils for hair?

D: ::checks notes:: Yeah, that’s about right. And it all looks so good! Steve Pugh does an amazing job illustrating the difference between the modern day and the battle during World War II.

K: I really like how the flashback scenes have a muted tone versus the bright images for the current time.  It made it easy to follow the story, and it wasn’t at all distracting.  I’m really digging this new mystery. I’m impressed. And I’m in for the long haul.

D: I told you: this is the return of the Big Story. Strap in. James Robinson and Steve Pugh are taking us for a ride we won’t soon forget!