I wanted to like this book so much.
I was a big Gail Simone fan right the way through her Agent X, Birds of Prey, and Secret Six runs, the latter of which being one of my all time favourite books. That said, her more recent output has left me cold, but when I heard she was writing a book billed as a response to Occupy Wall Street, it seemed like the perfect vehicle for aspects of Simone’s writing I enjoy most.
But alas, I was wrong.
Firstly, let me say that its not a bad book, it’s fine, in line with the majority of DC’s current output. But from Simone I expected something better, and certainly not something as conservative as this.
“Now hold on Adam,” I hear you cry, “this is THE Gail Simone we’re talking about, liberal firebrand of the comics industry, introducer of transgender characters and generally nice person right?” Right on all counts buddy, so cool your jets. When I say conservative I’m not questioning Simone’s leftie credentials, I’m talking about the mechanics of the book.
Lets backtrack for a second and talk about Young Avengers. It’s a good book, the art does a lot to enhance the writing but fundamentally Gillian is telling a fun story by imbruing the characters with a stylised teenage voice. It owes a lot, if not everything, to Joe Casey’s Vengeance, a messy, punky, fantastically inconstant, triumph of superhero world building and storytelling; which Gillian took, polished the hard edges off, and packaged as pop song.
Back on The Movement, I knew there was no hope of getting something as innovative and punchy as Vengeance, but I was hoping for a mass market friendly Young Avengers-esque/zeitgeisty fun-book. Instead it’s a bland, derivative book that could have been any grouping of “society doesn’t appreciate them and sees them as a menace” super types engaging in a small stakes rescue mission. Maybe it will grow into something great, but right now I’m not expecting much.