Fear Itself: Youth in Revolt #5

A comic review article by: Ray Tate
Youth in Revolt would have been a five-bullet book if not for the aftershocks of last issue's penis-measuring. The battle between Hardball and Gravity created the earthquake leveling Vegas, already fragile due to Juggernaut's hammer assault. This issue is about fixing the damage that the young heroes caused and about how their temper tantrum endangers the lives of their fellow heroes and the innocent. What's unfortunate is that, the current issue accents how much of the means were unnecessary to result in the ends.

It's as though Gravity's and Hardball's physical conflict over philosophical differences never happened. If you didn't pick up last issue, you would just recognize from this issue that Gravity and Hardball don't like each other much, and have issues with being thought of as gay; they initially balk at holding hands. You might rightfully assume that a hammered Juggernaut or a hammered something caused all of this. So why wasn't the Juggernaut the catalyst? Why did we have to suffer through that lousy previous issue to get to here? We didn't.

This chapter picks up where we left off. Cloud 9 is the point of view character. She details her recruitment, the nature of her power and a want for a normal life. McKeever contrasts that want and the fact she hasn't one in a pivotal scene that bestows this Cloud 9 resonance.

McKeever strengthens the friendship between Cloud 9 and Thor-Girl, who continues to win my respect through a combination of can-do attitude and physical strength in the service of the people, courtesy of artists Norton and Gandini. I actually think these two heroes could support a title of their own if written by McKeever and given the illustrative fortitude of Norton and Gandini.

McKeever ends the issue with Thor-Girl violently protesting her treatment at the facility that Prodigy held her in. It's a great moment for anybody who read the early issues of the mini, and for those who haven't, Thor-Girl's dialogue provides hints at what she endured.

Prodigy of course is innocent, and that gives the misunderstanding a comical twist. Prodigy's characterization in the issue is actually rather decent. He expresses good leadership skills. His plans factor in knowledge and a familiarity with his teammates. McKeever though missteps with a nod to his apparent alcoholism. It sends a misplaced goofy, Afterschool Special vibe, and you have to marvel at the convenience. How is it that the local liquor store with all its stock of bottled goods was spared by the quake?

Ray Tate's first online work appeared in 1994 for Knotted. He has had a short story, "Spider Without a Web," published in 1995 for the magazine evernight and earned a degree in biology from the University of Pittsburgh. Since 1995, Ray self-published The Pick of the Brown Bag on various usenet groups. In the POBB, as it was affectionately known, Ray reviewed comic books, Doctor Who novels, movies and occasionally music. Circa 2000, he contributed his reviews to Silver Bullet Comic Books (later Comics Bulletin) and became its senior reviewer. Ray Tate would like to think that he's young at heart. Of course, we all know better.

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