THIS GIRL NEEDS A HUG
These tribute covers are kind of brilliant in that the let you know the creators are aware that they aren't being extremely original, and they're not trying to hide it. And even then, yes it's the same as Battle Royale and Hunger Games, but it's not completely. Did BR or HG have superpowers? I think not. I also think the irony that a series like this is being written by someone with the name Hopeless is utterly delicious.
I have one problem with this series, and one with this issue. My overall concern is how long Murder World will be able to keep going, and what will happen afterwards. Why is this an ongoing series? I guess maybe it still has a definitive length in mind that is longer than almost any limited series. My problem with this issue in particular is that there's a very sudden death that serves very little purpose, something this series needs to desperately avoid in order to keep people from tearing at its throat. A series like this is already walking on eggshells. Last issue's death was INCREDIBLY meaningful though. And to be fair, I looked it up and the character in question has less than 10 previous appearances.
This issue we're mostly introduced to all the new characters, with a spotlight on the adorable and tragic Deathlocket. Deathlocket has an odd kind of chubby body type that ends up making her somehow even cuter due to her loneliness. She's so horrendously unfortunate that I DARE you make it through even half the issue without wanting to give her the biggest damn hug in the history of the world. She's an amazing choice to give us our first true perspective of Murder World, and the sense of despair and competition it breeds. Her very nature makes her a target for reasons almost unrelated to Murder World, and that helps set everyone on edge. Everyone at her throat is almost justified compared to anyone else.
In Conclusion: 4.5/5
I am in love with Avengers Arena, and maybe I need to read Avengers Academy now. I am brand new to the ENTIRE cast, except maybe X-23 and I only barely know her. For a new reader like myself this series is doing a fantastic job at endearing me to the cast, perhaps none more than Deathlocket. It makes me want to start a Facebook page simply titled 'Campaign to Give Deathlocket A Freaking Hug.'