Avengers Arena fans or only haters?

#1 Edited by Loki9876 (3015 posts) - - Show Bio

A lot of people have a lot of hate towards this book because they feel that it is cruel to kill of these teen characters. Well I bought the TPB and I really liked it.

Yes, I understand if you're favorite character dies that isn't fun but I think Hopeless manages these characters pretty well the time before their deaths. I'm intrested in these characters and see more of their personality in this book. If your character was killed think about it this way. Do you rather want him or her in a story where he or she dies but still a pretty fun story even if he or she dies or do you want the character to be stuck in comic-book-limbo until they have a 6-issue mini series and fall back in the void again.

I don't really think these characters are written in a wrong way. I read Avengers Academy and Runaways and I don't think these characters in this book are much different than these titles they were created in.

Also what is positive about this book is that the braddock academy has intresting characters and they don't seem like characters they have their just to kill them off. I first thought this was going to happen. I believe Hopeless likes all the characters in his book and isn't an evil writer who enjoys killing teenage characters.

But what about the obvious rip-off. Hunger games, battle Royale much?

Well it is but atleast they admit it. The first 3 covers were a homage to battle royale, hunger games and lord of the flies, so he doesn't try to hide it. Heck, Arcade even says he picked the idea up by a teenage novel (obviously hunger games). It's still an idea that has been used frequently. Yes, but if it can be a fun book, why not?

To recap. I think this is a fun book which could and allready did resolve in intresting situation. However I do understand if you truly loved these characters that you are a bit angry.

Please be kind this is just my opinion. You can tell your own but be respectful about it.

#2 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

I have a blog you should read.

Actually I have something like ten blogs running, most of which are archived here. If you only want to read one thing, read "Hopeless. Heartless. Careless?" because that covered the broadest bases and undercuts the notions that Hopeless is a good and caring writer.

More recently, on Tumblr, I've addressed a few people: through - these - four - posts. (includes spoilers of today's issue, so heads-up)

I am open to a discussion on opinions but I think you'll find that there is actually a tremendous amount of discussion on the topic already which will either convince you to change your opinion, or at the very least make it clear that the loathing that people have for this series is extraordinarily justified. If you read through at least that one blog and those Tumblr posts, and still feel the same and/or want to try to convince me or any other fans that this isn't as bad as we say it is, then I am open. But I do not honestly think that it is possible to read those things and still think that.

#3 Edited by DH69 (4258 posts) - - Show Bio

Only reason i read it is cause its spill off of the initiative and academy series, which i read for the teachers...never cared a bit for the students...so i guess i'm a fan of arena :D

#4 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio
@dh69 said:

Only reason i read it is cause its spill off of the initiative and academy series, which i read for the teachers...never cared a bit for the students...so i guess i'm a fan of arena :D

As I said in the third Tumblr post there, "Most readers of Arena are fans not of the characters, but of Arena."

I'd actually like to highlight part of another of those Tumblr posts because it put something well (to me) that I've had trouble phrasing for a while:

I’ll refer you back to the blog I mentioned earlier only because your penultimate paragraph again raises a point I simply don’t accept. Hopeless is not predominately developing fans of these characters — he is developing enough of an attachment that you care when he kills them. He has complete control over the emotional situation within his book, but it entirely disregards any development or emotional connections which readers may have had prior to the first issue. Consider, if you will, that the overwhelming majority of people who like this book have admitted to not knowing much about most of the characters.

You exemplify my problem with the book. Because the “fans” who were not there six months ago will not be there in six months, but the fans who were there six years ago have nothing left to hold onto, and will continue missing and mourning the character long after the people who got into the book because it was interesting have shrugged and moved on.

You come across like someone who sees a funeral procession and decides to stop by at the cemetery, sheds a tear because the eulogy was pretty well-said, and then carries on his merry way, telling the deceased’s friends and relatives that they should be grateful for how great the eulogy was.

#5 Posted by SoA (4777 posts) - - Show Bio

i look forward to this book every month , i like it besides a small handful i do not know of the other characters so it does not phase me as it would readers who know these characters. but its a fun book and would like to know what happens next.

#6 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@soa said:

i look forward to this book every month , i like it besides a small handful i do not know of the other characters so it does not phase me as it would readers who know these characters. but its a fun book and would like to know what happens next.

It's hard to try to empathize with other readers. I know because I'm able to enjoy a lot of New 52 stuff that grieves most longstanding DC fans.

But consider this: This was the ten-year anniversary of both Runaways and Juston's Sentinel book.

What did fans of the decade-old franchises get?

Juston, crippled from the waist-down, murdered while he was defenseless, and this right after Hopeless teased them by showing that he hadn't died after all, but was safe. He set the hopes of fans up on a pedestal and then dashed those hopes to pieces. And in this issue, we see his corpse disrespectfully catapulted through the air by his robot companion.

Nico, whose own Wiki page notes that she's the leader of the Runaways -- the most important character in that entire franchise -- has her arm blown off and then dies bloodily in the snow in an attempt to cast a spell which she absolutely should have cast on the very first day in Murder World. After having been inexplicably depowered despite possessing what had been established as one of the most powerful magical artifacts in the entire Marvel universe, she then dies before casting a spell which makes her look like an idiot for not having cast it sooner. Now her death will serve nothing but, possibly, motivating Chase and/or attracting the attention of outsiders -- which means her bloody, shocking death on ice is a textbook fridging.

Happy birthday Sentinel & Runaways. RIP.

You don't have to feel the way we fans do, but you should make an endeavor to recognize just how atrocious the thing you are calling "fun" actually is. Folks at the Roman Coliseum thought it was great fun to watch people they didn't know get torn apart by lions and bears and each other. This is the same thing -- a gladiatorial Arena, with people crying on the sidelines while others cheer and laugh and mock.

#7 Posted by Loki9876 (3015 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogert: I read your article. First of you have a problem digging in the characters past because in your mind he doesn't respect the audience who allready know these characters?
That's pretty weird in my mind by delving into these characters past he's giving them an emotional background. I think it is intresting to see their backgrounds and what they're made of.
because most characters are actually new ones that didn't exist before this series. Why dig into the old characters their past? Well maybe to make them intresting or be new reader friendly.
It is not if this is the only book that refers to the characters origin either. If you strip these things away from the book all you have is a book where characters fight each other and die. Do you think that would be intresting?
I read some other complaints to like that Mettle shouldn't have blood. Where do you got this from? Yes, his skin is some sort of metal but we don't know if his insides are.
There were some other things like the claw thing which I have no idea about what your refering to. Also the question how Arcade did this and all these question. Well, I hope he will reveal these answers in the next trade paperback. You also have a problem with X-23 because she was only a killing machine. Well if you read it you would see that she is not. You probably saw a scan in which she was affected by her trigger scent. This is something that really was a thing in her old stories.

#8 Edited by Loki9876 (3015 posts) - - Show Bio

oh and by the way I hope you do realise that all books are arena in the sense that in all books characters can die. Game of thrones is pretty popular characters, die by the dozen but they don't complain about it that much.

#9 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@loki9876: I don't understand your first couple sentences.

Most of these characters actually aren't new ones. Of the 16 kids the series started with, 11 were previously-existing characters. Of the characters who have died thus far, 1 is a new character, and 4 were pre-existing. 80% of the deaths in this series have been of characters who had fans prior to the book starting.

Your comments on Mettle are purely ignorant. Mettle's body was transmuted into alloy, and the fact that he should not have contained blood isn't mere postulation, is canonical fact.

My responses to the characterization of X-23 are not due to a single panel or page, and they have been confirmed by multiple fans of the character who are also reading (or were at the time reading) the book.

The definition of "arena" is not as broad as you just suggested. Moreover comparisons to Game of Thrones or any creator-owned property are moot because none of them involve taking characters with pre-existing fanbases and killing them off. A person who comes to care for GoT characters does so under the understanding that they are part of a cruel story and a harsh world where horrible things happen. The Runaways in particular was specifically created to be the antithesis of that, and I've quoted BKV's letter at the end of the first volume to point that out. People who learned to love those characters did so in a family-friendly, all-ages, directed-at-children environment. If Game of Thrones featured the cast of Wishbone being killed off then yeah, I think you would hear a lot of complaining about that too.

#10 Edited by Loki9876 (3015 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogertin the first arc of runaways the black kid I believe his name was Alex died. In the original books there was vilionce. The X-23 thing is just not true in my opinion.

Kid Briton, nara, deathlocket, Aiden, bloodstone, red raven and Apex were new characters. Even if mettle's insides are supposed to be metal. You don't kow how Arcade killed him and even if you're still not statisfied. I still think it's a small nitpick to be honest.

I respect your opinion. I don't want this debate to spin out of control.

#11 Edited by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@loki9876 said:

in the first arc of runaways the black kid I believe his name was Alex died. In the original books there was vilionce. The X-23 thing is just not true in my opinion.

Kid Briton, nara, deathlocket, Aiden, bloodstone, red raven and Apex were new characters. Even if mettle's insides are supposed to be metal. You don't kow how Arcade killed him and even if you're still not statisfied. I still think it's a small nitpick to be honest.

I respect your opinion. I don't want this debate to spin out of control.

Red Raven wasn't a new character. The others, yes, I believe were his. As for X-23, my biggest gripe with him will still be that he just gave Arcade the ability to craft his own Trigger Scent, despite very clear canonical reasons that that is impossible. I understand in today's issue Laura made an inexplicably stupid decision that nearly (and if Hopeless were writing logically, would have) cost her her life. As someone mentioned on the review of today's issue, Hopeless seems to have a good handle on dialogue, but the character behaviors (or failure to behave certain ways) is definitely a lot less defensible.

The issue with Mettle is that he was fridged. His death was meant to shock readers. That is really all it was meant to do. You can say it was supposed to motivate Hazmat (though that's still part of fridging) but she hasn't really actually mourned him at all, not in the way you'd expect considering just how much he meant to her. So when you have a death which is already dubious in quality, and then it ends up gory and bloody (seriously, the blood he doesn't have sprays on his girlfriend's face?), then yeah, it's going to be impossible to pacify or satisfy me.

#12 Posted by Loki9876 (3015 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogert: You are right it was meant to shock people. You are right about that. It was to show that this situation is serious. If the facility that created X-23 could make it why couldn't Arcade?

#13 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@loki9876: The rarity of TS is what makes it so dangerous. X-23 was designed to be a very expensive, very sought-after weapon.

TS is like the launch codes for a nuclear missile. Without them, the missile is harmless. If you could just hack the launcher or make up new codes, the weapon's value would diminish. Narratively, the tension would be gone because if TS can just show up anywhere, then X-23 can be controlled on a whim and is never safe at all.

Which is precisely what happens here, and why it's stupid. Many people have spent millions of dollars to try to secure a hint of trigger scent. People have died pursuing or transporting it.

Arcade isn't even a genius -- as we saw in issue 7, most of this is someone else's doing. His ability to concoct what some of the greatest villain masterminds in the world couldn't -- and "in a couple weeks," like it as no big deal -- is just PIS, it's a deus ex machina because without it X-23 would be impossible to stop, and impossible to make participate. So rather than saying "oh, then maybe she wouldn't be a good fit for this story," Hopeless hand-selects her, puts her in, and then bends canon and credulity to make her "make sense" for the story. If she does end up dead, she will have done so in a story she never made sense in in the first place due to situations which a respect of canon would have rendered impossible.

Sort of like how Nico's staff is insanely powerful, something that Arcade should never have been able to nerf (and never explained the rules for that nerfing), but rather than just having a different character in the book he hand-selects her, depowers her despite canon, writes her like an idiot who never thought to cast a "help" or any other of a thousand spells which should have gotten her or others out of the mess before, and then expects you to think him clever when she casts that spell -- and it works -- in her dying breaths. The fact that that spell should have been thought of and cast ages ago strips the death of any meaning Hopeless no doubt expects it to have when her "sacrifice" leads outsiders to find Murder World. Another character whose death ultimately does nothing (and should not have been able to happen) but serve the plot Hopeless is trying to force.

#14 Edited by SoA (4777 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogert: i am still holding on to the small hope that the whole thing is in a virtual reality simulator

#15 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@soa: Alas, that has been disproven several times over and actually specifically dismissed by the author. These deaths are very real, and while typically I would embrace anything which makes people feel better, if that self-delusion is helping you justify financially supporting this book then, well... I can't embrace that.

#16 Posted by Loki9876 (3015 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogert: I have no idea about the rarity of the trigger scent so I can't tell anything about that.

#17 Posted by SoA (4777 posts) - - Show Bio
#18 Posted by Loki9876 (3015 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogert: by the way I'm not saying this is a masterpiece. It's a fun book for what it is in my opinion

#19 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@soa: I'm just saying that it absolutely isn't virtual reality, and that there is proof. So if you truly still are holding onto that, you need to not, because it is confirmed to not be true.

@loki9876: Laura's my favorite character in comics. If there's one thing I feel comfortable in considering myself an expert on, it's her.

#20 Posted by SoA (4777 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogert: fair enough , still going to see how this ends even if deathlocket is the sole survivor

#21 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@loki9876: I understand that. And like I said earlier, I understand also that people watched other people being torn apart by lions a millennium ago and also called that fun. Comparatively this is trivial, but the fact remains: some people simply enjoy really despicable things. I can't make you stop enjoying it, but I will continue to point out why it is, in fact, despicable.

As I've said elsewhere, what really bothers me is that there isn't any parity. The people this book hurts, it hurts far more than it pleases those whom it pleases. It's fun, a distraction, something not great but at least somewhat decent to the people who like it. But if the book were to be cancelled right now, you wouldn't really feel like you were missing that much. Some people would get angry but that anger would subside quickly, and the lasting impact on them would be negligible. But for every new issue of this book, people do care, and things affect them which will affect them for a long time, and badly.

#22 Posted by crimsonspider89 (817 posts) - - Show Bio

Also his Hazmat and Reptil were awful. Hazmat has came off as spiteful and a horrible person. She is supposed to be the harsh but caring cynic. Reptil is first and foremost a super hero geek, so his lines should be moral and making jokes towards Arcade.

Also he forgot how Nico's staff works. It wouldn't of broken and she could of called it to return back to her.

#23 Edited by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@crimsonspider89 said:

Also his Hazmat and Reptil were awful. Hazmat has came off as spiteful and a horrible person. She is supposed to be the harsh but caring cynic. Reptil is first and foremost a super hero geek, so his lines should be moral and making jokes towards Arcade.

Also he forgot how Nico's staff works. It wouldn't of broken and she could of called it to return back to her.

He didn't forget. He seems to have never known or cared.

It's not even the right staff.

...honestly, it's like if Tony Stark (one of the most important characters in his group franchise) were to die because he couldn't get to his suit, despite having previously established over the course of years an ability to will his suit to come to him.

#24 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (33091 posts) - - Show Bio

A book specifically designed to kill of teen heroes because Marvel think they have to many is not a good book

#25 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

A book specifically designed to kill of teen heroes because Marvel think they have to many is not a good book

Agreed, and before people try to contradict you (because I see people contradict this), here's a direct quote from the solicits at the end of Avengers #1 - Avengers World (I've underlined the important parts):

Also making its debut this month is Avengers Arena #1! For those fans who complain that Marvel has too many young heroes in our stable, Arcade is out to do something about it -- by imprisoning sixteen of them on Murderworld Island and forcing them all to fight to the death! ... So if you're a fan of Hazmat, Darkhawk, the Runaways, Mettle, Cammi and Nico -- or if you can't stand the sight of 'em -- AVENGERS ARENA's got something you won't want to miss!

#26 Edited by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@soa said:

@akbogert: i am still holding on to the small hope that the whole thing is in a virtual reality simulator

#27 Posted by ShadowX (1218 posts) - - Show Bio

This book is my most hated book. The Runaways was the first comic book series i read in full. I loved the characters that appeared in it, i connected to all of them. Nico was a powerful Woc leader, that is something rare. In this book they depowered her and tore her apart, meanwhile they took the white male Chase stien( i love him too. Well the runaways veraion if him) give him a poeer boost, then mind controls him to deliver the final blow. I cried when I heard this. it wasn't a beautiful death scene that represented the character, like Nightcrawlers death during second comomg. No nicos death was a horrible, destructive fridging that has made a scar in my heart. I still like marvel books, but the wound I have received will always leave a bitter taste. And unlock Nightcrawler or Peter parker, these characters might not have the "popularity' to be.brought back. I would have much preferred to see Nico and the runaways as a whole go to limbo and only ocassionally appear than the horror of whats happening now. I would rather have the good stories end and remmeber them fondly than know that this was Nicos last breath. ...

#28 Posted by SoA (4777 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogert: ok...? im still going to read how this ends . happy ending or not , all the kids die or there will be a survivor . i was a big fan of the original battle royale so this book intrigued me and to be honest , only my positive side was hoping its a dream/virtual reality (more or less because of the last issue , nicooo!!!) but im ok with gratuitous violence and the books attempt at shock value .

#29 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@soa: I understand. I just was going through Hopeless' tweets and saw that, and figured a bit more confirmation wouldn't hurt.

I've never questioned the book's success at shock value (I wouldn't say attempt...it succeeds) or gratuity...I just question what's left if you take those things away. And what will be left when this book is over, compared to what was there before it.

#30 Posted by SoA (4777 posts) - - Show Bio
#31 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

I didn't know where to mention this, so I'm mentioning it here. Apparently the folks over at Multiversity Comics fall under "Avengers Arena fans," much to my delusionally-strong chagrin.

#32 Edited by Annabelle_Godwinne (150 posts) - - Show Bio

Blegh.

#33 Posted by TheAcidSkull (18032 posts) - - Show Bio

It is Horrible.

This is My disgust towards the latest issue. and since i'm a lazy slug i'll just copy paste it:

This is My first review of the Avengers arena, and it'll probably won't be my last either, see the thing is that i've kept hope that the series would improve, and it and the kids would team up and defeat arcade or at least something like that, but i should have figured it out from the moment mettle died that that the kids/heroes would probably die one way or the other, even the major ones. i decided to postpone my review until the word was out about one of the main characters deaths, and since i've waited lets start reviewing.

First of as usual, i'd like to get the art out of the way. it's not exactly bad, but it's ....i guess...ill structured. What i mean is that sometimes the characters seem bent in an odd way or the faces are kind of rusty. For example on one panel x-23 looks as if her hands are connected with her legs, and her face looks as if she just sniffed up cocaine , and no this isn't a joke, the face was hilariously stupid. and the flow of the actions scenes shifted from smooth to rusty from time to time, it wasn't enjoyable at all.

As for the story, not much makes sense here. i get that hopeless is trying to make some of the kids as a bad guy to show what circumstances could do to us, but it just doesn't work well. for one thing When Laura goes to look for and FINDS katy, she meets chase and tells him to stay put, and so he does, and while she is getting stomped by a huge sentinel, chase says OMG and does absolutely nothing to help. so i'm supposed to believe that chase, a stubborn , athlete jock with powers didn't even try to help? i know he and Laura aren't exactly teammates or friends but it would have made sense for him to intervene. Also, why was x-23 unable to doge a huge robots attacks when she dodges bullets with ease? so a master strategist killing machine wasn't able to figure out that the giant robot standing behind the villain would be a problem? or did she simply ignore it? or wasn't it her who said that as soon as she meets someone she instantly tries to account for everything a couple of issues back? where did that go? no idea.

Then katy, the supposed intellectual villain who will do anything to survive and win, doesn't get rid of the main threat, x-23 , and tosses her miles away to her friends because the plot demeaned it. Look, i don't want Laura dead, don't get me wrong, but there should have at least been a logical reason to why katy let x-23 live, not that she would be able to kill her though.

Now we get to the good part, as they are fighting, they end up at the end of a cliff, where Nico saves her friends, but before she can get out, she gets injured and has to close the portal. not here is the deal. While nico gets up, chase comes back, as darkhawk, and nico apologizes for being a jerk, but then it turns out that chase being controlled, and therefore he cuts here arm of and knocks her off a cliff. Before i get into why this sucks i'd like to ask , why didn't nico realize something was off? Chase knew who the bad guy was, and yet he didn't attack her at all, and nico, for some reason doesn't realize that chase, her friend mind you, isn't attacking the obvious foe for some reason. it's bad enough that she basically threw out a close friend of his out of the group to be alone, now she can't even think straight?

But thats not the problem, her death, was absolutely idiotic. i had no build up, and she was just sacrificed how hopeless's characters could live on, for whom none of us even care about , not even a little. Nicos death was sudden, and if had not emotional force or merit to it. sure it could have been sad that her friend was the one who executed her unwillingly, but it just didn't work, because it was not played out well.

#34 Posted by Cap10nate (2251 posts) - - Show Bio

I haven't read the series mostly because I don't really care about any of the characters, and I have some other books ahead of it on the wait list to read first. However, it seems that most people who read the book without the hatred of the premise are actually enjoying the book for the story and writing.

I think it pulls the same emotions that makes Walking Dead and Game of Thrones so popular. When you read Walking Dead, as soon as you start cheering and caring for a character, you start feeling dread that it might be their time to meet a horrible end.

#35 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

I haven't read the series mostly because I don't really care about any of the characters, and I have some other books ahead of it on the wait list to read first. However, it seems that most people who read the book without the hatred of the premise are actually enjoying the book for the story and writing.

I think it pulls the same emotions that makes Walking Dead and Game of Thrones so popular. When you read Walking Dead, as soon as you start cheering and caring for a character, you start feeling dread that it might be their time to meet a horrible end.

It's not merely hatred of the premise that keeps people from loving the book; by and large, it's also love of the characters. With few exceptions, the people who are enjoying the story and writing have no prior knowledge or care for the characters. That's why they can't see the flaws in the writing -- you can't know something's inconsistent if you don't know what it's supposed to be consistent with -- and that's why the story doesn't bother them, because they have no emotional or personal stake in it beyond general entertainment. I don't think there's a single person whose love for Arena rivals the loathing of people who hate it. And I don't mean just saying "it's good" but "if they cancelled this book I would quit reading Marvel because this is honestly the greatest thing they've ever published."

You're correct about how connections with characters in WD and GoT are formed. But you know before you start cheering or caring that they're characters in WD or GoT, and develop your attachments accordingly. The characters in Arena have fans who developed attachments without any of that caution or danger or fear or dread looming over them. The Runaways was a book explicitly designed to be safe for kids -- fun for all ages, but with young readers as the demographic, specifically to contrast the dark and convoluted stuff in other books. This book prays off the dread that something will happen to someone you care about but using characters you already cared about, rather than doing the work of forging those attachments prior to severing them. If George R.R. Martin wants to do a Red Wedding every other chapter, he can do that, because they're his characters and because his readers know what to expect coming into it. But Hopeless is performing a Red Wedding filled with attendees from other writers' books. Oh, also: the Red Wedding served a purpose plot-wise; it wasn't just gratuitous. The deaths in this book serve no one's purpose but Arcade's, and his motivations have been established as trivial and trite.

#36 Posted by TheAcidSkull (18032 posts) - - Show Bio
#37 Posted by lykopis (10746 posts) - - Show Bio

OMG

I think, I think...well. I do believe I feel like crying.

@akbogert said:

I didn't know where to mention this, so I'm mentioning it here. Apparently the folks over at Multiversity Comics fall under "Avengers Arena fans," much to my delusionally-strong chagrin.

Ugh. Looks like someone made a deal to get a much wished for interview with Hopeless when the series first launched.

Pathetic article (in my opinion.)

Anywhoo, back to what TAS linked us too.....

(weeping)

#38 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@lykopis: To be fair, I had a pretty extensive chat with one of the Multiversity guys over twitter after the fact. It was refreshingly civil and informative.

Also, regarding what TAS linked to, I started a thread which links to my thoughts on the matter. The most succinct way of recapping, if y'all are pressed for time, is that I've tired of being an emotional yo-yo. I refuse to be truly excited or comforted by anything in the series until I am positive that that happiness is more than a set-up for future misery.

#39 Posted by lykopis (10746 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogert:

True. But to have an article written when it's blatantly misleading the reader into thinking the book is extremely successful when its not is irresponsible. I am harsh when it comes to journalism, no matter what level it's at.

I shall seek out your thread.

#40 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

@lykopis: What sort of rattles me a bit is the fact that they're not intentionally misleading. They actually do believe that the book is super awesome, and they're simply expressing that. I can list a ton of reasons why they shouldn't be loving it but none of them seem to change the fact that they are. (and yay)

#41 Posted by lykopis (10746 posts) - - Show Bio

@akbogert:

O_O

In that case, I don't know what to say. If it's sincere - then clearly their thought processes and mine are not in sync. I shall avoid reading articles from them in the future. (saving your thread to read after I am done replying to PMs, lol).

#42 Edited by Sharkbite (292 posts) - - Show Bio

Unfortunately, Hopeless actually is a good writer. Cable & the X-Force has been quite solid thus far, and in Avengers Arena, Hopeless has actually done well with the Britain Academy (his original creations). One version of the behind-the-scenes that I read stated that originally Hopeless wanted to actually write a Britain Academy book, with the Arcade Murderworld being the first big arc, but at the last second some of the Marvel Team instructed him to include a few specific characters from some other titles (titles and characters which I am convinced he was not familiar with in advanced and had no interest in writing, judging by his complete mishandling of them). Hopeless isn't a cruddy writer, but Avengers Arena has been a cruddy book and it's because of the inclusion of the existing canon characters as one-dimensional mishandled meat for the grinder.

Marvel didn't think the book could sell without the existing characters? Just look at Boom! Comics title "Deathmatch". They are doing essentially the same thing, delivering it ten times better and is using nothing but original characters. Runaways had fans. Avengers Academy had fans. Darkhawk and Juston had fans. And if Hopeless would have launched Britain Academy as it's own title, those characters would have had fans too (probably a lot of the same people who enjoyed the being-cancelled Avengers Academy).

Haphazardly mishandling these existing characters pushed fans away. That's what people need to understand. It's not the death, it's the poor presentation, that makes the book a trainwreck of garbage. In Runaways, Alex dies. Gertrude dies. Old Lace dies. Heck, when Volume 3 was cancelled, I was fairly certain that Chase was dead. And you know what? I would have been okay with that. Not because I didn't care about Chase, but because he was being presented correctly, the story made sense for his character, and his death fit in the overall sense of the book. I didn't write scathing hate letters when Gert was killed. I wasn't angry; I was sad. It was a very well written story, and the death of the character moved the title forward. Same with the depowering of Veil in Academy. I could handle Academy kids getting written off, provided it fits the story. Darkhawk (who I will always see as a member of the New Warriors) could get powered down or killed the way Night Thrasher was killed or Justice was sent to prison, and I would have been good with it, provided it fit the overall story.

Hopeless has done a terrible job trying to shoehorn these existing canon characters into roles that they were never meant to fit into. It's like he had a mental storyboard for 16 original characters, and he just kinda took the canon characters they handed him and tried to do a straight swap. He's not thinking "What would Nico do?" or "How does the Staff of One work?" He's still trying to pretend in his head that it's Merlin-Girl, or whatever he originally had envisioned for that spot. He treats the characters like it's a case of "close enough", while the fans of these characters look at it as an obvious case of "missed it by a mile".

Avengers Arena is a terrible book. Not because of the death; death is a regular part of many comics, including some of the origin books where these characters come from. People die in X-Men and they haven't been boycotted and faced with cancellation petitions for a year afterwards. Avengers Arena is not a terrible book because Hopeless is a bad writer; people aren't throwing these same complaints out about his work on Cable. Avengers Arena is a terrible book because Avengers Arena is a terrible book. Because characters are mishandled, because the plot is filled with loopholes and lack of continuity, and because Hopeless has a story he wants to tell, but it's not the story of these characters.

Avengers Academy was founded on the premise that these characters were one nudge away from becoming villains. Heck, some of the Academy kids did not successfully graduate, and some did drift into a morally grey area where they still are not exactly convincing that they will not someday be the villains the Avengers fight against. For Mettle, Hazmat, Reptil, and Juston ALL FOUR to vanish from the Academy grounds, Pym should be flipping out. They just lost four powerful, dysfunctional, highly dangerous youth with incredibly strained pasts, and all on the cusp of what was just a huge arc with Finesse murdering Jeremy and many of the Academy kids wanting to quit. Instead, Arena exists in some sort of sealed bubble, as if these events have no effect on the outside world. The Avengers don't notice the loss of their kids. SWORD doesn't blink at Cammi's abduction. Continuity is entirely ignored and we're left with plotholes big enough to drive a bus through. Arcade has complete control of every molecule in Murderworld? That still makes no sense how he's able to abduct Cammi, when she's not only not in Murderworld where his powers are limited to, but she's not even on the same freaking planet.

Putting blame where blame is due, Avengers Arena could have been a good book, but it cannot be a good book when over half the cast are characters that Hopeless does not understand, did not want to write, and who do not in any way fit into the story that he's trying to tell. The book stinks, and sadly the only way the book is going to improve is if either all the existing canon characters are killed off or saved until only Britain Academy remains.

#43 Posted by crimsonspider89 (817 posts) - - Show Bio

@sharkbite: Thank you. SO much. That is the problem. IF was just new characters I would love it. He just mishandles so many of the old characters.

#44 Posted by akbogert (3218 posts) - - Show Bio

Unfortunately, Hopeless actually is a good writer. Cable & the X-Force has been quite solid thus far, and in Avengers Arena, Hopeless has actually done well with the Britain Academy (his original creations). One version of the behind-the-scenes that I read stated that originally Hopeless wanted to actually write a Britain Academy book, with the Arcade Murderworld being the first big arc, but at the last second some of the Marvel Team instructed him to include a few specific characters from some other titles (titles and characters which I am convinced he was not familiar with in advanced and had no interest in writing, judging by his complete mishandling of them). Hopeless isn't a cruddy writer, but Avengers Arena has been a cruddy book and it's because of the inclusion of the existing canon characters as one-dimensional mishandled meat for the grinder.

Marvel didn't think the book could sell without the existing characters? Just look at Boom! Comics title "Deathmatch". They are doing essentially the same thing, delivering it ten times better and is using nothing but original characters. Runaways had fans. Avengers Academy had fans. Darkhawk and Juston had fans. And if Hopeless would have launched Britain Academy as it's own title, those characters would have had fans too (probably a lot of the same people who enjoyed the being-cancelled Avengers Academy).

Haphazardly mishandling these existing characters pushed fans away. That's what people need to understand. It's not the death, it's the poor presentation, that makes the book a trainwreck of garbage. In Runaways, Alex dies. Gertrude dies. Old Lace dies. Heck, when Volume 3 was cancelled, I was fairly certain that Chase was dead. And you know what? I would have been okay with that. Not because I didn't care about Chase, but because he was being presented correctly, the story made sense for his character, and his death fit in the overall sense of the book. I didn't write scathing hate letters when Gert was killed. I wasn't angry; I was sad. It was a very well written story, and the death of the character moved the title forward. Same with the depowering of Veil in Academy. I could handle Academy kids getting written off, provided it fits the story. Darkhawk (who I will always see as a member of the New Warriors) could get powered down or killed the way Night Thrasher was killed or Justice was sent to prison, and I would have been good with it, provided it fit the overall story.

Hopeless has done a terrible job trying to shoehorn these existing canon characters into roles that they were never meant to fit into. It's like he had a mental storyboard for 16 original characters, and he just kinda took the canon characters they handed him and tried to do a straight swap. He's not thinking "What would Nico do?" or "How does the Staff of One work?" He's still trying to pretend in his head that it's Merlin-Girl, or whatever he originally had envisioned for that spot. He treats the characters like it's a case of "close enough", while the fans of these characters look at it as an obvious case of "missed it by a mile".

Avengers Arena is a terrible book. Not because of the death; death is a regular part of many comics, including some of the origin books where these characters come from. People die in X-Men and they haven't been boycotted and faced with cancellation petitions for a year afterwards. Avengers Arena is not a terrible book because Hopeless is a bad writer; people aren't throwing these same complaints out about his work on Cable. Avengers Arena is a terrible book because Avengers Arena is a terrible book. Because characters are mishandled, because the plot is filled with loopholes and lack of continuity, and because Hopeless has a story he wants to tell, but it's not the story of these characters.

Avengers Academy was founded on the premise that these characters were one nudge away from becoming villains. Heck, some of the Academy kids did not successfully graduate, and some did drift into a morally grey area where they still are not exactly convincing that they will not someday be the villains the Avengers fight against. For Mettle, Hazmat, Reptil, and Juston ALL FOUR to vanish from the Academy grounds, Pym should be flipping out. They just lost four powerful, dysfunctional, highly dangerous youth with incredibly strained pasts, and all on the cusp of what was just a huge arc with Finesse murdering Jeremy and many of the Academy kids wanting to quit. Instead, Arena exists in some sort of sealed bubble, as if these events have no effect on the outside world. The Avengers don't notice the loss of their kids. SWORD doesn't blink at Cammi's abduction. Continuity is entirely ignored and we're left with plotholes big enough to drive a bus through. Arcade has complete control of every molecule in Murderworld? That still makes no sense how he's able to abduct Cammi, when she's not only not in Murderworld where his powers are limited to, but she's not even on the same freaking planet.

Putting blame where blame is due, Avengers Arena could have been a good book, but it cannot be a good book when over half the cast are characters that Hopeless does not understand, did not want to write, and who do not in any way fit into the story that he's trying to tell. The book stinks, and sadly the only way the book is going to improve is if either all the existing canon characters are killed off or saved until only Britain Academy remains.

I really want to have a dialogue. I want the people who have defended the book to get more specific and deal with arguments like this one. I'm sick of just being told "it's great" or being asked to be quiet and/or enjoy it. I'm sick of being told why I shouldn't hate it. I want to be told why I should love it -- and unfortunately, almost every person who has told me they love it has also acknowledged not having read Runaways or Avengers Academy.

I want people who know the characters, who are invested in them, who also support this book, to actually explain themselves, because it's been six months and I've never actually seen a well-constructed defense of Avengers Arena from a person who was familiar with the majority of the kids who were placed in this story.

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