Customer Reviews: Runaways Volume 1: Pride & Joy
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on April 28, 2004
God, what else is there to say?
Alex Wilder, Nico Minoru, Gertrude Yorkes, Karolina Dean, Chase Stein, and Molly Hayes are all children of privelege. Unbeknownst to them however, this privelege comes from the fact that their parents are all members of a secret criminal organization called the Pride that has its hands in everything dirty to be had in LA. When they discover this, the kids must go on the run, discover the truth about their parents, and decide what to do with the new knowledge and abilities the journey grants them.
The kicker of this book is the wonderful storytelling and characterization. Brian Vaughan, writer of the acclaimed Y: The Last Man, turns in taut and suspenseful scripts; reading this story in single issues, I couldn't wait for the next chapter to come out. The ideas come at a fast pace, but the story is kept manageable by the great cast. Each of the kids is a unique, believable individual, and cliched like so many teens written by adults these days. Very few can pull of writing young characters in a way that will appeal to young readers, but Vaughan is one of them. Kids and adults alike will fall in love with these characters. If nothing else, there's a dinosaur.
So, in closing, buy this trade, and then rush down to your local comic store to seek out the following issues. 14 have been published to date; the first six are reprinted in this volume.
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on June 23, 2004
This great new series follows the story of six teenagers as they go from being normal kids to learning that their parents are more than they seem, and frankly, evil. One of the key elements that makes this story click is one word: fun. While maintaining a fairly serious tone, the story is full of humor and amusment. The whole books just has a freshness and sense of fun that really makes it not only work, but is good reading for people of all ages; similar to the appeal of "Ultimate Spider-Man" but even moreso because of the diversity of the cast.
Brian Vaughn continues to impress with his writing that also makes "Y: The Last Man" so good: great dialogue and characterization, humor, action, and an unpredictable plot full of twists and turns; his writing here is even better because it has more appeal than "Y's" mature, post apocalypse story.
Newcomer Adrian Alphona supplies very good artwork that really adds to the story and Brian Reber's colors are also great for conveying the vibrant characters as well as the dark settings.
With fantastic writing and good artwork, "Runaways" is one of the best new series of the year.
At such a good price, there is no reason why anyone should not miss this great new series.
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on April 17, 2013
This is one of my favorite comic series. EVER. The characters are lovable, the premise is original, the angst is minimal. It's just a really grounded, relatable book.

Here's the basic setup:

There's a bunch of kids, most of whom seem really normal. You've got your general mix, of course, the brainiac, the jock, the goth, the gamer. But they find out that their lives aren't as normal as they thought. Their parents are...supervillains! Oh the horror they must be feeling!

And that's how it takes off. The first few issues are a little rough, as the series attempts to find its niche. I don't LOVE the art style, but I like it well enough, and it's certainly well-done. The characters, however, are constantly realistic and earnest. I love them!

But the book...oh the book! I read it through once, no real problems. I opened it again an hour later, and the pages were already coming apart! In fact, the whole book is coming away from the cover! I have Runaways Vol. 2 as well, and its the EXACT SAME PROBLEM! It sucks! And, to add insult to injury, the paper is cheap, thick, and feels like cardboard, so not only does it lack the high-quality gloss of a real comic, the colors are washed out and faded! I want to rate this book highly, cause it's a total must read! But that read might end up being the only one you get out of it.... Try digital? I hate to say it, but it might be more practical here...
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on October 19, 2004
Not so long ago, I was talking to a friend of mine about coming up with an original idea for a comic. He often said that all the good ideas were taken, and there was no originality in comics anymore. Well at the time, I thought he was right. Then the House of Ideas came up with Runaways, and that was it for the 'death of originality.' Here we have six teenagers who learn that their parents are secretly a clan of supervillains. Specifically, they're aliens, sorcerers, mutants, mad scientists, travelers from the future, and a couple of good old-fashioned gangsters, each of whom is a husband/wife couple who had their own child. Now that the (mostly) law-abiding children know, they run away from home with a few of their parents' weapons and gimmicks in the hopes of stopping them somehow. What's more, the parents have framed their kids for murder, and it is revealed at the end of this volume that... well, I'll just let you buy the thing and see it for yourself.

Now, this story takes place in the Marvel Universe, and all the other Marvel heroes are there, so why aren't they helping? Because most of the Marvel heroes live in New York City, or somewhere else on the east coast. These runaways and their parents live out in Beverly Hills, California. Living a continent away from Earth's mightiest heroes makes it easier for a gang of super-villains to set up shop. Wonder why the Green Goblin or Magneto never thought of that? Hmn!

Now, Runaways is a character book, and it hinges mostly on the kids themselves. The situations are actually very believable, and the dialogue rings true throughout. I would recommend this book to anyone I see, whether they like, comic books or not.
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on April 16, 2014
I'd probably give the actual story 4 stars, but this is the lowest quality graphic novel I've ever seen. The book is shrunk down to almost half the size of a comic, and the paper is incredibly cheap. The absolute worst thing about it though, is the binding, as the book literally fell apart in my hands as I was reading it. The build quality of the book is unacceptable, and I would send it back, but I think it's too late as I bought it a couple of months ago but didn't read it until now.

For the story itself, I enjoyed it, even though the actions of the characters were a little goofy. I liked the idea of a group of unknown but very powerful super villains having kids that upon learning of their parents evil ways runaway from home. They're an interesting collection of characters, although for their design it's a little odd that the youngest one looks like one of the oldest of the group (and talks like a child). For the parents, they look cool and appropriately varied and evil, but their reasoning really bothered me. The first thing they do when their kids (who they love) learn about them, instead of trying to reassure them, is to attack them and then when that doesn't work, threaten to kill the youngest of the kids in her sleep if they all don't immediately come home. The reasoning of the kids was a little off too, you'd think they'd want to say something to their parents to get their side of things, but they're so quick to runaway/call the police. Still, I think I'll continue the series, although I hope the rest of them aren't produced in a similar fashion.
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on October 21, 2005
I am a comic book geek and a Teen librarian and I'd heard ALOT about the Runaways series. Not just in the comic world but also from other librarians as well. I went into this book a bit hesitant, sure that it couldn't live up to the hype that had been built around it.

I was wrong. I sat down and read this digest in less than an hour and I was left wanting more.

Mainly the story is about a group of kids that are forced into a sort of 'family reunion' every so often when their parents get together. What they don't know is that their parents are a group of Super Villians and are doing evil deeds during these get togethers.

The kids find out what is going on with their parents and decide to fight back.

The book was fast paced and very funny. They balanced the action and the humor very well and neither weighed on the other. I would definatly reccomend this book to any comic book fan and even to people that might not have as much of a background in comics.
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on July 9, 2013
The contents of the book are great, however I opened the book for the first time and like three pages fell out. Not really sure what I'm going to do. I just am disappointed, I love Brian K Vaughn, But the book quality is really s****y.
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on November 20, 2015
I have a 10 yr old granddaughter who loves graphic novels. This one is interesting with many characters and strong female characters and is a nice alternative to the superheroes. She will love it for Christmas.
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on February 19, 2013
Let me just state now that I love this comic. If you haven’t read it you should. However, the quality of these books is horrible. They are printed on paper that feels like cardboard, the pages are much smaller than a normal comic (I admit this is my fault for not reading the description carefully, but it could have been made more obvious in the description), and worst of all THE BOOK FALLS APART!

I have ordered the first 3 volumes of this series and all three has lost pages, or their covers are falling off. I treat my books very well, but this is just unavoidable with these books. I even returned the worst one I had for a new one, and sure enough it started to lose pages within a few minutes.

I wouldn’t buy these cheaper trades. You may save money, but it is not a good deal. You will most likely get only one reading out of them before they fall apart.
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on November 4, 2015
I am a big fan of "Y: The Last Man", so I took a look at "Runaways". I enjoyed it, and will read on, but I do not think it is as good a comic.

The premise is fun: five wealthy teens (and one pre-teen) discover that their parents are actually Marvel universe super-villains. But the execution is a bit lacking. The characters are "Breakfast Club" stereotypes -- a geek girl, a goth, a jock/bro, a skinny blonde, and a stoic genius. Eleven-year-old Molly comes off more like a nine-year-old. Also, I wasn't crazy about Adrian Alphona's artistic style.

This first collection offers a lot of questions but no real answers -- why are the parents baddies? But this is a fun, light read, and I'll give the next volume a chance.
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