Writer: Rainbow Rowell / Artist: Kris Anka / Marvel Comics
We start off with Kris Anka showing off the skills as Gert is slowly brought back to life. Panels within panels capture her final moments before death and parallel them with the present. It’s done beautifully. Aaaannddd Gert picks up right where she left off by being an unapologetic boss! She wakes up in the
future present and starts barkin’ on Nico and Chase. She wants to know where the rest of the team is. She wants to know how we got here. What?! The team is no more?! She wants to know why, when it feels like their family was a cohesive unit just yesterday, but now they’re all scattered across the universe.
It takes a special kind of writer to create a proper “Getting the band back together” story for a number of reasons. First, you obviously have to get the band back together, but it can’t feel forced. They’re 3 for 3 on that front. Chase wanted things to go back to normal; wanted their family to stay together and felt saving Gert was the only way to do that. Gert needed to be healed and saved after Chase failed to arrive on time, he needed to bring her to Nico for her magical abilities. Second, you have to make the getting back together dynamic feel real. Mufuckas don’t come together after two years of not seeing each other and act like shit ain’t go down in those 730 days apart. Shit. Went. Down. They just didn’t have the heart to break it to ol’ Gert.
The team dissolved day by day after her death. Molly was placed in the custody of her grandma, Xavin went off into space to be an intergalactic warrior, Victor became an Avenger, Klara is state property and Chase and Nico were kidnapped and held prisoner on the Murderworld. After escaping, Nico was tapped and not trying to return to this life. This is what Gert can’t accept. This is what Gert doesn’t understand. I’m so glad Rowell kept her mindset in the past, where The Runaways were inseparable. She’s on a mission. She wants to get Molly back. Molly, who is being watched and stalked by red-eyed cats. Red-eyed cats who are joining forces. Red-eyed cats that are Hydra operatives?! Say what?
Great, great, great dialogue in issue #2. With absolutely no action, besides Old Lace returning, this book proves that Rowell is a force to be reckoned with. After Chase reads Gert the time machine riot act, things immediately become sober and somber. It hits Nico and Chase that they really have lost every member of the team they called blood. This is the moment that I realized Rainbow Rowell shines brighter than a supernova. Her dialogue game is insanely proficient. Her prowess with the pen knows no bounds and I don’t think anyone could’ve done The Runaways return any better.
Reading Runaways? Find BNP’s other reviews of the series here.