Runaways 8: Dead End Kids

runaways volume 8 dead end kids cover review tpb trade paperback
4.0 Overall Score
Story: 4/10
Art: 7/10

Potentially interesting storyline

Dull and plodding, divided storyline, too many characters and not enough story

Comic Info

Comic Name: Runaways (Volume 2)

Publisher: Comic Public

Writer: Joss Whedon

Artist: Michael Ryan

# of Issues: 6

Release Date: 2009

runaways #26 cover molly punisher

Runaways (2) #26

Reprints Runaways (2) #25-30 (June 2007-August 2008).  The Runaways find that filling the Pride’s role in the world of crime could be more than they expected.  When an accident sends them back in time, the Runaways discover themselves in the year 1903, and teamed with street gangs in the hopes of finding a way back to the future…but the Runaways discover an old enemies from their past are also in 1903 and stopping them might be the only chance to get home.

Written by Joss Whedon, Runaways Volume 8:  Dead End Kids is a Marvel Comics superhero comic book collection.  Following Runaways Volume 7:  Live Fast, the collection features art by Michael Ryan.  Issues in the collection were also collected as part of Runaways:  The Complete Collection—Volume 3.

I loved Runaways when it premiered.  Brian K. Vaughan’s take on the kid-teen superhero group was a fun and fast title that tried to take something like Power Pack or New Mutants to a new modern level.  The kids felt like genuine kids with genuine problems.  When Vaughan left Runaways, it felt like he took something with him, and Joss Whedon wasn’t the solution to fix it.

runaways #27 cover review

Runaways (2) #27

The story really plods.  The first part of the collection deals with the Runaways in New York and being challenged by the Kingpin for control of the territory once run by their parents as the Pride.  The story has a rather obligatory Punisher appearance and a mysterious winged creature…it just doesn’t feel very compelling and kind of feels like the characterizations forged by Vaughan were crumbling already.  The storyline is abrupt and feels like it should have been extended for the whole collection before switching directions in the second part of the collection.

The next part of the story has the Runaways in the past.  While the concept isn’t bad, the execution is.  There are rival gangs, some ties to Nico’s ancestry, and the Yorkes.  There is too much happening for only four issues.  Whedon introduces a ton of new characters that feel like cardboard cutouts and unlike something like his Buffy the Vampire Slayer, he doesn’t have the time to develop them into three dimensional characters…it is a waste of time (literally in this case).

Runaways 8:  Dead End Kids just isn’t a suitable follow-up to Vaughan’s run (which admittedly might have gone a bit longer than it should have as well).  It feels like the characters need to be better rolled into the Marvel Universe or almost remain outside of it because they don’t necessarily work within it at this point.  The series ended with this collection and the Runaways were merged with the Young Avengers for the Secret Invasion tie-in Secret Invasion:  Runaways/Young Avengers.

Related Links:

Runaways 1:  Pride & Joy

Runaways 2:  Teenage Wasteland

Runaways 3:  The Good Die Young

Runaways 4:  True Believers

Runaways 5:  Escape to New York

Runaways 6:  Parental Guidance

Runaways 7:  Live Fast

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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