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Siege: Suffer the Children

The next generation of heroes takes to the spotlight in SIEGE: YOUNG AVENGERS #1 and SIEGE: SECRET WARRIORS #1

By Marc Strom

The youngest among Marvel's greatest heroes have never had the most normal childhoods. But in SIEGE: SECRET WARRIORS #1 and SIEGE: YOUNG AVENGERS #1-on sale April 14 and 28, respectively-the next generation of heroes will experience something unlike anything they've seen as they follow Captain America straight into the heart of Norman Osborn's assault on Asgard.

Jonathan Hickman, who writes the Secret Warriors one-shot with art by Alessandro Vitti, compares what the group faces in Siege as opposed to their regular battles:

"[It's] bigger. Gods flying around getting pulled apart by super men while other gods get stomped on by super villains; it's like spring break in Jaurez, Mexico."

When Steve Rogers put out the call to old allies for his counterstrike against Osborn, he might not have planned on getting the Warriors' help.

SIEGE: SECRET WARRIORS #1 cover by Marko Djurdjevic
"I'd argue that the call went out to Nick and the kids are on backup vocals," says Hickman. "Good band though."

Siege also marks the first time Nick Fury and Steve Rogers have come together again since the latter's rebirth, something that means a lot to Fury.

"All the Howling Commandos are essentially men out of time, soldiers from the greatest generation in the here and now," Hickman points out. "They are the guys that we look up to from the last century. They are the ideal, and there's only one guy they look up to. So, yeah, it's a big deal to Fury that Cap's back. The biggest."

Hickman also promises that "SECRET WARRIORS #17-19 [will deal with] pretty much nothing but [Cap's return]."

One of the major casualties of Siege so far, the death of Ares, will have particular resonance for the Warriors, since they count the god's son, Phobos, among their members.

"[SIEGE: SECRET WARRIORS] is mainly a story about a kid whose dad just died, and that kid deciding to send a message," Hickman says. "The God of Fear on a rip. Watch out."

SIEGE: YOUNG AVENGERS #1 black and white preview art by Mahmud Asrar
In SIEGE: YOUNG AVENGERS #1, writer Sean McKeever and artist Mahmud Asrar stick the teenage heroes right in the thick of things, with a special story that focuses on team members Wiccan and Patriot.

"Wiccan was the easiest decision since his initial codename was Asgardian and he chose to emulate Thor, even though his powers didn't necessarily require it," McKeever explains. "So there's a bit of back story introduced that explains the origin of Asgardian.

"As for Patriot, I thought it would be neat to see how he acts in a situation where someone he cares about is in grave danger and the clock is ticking."

McKeever reveals that his one-shot takes place "near the end of SIEGE #3," though he remained mum on the specifics.

"I can tell you that the point of this story is to show how these teenage heroes handle a crisis situation," elaborates the writer. "Sure, they've been through the Secret Invasion and the Civil War and whatnot, but this is different. Again, can't say much, but folks will see what I'm talking about soon.

"Diving into this story-which had me very excited from the get-go as I loved [Allan] Heinberg and [Jim] Cheung's 12-issue [YOUNG AVENGERS]

SIEGE: YOUNG AVENGERS #1 black and white preview art by Mahmud Asrar
run-I took a good look at each of them individually, and then looked at their particular team dynamics, and then decided how to split the team up and which character beats and relationships to focus on."

When the team received Captain America's call to arms, they experienced a number of emotions as they officially stepped into the big leagues.

"It's obviously very flattering but also intimidating," notes McKeever. "These kids are determined and tough and rather fearless, but at the end of the day they're still kids. There's a real weight to this mission that we'll see play out in this story."


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      wow, these both sound/look really good (especially the phobos part). i didn't think i was going to pick these up, but now i'm not so sure.