By Kevin Mahadeo
On June 9, the next generation of Marvel champions comes together to commemorate the Heroic Age in YOUNG ALLIES #1 by Sean McKeever and David Baldeon! Over the next four weeks, Marvel.com will spotlight a quartet of characters who will in part comprise the Allies, with commentary from McKeever as well as key reading on Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited. So sit back, read up and join the Young Allies!
On one hand, she fought as Firestar with both the New Warriors and Avengers. On the other, her ability to control microwave radiation gave her breast cancer. However, after beating the illness, Angelica has a new outlook on life and a new set of friends to help her live it in the upcoming series YOUNG ALLIES.
The new title by writer Sean McKeever and artist David Baldeon follows both the NOMAD limited series and a FIRESTAR one-shot, also written by McKeever. In the latter, the writer focused on establishing Firestar's new status quo: seeing her recent bout with cancer and subsequent overcoming as a second chance.
"She's in a very positive place when we come into YOUNG ALLIES," explains McKeever. "With her studies, she's not stressed out about the idea of super heroing-she balances them pretty well. That's who she is going in. She's definitely a little more outgoing than we've seen her lately, if only because she has a new lease on life and that usually brings out certain exuberance in all of us when we're faced with those opportunities."
The whole ordeal helped Firestar grow more comfortable with herself. Throughout her comic life, the character has gone from a shy, lonely teenager to a well-adjusted young adult. McKeever says that this growth and psychological evolutions happens to everyone in real life, so why not with a comic book character?
Of course, having some super-powered friends help her through it all worked toward keeping Angelica figuratively making lemonades from all of the lemons thrown her way. Most notably, Firestar shares close friendships with fellow heroes Hellcat, Photon and Black Cat. Although McKeever wants to bring these characters into YOUNG ALLIES and continue to develop their bond, juggling a cast of five main characters in the new series imposes some limits. While Firestar's old friends will make appearances here and there, the writer admits he spends more time focusing on her budding relationship with her new team members-especially fellow college age hero Gravity.
"In this first arc, she spends a lot of time with Gravity," notes McKeever. "They're both going to school at NYU and are both former team leaders. So, they've got some touch points even though he's definitely younger. The dynamic there is a very interesting one because I always like the idea of telling the story of super heroes becoming friends and the non-super
However, not all relationships begin bright and sunny. Sometimes a few thunderclouds need to clear up before the sun shines in.
"With the three younger, high school age characters, I think that there's going to be a little bit of head butting," teases McKeever. "Firestar is instinctively a team leader at this point and wants to give direction because she knows what needs to be done. So, we'll see how the younger girls and
FIRESTAR DIGITAL HIGHLIGHTS
FIRESTAR #1: Angelica Jones discovers her mutant powers
AVENGERS #13 (1999): Firestar must choose between the New Warriors and Avengers
I (HEART) MARVEL: MASKED INTENTIONS #1: The relationship between Firestar and Justice reaches a turning point
MARVEL DIVAS #1: Firestar gets some life-altering news
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