Monday, July 19, 2010

YOUNGBLOOD #8 - September 1994

Credits: Rob Liefeld (story & art), Eric Stephenson (script & edits), Danny Miki & Jonathan Sibal (inks), Kiko Taganashi, Donald Skinner, & Andre Khromov (colors), Kurt Hathaway (letters)

Summary: As Youngblood faces the evil Maddock, former member Chapel stalks the alleys of New York. He shoots Spawn’s friend Bobby in the head during his killing spree of the homeless. Chapel confronts Spawn, taunting him to use his powers in a fight, or to heal his friends.

Spawntinuity: Bobby is usually spelled "Bobbie" in Spawn. Chapel claims he’s killed several of Spawn’s friends, although Bobby and new (unseen) character “Chas” are the only ones listed by name.

Review: So it’s come to this…Youngblood. I have no intention of reviewing all of Spawn’s guest appearances from Image’s early days (this site has a comprehensive list if you’re interested), but this storyline directly crosses over into the Spawn series, so I thought I’d give it a look for completism’s sake. What else would you expect to find in Youngblood? It’s insanely violent, various cast members are blatant clones of Marvel characters (did you know there’s an Image knockoff of Sabretooth called “Warwolf”?), everyone has too many teeth and veins around their necks, and all of the heroes and villains are oozing either blood or saliva during the fight scenes. As unappealing as all of this is, I could see how an adolescent might be interested in it. The issue opens with Youngblood avenging the deaths of three members, which isn’t something Avengers would probably give you (and it’s one way to take advantage of Liefeld’s propensity to create a dozen characters at a time, although I doubt all of the characters were allowed to die). And as tough and nasty as Wolverine might be, he isn’t going to go on a killing spree of the homeless just to get the attention of an old rival he hasn’t seen in a while.

I’m amazed that this is Youngblood volume one, and it’s only on issue number eight. Spawn started a few months after Youngblood and was in its mid-twenties by this point. I realize Liefeld diverted his focus to numerous other titles (the Extreme Checklist in this issue has seven additional series being released this month), but I didn’t know Youngblood shipped so rarely in the early days. A spinoff, Team Youngblood, is already on issue eleven! How did a spinoff reach a higher issue count than the original series?

1 comment:

wwk5d said...

Another beautiful cover by Liefeld. All of the male characters are leaning towards the reader face first, except the woman...who is jumping crotch first. And the proportions of Shaft's arms...And if you needed proof that this is from the 90s, the character in the center of the titles has a soul patch and a bandanna...oh wow, this is bad.

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