Sina Grace details the Marvel Legacy reunion of the original Champions!
He’s getting the band back together!
The super group—which debuted in THE CHAMPIONS #1 over 40 years ago—consisted of Iceman, Black Widow, Hercules, Ghost Rider, Darkstar, and Angel. And on October 4, as Iceman assembles a team to “protect those who can’t protect themselves,” a familiar foe returns to counter the Champions and all that they hold dear.
We met up with Sina to map out a Champion reunion four decades in the making.
Marvel.com: What about Iceman’s past made you want to revisit the Champions?
Sina Grace: Outside of the X-Men, the Champions are the most important team Bobby Drake has ever been a part of. Bobby also found himself in a unique place at that time—back then, Iceman lived in Los Angeles as a student at UCLA, considered the “kid” of the team. And when my editor told me Black Widow would be dead by the time my issues happened [due to the events of Secret Empire], suddenly all the stories synced up with his journey in ICEMAN.
Marvel.com: Of this group, Bobby and Warren Worthington have known each other the longest—how would you describe their relationship today?
Sina Grace: I would describe Bobby and Warren’s relationship as “bromantic,” to say the least. Readers will get to see the pair lean on each other as friends. For anyone reading ASTONISHING X-MEN, they’ll see that Warren needs Bobby’s comfort and guidance more than ever before.
Marvel.com: Darkstar’s probably the least known member of the Champions at this point. What’s her situation as this story picks up?
Sina Grace: I sort of play into her odd-woman-out vibe. She’s trying desperately to cling to some kind of normalcy—to be some kind of reliable—after Natasha’s death. And it’s a struggle. Darkstar plays into the concept that, “It’s easy to be a hero; it’s hard to be a human.”
Marvel.com: Hercules and Black Widow are well-established heroes—does Bobby look up to them in some ways?
Sina Grace: We’ll get to see some new layers behind Bobby’s relationship with Black Widow. It’s interesting—in the aftermath of Natasha’s death, Hercules isn’t really able to play leader at the moment…which gives more reason for Bobby ending up front and center in this story. If anything, readers can expect to see Hercules as more of a wingman for Bobby (cue intense ellipsis)…
Marvel.com: How does Ghost Rider fit into these team dynamics?
Sina Grace: He’s got some great moments, and he really gets some cool bits in issue #7. Robert Gill and I had so much fun choreographing the fight scenes to not only play to Ghost Rider’s strengths, but also to the visual strengths of each of these insanely different characters. For as much as these characters grieve and struggle, they have a lot of fun too!
On October 4, Sina Grace and artist Robert Gill bring the Champions together again with ICEMAN #6!