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Writer: Brian K. Vaughan

Art: Adrian Alphona & Takeshi Miyazawa

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Runaways: The Complete Collection, Vol. 1 (tpb), cover, Marvel Comics, Vaughan/Alphona/Miyazawa


A West Coast superpowered teen drama. Basically an updated The O.C. meets The Breakfast Club, if the characters had superpowers and were on the run.


(Minor Spoilers)

Imagine you’re a teenager. Your parents have friends over, like they do every so often. Those parents bring their kids. You know them from school or from the past gatherings. They might not run in your social circle, but everyone seems to get along.

Now imagine that, at some point during the night, you catch all your parents in supervillain costumes doing really shady criminal/cult stuff. What do you all do? You get the heck outta there.

And that’s what they do. The rest of the comic is what happens next.

The Runaways TV show is based on this title, and seems to have only covered a small part of this volume/first run in its first season. It also seems very different from the comic, so you could potentially enjoy both the TV series and the comic’s different stories!


  • The concept of powered teenagers and running away from home because their parents are evil is really cool and a new idea

  • The dialogue feels like it’s actually coming from teenagers, not an adult trying to write kids

  • Superpower discovery is mixed with hallmarks of the teenage/coming-of-age genre, like romantic coupling, personal growth and missing home

  • The comic discusses things like self-harm and LGBTQIA+ issues in a tasteful way that feels natural to the characters and story

  • The art and visual effects capture a great deal of emotion in facial expressions and body language, and Karolina’s powers look super cool

  • Each character has a very unique personality and way of speaking, which helps them come to life for the reader

  • You can just pick this up without having to read anything else – no prior Marvel knowledge is needed to enjoy this title


  • If you’re not a teen drama fan, this probably isn’t the comic for you

  • It feels disconnected from the rest of the Marvel Universe since they don’t interact with the X-Men or Avengers or anything in this first volume (if that bothers you)

  • This is by far the best Runaways storyline – later volumes just can’t recapture how good this first one is

Runaways (2003), Issue #3, page 18, Marvel Comics, Vaughan/Alphona


It’s a teen comic done right, from one of the best comics writers out there. The drama and maturing and coming to terms with powers and responsibility bring so much color to their journey, which is highly enjoyable. It’s one of my favorite Marvel runs of all time.


If you like the writing:

If you like the art:

  • Runaways: The Complete Collection, Vol. 2 by Vaughan, Alphona, Miyazawa & Young

  • Ms. Marvel, Vol. 1 by G. Willow Wilson & Adrian Alphona

  • Avengers Arena: The Complete Collection by Hopeless, Gage, Walker, Vitti, Burchielli, Moline


Brian K. Vaughan – Writer

  • Name Recognition: One of the most talented and celebrated writers in the industry

  • Award Winner: Has won a truly incredible amount of awards for his other comics

  • Writes and co-produces on the TV version of Runaways

Adrian Alphona – Penciller

  • Outlander: Lives in Canada

  • Left comics for several years

  • Helped write some of the Runaways TV series

Takeshi Miyazawa – Penciller

  • Outlander: Lives in Canada

  • Art style is influenced by manga

  • Has worked on many Marvel titles Adrian Alphona worked on, like Runaways, X-Force & Ms. Marvel

David Newbold – Inker

Craig Yeung – Inker

  • Recently did some of the inks for Runaways, issue #8, which came out 15 years after this first run

  • Outlander: Lives in Canada

Brian Reber – Colors

Christina Strain – Colors

  • Multitalented: Is now a writer and editor for TV’s The Magicians

  • Most of her work has been with Marvel

  • Was born in South Korea

Chris Eliopoulos – Letters

  • Designed the fonts for Marvel’s lettering department

  • Prolific: Hand-lettered the first 100 issues of Savage Dragon, along with several other titles

  • Appeared on Late Night with Seth Meyers in 2016

Paul Tutrone – Letters

  • Multitalented: Started his career as an Assistant Editor before switching to design & lettering

  • Now works as a designer at Scholastic, Inc.


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