Runaways is a Marvel Comics comic book series created by Brian K. Vaughan and Adrian Alphona. The series is about a group of teenagers who try to make up for the evil done by their supervillain parents by becoming superheroes. They are commonly called "the Pride's kids" or "those kids in L.A." by other characters in the Marvel Universe. This is because the team does not have an official name and the most of Marvel's characters are in New York.
In 2006, the series won the Harvey Award for best continuing/limited series.
In February 2007, series creators Vaughan and Alphona stopped making Runaways at issue #24 of the second series. In April 2007, long-time Runaways fan Joss Whedon (of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel and Firefly fame) will take over the series for 6 issues. Marvel has said that Terry Moore, creator of Strangers in Paradise will take over after Whedon leaves, with Humberto Ramos on art.
Runaways was started in 2002 as part of Marvel Comics' "Tsunami" imprint. After Marvel cancelled the Tsunami imprint in January 2003, the series moved to the "Marvel Age" imprint. Because of this, the individual story arcs for "Runaways" are collected in small, manga-sized trade paperbacks. The hardcover collections are in normal sized books. In September 2004, the series ended at issue #18. Marvel started the series again in February 2005 and it has been published ever since.
The series is not usual in that it does not use the ideas of superhero names, uniforms, and team names. All the characters in the first series (except Alex) chose codenames, but they are used less and less throughout of vol. 1. In vol. 2, the codenames are mentioned once but never actually used. Molly is the only character who makes a costume but it is made from old bedsheets and clothes. She never wears the costume again after vol. 1 issue #8. During battle, the runaways mainly fight in their street clothes and call each other by their given names or nicknames. Also, the children never call themselves "The Runaways". Their team simply goes without a name. Other Marvel characters usually call the team "the Pride's kids" or "those kids in L.A." Vaughan even makes fun of common superhero sayings such as "Hulk smash!" or "Avengers assemble!" when Nico tells Victor that the team's rallying call is "Try not to die."
- Nico Minoru - Daughter of evil wizards Robert and Tina Minoru. Nico uses the mystical Staff of One to cast spells but she can only cast each spell one time. When it is not being used, the Staff of One hides inside her body. To make the Staff of One come out she must bleed. She is the leader of the group in Volume 2.
- Karolina Dean - Daughter of alien invaders Frank and Leslie Dean. In her alien form she can fly, control solar energy to do many different things, and her skin glows with a rainbow-like light.
- Molly Hayes - Daughter of evil telepathic mutants Gene and Alice Hayes. She has super-strength and is very hard to hurt. At first when she uses her powers get tired very quickly, but as she uses them more often, she does not get tired as quickly.
- Chase Stein - Son of mad scientists Victor and Janet Stein. He used a glove that could create and control fire and X-ray goggles stolen from his parents in vol. 1. Chase pilots the Leapfrog, the group's transport, in vol. 2. He also gets a telepathic and empathic link with Old Lace in vol. 2.
- Old Lace - Genetically engineered Deinonychus from the 87th century. Old Lace was empathically linked to Gertrude, but is now linked with Chase and obeys his mental commands. During vol. 1, Old Lace was thought to be a Velociraptor.
- Alex Wilder - Son of organized crime bosses Geoffrey and Catherine Wilder. Alex was the leader of the group in vol. 1. However it turns out that Alex was on the side of his parents instead of the Runaways. He is killed along with all of the Runaways parents.
- Gertrude Yorkes - Daughter of time-traveling criminals Dale and Stacey Yorkes. She shared an empathic and telepathic link with Old Lace, however she transfers the link to Chase when she dies in volume 2.
- Victor Mancha - Cyborg "son" of the android Avengers enemy Ultron. Victor has electromagnetic powers similar to X-Men villain Magneto. He can also create large electric blasts.
- Xavin - Child of Skrull alien warlords. He has all the powers of the Fantastic Four, but can only use them one at a time. He also has the Skrull racial ability to change his form (Shapeshifting).
- Klara Prast - a Swiss immigrant to America from 1907 and child bride of an abusive older man, can control the growth of plants
- Runaways vol. 1 #1-18 (April 2003 - September 2004)
- Runaways vol. 2 #1- (February 2005 -)
- X-Men/Runaways (Free Comic Book Day 2006 offering)
- Civil War: Young Avengers/Runaways (July 2006 - October 2006)
- Daily Bugle: Civil War Edition
- Runaways Saga (March 2007)
Runaways has been collected in the following digest-sized comic book collections trade paperbacks:
|Runaways Vol. 1: Pride & Joy||Runaways vol. 1 #1-6|
|Runaways vol. 2: Teenage Wasteland||Runaways vol. 1 #7-12|
|Runaways vol. 3: The Good Die Young||Runaways vol. 1 #13-18|
|Runaways vol. 4: True Believers||Runaways vol. 2 #1-6|
|Runaways vol. 5: Escape to New York||Runaways vol. 2 #7-12|
|Runaways vol. 6: Parental Guidance||Runaways vol. 2 #13-18|
|Runaways vol. 7: Live Fast||Runaways vol. 2 #19-24|
Runaways has also been collected in the following hardcovers:
|Runaways, Vol. 1||Runaways vol. 1 #1-18|
|Runaways, Vol. 2||Runaways vol. 2 #1-12, X-Men/Runaways: Free|
|Runaways, Vol. 3||Runaways vol. 2 #13-24|
|Runaways: Dead End Kids||Runaways vol. 2 #25-30|
- Runaways, vol. 2 #7