Brian K. Vaughan and Adrian Alphona are ‘Runaways’ (UPDATE)

UPDATE! The new Runaways team has been announced — it’s Joss Whedon and Michael Ryan!

UPDATE! Marvel has revealed that the new creative team will be announced at the Baltimore Retailer Summit in one week. Click “Continue” to see the detailed info.

iFanboy favorite Brian K. Vaughan has announced on his his website that he and artist Adrian Alphona are leaving Runaways with issue #24.

After working together on the series for more than four years, Adrian Alphona and I will be leaving Runaways with Issue #24.

This was entirely my idea. While Y: The Last Man and Ex Machina have planned endings, I’ve always said that I hoped Runaways would last forever, long after I left the series. I never wanted Runaways to become a vanity book that was dependent on its original creators’ involvement; I wanted our kids to be able to eventually run away from us, and find new life apart from their “parents.”

I can say with a great deal of confidence that these next five issues are the pinnacle of the series, and Adrian and I decided that the best thing for the Runaways would be to hand them off to new creators on this high note, rather than risk overstaying our welcome until we ran ourselves–and the book–into the ground.

Yikes! This is sad news for people who like good comics, but good news for my wallet.

UPDATE! Here’s Marvel’s press release:

New Runaways Creative Team to Be Revealed at Baltimore Summit!

Brian K. Vaughan to Leave Runaways With Issue #24

The Runaways recently lost one of their own when a teammate died in Runaways #18 and now they’re about to lose two more members of the family as writer and co-creator Brian K. Vaughan is leaving the title with issue #24 along with co-creator and penciler Adrian Alphona. Vaughan’s run on the Runaways will span 42 issues, in that time accumulating a rapid fan base as well as a wealth of critical praise, winning several awards.

Starting in 2002, Vaughan and Alphona took the concept of teenagers learning that their parents are actually super villains and ran with it. Entertainment Weekly named Runways Vol.1 HC to its Must List and the America Library Association named it to the Top Ten list for Best Books for Young Adults for 2006. Wizard Magazine even named Runaways “the best original concept from Marvel in thirty years.” Now Vaughan and Alphona are leaving the kids they created to others as Runaways will continue on with a new creative team with issue #25.

Vaughan and Alphona’s run on the Runaways with help from artists Takeshi Miyazawa, and Mike Norton will be remembered as one of the best in recent Marvel history. Everyone at Marvel and all of the devoted Runaways fans wish Vaughan and Alphona the best with the same sendoff given at the end of each issue’s letters page – keep running.

But this is NOT the end of the Runaways…let the speculation begin now…who will be the new creative team on Runaways! The answer will be revealed to retailers at the Baltimore Summit in one week.


  1. I read the headline as “Vaughan, Alphona, Jimski Leaving ‘Runaways.'” Of course, the book is going on without them/us, so the questions are: which creative teams would make good replacements? Who would get you to stick around?

  2. I was really upset to see this. That book has been so great and it’s Vaughn’s all the way. Young Avengers/Runaways has been horrible without him. Marvel needs to bring it with the creative team if they don’t want these awesome characters to die. I vote Bendis. Why not, he’s writing everything else.

  3. Just read this at IGN… haven’t even gone to his site yet… bet is full of his fans throwing tantrums and tears (they are a nice bunch of fellows over there).

    Man, that is sad! Runnaways was one of my first “fell in love with” comics I got into and I’m a super fan of BKV. What can I say, I guess that is the nature of the industry so… must deal with it. Hopefully whomever takes it has as much heart, wit and warmth as BKV had. The art was just as powerful man, the tone was just perfect and sure lent it the attitude the characters deserve. Man… still dealing with it so…

    Still, must thank them for such a great run and great characters, for sure this run will be hallmark… or something in the future.

  4. Wow, this is not only shocking, but really disapointing. I’ve been a fan of this books since I picked up #1 on a whim. To leave After only 42 issuses of something they created seems odd. I’ll keep reading it anyway, but it won’t be the same.

  5. They had a long run, and it was a good one. Seems lik a good place to jump off to me.

  6. Hey, maybe this frees him up to do something else?

  7. Any bets on who Marvel has tapped to take over? Kirkman seems like a good bet for anything at Marvel these days. As an artist, perhaps Humberto Ramos…

  8. Ask and ye shall recieve Dustin, look above for Marvel’s commitment to announcing the new team and the call for speculation to begin..

    so you propose Kirkman and Ramos.

    I think that’s too easy, Kirkman is too much the go to guy.

    My prediction for writing will be Zeb Wells, who is currently writing the Young Avengers/Runaways Civil War book…

    That’s not my personal preference, but who I think Marvel will turn to.

    As far as artist, who knows, probably some dude from Spain again.

  9. I think Wells is doing pretty good on YA/Runaways. I was a fan of his brief run on New Warriors despite the less-than-flattering status quo it set up for their swan song. Still…big shoes to fill.

  10. Wells is a great bet for the writer. As for the artist – what about Mark Bagley? He’s leaving USM pretty soon, he knows how to draw adolescent angst, he can keep a good schedule. It would be a totally different style than Alphona, but that’s OK. I would like Bagley on the book I think.

  11. Yeah, this is a bit saddening to hear since I’m a big BKV and Runaways fan, but like Josh mentioned, this will free up to the two to do something else that will probabyl be creator owned. BKV, to me, is one of the most exciting writers in the business right now just because he’s doing a lot of his stuff outside of the superhero genre.

    Plus, I think the Runaways have been cemented as a lasting fixture in the Marvel universe for a while to come. I’ve really enjoyed Wells’ take on the team in the Civil War crossover, and think he’d make a great replacement for BKV – I think I’ve even read that BKV mentioned as much, saying that the ideal team to replace him on Runaways would be Zeb Wells and Skottie Young. I could dig that.

  12. I would respectfully disagree, and say that Bagley is too old to do the job on this book. He’s OK for USM, because it’s a bit more broad, but I feel this book really needs an artist who understands what it’s like to be young in a very specific way.

    I realize that sounds odd since USM is such a successful book about teenagers, but I just don’t feel like he’s the right fit.

    I think this is the prime spot for a young hungry writer to make his place. So, I’d like to nominate myself as the new writer.

  13. Well, I am not necessarily saying that Bagley would be the best choice. I was just trying to think of artists that would be possibilities given their current schedule and history and he was the first one I thought of that could work. I am sure there is someone who could do a better job that has an opening in their schedule, I just don’t know who they are.

  14. I’ll be surprised if Wells takes over.

    In his post, Vaughan wrote of the new team “to say that you guys will be thrilled is probably an understatement.” I don’t know about you guys, but that sounds to me like it’ll be a surprise and/or a name guy. It makes sense that if Marvel want to keep this thing going they’d bring someone in who will get fans excited for at least a little bit post-Vaughan.

    I don’t think Wells fits either one of those, and he’s not really lighting the world on fire with YA/Runaways. I wouldn’t be shocked to see a big name go to this book.

    Getting someone good to follow up Vaughan’s awesome run would make me very happy.

  15. I have to agree with Matt. I think that Wells is not a big enough name to be “thrilled” with. Though I am enjoying the YA/R crossover by Wells.

    I doubt it will be Bendis, or Loeb cause they are so busy. I wouldn’t be too shocked it it was Kirkman.

    Even though off topic, did any of you (Josh, Ron or Conor) or ifanboy listeners/posters read Marvel Zombies. I never heard it mentioned on the podcast and I haven’t seen it mentioned on on the site, but I’ve only been coming here since May.

  16. I didn’t read it as it was coming out, but I want to pick up the collection. Right now there’s on the HC, so I was waiting for a cheaper option. I’m a huge Sean Phillips fan, so I like that too.

    Wells isn’t thrilling, but they’ll always tell you what you’ll be thrilled by. I mean, they can’t say that Zeb Wells is the new writer, and all the readers will just be kinda OK with it. They have to say you’ll be thrilled.

    I’m hoping it will be something unexpected. Like Frank Miller. God, wouldn’t that be awful?

  17. Dave Sim’s Runaways. I’m there.

    When Vaughan says, “you guys are going to be thrilled,” it presumes that he knows what makes us happy… which he seemed to, until he left the book.

    What if he’d said, “I’m leaving, and as for my replacement… man. I am so sorry, you guys. It was good while it lasted.”

  18. “What if he’d said, “I’m leaving, and as for my replacement… man. I am so sorry, you guys. It was good while it lasted.”

    And then he said, “Writing chores will be handled by Scott Lobdell, with art by Rob Liefel.”

    There, I did it. I brought Liefeld into it.

    Wells seems to be the odds on favorite, but I haven’t read any of his stuff. What does iFanboy nation think?

    What is the possibility they go with a BIG name? Remember that the books most famous early fan was Joss Whedon. That would be awesome. I read that no matter who drew it.

  19. This comic drew me back into the fold. I’m destroyed that BKV’s leaving. I liked Alphona, but BKV really made the characters pop. It’s a bad day for good comics.

    Maybe Bryan Lee O’Malley. That’d be rad. With BKV’s comments, I’m not thinking that it’s Wells or McKeever. They’re alright, but not huge names. I’m expecting a huge name.

    I really really really really hope it’s not Kirkman. Could he possibly do it? He’s doing Invincible, AntMan, Walking Dead and UXM and has said that there’s a new Marvel Zombies coming out.

  20. Ah Jan, you forget the regularly-shipping Superpatriot! I doubt Kirkman will be doing Runaways, but I guess in terms of time restrictions he could if he was pushed to. Remember at one point he was writing UXM, MTU, Marvel Zombies, Invincible and Walking Dead (ahem… and kinda Superpatriot) all at once. I think there are much more likely candidates however.

  21. I think there’s a decent chance of Millar.

  22. I’m not thinking it’s Millar, unless he’s a big liar:

    And I’ve said it before on here, but I was never a huge Kirkman fan, though, of his books, I tend to prefer Invincible the most. And that’s a teen book, so maybe I’m underselling him. But I think he has his plate full, so I’m doubting it’s him.

    Is Loeb writing anything other than every Wolverine book in existance? Maybe it’s him. Oh, he’s writing two seasons of the Ultimates as well, right? I have no idea.

  23. It’s time for a WAITING PLACE reunion — Scott McKeever and Mike Norton! Gotta be!

    In any case, I wouldn’t expect Marvel to put a BIG NAME on this book. Its sales don’t warrant it, unless it’s a gift to a Big Name who wants to write the series that badly. . .

  24. Sorry – SEAN McKeever. . .

  25. It’s not Norton. Unless he’s lying too. He said on BKV’s site that it’s not him.

  26. There’s a new interview with BKV at Newsarama. He implies in some of his comments that it is NOT a big-name established team that will be coming on:

    “BKV: My successor has carte blanche to use or ignore anything Adrian and I have done over the last 42 issues. I trust her or him completely.

    I know people are saying that Runaways needs a “superstar” writer to stay alive, but I certainly wasn’t a superstar when I started writing the book, nor am I really one now. I’ll let the talkbackers decide the worthiness of our successors when they’re announced early next week, but we just wanted to find daring young creators who were fans of our book, and yet not afraid to take the series in a wholly unexpected new direction.”

    Here is the link:

  27. Stan Lee?

  28. Alan Moore, I think.

  29. Ha! Alan Moore’s Runaways. He’ll turn it into hardcore erotica, and I’ll have to go around to everyone I ever recommended it to and convince them I’m not a perv.

    Now, Garth Ennis… there you’ve got something. I understand Garth Ennis’ Runaways out-Preachers Preacher.

  30. Whedon!!!

    It’s official!

    I’m so happy. I feel like this is the only name they could have pulled out where I’m not only happy, but I feel more excited than I would be if Vaughan had stayed.


  31. Conor Kilpatrick says: Whedon is the new writer on Runaways
    Ron Richards says: holy shit
    Conor Kilpatrick says: yeah
    Conor Kilpatrick says: no kidding
    Ron Richards says: youre kidding me
    Conor Kilpatrick says: i’m not
    Ron Richards says: so ts NEVER going to come out again
    Conor Kilpatrick says: LOL
    Ron Richards says: hehe
    Ron Richards says: thats a great replacement
    Ron Richards says: way better than zeb wells
    Conor Kilpatrick says: i know – probably the only person that could keep me on the book
    Ron Richards says: too bad it’ll never come out
    Conor Kilpatrick says: naysayer
    Ron Richards says: LOL

  32. wow

  33. My head exploded when I heard this news. No, really, I’ll show you guys pictures later.

    But, man, I’m excited! Whedon’s an absolute perfect fit for the book.

  34. Holy crap!

    I have to start reading Runaways now.

  35. Where were you when the monthly comic died? No really this is great news if you don’t mind 4 issues a year.

    World War Hulk? WTF? Seriously? Are there really enough people who read the Hulk to make it the ‘big summer event’? Am I just putting my personal dislike for the Hulk into this?

    Mighty Avengers/Guiding Light Crossover. What? I was actually excited about Mighty Avengers. I think this news has me in the foulest mood of all.

    Spiderman back in black but not as Peter Parker. I f**king smell RETCON.

    Yes indeed, Joe Quesada, Who is Michael Ryan?


    There was more honestly that pissed me off in that article, but for the sake of my health I’m done.

  36. Hell, let’s have a different Spider-man on each Avengers team and then a 3rd on Omega Flight. A 4th will join the Runaways, along with Kitty Pride. Wolverine will do animated Target commercials. And Spider-man #5 will jump universes and join the goddamn Green Lantern brigade.

    shark people. really!

  37. I’d just like to apologize to anyone from HEAT I may have offended. No reason to come to my house

    thanks guys

  38. straight from joss whedon’s mouth, courtesy of

    “And now, a public service message.

    Lately I have heard much crabbing about bi-monthly books and people not meeting deadlines. And yes, I have much to answer for in terms of the FRAY schedule debacle. But I was young, I was running three shows, and I was borderline not-impotent. Since then I have been late by a week (extenuating circumstances)once and by two weeks (no frikkin’ idea what to write) once, both in the first arc of Astonishing. Never since. I didn’t need the book to go bi-monthly — in fact I wasn’t even told it would be. I don’t like bi-monthly; it puts too much pressure on every issue to be standalone-ly awesome, and hurts the flow. Schedule haters, hate the game, not the playa. And quit pissin’ me off.

    This was a public service message, because it helps me, who is a public.

    -j. ”

    i’m not saying its never going to be late, but i’d wager it’s going to stay more or less on schedule.

  39. Cool!

    Just read this and I guess I’m happy. Currently enjoying Astonishing and dig Whedon’s writing tone. Glad its him and not some other writer currently doing that crossover which just leaves my a bit mad. Don’t know the artist but hope he is good.

  40. Joss on Runaways. I like. I like very much. Runaways may move from one of my top 5 books right up to the top of the pack. My wife is going to scream when she gets home. Runaways is her favorite already and now with Joss at the helm? Watch out. Of course, if we only get 2 books a year out of him neither she nor I will be happy. But for now – all is good.

    Michael Ryan? Anybody know what his style is?

  41. Michael Ryan appears to be an unknown commidty.

    A quick googling yielded this:

    Maybe this is him, but it probably isn’t.

  42. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot?

    I certainly love the writer, and I like the artist’s only picture, but, as the kids say, Whaaa???

    I’m gonna need a minute or two.

    “World War Hulk,” if it involves the Green Machine smashing Tony Stark’s iron head in with Mister Fantastic’s head, I am all for.

    (Shouldn’t it be Doctor Fantastic? Really?)

  43. OK here we go – looks like he has been around for a while – most of his stuff started around the mid 90s. Worked on Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Mystique, Spectacular Spider Man and some others. This comicbookdb link shows everything he has worked on. There is also a cover gallery that shows off some of his stuff. Be careful though – he wasn’t the penciller on all of the covers shown – some of them he was the inker only.

  44. Oh wow – he’s been pencilling New Excalibur, which has been…uhm, ok I guess – not awful, but I’ve actually been reading that and I didn’t remember his name…but I’m sure that doesn’t mean anything…really..

  45. I went a little babypants there for a second didn’t I?

    Jimski I could get into the Hulk/Iron Man thing but only if it was Ultimate style. For instance, they find Tony Stark’s fingers in a pile of Hulk dookie. The good news is the Hulk is the only thing on earth that could eat Tony Stark and not die of alcohol poisoning.

    By the way, if it takes an hour to find an artists work online, I stand by my who is michael ryan,

    Joss Whedon, the real problem with delays is the way that they are handled. They are reasonable, sometime expected. The creator response should be:
    I know you expect x and y happened. I’m sorry in the future we will do z to make sure x happens. It SHOULD NOT BE: screw you guys, you’re annoying anyway, it’s not my fault that I can’t live up to a standard that’s existing for 50 fing years. By the way you suck.

    Poor form, poor form. Keep in mind that I spend my hard earned money on these products. My money that I earn by going to work in the same month I’m expected to be there jackass.

    And why is everyone ignoring the Mighty Avengers thing? It is terrible.

    Michael Ryan on pencils. I’ve always wondered what Spider-man’s balls would look like if he jumped over me while I was laying on the ground.
    Kudos to you Michael Ryan, you answered a question from the outer depths on our collective minds.

  47. And hey, who’s the Darkhawk fan around here? You must be stoked that he’s back in an ongoing title, albeit as part of an ensemble.

    The Mighty Avengers thing and babyspiderpants thing, I haven’t commented on because I haven’t read about it anywhere yet. I do know the rumored lineup of Mighty Avengers made me Mighti-ly yawn my head off a few weeks ago, but hey… benefit of the doubt here, peeps! Let #1 hit the stands, my brothers and sisters!

  48. The Darkhawk fan is me and I won’t be satisfied until he has his own solo ongoing, and they retcon him from the wussy Darkhawk from Runaways to be more like the confident/kickass Darkhawk from Marvel Team Up…VIVA LA DARKHAWK

  49. “And why is everyone ignoring the Mighty Avengers thing? It is terrible.”

    You’re talking about the Guiding Light thing? Yeah it sounds stupid as hell, but as long as it is not part of the regular book and is out of continuity I don’t care. I just won’t buy it. Marvel has plenty of crap books I don’t buy (as does DC and Image and everyone else). Of course, if it is in the regular ongoing series I may get a little worked up…

    And here is Newsarama’s chat with Whedon…

  50. This is off-topic but I don’t know where else to post it. I just read that DC announced today that the LOEG Black Dossier has been delayed indefinitely! Argh! I was looking forward to this more than anything else the rest of this year (except Absolute Sandman)! Apparently all orders are cancelled and it will be resolicted sometime in 2007. Oh well. OK, you may resume the Marvel/Runaways talk…

  51. i’ve never read LOEG because i saw the movie first and it was… not good. i’m sure the actual book is amazing but i can’t shake the feeling out of my head.

    “Joss Whedon, the real problem with delays is the way that they are handled. They are reasonable, sometime expected. The creator response should be:
    I know you expect x and y happened. I’m sorry in the future we will do z to make sure x happens. It SHOULD NOT BE: screw you guys, you’re annoying anyway, it’s not my fault that I can’t live up to a standard that’s existing for 50 fing years. By the way you suck.

    Poor form, poor form. Keep in mind that I spend my hard earned money on these products. My money that I earn by going to work in the same month I’m expected to be there jackass.”

    I imagine his apparent frustration comes from reading comments by people who blame him for the lateness when there are several factors that go into the publishing of a book. he may very well have turned in his scripts on time (which he says he has) but there were other circumstances, such as art, that may have caused the book to be late. I don’t think him being frustrated makes him a jackass. besides, the second season of astonishing was scheduled as being bimonthly for the first few issues, so it hasn’t even been late. anyway its supposed to be monthly from here on out, so i guess we’ll really see if he can keep a schedule on runaways.

  52. Oh man, I couldn’t have hoped for a better team to do Runaways. It’s good to see Michael Ryan finally on a suitable book, I think he’ll do it justice.

  53. It’s not just Whedon. Unfortunately he can’t exactly be singled out. If you look at the statements regarding Civil War that Marvel put out there is a lot of that in there as well. Some of the comments by Breevort and Quesada were absurd. Things along the lines of ‘think of all the money you’ll save’ and trying to pretend that shoe-horning in 3 issues of Black Panther would make up lost retailer revenue when that book is hardly a big seller. These were the things that they were saying rather than admitting that they sidetracked the entire Marvel U for months.

    Breevort: ‘Comic book readers as a whole aren�t really great with delayed gratification � I�m certainly not, so I can understand the impulse.’

    Quesada: ‘I couldn�t imagine what you�re alluding to? But to be honest, I think it�s been talked to death. There�s nothing that I can say here that is going to be new information, so just look back on the info that�s available.’ This was his first chance to really address it as the EIC. He’s the public face of the company

  54. Michael Ryan’s credits include Iron Man, New Xmen, Mystique and Cable.

    Here are some old pencils of his from Cable:

  55. Even Whedon cant get me to buy this book anymore. The characters are just not interesting to me.

  56. He drew Mystique and New X-Men, which means this artist I have “never seen before” is someone whose work I have enjoyed many, many, many times.

    I am senile.

    I’m gonna give Whedon the benefit of the scheduling doubt… again. I think my reaction to late books in the last few months depends entirely on creator/editorial attitude. It would be one thing if those responsible had ever been quoted saying something like, “Oh my God, this was so unprofessional of me. The industry deserves better. I’ve learned my lesson about what kind of schedule I can reasonably agree to take on,” but when their public attitude towards the problem is “that’s just the way it is, babypants! You can’t rush genius! Hotchacha!” that’s when I want to go all World War Hulk on them.

    I’m pretty excited by the prospect of that “Loners” book, Darkhawk or no Darkhawk.

  57. Hotchacha! Is Jimmy Durante writing comics again?

  58. Ron, are you serious about DH in the Runaways? He kicked ass and was half mental.

    Kirkman wrote him closer to his 90s run, but he was way more hardcore in Runaways. And though I liked all the characters that Kirkman used in League of Losers, they were all pretty much one note. There wasn’t a whole hell of a lot of characterization going on in that arc.

    I can’t wait to see Joss’s Runaways and the new Loners book. Marvel’s really getting me excited for these upcoming books. Except the Guiding Light stuff. That’s just weird.

  59. I thought that Kirkman’s DH showed alot more confidence and leadership and growth from his 90’s incarnation than in the Runaways version – all in all I think Iw as soured by the Runaways version because that idea had SUCH potential and if you ask me BKV blew it big time.

  60. From what I’ve seen, the “Guiding Light” thing looks like it’s only going to be an eight-page bonus story in the back of some books a la that “Masked Marvel” thing from a few weeks back. Isn’t that much less worrying?

    You know, if they put it in continuity and never told me it was a “Guiding Light” crossover, I probably never would have known. “What is with this town?” I’d have asked, briefly perplexed.

  61. I don’t want to start a thing with anyone, but there is no bigger fan of Darkhawk than me.

    I didn’t take Darkhawk in Runaways as whiny, just bi-polar. And I liked that addition to the character. Obviously, things went down hill for the guy when he went off the radar.

    I was proud of the Leader of Losers Darkhawk. My favorite Marvel hero ended up having a little bit of Captain America in him.

    What I am hoping for in Loners is a transition from bi-polar DH to leader DH. Transformation from half-psycho hero to a leader with loyal teammates is a story I want to read.

  62. Yea, I’m with you Dave. That’s how I saw DH. Kirkman kind of took the edge off and made him more a vanilla kind of leader. And with all the interviews with CBC, it doesn’t look like he’ll be looking change the way BKV has developed the character anytime soon.

    And wouldn’t the de facto leader be Rick Jones?

    I don’t care what stories I read, I’ll read em if DH is in them. And I liked him having an edge. I think he sort of lacked a bit of it in his original run. Big derivation of the character, but I’m interested to see where it’s going.

    Regardless, I’ll be picking it up.