New Warriors

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
L to R, T to B: Nova, Firestar, Justice, Speedball, Night Thrasher, Namorita. The guy in the back is Gideon, a villain.

The New Warriors is a team of young superheroes published by the Marvel Comics company. Created in the 1990s as Marvel's answer to DC Comics' Teen Titans, they were at first, like the Titans, composed mostly of teenage superheroes who had already appeared in other comics, though new characters were added as well. Among their most notable members are:

  • Dwayne Taylor / Night Thrasher, an orphaned African-American who uses his parents' inheritance to create a gadget-equipped suit (and a skateboard) and organize the group to avenge the murder of his parents, sort of an urbanized Batman. Created specifically for the series.
  • Richard 'Richie' Rider / Nova, whose origin resembles that of Hal Jordan: inheriting the powers of a dying alien member of the Nova Corps. First appeared in his original solo comic, which ran in the mid-to-late '70s, languished in obscurity before Thrasher restored his powers and recruited him for the Warriors, and has since had three ongoing solo series of varying success. Recently Took a Level In Badass.
  • Robert 'Robbie' Baldwin / Speedball, an unsuccessful attempt by Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko to create another character whose struggles with friends, family and school are complicated by his superpowers, albeit with more Wangst and without Spidey's humor. He possesses the ability to redirect kinetic energy, which he uses mostly for bouncing. The team series kept the family problems but recast him as the mostly-ineffectual Plucky Comic Relief, although he gets more competent as the series progresses.
  • Angelica Jones / Firestar, a mutant girl with microwave heat powers. Canon Immigrant from Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends, brought into the comics as a student of the then-villainous Emma Frost.
  • Vance Astrovik / Justice, originally called Marvel Boy. A mutant with telekinetic powers; he and Firestar dated and were engaged.
  • Namorita Prentiss / Namorita, cousin of Namor the Sub-Mariner, prince of Atlantis.

Other members include Rage, a super-strong angry young Black man, Silhouette, a crippled girl with darkness powers who fights crime on crutches; Turbo, actually a guy and a girl who shared the superpowered Torpedo costume between them; Hindsight Lad, a nerdy Joke Character; Microbe, who could make people sick, and a few others. The most famous non-original members include Darkhawk, Cloak & Dagger, the Scarlet Spider, and Slapstick.

The first series started in 1990, thrived during the comics industry's boom years following, limped through the market's contraction and finally ended in 1996. Firestar and Justice "graduated" to the ranks of The Avengers, while the rest of the cast went their separate ways.

In a later revival, the team was deprived of their funding, forcing them to star in a Reality Show in order to make ends meet.

Whilst filming an episode of their reality show, the team entered a fight with several supervillains in Stamford, Conneticut. One of the villains, Nitro [1], caused an explosion which killed the majority of the team, their camera crew & destroyed several city blocks, including an Elementary School. The New Warriors became the face of superhero negligence & were the catalyst of Civil War. Speedball survived, but with an extreme case of Survivor Guilt. The very term "New Warrior" became an insult amongst people who hated Supers, much to the annoyance of the former team members and the majority of the team was forced to register under the Super Human Registration Act & receive formal training; the exceptions being Justice[2], Nova[3], Firestar[4] & Speedball[5].

At the same time, a new group led by someone in a Night Thrasher costume began calling themselves "New Warriors" & striking at the government that passed the Super Registration Act. However, with the exception of Night Thrasher, every member of the team was a former member of the X-Men depowered following the events of House of M. With a lack of trust between Night Thrasher & the rest of the team, due to Night Thrasher secretly working to ressurect the original Night Thrasher & using the rest of the team as a distraction on numerous occaisions, the former X-Men eventually tired of his leadership & disbanded after a trip to an alternate future where the original Night Thrasher had been ressurected, manuevered his way into office as Head of S.H.I.E.L.D, stole the Iron Man armor for himself (Tony Stark took the Night Thrasher identity) & banished the majority of the superheroes to the Negative Zone.

Eventually, the former New Warriors who had joined the Inititave, along with the surviving Scarlet Spiders, left after they felt the Inititave was becoming corrupt & needed someone to regulate them to stop an abuse of power, adopting the name Counter Force until the current New Warriors team disbanded, at which point they recruited the second Night Thrasher & briefly took the New Warriors name back, before Tigra & Gauntlet joined them & renamed the group the Avengers Resistance in the wake of Norman Osborn taking control following Secret Invasion. This team operated until the events of Siege, when they mounted an attack on the former Inititave training camp to keep Osborn's baclk-up occupied whilst the New Avengers & Secret Warriors fought the Dark Avengers. After their victory, the Avengers Resistance disbanded & a new team of New Warriors has yet to form.

Tropes used in New Warriors include:

  • Abusive Parents: Marvel Boy's father beat him for being "different". Eventually Vance lashed out at him with his telekinetic powers...and killed him.
  • A God Am I: Nova's archenermy Sphinx is this. He/she had fought the New Warriors and altered reality twice.
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: New Warriors Vol. 4 didn't feature a single fomer member of the team, instead filling the roster with X-Men characters who had been depowered following House of M. Whilst there was a Night Thrasher on the team, it was quickly revealed to be the younger brother of the original.
  • Animal-Themed Superbeing: The Scarlet Spider when he was a member.
  • Appropriated Appellation: The New Warriors got named when a random reporter referred to them that way, and Night Thrasher hurriedly announced they'd be sticking with that before any of his team could come up with anything more embarrassing.
  • Ascended Extra - Except for Thrasher, the original cast members were protagonists of cancelled series (Nova, Speedball) or minor supporting characters elsewhere. Several characters went on to new solo series, Nova being the most successful (albeit intermittently.)
    • Likewise, the latest version of the team was made up of numerous depowered former X-Men and students of the Xavier Institute, including Jubilee, Angel Salvadore, Beak, and the remnants of the Omega Gang.
  • Ascended Fanboy - Hindsight, and Marvel Boy gushes so much super-hero trivia that his teammates nickname him "Super-Tights".
  • Asian Baby Mama - Silhouette's mother
  • Battle Couple - Tempest and Blackwing on the latest team, on the original: Thrasher and Silhouette, Firestar and Justice, Nova and Namorita.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Firestar is the nicest redhead girl of the group but if any loved one or friend is threatened, she becomes fearsome. One of the boys who had raped her best friend in the party found the hard way.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Speedball may look ridiculous with his costume, powers and his attitude but he has proven himself a badass at times. In the tie-in issue of Infinity War crossover, Speedball found an evil doppelganger of himself terrorising his mother and destroyed the doppelganger with a lot of kinetic energy bubbles.
  • Big Guy, Little Guy: Rage and Speedball
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: Namorita (blonde), Silhouette (brunette) and Firestar (redhead)
  • Canon Immigrant - Firestar. Originally she was from Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends cartoon
  • The Cape (trope) - Justice; see Awesome Moments for the incident where he proved it.
  • C-List Fodder - The various incarnations of the team generally draw their ranks from this pool.
  • Clothes Make the Superman - The original Thrasher and several of the current team members depend on gadgets for their powers
  • Clones Are People, Too: Namorita is the clone of Namora, Sub-Mariner's seldom-seen cousin. Namorita is a much more of a major character, appearing continually whereas Namora sometimes goes decades without having her existence acknowledged. Until recently anyway. Namorita has died and now Namora appears more frequently. Basically, Namora couldn't have children, so she had her science folks implant her with an embryo made entirely from herself. The plot has always treated her like more of a daughter, though her clone status has been discovered and caused trouble at times.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: The New Warriors broke in into Gideon's house to interrogate him for the information of the ties of the Taylor Foundation had to Ophrah Industries. However, it horribly backfired on them as they were unprepared for Gideon's mutant power of other mimicking superpowers and skills that he easily defeated them. In return, he tortured Marvel Boy and Firestar while saying out the painful details.
  • Coming of Age Story - Vance's time in the Vault causes Character Development and the transition from Marvel Boy to Justice.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Firestar may have visually awesome fire powers (microwave heat) but her microwave heat powers also render her sterile if she uses it too much.
  • Dark Age - Some see the team as being part of this
  • Dark Age of Supernames - Night Thrasher, Rage, Darkhawk
  • Deus Exit Machina: Nova is at times written out of some New Warriors issues by losing his Nova Force powers or going away on a space mission as he is one of the most powerful members of the team.
  • Die or Fly - Night Thrasher recruits Nova this way. Nova is less than thrilled.
  • Evasive Fight Thread Episode: The New Warriors once fought X-Force with no clear winner, although there was a double-KO when Nova and Cannonball collided.
  • Evil Old Folks: Tai in 'Nothing But The Truth' storyline.
  • Expy - Bandit (to the X-Men's Gambit) and Chord (to the X-Men's Cable; they even worked together once as mercenaries) The original Night Thrasher bears a distinct similarity to Batman.
  • Face Heel Turn - Hindsight Lad, who outed several of the surviving Warriors in the wake of the Stamford incident, because he felt betrayed by the dead Warriors' actions.
  • Fad Super - Night Thrasher and his skateboard gimmick, although no less than The Punisher comments, "I called it stupid? It's a shield, a weapon and transport. Maybe I should get one..."
  • Foregone Conclusion: When the 3rd series of New Warriors issues were cancelled, the fans knew their fate before Civil War started.
  • Fun Personified: Speedball in his New Warrior days
  • Future Me Scares Me - Vance's initial reaction to his future self, Vance Astro.
  • "Get Out of Jail Free" Card - Subverted (see Crowning Moment)
  • Handicapped Badass - Silhouette.
  • Henshin Hero: Robbie Baldwin transforms into Speedball whenever he absorbs any impact.
  • Legacy Character - Turbo, whose armor belonged to Rom ally The Torpedo. Justice/Marvel Boy is an odd inversion: his Buck Rogers-like future self, Vance Astro of the Guardians Of The Galaxy, was introduced first, and he travels back in time to prevent the present Vance from becoming an astronaut. Vance's Marvel Boy costume is modeled on Astro's black-and-white spacesuit. The Scarlet Spiders also joined the Counter Force/Avengers Resistance incarnation of the group, wearing modified versions of the Iron Spider armor. Also, the current Night Thrasher is the brother of the first, who was killed.
  • Let's Wait a While - Vance and Angelica decide not to consummate their relationship (literally) in the wake of his aborted jailbreak.
  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Night Thrasher occasionally uses his skateboard as a shield. A retractable blade is built into the nose, but otherwise it's mostly used for defense. The Punisher, of all people, commented:

"I called it stupid? It serves as a shield, a weapon and transport. Maybe I should get one."

  • Missing Mom: Firestar's mother is not mentioned in any backstory, she lives with her father.
  • Mission Control: Hindsight Lad (before his Face Heel Turn)
  • Monster Modesty - Namorita already had ankle-wings and pointy ears before turning into a blue skinned water babe. Considering her costumes were usually Stripperiffic, she invoked this trope.
  • Most Common Superpower - Jubilee (of the X-Men, now a New Warrior) is suddenly more busty
  • Ms. Fanservice - Jubilee in the latest lineup, Namorita in the original. When she temporarily wore battle armor, Speedball lampshaded this with the comment, "Lordy, do I miss that bikini."
  • No Endor Holocaust - Subverted in the explosion that killed the original team and set up Civil War.
  • No One Could Survive That - Spider-Man has to convince the team this can happen
  • Parental Abandonment: Night Thrasher is initially driven by the murder of his parents when he was a child. Rage was an orphaned child and raised by his grandmother until she was murdered by Poison Memories gangsters.
  • Pettanko - Jubilee used to be like this
  • Power Pack - Alex Power, now a teenager, joined the team with all of his siblings' powers (calling himself Powerpax)
  • Prison Episode: After he was convicted of killing his abusive father (actually a negligent homicide), Marvel Boy spent several issues in The Vault, a prison for Superpowered-Individuals.
  • Reed Richards Is Useless - The first team tried to intervene in the Trans-Sabal civil war, only to make things worse.
  • Re-Power - The current Warriors are depowered mutants using stolen or reverse-engineered technology
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: In one storyline, the mafia Poison Memories had targeted the family members of the New Warriors as part of a vendetta against the Warriors and one of them was Elvin's grandmother who was killed by the gangsters. Elvin Haliday (also known as Rage) was very pissed-off and went after the gangsters that on the final confrontation, he brutally snapped the neck of the gang leader as a result.
  • ROM Spaceknight - Rom's enemies, the Dire Wraiths, returned in the Warriors series
  • Self-Restraint: Marvel Boy's refusal to be bust out of prison.
  • Something Person - Marvel Boy
  • Stolen Good, Returned Better: Played with this a bit. The character Silouette stole an Unstable Molecule costume from Reed Richards (she could meld into the shadows for teleportation but would always lose her clothes in the process since they can't meld with her, forcing her to find something with less Fan Service.) She shed her old costume and stole the new one, feeling guilty about the situation afterwards. She tried to return it to Richards but he was fine with the situation and ended up tweaking it slightly for her and offering to make further costumes in the future.
  • Stripperific - Namorita's preferred costume is a bathing suit. Frequently a bikini, as depicted above.
  • Superhero Sobriquets: Speedball is known as 'The Masked Marvel' and Nova is known as 'The Human Rocket'.
  • Tarot Motifs: Every introduction page of 'Justice: Four Balance' mini-series starts off with the image of Vance holding the scales as a motif of Justice tarot card.
  • Telescoping Robot - Tattoo, of the current group (actually a Powered Armor)
  • Token Minority Couple: Night Thrasher (black guy) and Silhouette (a handicapped half-black, half-Cambodian girl)
    • If mutants are counted, it's Justice and Firestar
  • True Love Is Boring: To be fair, Fabian Nicieza (the man who made Justice and Firestar a couple in the first place) said that he had always planned to split them up, but simply left the book before he was able to. Nonetheless, later authors married the pair and used them as an introspective of what it's like to be young newlyweds working as Avengers. However, eventually, the two characters wound up back in the hands of Nicieza, who promptly broke them up.
  • Twofer Token Minority: Silhoulette is half-black, half-Cambodian, female and handicapped.
  • Wolverine Publicity - Towards the end of the first volume, the Scarlet Spider was shoehorned into the cast to boost flagging sales.
  • Working with the Ex: Justice and Firestar.
  • Younger Than They Look: Rage was about 14 when he started his superhero career, but looked like he was at least 30 due to his gargantuan size and muscles. Of course, prior to getting his powers he looked like a regular kid. In any case, this gives him the distinction of being the youngest Avenger ever - so young that when the team discovered his true age they sent him to the New Warriors and told him to come back when he was 18.
    • Speedball was about 15 when he joined the New Warriors, he looked like he was at least 18 or early 20s when he is in his superhero persona. When Chord told Speedball to drop his superhero stint and go undercover, he transformed back to the short, scrawny Robbie Baldwin much to the surprise of his teammates in the early issues.
      • When Rage joined the New Warriors, he and Speedball became good friends when they found that they had something in common.
  1. A former Captain Marvel villain
  2. Instructor for the Inititave
  3. Off-world dealing with Nova Corps business
  4. Retired
  5. Assumed the identity of Penance & placed on the Thunderbolts roster