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Awesome: Astro City
  • It's an understated one and easy to miss, but an unnamed bystander gets one in "Safeguards." A group of people on a bus watch Winged Victory flying away with two criminals, and most of the passengers (except Marta, the main character) start talking about how Winged Victory's a cult leader and are generally being dismissive and contemptuous. One passenger had this to say:
    Passenger: Honestly! Would you listen to yourselves? Winged Victory's just captured some criminals, and this is the thanks she gets? Mutterings and slanders? I shudder to think what we'd do without them, without ALL of them!
    • Everyone else promptly kept quiet after that.
  • Irene Merriweather has an understated moment as well. Despite the fact that Irene's unrelenting attempts at exposing Adam Peterson as Atomicus bordered on insane and ultimately drove Atomicus to leave Earth forever, Irene's defining characterization is being The Determinator. She originally got where she was by willpower, resourcefulness, and the ability to bluff, and when she began dating Atomicus, she initially misconstrued his feelings of fear as some sort of challenge to prove herself as a woman deserving and capable of receiving his love. After Atomicus finally left Earth, Irene went through a Trauma Conga Line where she was fired, routinely pelted with objects on the street, and sank into alcoholism, before she finally decided enough was enough and began looking for work again. She found a job with an alderman, met her future husband and had a daughter named Samantha. While she is still plagued with feelings of guilt over her mistakes, Samantha was inspired by her mother's resourcefulness and determination and became Flying Fox.
  • The "sideliners" in "On the Sidelines," ordinary folks who use their super-abilities in everyday jobs. They just want to pay their bills and get on with their lives, but that doesn't mean they can't get pissed when someone tries to exploit them...
  • The end of Astro City #8 "Patterns" is an amazing moment for The Confessor. First, he reveals himself as a vampire - a secret he's kept for over a hundred years, half of which time he spent operating openly as a superhero - by fighting, desperately, with his full speed and strength in front of thousands of people and several news cameras. His opponents are a whole squad of soldiers armed with hologram cross generators, holy-water-squirters, and a gatling gun stake gun. After getting staked, he grabs the gun and uses it to take out the mayor, revealing to the world the fact that shapeshifters have infiltrated the planet.
  • Towards the end of the Tarnished Angel arc, former supervillain and Chrome Champion Steeljack has figured out who it is who's been killing low-level supervillains, and only he can do anything about it. Unfortunately, he gets arrested for something he didn't do. He breaks free of containment, then, being hunted all the while, walks across a riverbottom, travels across the country, obtains a jetpack and flies to the headquarters of superhero team Honor Guard. When they don't believe him, he, out of desperation, overcomes the magnetic weapon that can usually defeat him. He proceeds to hijack a biplane, and then confronts the mastermind behind the killings, who reveals intent to murder all the supervillains who he got to join his scheme, then pass it off as an accident so he looks like a hero. This knowledge, and the knowledge that no-one but him can stop it, drives Steeljack to engage in a brutal, epic fight with the villain. Steeljack wins, and thus finally achieves redemption.

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