Archive for Skottie Young

Blood and Glitter


I Hate Fairyland #1

Skottie Young’s first creator-owned comic is about a little girl named Gertrude who gets whisked away to Fairyland. To get back home, she just needs to find a key to the door back home — but luck is not with her. A quest that should’ve taken only a day or two ends up taking 27 years. And while she still looks like she’s just a little kid, she’s actually almost 40 years old, she’s furious, she’s sick and tired of Fairyland, and she’s armed with an array of fantastically violent weapons. She’s still looking for the key — but she also takes time to blow the moon’s brains out, murder a bunch of stars, rob casinos, throttle a giant caterpillar, eat way too many mushroom guards, and make daring escapes — but can she survive an attack by a barbarian assassin?

Verdict: Thumbs up. It may look a lot like your typical Skottie Young all-ages comic, and it may have no swear words (just Fairyland-swears like “hugger fluffer”) — but this is definitely not for kids. There’s blood and violence and hurt feelings everywhere, and it’s pretty dang wonderful so far. Let’s hope they can keep up the violentastic wonderments.


Ms. Marvel #19

The world is ending, and Kamala Khan has just discovered that her mother has known she was really Ms. Marvel almost from the very beginning of her superheroic career. Plus she finally realizes that her pal Bruno is in love with her, and she doesn’t know how to react to that knowledge. She makes up with her friend Nakia and has a meeting-of-the-minds with the school’s alpha bitch. And everything closes out with an incredible dance party.

Verdict: Thumbs up. We know this isn’t really a final issue — it’ll definitely be back with a new #1 soon — but it feels like a really strong final issue anyway. It’s great to get some excellent moments with almost everyone in Kamala’s supporting cast. And as always, you gotta pay close attention to the backgrounds, because some of the best things are hidden back there.


Starfire #5

Kory discovers an unexpected talent for mind-reading, and as a result, we get a little of the backstory of Soren, the apparent psychic who killed everyone on a cruise liner a few issues back — he’s a former doctor with the power to heal cancer, at the cost of strengthening the cancer he was suffering from himself. Kory also has a job interview at a local aquarium and manages to get the job when she’s able to learn dolphin language to communicate with a depressed porpoise. But Soren has dire plans for everyone, and there are forces from outer space that are bringing trouble to Earth, too.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Aside from the extremely pretty art, a lot of the fun of this series is watching Kory misinterpret human metaphors, and some of this issue’s misinterpretations are the best yet.

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Toys in the Attic


Giant-Size Little Marvel: A vs. X #4

The Avengers and the X-Men are working hard to impress the new twins in town, Zachary and Zoe, so they can get them to join their clubs — but things are complicated now, as the Guardians of the Galaxy and the Inhumans join the competition. This means there’s going to be a huge fight, with lots of Marvel characters rendered in Skottie Young’s cartoonish style, right? And who do the twins finally pick?

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s wonderfully funny, and the double splash page, featuring several dozen characters, including Spider-Gwen, Ms. Marvel, Brother Voodoo, Cloak and Dagger, Shatterstar, and many more, definitely makes it worth the cover price.


Starfire #4

A creature called a chida monster from deep below the earth is wreaking havoc in Key West. Starfire has met up with Atlee — better known to fans of Palmiotti and Conner’s old “Power Girl” series as Terra. Atlee has a plan for dealing with the chida — throwing him over the ocean, have Kori blast him as he grows larger and larger, and let his weight drive him back underground. And what’s left after that? Brace yourself for… conversations.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Okay, it’s a lot of talking compared to action, but I didn’t mind the talking all that much.


Ms. Marvel #18

Kamala Khan’s big brother Aamir has been exposed to the Terrigen mists by her former crush Kamran — but wait, Captain Marvel is here and knows what Terrigen mists look like, and this ain’t them. Besides, Aamir is showing signs of superpowers, and he hasn’t even entered the Inhuman cocoon — so he doesn’t seem to be an Inhuman at all. So why is he demonstrating the ability to form protective force shields? Kamala and Captain Marvel return Aamir to the school, and Carol reveals to Kamala that the world is probably about to end. Will Kamala’s last night be marred by the usual strife that keeps blowing up around them?

Verdict: Thumbs up. I loved the heck out of this entire issue, but I think where this comic really sings is the fantastic family relationships we see here. Yeah, there’s lots of stress and irritation — let’s face it, Aamir may be a good guy, but he’s also a grade-A dick — but ultimately, there’s lots of affection and love. And I’m really looking forward to the next issue now, just so we can resolve that cliffhanger.

Today’s Cool Links:

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Putting the Funny in Funny Books


Giant-Size Little Marvel: AvX #1

Skottie Young glorious cartooning gets to move off the alternate covers and into a full comic of its own. Believe it or not, this is part of the Secret Wars crossover, though it seems to have very little connection to anything with Battleworld. It’s basically a whole comic book full of the Avengers and the X-Men looking for excuses to get into hilarious fights.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Marvel’s characters as particularly funny cartoon babies is something I will never, ever get tired of. I’d love it if they made this a regular series.


The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #6

In this issue, we meet a new supervillain — Hippo the Hippo, who is a bipedal talking hippo! He’s very angry and wants to rob a bank that Doreen and her roommate Nancy are guarding. But before Squirrel Girl can kick his ass, we meet new heroes — Chipmunk Hunk, who can talk to chipmunks, has chipmunk powers, and is awfully good looking, and Koi Boi, who can talk to goldfish and slowly grow to fit the size of his container. After Doreen convinces Hippo to turn from a life of crime, she decides maybe Nancy has the power to talk to animals, too, so they head to the zoo so Nancy can talk to every animal there. Of course, a crimefighting emergency presents itself, but before Doreen can get into her costume, the day is instead saved by a teensy squirrel superhero called Girl Squirrel! But is Girl Squirrel friend… or foe?

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s very funny — and insane to a degree that you almost never find in comics today. The description I have above is seriously toned down, because if I mentioned all the crazy stuff that happened in this issue, it would’ve taken another three paragraphs to tell it all. Yes, this is absolutely a recommendation.

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Bear Attack!


The Age of the Sentry #2

I didn’t think I’d keep reading this, but dangit, when your cover features a giant monster called Ursus the Ultra Bear, I am helpless to resist.

We get a couple Silver-Age-style stories here — the first, in which the diabolical Cranio (The Man with the Tri-Level Mind) unleashes Ursus on the world, and the second where Marvel’s superheroes are mysteriously avoiding the Sentry, but what terrifying secret are they hiding?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Good gravy, this is cool. Plot synopses alone cannot demonstrate how cool, amazing, and hilarious this is. Carol Danvers shows up as Sentry’s girl-sidekick, the Sentress, wearing an altered version of her Ms. Marvel costume. Truman Capote antagonizes the Sentry throughout most of the comic, reveals that he has a bear phobia, and flashes back to a scene from “To Kill a Mockingbird.” There’s a character named Harrison Oogar, the Caveman of Wall Street. The Sentry’s superpowered corgi Watchdog pees on a fire hydrant and blows it up. A teaser ad for a Sentry annual includes characters like Zombin Hood, Howie Lovecraft, and X-Rex: Reptile Ranger! It even has a moment of modern-day creepiness that works out fairly well. The whole thing was much fun.


1985 #6

The final issue of this series, set on an alternate, superhero-less Earth in 1985. Marvel’s supervillains have invaded, and Galactus, Devourer of Worlds, is preparing to, well, devour the world. Luckily, Toby has made it back from the Marvel Universe with all the superheroes in tow, and they make mincemeat of the bad guys. Toby and his dad rush off to the old Wyncham Mansion, where it’s revealed that the brain-damaged Clyde Wyncham was the planet’s lone mutant, able to breach dimensions, control minds, and even raise the dead. He’s the one who brought the villains here, and he’s been controlling them from the beginning. Toby’s dad tries to talk sense to Clyde, but will his efforts come too late?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Much better than I expected it to be, along with a nice, bittersweet ending.


The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Sketchbook

Looks like Marvel is going to be publishing a comic version of the classic fantasy. This is a promotional giveaway showing off Skottie Young’s artwork and designs for the characters. So there’s no plot, just some nice artwork.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Hey, it’s free! But the art is very nice, too. Looks like just the thing for fantasy-loving kids, and grown-up fans of the Oz books should also enjoy it.

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