Welcome, lovely listeners and Precious Patrons of Pulp Pamphlet Parlay, to Issue 48 of Comics Squee. Each podcast our panelists, wielding cosmic power rings, discuss the comic books, graphic novels, and general sequential art geekery that excites them.
Our superpowers are tangents and tentacles.
Taking the revolving 4th chair this issue is our guest, comics fan and return guest Sarah Jordan.
In this issue of Comics Squee we have: Canadian humor ; a superhero private eye; a robot doll fighting championship ; and a quartet of dungeon crawling friends.
April: Hark A Vagrant by Kate Beaton (starts at 00:02:36.562)
This funny series of cartoon strips ranges literature and Canadian history; from the Bronte Sisters to rivals to telephone invention fame. There aren’t many repeating characters or strips, the only one April could think of is The Watsons – there’s Smart Watson and then ‘Dumb Watson’ who Holmes makes Smart Watson babysit.
It would be really easy to go down a Wikipedia rabbit hole with each of Kate’s strips.
There are two volumes of her collected webcomic strips, plus Kate ocassionaly posts sort of quickie sketches on Twitter.
Chriss: Angelic Layer by CLAMP (starts at 00:11:11.000)
This Japanese comic, and the great cartoon based on it, is a sports combat story for girls. The ‘angels’ are dolls players can customize and then battle with on The Layer using their minds (by wearing little headsets with angel wings, because it would just be silly otherwise).
The main character was raised by her grandma because her Mother is always ‘busy working in the city’. But it turns out she’s got a health issues affecting her legs and the scientist who developed the Angels invented the technology to create mind-controlled prosthesis for her – they had to monetize the technology as a toy in order to finance the medical research.
So there’s the shadowy parent / rival, and the you-destroy-your-enemies-by-making-them-your-friend theme that’s common to Japanese comics and cartoons. The series is overall light and friendly and a great entry point to manga.
- 2a) Tangent 1: Chobits by CLAMP (starts at 00:15:55.500)
John: Alias: Jessica Jones by Brian Michael Bendis (writer) and Michael Gaydos (artist) (starts at 00:02:04.108)
When the Netflix series came out John wanted to read the original comic from the ’90s first. It came out as part of Marvel’s “Max” line, so Jessica says F*** and other potty mouth words.
The interesting thing about the comic is the variety of art styles based on what’s happening. When its a flashback to when Jessica was a superhero the art is very 4-color in style. When it’s ‘now’ the art’s more realistic. And then Jessica’s journal is collage.
John also like the changes the Netflix show made. For instance, Jessica’s best friend is Pasty Walker instead of Carol Danvers/Ms. Marvel/Captain Marvel. And the reason for how she becomes able to resist The Purple Man is better in Netflix since they had to get around the “Jean Gray used post-hypnotic suggestion” explanation of the comics.
- 3a) Tangent 2: Heroes for Hire (starts at 00:25:13.750)
- 3b) Tangent 3: Wolverines issue 3(starts at 00:25:59.062)
- 3c) Tangent 4: Punisher laundry day video (starts at 00:27:06.187)
Sarah Jordan: Rat Queens by Kuris Webe (writer), Roc Upchurchs (artist), and Tess Fowler (artist) (starts at 00:31:12.062)
Sarah is unduly excited about Rat Queens. It’s sort of like playing Dungeons & Dragons if your funny friend is the DM.
Basically, it follows four adventurers and, as is no great shock, that would be one dwarf warrior, one elven mage, one human cleric, and one halfling rouge. And they’re all women. They’re in a town that has multiple adventurer bands and, as you would expect, they all get into property destroying mischief. And the first band set is the town trying to get rid of them all.
It’s funny, with great characters that are distinct from eachother. It’s very sex positive, female sexuality positive, and they all go about that in different ways.
It’s the right mix of sarcastic, and fun, and cute, and violent. And there’s a lot of loyalty among the characters.
Question Time: What’s your favorite comic combat scene? (starts at 00:38:46.697)
- Sarah Jordan:
When the church just explodes in Preacher. Kaboom. And done.
No one had anything for an answer, so we refined the question to, “What are your favorite comics that have good combat?”
Amala’s Blade, Delilah Dirk.
Sixth Gun, Gail Simone’s run on Red Sonja. The hallway scene in the Netflix Daredevil series.
The fight scene in Mouse Guard when they’re fighting the crabs.
What We’re Looking Forward to Reading Next (starts at 00:43:45.375)
Watching the Deadpool and Captain America: Civil War movies
- Sarah Jorden:
The next Rat Queens set
We bought a house so she’s excited to put her comics shelves up and have a proper place for them.
Memoir about the loss of the author’s 2 year old daughter, Rosalee Lightening. And she has The Sculptor to read.