My favorite DC girl has the adventure of a lifetime in Harley Quinn and The Birds of Prey 1-4 by Amanda Connor and Jimmy Palmiotti. The very queer and vibrant four book series catapults Harley and The Birds of Prey into the spotlight, providing a sequel to their beloved series Harley Quinn and Harley Quinn and her Gang of Harleys. The arc is comical and refreshing and we get to see another side of Harley that provides depth for her character. While the Joker is still present in the book, he is not the focal point and is rightfully seen as the piece of trash many Harley fans have come to view him as. The Gang of Harleys, the Birds of Prey, Power Girl, Red Tool and Poison Ivy all help amplify the brilliance and complexity of Harley Quinn’s life. I am forever grateful for this series. Not just because she is a relatable Gemini Jewish girl who can’t tell her butthole from a hole in the ground – but because she is resilient and misunderstood. [Read more…] about And She Was Loved: Harley Quinn and the Birds of Prey
Natasha Romanoff gets a new perspective in Kelly Thompson, Elena Casagrande and team’s Black Widow and it’s not what you might have expected. Black Widow is given an entirely new life – complete with a newfound family and, of course, more than her share of villains who are amped to destroy her at any point. In Thompson’s take, Natasha delves deep into a life that is extremely domesticated, but her dark past comes in on schedule in order to shake things up. [Read more…] about The Many Lives of Natasha Romanov in Kelly Thompson’s Black Widow
T’Challa and and the legacy of Wakanda is continued by Ta-Nehisi Coates in his recent Black Panther series. Being his first shot at writing a comic book, Coates was determined to provide a lush, vibrant story that would ensnare leagues of veteran fans and newcomers to the series. He also proved to stay authentic to T’Challa’s background and story by featuring Klaw, Luke Cage, Ororo Munroe and countless others into his arcs. Themes surrounding colonial theft, xenophobia and the struggles to stay autonomous within an increasingly ‘globalized’ world are discussed within the series.
It is vastly important for Wakanda to have a collective memory and purpose outside of the Western gaze. While Don McGregor did a considerable job with T’Challa, it is evident that when dealing with culturally diverse characters, it is best to have a person who is of that culture to spearhead the character’s development. While some dismissed it as a promotional tool to ramp up interest in the Black Panther film by director Ryan Coogler, Coates proved that he is a writing force to be reckoned with. In his run of Black Panther, we receive a more nuanced idea of what T’Challa’s reign as a King is. The strife, the complications, the love interests, the cultural context – are perfected with Ta Nehisi’s flawless sociopolitical insight. Here are some highlights of his amazing run. [Read more…] about Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Black Panther Retrospective
Kieron Gillen (Author), Simon Spurrier (Author), Jason Aaron (Author), Kev Walker (Illustrator), Salvador Larroca (Illustrator), Andrea Broccardo (Illustrator), Emilio Laiso (Illustrator), Wilton Santos (Illustrator), Caspar Wjingaard (Illustrator), Elsa Charretier (Illustrator), Mike Deodato Jr. (Illustrator), Leinil Francis Yu (Illustrator), Marco Checchetto (Illustrator)
Doctor Aphra is a rogue archaeologist traveling the galaxy with a pair of homicidal droids and an unhinged Wookie named Black Krrsantan. This collection details her early days as a freelancer for Darth Vader to her present-day rabble rousing around the galaxy. Aphra is not a hero and she doesn’t claim to be one. If anything, she represents the autonomous galaxy traveler, not unlike pre-resistance Han Solo. She knows what her purpose is and she sticks to it, not attaching herself to a glorified hero stance as so many canon characters have. Aphra is also one of the first openly queer characters within the Star Wars canon. Sarcastic and full of zingers, Aphra is one of the best Star Wars characters, and the Star Wars: Doctor Aphra omnibus is a great place to get to know the inner workings of the Star Wars universe.
Collects: Star Wars: Doctor Aphra (2016) 1-40; Star Wars: Doctor Aphra Annual (2017) 1-3; Darth Vader (2015) 3-4, 8, 21, 25; Star Wars (2015) 13, 19, 31-32; Star Wars: The Screaming Citadel (2017) 1; material from Star Wars: Empire Ascendant (2020) 1 [Read more…] about To Harm Or To Not Harm: The Doctor Aphra Omnibus Review!
Deadpool, “the Merc with a Mouth” is one of my very favorite characters. He is annoying, hilarious, and violent – but he has a tendency to curb his antics when it’s time to help other people. His voracious eating of tacos, numerous nerd references, and endless self-sabotaging redefines what to expect from a bloodthirsty maniac with a taste for homicide. There is an uncertainty as to whether he is a hero, antihero, or villain. Perhaps the truth is he cannot be boxed into any of them because he is unpredictable, and his schtick puts him in a position where he can be anything he chooses. For better or worse, whether you love him or hate him, Wade Wilson is here to stay because you CAN’T KILL HIM. [Read more…] about The Best of Deadpool!