Ms. Marvel is the hero we need now

ms-marvel-trump If you are like Kate and I then you are horrified about the actions of the current administration. All throughout the campaign, through his transition period, we were told not to take what Trump says seriously. He isn’t going to build a wall. He wasn’t going to ban an entire religion. He has seriously begun one and made steps to do the other. I’m almost afraid to turn on the news or go online. Even if you try to avoid social media, you can’t escape the outside world entirely.  Really, for the first time, I truly feel afraid. I have now lived in New York City for almost nine years.  I work on the World Trade Center.  Everyday I am reminded of the terrible effects of what terrorism does to people, to cities, to nations and to the world.  I see the hatred, but I also see what comes after.  The love and caring for perfect strangers, the kindness that brings us all together after such horrific events.  Since moving to New York, there have been two possible attacks and yet I have never been afraid.  I have never been scared of being injured in a terrorist attack until the last couple of days.  In one day, he has made us more of a target than we were before.  He turned his back on our American ideals. I understand wanting to keep our country safe.  I want to keep our country safe and the current Immigration Order will in no way keep us safe.

Last year I started reading Ms. Marvel Graphic Novels.  Ms. Marvel’s alter-ego is Kamala Khan,  a Pakistani-American Muslim teenager from New Jersey.  She is a normal American teenager.  She reads comics and writes fan-fiction about the Avengers. When she meets her idols like Wolverine and Captain America she freaks out like any of us would.  She cares for her friends and her family. Like most kids, she toes the line between fitting with her friends and making her parents proud.  She is full of confidence and insecurities. She has doubts and fears about what she has done and what she could do.  When she comes into her power, the first thing she does is save a fellow student who bullied her earlier in the comic without hesitation.  When her best friend’s brother gets in trouble, she puts her fear aside and puts on her costume and goes to the rescue.  She does this because her religion tells her to help others if she has the ability to.  Isn’t that what we all should strive for?  Isn’t that what we all should be doing?  If you have the ability to help someone, shouldn’t you?  Even if they are a stranger to you?  Kamala Khan is a brave girl who goes out into her community and her city and helps those in need because she loves her city and community.  She is brave. Muslim, Christian, Jewish, White, Black, Asian, LGBTQ+. We could all use a little bit of bravery right now.  We all could use a little Ms. Marvel in us and we need to remind our representatives and our President of that, too.  Ms. Marvel and Kamala Khan are the Heroes we need right now.

Quick Review: Adulthood is a Myth by Sarah Andersen

adulthoodIt’s the universal truth that being an adult sucks.  Even though today is my day off, I should be working.  I have staff reviews to write, sales data to analyze and what am I doing?  Flipping through Sarah Scribbles tumblr because as I said, being an adult sucks. You have probably seen Sarah’s work on Facebook because I’m sure one of your friends has shared it.  It seems like Sarah has taped into all the stress, anxiety, and fears of what it’s like to be an adult right now and probably ever.  How we all rather sleep or read then go to work or go outside.  That it would be so much easier if we just didn’t have deal with things but we do. At Book Riot Live this past weekend, Sarah was there to play a little game of Pictionary and since her publisher was a sponser they gave out her book for free.  It was a wonderful surprise.  Before the game started I sat in my seat giggling at all the comics and thinking this is all too real.  Some of the comics I have read before but there was a couple of new ones.  They were all great and wonderful and another reminder that I’m not alone.  There are so many others out there that feel the same way as I do.  It just makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.  Adulting is hard but at lease with Sarah Scribbles we can all laugh at it.

Review: Crecy by Warren Ellis

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I’m pretty sure that I read this graphic novel when it first came out but, I recently moved and in all the packing I came across it and decided it was time to pick it up and read it again.

 

 

The year is 1346 and then English army is outnumbered outside of the village of Crecy. They’ve run a shock-and-awe campaign, attacking villages and just generally making mayhem but now they have to stand and fight. French forces with mounted knights and hired crossbowmen go up against English longbows and other fighters a battle that would have a major impact on the Hundred Years war. The story is centered around one longbowman as he moves through the French countryside and prepares for battle.

 

This is a quick read about a piece of English history. It is pretty good. A little sweary and sometimes a little gross, but that is in line with the subject material. So, if you’re looking for a little history but you aren’t into reading a long tome, I say give this a try.

 

 

Review: Bitch Planet by Kelly Sue DeConnick

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In this dystopian future, Non-compliant women are shipped off to a prison planet where they are kept out of the population and away from the compliant women. They are separated so that they do not destroy society. And, so that they do not infect other women with their non-compliance.
The prison is awful. Women are beaten. They are spied on. They are occasionally murdered by the guards (sometimes on the request of someone in the prison’s administration. Sometimes to protect compliant women from being confused with non-compliant women. Like, if your new husband’s ex-wife is non-compliant and a warrant is issued for her arrest but they get confused and arrest the wrong Mrs….well, what’s a girl to do?)
The women of the prison planet (colloquially known as Bitch Planet) are given the opportunity to play in a competition of a sport some people call dua mille and some people call Megaton. The sport seems to be a no-holds-barred life or death kind of rugby. You can have as many players as you like as long as the total weight of your entire team is 2,000 pounds. (Hence the name of the game). The women could win their freedom but the cards are stacked against them. Even in their practices they are not safe from an unholy level of violence, scheming and trickery. But, they have a few secret weapons.  But, no spoilers so this is where this description stops.
Oh my god. This comic. This comic is soooo good. The art is great. The colors are muted but still there. Especially in the prison. The places where they are the most vibrant are on TV broadcasts. We see compliant women and bright, pastel colors and it really seems forced, which was perfect. The characters, at least the prisoners, are sympathetic. I so want them to win. At everything. Forever. There are a few characters on the outside as well who are sympathetic. And, it ended on a huge cliffhanger. Huge enough that, even though I waited for the first collected volume to come out, I’ve since picked up the individual issues to catch up. (Of course, there was no wisdom in that since I haven’t had time to catch up. But, such is life.)
This counts as my non-super hero comic in the Diverse Stacks, Diverse Lives challenge.

 

Captain America. So much Captain America

Tomorrow a movie that Beth and I (and a lot of the world) has been anticipating comes out and I have been preparing for it in typical Book Blogger fashion. I binged on some of the source material.

I started with Civil War (which Beth also read.)  This is a heartbreaking title in which Captain America stands up for what he believes in and Tony Stark is kind of a dick about something that’s probably a terrible idea. But, that’s not what is heartbreaking about it. I don’t want to spoil it for anyone interested in reading the interesting title, but Cap’s arch in this comic is pretty sad.

 

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And, then I read The Death of Captain America. I feel like that title should come with a spoiler alert? Except, I don’t. This is the post-registration world and so no one can take up the shield without registering first. And, Bucky Barnes, who once again remembers who he is or was, isn’t going to let just anyone take up the shield. I liked how this story developed and went into some of the implications of the registration act. There are still fugitive unregistered heroes. There are registered heroes who regret that choice. It was a good read.

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And, then I read Captain America: Road to Reborn. Steve Rogers has been gone a year. How is everyone holding up? How are they living with what happened and the part they played in it?  This was also an interesting title that unsurprisingly has left me wanting to read more.

So, a friend lent me Marvel 1602 and now that’s what I’m reading.

The good news is Comixology has got a girl’s back and they’ve helpfully had a number of sales that have let me keep reading. (Even if it meant I had to buy single issues.)

 

How do you prepare for a movie based on a book to come out? Do you read the book? Do you watch the interviews of cast members? Do you avoid everything and hope to be pleasantly surprised? Let us know it the comics!

 

 

 

Review: Civil War by Mark Millar

civil warI have to remind myself that the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) is not the same as Marvel Comic Universe. The Captain America and Iron Man that we have grown to love in the movies are not exactly the same in the comics.  They may share some story lines, traits and beliefs but really they are different characters.  As is the story is going to be a different story then the movie.  For one thing thing, in the comic the story relies kinda heavily on the involvement of both the Fantastic Four and the X-Men, both teams that do not exist in the MCU.  So the reasons why the registrations of Superhero’s is necessary had to be changed but the central argument seems to be the same.  To have a governing body to oversee superhero activities or continue to have autonomy on their work.  I can understand both sides.  On one hand, just because you have super human abilities does not mean you are or should be above the law and do what ever you like and then force other people to pay to clean up your mess.  On the other hand, you can’t force someone to work for someone without a choice of employers.Not everyone has the same prioritize and they shouldn’t be forced to submit to others.  I’m not sure how it’s going to play out in the movie since it doesn’t come out until Friday but I feel like the in the comic they were definitely more Team Captain.  Team Iron Man was doing all sorts of shady things.  Cloning older superheroes and creating new ones who will follow their directions.  Release super villains to track down the rebelling superheroes.  Who is supervising them?  The more I read the more I felt that people’s anger was misplaced.  What started it all was a few Mutants (were they actually X-men?) are filming a reality TV show.  They track down other mutants in Stanford, Connecticut. Even though they know they are out matched and they confront them anyway for the sake of better ratings.  They end up dying and taking with them a whole bunch of kids from a near by school. Now this is truly a tragedy but why blame all superheroes and not the producers and the network of the show that pushed them to get bigger rantings.  I haven’t read all the Civil War collections, as I see their are many, so maybe there are more to this then just that but it seems to me this is blaming all for the actions of few.  Say, like blaming the all Muslims for the actions of terrorist even though majority of Muslims live peaceful lives are are just as angry and appalled by the actions of Isis as everyone else.  Captain America, The Falcon, Iron Man, The Fantastic Four Spider-Man and so on are not going out looking for trouble they are only responding when there is.  That’s a big difference.  Maybe regulations should be made but this all of nothing solution that is presented in this is probably not the way.  I found this book to be enjoyable.  Gave me a lot to think about.  Not sure if if really prepared me for what’s to come in the movie since as I said in the beginning these are different beasts but I’m glad I did.

Review: Operation S.I.N. By Kathryn Immonen and Rich Ellis.

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First off, the cover of this book lied to me. This isn’t MCU Peggy Carter, it’s a different Peggy Carter. But, I was able to quickly put that aside because she still kicks ass. The story starts off with a home invasion and then it takes you through a rollicking ride into Mother Russia. Howard Stark has a question about some tech and he needs Peggy Carter’s help. They then team up with a couple of Russian teenagers and a Scottish dude to investigate some alien tech. Can they diffuse tense situations? Will they thwart Hydra? Will Peggy punch Howard in the face? Will Howard deserve a punch in the face? (I think we all know the answer to that last question, at least, even if we don’t read the book.)

This was a fun story and I liked the art. I also kind of love Howard Stark and his Science! first approach to life. It’s amazing he lived as long as he did in the comics since he doesn’t always seem to be aware of his surroundings.

Oh, and there’s a bonus Agent Carter and Captain America at the end of the volume. And, that was pretty fun.