The Disappointment of an Exclusionary Man-Eaters: Issue #4 Review

I’ve been sitting on this essay, but in light of NPR naming Man-Eaters one of their favorite graphic novels in their 2019 Book Concierge, I’m publishing this as a counterpoint and why it shouldn’t be on that list.

Man-Eaters #4

Erica gives this comic one star.Man-Eaters #4 by Chelsea Cain (writer/creator)
Art: Lia Miternique (cover/creative producer), Lia Miternique and Stella Greenvoss (additional interior art), and Eliza Fantastic Mohan (additional writing)

I wrote some glowing reviews for issues #1-3. Reviews, which at this point, I won’t ever publish.

Unfortunately, Cain has expressed a disinterest in talking about gender issues — namely gender identity and the many genders or non-genders a person could be — while writing a book about gender. Man-Eaters has become a binary gender essentialist text, and it breaks my heart. Continue reading “The Disappointment of an Exclusionary Man-Eaters: Issue #4 Review”

The Best and the Worst of 2016 Comic Books

Yes, the time has come to say goodbye to (aka light on fire) 2016 and ring in 2017. Here’s a look back at the Best and the Worst of 2016* Comic Books.

I reviewed 265 pieces of individual media on this blog this year. Giant Days, Jem and the Holograms, and Lumberjanes had the most individual issue reviews at 12 issues each. Technically, I reviewed 16 Wonder Woman comics; but the New 52 and Rebirth comics are vastly different stories and one was close to the top 5 and the other at the bottom rating-wise.

I changed the format a bit as some stories start off or end strong, which might be my only reviews. But for series where I reviewed many issues, I can be tough even on series that I love, and I wanted this list to reflect consistency in storytelling.

The Best Series (reviewing 6+ issues)

26 different series eligible in this category.

Monstress #11. Monstress by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda
Average rating: 5/5

This book is gorgeous with its fantasy, art deco, and manga influences in Takeda’s pencils. It’s horrifying with plots of a post-war world and a land of broken people. Mostly women, it’s full of women and their stories. It’s a challenge read for the soul. But also for the mind, as Liu’s world building and plots build bit-by-bit. You are immersed in them. Your hand isn’t held. You figure out how to use your feet while running just like the characters.

Read all my reviews for Monstress. Continue reading “The Best and the Worst of 2016 Comic Books”

Mockingbird #1 Comic Book Review

Mockingbird #1Erica Gives This Comic Four StarsMockingbird #1 by Chelsea Cain
Art: Joelle Jones

Cain and Jones teaming up for a book about Mockingbird: yes. Yes, so much I approve of this. I only wish this was an ongoing, not a single issue.

Cain has a hard task of taking all the different versions of Bobbi — West Coast Avengers, more recent spy stuff with Hawkeye, and the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D show — and bringing some coherent narrative to her story. She does do a good job at it and creating a new story to show us the different aspects of Bobbi, not just tell us through meaningless flashbacks.

There’s also a good amount of humor in this book to balance it. Love Lance Hunter’s house and how very British is. Ridiculously so with flags everywhere, including his underoos and the TARDIS cookie jar with his bullets in it. They don’t seem to be in England, which makes it all the better. Continue reading “Mockingbird #1 Comic Book Review”