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Da Bomb Bath Fizzers (Part 1!)

This wasn’t going to be a review until I saw that in my favorite clothing store, Torrid, they had a few of these bombs I had seen on Tumblr. They are Da Bomb Bath Fizzers. These sisters handmake their bombs here in the U.S. (depending on where you live in the U.S., your bombs from Lush might come from our neighbors to the North: Canada!) and they are cutely unique. They are a little more pricey than Lush’s regular bombs, theirs being at 7.50 or 7.90 (if you buy them at Torrid), but are they worth the price? We’ll find out together!

Earth Bomb

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What’s inside it: baking soda, citric acid, food grade PEG, fragrance. May contain cosmetic grade pigment, sugar topping and/or mica.

Is it vegan and cruelty free?: Yes!

What was the surprise inside?: A little toy zebra turkeyfish!

This was probably the bomb I was most excited for! I love Lush’s bath bomb Big Blue, and it has a very big ocean smell. I love the little bits of seaweed in it and just everything about it. I wasn’t expecting an exact duplicate, but I was excited to see what little toy came in it.

The bomb smells almost exactly like Lush’s. I think this is the perfect bomb for people that love the smell of Big blue, but might not like the seaweed in it. The color is almost the exact same too and is a slow fizzer. This is the perfect dupe. I may actully like it more because of the little toy inside.

I love the little fish inside. It’s so cute and it was really fun to get. This is perfect for adults and kids alike!

Candy Bomb

img_28341 img_28381 img_28401 img_28501

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What’s inside it: baking soda, citric acid, food grade PEG, fragrance. May contain cosmetic grade pigment, sugar topping and/or mica.

Is it vegan and cruelty free?: Yes!

What was the surprise inside? An eraser

This one smelled like cotton candy when I took it out of the packaging, which is an awesome smell. I really do like the cotton candy smell, but sadly the smell didn’t last long.

When I put it in the water, it immediately began to stink. I was sitting in my tub with it in the water with my face scrunched up. It smelled almost as bad as the pumpkin one I used at Lush Halloween. I was very thankful for the fact that this was an extremely fast fizzer so I didn’t have to deal with the stinky smell anymore.

The color wasn’t that bright really either. It was a very dull pink and not a bright pink like I thought it was going be since it was cotton candy. It was nice, but not as bright as I thought it was going to be.

The one thing I did really like was the little eraser that came in it. It was super cute and I didn’t expect since the packaging only said that there would be a little “surprise” inside.

 

“F” Bomb

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What’s inside it: baking soda, citric acid, food grade PEG, fragrance. May contain cosmetic grade pigment, sugar topping and/or mica.

Is this vegan and cruelty free? Yes!

What was the surprise inside? A little heartwarming message

I knew I was going to like this bath bomb as well as the Earth bomb because of the fact that I love lavender. It’s an amazing and calming smell. It’s wonderful if you were going to try and fall asleep after it. It’s also really nice if you’ve been having a rough week (like me!).

The color was a beautiful dark purple that my phone really couldn’t get a picture of. It was so nice to be in the bath like that after the previous one wasn’t that great.

The message was super sweet too. It’s something that I’ve been thinking about all day because of the fact that it was something I really need to work on. It was like the universe made sure I got this specific bomb.

Treasure Bomb

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What it’s made of: baking soda, citric acid, food grade PEG, fragrance. May contain cosmetic grade pigment, sugar topping and/or mica.

Is it vegan and cruelty free? Yes

What’s the surprise inside? A toy coin

This was the worst out of the four bombs I tried. I was at least expecting a yellow color in the tub because that was the outside of the bomb. It added no color to the bath at all.

The coconut smelled nice, and I did get the little coin inside, but this is not a bomb I would recommend unless you really like the smell. This is nice if you don’t want to have color or bubbles in your bath, this would be the perfect bomb for you.

 

 

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Dog Day Sunday: All About Sammy

Since my little mutt is about to turn 10 this month, the Dog Day Sunday I figured I’d talk all about my marvelous bird hunter and nap taker extraordinaire!

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The day that we got Sammy was just a regular January day. I was about to be 12 years old in March and my brother was 10. All my brother did at this time was beg my folks for a dog. A dog was all he wanted when he was little, but my father always protested it, citing allergies.

The day we brought her home was super average. My brother and I were both homeschooled at the time and we had finished our work. My mom had left, saying that my dad needed something, and so my brother and I put on Good Boy (which was his favorite movie since it was all about a boy who saved up money to get a dog, which happened to be from outer space). It was ironic because the opening of the film featured a song all about how the singer wish they could have a puppy and I remember my brother turning and saying to me. “Yeah, Cork, I really want a puppy.”

We didn’t even finish the movie because I had gotten a text from my mom saying that she needed Chris outside. I paused the movie, told him to go, and I waited. I waited a while before finally trekking downstairs to see my brother in the garage crying on the floor while Mom was holding a small dog in a Tootsie Roll blanket.

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Later that evening, it was explained that my dad’s business partner saw our little babe on the side of the road just walking around. He pulled over and opened his door, asking her where she was going and she immediately hopped into the car. He had gone through two other people that couldn’t take her and we were her last hope.

Honestly, who could say no to that face?

Now she used to be super timid. When we would walk her outside, we had to be on the sidewalk because the cars scared her. Now she’s a mouthy brat. If you ring the doorbell, or be anywhere near her, she’ll bark her head off.

Her name was mostly my idea, but my brother said it so they liked it more from his mouth than mine. I had three names I liked, all Nickelodeon related: E.T., Porkchop, and Sam.

E.T. was due in part to my obsession with The Naked Brothers Band, and her name would have been short for Elizabeth Taylor (Thanks Mom and Dad for rejecting this idea!). Porkchop not only came from Doug, but the fact that at dinner that night, she had jumped up and tried to eat porkchop off the table. That got rejected too. I could tell that she had a love of meat, which reminded me a lot of Sam from iCarly, so that became the winning name.

Now y’all are probably looking at her and wondering “what breed is that?” Sam is a German Shepard/Chihuahua mix. Really.

The vet said that was likely her mix since he has never got much bigger (like a Shepard would), and she had big Chihuahua ears. It’s also how we found out that she was around 3 months old when we got her, making her birthday in October!

Flashforward 10 years later and she loves to nap (she’s napping and snoring right now as I’m tying this). She has little quirks to her – like how some toys she tears the eyes off and pulls out their stuffing, but others she’s delicate with. If you squeak her toy too hard, she gets visibly upset. She also really loves carrots (which are great for dogs).

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Sam is also an expert bird hunter!

A few years ago we had a pool in our backyard that had handrails. My mother and I noticed there was a pigeon sitting on one who would not move for anything. Sam was freaking out about the bird and wouldn’t get in the pool to get it (she hates water and baths!). My mom was worried it was laying an egg or something so she called my father and we waited.

While my mom was filming the scene, she noticed that there were feathers around the pathway from our patio area to the pool, and everything pieced together. When my father finally got home, he had to use a pool cleaner to get it off the rail. It immediately tried to fly and my dog went nuts trying to get it. She had broke its wing and was torturing it.

I love Sam.

She’s such an integral part of our family now that it’s hard to think of life before her. She’s a blessing and I consider her my little sister.

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Have a story about your own loveable pooch? Send your photos and stories to webmaster@geekgirlworld.com and we’ll future your dog during Dog Day Sunday AND enter you to win a pet edition of Loot Crate!

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Courtney’s Pullbox: September 2016

[Warning: This article will contain spoilers for current comics that are out right now in stores.]

Thank you guys for being so wonderfully patient! With school, internship, and work, I’ve been barely able to read a comic a day (if that!) AND I caught up on Afterlife with Archie so I could get #10 for review before the new Josie and the Pussycats comic comes out (which will be in this month’s box). Here’s what was in September’s box:

  • Wonder Woman #5
  • Titans #2
  • Batgirl #2
  • Archie #11
  • Justice League #4
  • Batman #6
  • Boo, The World’s Cutest Dog #1 (New to the box!)
  • Afterlife with Archie #10 (New to the box!)
  • Cyborg Rebirth #1 (New to the box!)
  • Nightwing #4
  • Powerpuff Girls #3
  • Sherlock: A Study in Pink #4
  • Archie #12
  • Jughead #9
  • Cyborg #1
  • Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #2
  • Wonder Woman #6
  • Batman #7
  • Justice League #5
  • Nightwing #5
  • Raven #1 (New to the box!)

Wonder Woman #5

ww5Title: Wonder Woman
Written by: Greg Rucka
Art by: Liam Sharp
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: August 24, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: “”The Lies” part three! Steve Trevor finds himself trapped in the heart of Urzkartaga’s darkness, with Wonder Woman and Cheetah the only hope of rescue for him and his men. But how far can Cheetah be trusted?”

I’m back to not really liking this plot line.

Now it’s more confusing because of the fact that Wonder Woman, the main character that we are supposed to follow, is just as confused as we are. Readers have been given no hints as to what the truth is, and now the comic wants to feed us information we already know.

On the bright side, the art is kind of growing on me. There is one really good panel where Steve was being held down by snakes as tortue. It was a pretty cool visual, but not not cool enough to add any sense to this comic.

Titans #2

titans011Title: Titans
Written by: Dan Abnett
Art by: Brett Booth and Norm Rapmund
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: August 24, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““Remember the Titans” part two! As the Titans prepare to do the unthinkable in order to defeat the intergalactic demon that stole time itself from the DC Universe, enter the Fearsome Five! But are the sinister quintet acting of their own accord…or are greater forces at work?”
I really love this comic and the way it’s going right now.
This issue is about Kadabra taking the Titans’ younger essences and having them fight their younger selves. It’s a fun concept that does make for awesome fight scenes.
The only downside is that I know this is going to be a “we all have to fight someone else’s self since we know all our own moves”, but then again, I could be wrong. Even if that is the turn around plot point, I think it can still be fun and interesting because we haven’t seen everyone’s current moves.
As usual, the art looks awesome. The fight scenes show this really well and I really like the cover of this issue, too. It reminds me a lot of the early 2000’s show Teen Titans where the boys had their souls trapped in puppets and the girls had theirs switched.

Batgirl #2

5205825-bg_cv2Title: Batgirl
Written by: Hope Larson
Art by: Rafael Alberquerque
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: August 24, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““Beyond Burnside” part two. Batgirl is off to Singapore! Following the mysterious advice of the ancient superhero known as Fruit Bat, Babs dives into the dangerous world of MMA fighting. But her first opponent may be more than just an adversary in the ring. Could she be connected to Babs’ new travel-companion-slash-maybe-crush?”

Though I’m still liking this comic, the previous comic’s cliffhanger was pointless since Babs can’t train at the gym Fruit Bat suggested. She does get trained at another gym by May, but it bothered me that the cliffhanger ended so abruptly and it probably won’t matter as we continue through the comic.

I really love Batgirl as a character. Her facial expressions really crack me up and she’s really well written. It’s obvious that she is an actual human being underneath the mask and the training, which can be rare to see in super hero comics. I also love how smart she is – she noticed a few people with different Chinese tats when they were both Japanese, whichI thought that was pretty awesome.

I’m liking all the characters in this comic, really. I like May, who’s real tough and honest, but is clearly working with Babs because she has talent. I like Kai, even though the kiss between him and Babs clearly wasn’t something Babs was ready for.

The art is amazing… as usual. The fight scenes look amazing and the blood doesn’t look too jarring to the point where I wouldn’t want to read the comic.

Archie #11

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Title: Archie
Written by: Mark Waid
Art by: Veronica Fish, Jack Morelli, Andre Szymanowicz, and Jen Vaughn
Published by: Archie Comics
Release Date: August 24, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “Archie and Jughead have been playing their instruments in Archie’s garage for a while, but now it’s finally time for them to take their talents elsewhere. Veronica suggests that the two form a band — assuming, of course, that she gets to be their lead singer. This bothers Betty, since music was a deep connection that she had always shared with Archie — so she’ll just have to form her own rival band. Now it’s #TeamArchie vs. #TeamBetty in a battle of the bands that has the whole school picking sides!”

The writing in this comic is so rushed and weird.

At the beginning of the comic, Archie is literally spoon feeding us the exposition and then adding some nonsense about Veronica being a reality TV star? What? When has this been a thing at all?

The writing only gets worse when you now add in the fact that Veronica can only sing well in the band if she’s looking at Archie. That doesn’t even make a lick of sense!

Listen, I use to watch The Naked Brothers Band as a kid. It was terrible and they even had one plot where their babysitter could only sing well in the shower. Though that could have easily been chalked up to acoustics, that’s not how they played it. This still makes more sense that Veronica only being able to sing well when looking at Archie. Is she a Disney Princess or something? It makes no sense.

The shitty writing of this comic continued with its rushed ending, which saw Archie and Betty apologizing and hugging (causing issues for the next comic with their significant others).

I can’t even applaud the art style. They got a new artist for this and it’s definitely off. At some parts, Jughead looks like Flynn Rider from Tangled. Which perhaps make sense considering the faux Disney aspect of the writing.

Maybe #12 will be better. Maybe.

Justice League #4

justice-league-4Title: Justice League
Written by: Bryan Hitch
Art by: Jesus Merino
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: September 7, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““THE EXTINCTION MACHINE” part 4! In the center of the Earth, Superman faces three doomsday machines set to tear the world apart, while Earth’s two Green Lanterns discover just what a purged planet is truly like. The Kindred are awake and hold the truth about the beginnings of humanity.”

This issue continues the plot of the Justice League attempting to stop all these natural disasters and the people/god things creating them, and I’m so over it. I want this to be over and moved on.

Throughout this, any idea I had of defeating these characters was brought up, which begged the question, why didn’t they do this earlier?

It’s frustrating to have to deal with Superman in this comic. He’s still trying to stop the power in the center of the Earth, and I’m hoping the whole time that the power is too strong and will kill him, as he mentions near the end that he if he fails, Lois and his son will die. Really? That’s all that matters? Not the fact that your team and THE ENTIRE PLANET will die. I understand he’s an alien, but if he doesn’t care about this planet, why even bother saving it?

The art is nice, but not nice enough to make up for this tiring plot point and Superman’s poor characterization.

Batman #6

bm_cv6_575f448af13504-46600219Title: Batman
Written by: Tom King
Art by: Joe Prado and Ivan Reis
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: September 7, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““I AM GOTHAM” epilogue. In this stand-alone tale, Batman seeks redemption as he tries to keep Gotham Girl from going down a dangerous path. But can the Dark Knight save someone who doesn’t want to be saved?”

This one is a bit of an annoying comic, too.

It wasn’t implied previously that Gotham died, so seeing Claire’s reaction (which came out of nowhere) and talking to herself is too sudden and confusing. The writer really never explored her powers until now,  where she is slowly killing herself. It is not okay to bring this up out of nowhere and just accept it. Claire talking to herself gets super annoying, as well (even though she’s supposed to be talking to her brother).

The only part I really liked was Batman trying to help her grieve. He goes to Alfred and asks how he helped him with grieving his parents. I think it’s really nice that he reveals his secret identity to her and wants to help her. Nice, but sadly it’s out of nowhere.

The art style is okay. There’s no big changes or anything that I really think is amazing, but I did like it.

Boo, The World’s Cutest Dog #1

boo2016-01-cov-c-fleecs-f6a3eTitle: Boo, The World’s Cutest Dog
Written by: Kristen Deacon, Audrey Elizabeth, Fernando Ruiz, and Joelle Sellner
Art by: Tony Fleecs, Robbie Robbins, and Fernando Ruiz
Published by: Dynamite Comics
Release Date: September 7, 2016
Price: $1.99

Summary: “The World’s Cutest Dog comes to comics! He’s Boo, the Pomeranian pup that’s become an internet sensation, and he’s ready for four-color adventures in his first-ever comic book! In this debut issue, Boo and his canine companions Buddy and Blueberry Pie create kitchen chaos when they can’t control their tummy rumblings; our favorite doggie becomes a “Boo-vie star” when he lucks into a Hollywood audition; and finally, Boo celebrates the birthday of adorable eight-year-old Audrey… but the party gets out of hand! Comic readers of all ages will love the whimsical, fun-filled escapades of Boo, the World’s Cutest Dog!”

This comic is all around adorable.

I really like these stories and I particularly enjoyed this one. Plus, all of the advertisements were at the end of the comic, as to not clog up the story. It was kind of cool.

There were three stories in this issue, but I’m only going to mention two of them.

The first story is “Boo and the Birthday Bash”,  and I have never felt as bad for a character than I did for the little girl in the story. She gets Boo for her birthday and all her friends are so distracted by the cute dog at her birthday party that they ignore her. It was so sad – I felt bad since she’s just a little girl.

The second story – and my personal favorite – is titled “One Boo Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”. This story is about Boo and his doggy friends trying to feed themselves since their Human is sick. It’s super cute because they are genuinely worried that Human won’t be able to take care of them. Though in the end, she of course does get up to take care of them. It was a super cute read!

Afterlife with Archie #10

alwarchie10Title: Afterlife with Archie
Written by: Robert Aguirre-Sacasa
Art by: Francesco Francavilla
Published by: Archie Comics
Release Date: August 31, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “Interlude with the Pussycats BETTY: RIP Part 5, “Interlude with the Pussycats” Before the end of the world began, a female pop trio was setting charts on fire. But in a world of TMZ and paparazzi-driven media, somehow these women kept their private lives a secret from everyone — until now. A full-access interview promises to show the tragic and terrifying origin story of Josie and the Pussycats. For TEEN+ Readers.”

This is the second story from Afterlife where they pull away from the group (who are trying to survive the zombies). The first one told the story of Sabrina getting her punishment, while this one starts a new story line all together.

I really like this comic series, and this issue in particular. This comic is a really good example of how to tell stories about existing characters in a new and interesting way without randomly shoving characters together and having them shovel all this story out via exposition.

I really love the story of thes orphan girls growing up in the early 1920s and becoming singers. It shows them being naive and paying the price for it. The set up is amazing, the explanation for how they can go unnoticed is wonderful, and how they lead up to being in Riverdale is fantastic.

One part in particular that I would recommend based on this alone is the fact that Valerie is almost kicked out multiple times because she is black, and how does she get vengeance for all this racist hate? She and the girls literally attack and kill multiple groups of the KKK. It’s absolutely beautiful to read and I’m glad that they brought up this issue at all.

This could easily be one of the best comics I have read all year.

Cyborg Rebirth

cyborg_reb_1cover_575eeb38bf00c2-46954474Title: Cyborg
Written by: John Semper, Jr.
Art by: Tony Kordos, Sandra Hope, and Paul Pelletier
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: September 7, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: “Victor Stone was once a star athlete and brilliant student with a bright future. But after a tragic accident destroyed over half of his body, Victor was kept alive by merging flesh with advanced technology. Today he is the Justice League co-founder called Cyborg. But is the young hero a man…or a machine that merely believes it’s a man?”

Though I haven’t read the new Titans Rebirth yet, I would have to say that this right now is probably my favorite first story (though I really liked Batgirl too). This comic was amazing and I really loved it!

The art style was absolutely great and paired perfectly with the story. I think it was beautiful and I would recommend this comic on art style alone.

When it comes to the actual story, the writer goes back far enough to do background on Cyborg’s parents. I really like the characterization of his parents, especially with his father, who has an internal conflict of saving his son with alien technology and possibly losing his son personality wise. It was something that really pulled at my heartstrings when I read it.

Nightwing #4

ntw_cv4_575f47ffba7c85-66541202 TitleNightwing
Written by: Tim Seely
Art by: Javier Fernandez
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: September 7, 2016

Price: $2.99

Summary: ““BETTER THAN BATMAN” part 4! At last, Nightwing and Raptor enact their endgame to shut down the Parliament of Owls permanently! But the Parliament has one last card up its sleeves: The Moloch, a giant owl monster whose mission is simple: eviscerate Nightwing and Raptor.”

This comic was very much a character building relationship story between Raptor and Nightwing. The two are fighting side by side a lot of the time in this comic, saving innocent people, and even reveal that Raptor was part of the circus like Dick was. I really liked it, but I feel like the writer was not doing any real plot structure.

The one part I really enjoyed about this comic is the building relationship between Dick and Bruce. It’s something that they still work on because Dick has left for so long. It’s really nice and it was nice to see it outside a fighting setting.

The art is starting to grow on me, but it’s still very weird that Bruce looks more like Dick than Dick is suppose to.

Powerpuff Girls #3 

ppg2016_03-cover-330x500Title: Powerpuff Girls
Written by: Jake Goldman and Haley Mancini
Art by: Derek Charm
Published by: IDW Comics
Release Date: September 14, 2016

Price: $3.99

Summary: “Donny the Unicorn may have magical unicorn powers but you know what he doesn’t have? Money. Lucky for him, Princess Morbucks is hiring a personal assistant and is more than willing to have a superpowered magical unicorn in her employ. But when she wants him to help her destroy his BFF’s Powerpuff Girls, Donny must decide what’s more important to him!”

I really have been enjoying this comic series so far, but sadly, this comic is my least favorite so far.

I hate the character Donny. I know he’s new and from the show, but he’ so annoying. At one point, he even references The Legend of Zelda TV series from 1989 doing the signature phrase “Well, excuuuuuuuuuse me!” Really? What child is going to get that reference? I barely know the reference and I was born in 1994. He also mentions waffles constantly. What is with Cartoon Network shows referencing waffles so much?

Another thing I really didn’t like about the comic is the fact that there’s loose references to the old show. Princess is in the comic, but then at the beginning of the comic, the girls have after school jobs. How old are they? Aren’t they suppose to be 5?

The art is really the only good thing, but again, it looks better as a comic, not as a show.

Sherlock: A Study in Pink #4

sherlock_manga_asip_04_cover_a-1

Title: Sherlock: A Study in Pink

Written by: Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat

Art by: Jay

Published by: Titan Comics

Release Date: September 14, 2016

Price: $3.99

Summary: “Sherlock and John take to the streets of London on a breathless foot chase – but is their quarry any closer to being caught? What kind of mind does it take to baffle – and challenge – the peerless Sherlock Holmes?! The mystery deepens in the latest thrilling issue of the Sherlock manga!”

This comic really almost ignited my shipping heart again. I use to heavily ship Johnlock and the scene of them at the restaurant is probably what started it. The dialogue is very funny and it’s shown a lot better through the show.

One of the benefits of having this medium is the fact that you get a panel seeing John leaving his cane behind. You could argue that this would ruin the surprise, but I found it very cute. I also really like showing the maps and streets of London so you could see where they would be going.

The art style is still really nice, but I’m glad they’re using the medium to their advantage.

Archie #12

arch12Title: Archie

Written by: Mark Waid

Art by: Thomas Pittilli

Published by: Archie Comics

Release Date: September 21, 2016

Price: $3.99

Summary: “The end of an era for Riverdale’s power couple! The romantic rivalries and not-so-friendly competitions in Riverdale will finally come to an end as newly-crowned queen of Riverdale Veronica Lodge is sent packing once and for all! What does this mean for Archie? You won’t want to miss this one!”

This comic felt so rushed and short. Every single bit. The fighting, the blowing over the election, Veronica leaving. I think this is so that way we can forget about all those little pesky story lines when the next issue is going to be about the arrival of Cheryl Blossom.

I understand wanting to only have one bitchy rich girl, but I don’t feel bad about her leaving. Throughout this entire comic series, Veronica has ruined relationships, made Archie look like a jerk with not caring about his family or friends, technically ruined a teaching and political career, and have her uproot Archie’s family so that way she can have what she want. Oh yeah, I’m suppose to be sympathetic and miss her. Not gonna happen.

Minor nit pick, but someone please teach Archie Comics how cellphone batteries work. While trying to get in contact with Veronica, Archie’s battery starts at 20%. When she finally contacts and all he did was get dressed, it’s dropped to 3. Either Archie has the literal worst battery ever or the Archie comics needed to add more unnecessary tension.

The art style is not even something to really enjoy because it looks like something from an anime made not in Japan. It’s a shame because I do like this comic series, though it frustrates the hell out of me.

Basically, this whole issue and Veronica leaving left me like this:

Jughead #9

jughead9charmTitle: Jughead

Written by: Ryan North

Art by: Derek Charm

Published by: Archie Comics

Release Date: September 7, 2016

Price: $3.99

Summary: “(It’s kind of like a) BRAND NEW #1… except it’s issue #9! SABRINA makes her debut in the NEW RIVERDALE and things are about to get INSANE! New story! New arc! New creative team! Pop Tate’s has a new mascot: it’s a lady in a burger costume with a giant burger for a head! And she never takes off that giant burger head! And she and Jughead really hit it off, probably for that very reason! But is it possible Burger Lady is MORE than she appears? Find out what happens when Jughead meets a burger he REALLY likes—and a POWERFUL and unexpected new force in Riverdale is revealed!! P.S.: that powerful and unexpected new force is SABRINA THE TEENAGE WITCH! SHE’S the Burger Lady!”

I really like this comic series still. Even with the new writer, I’ve really enjoyed it.

From beginning to end, this comic is fun, and it kind of worried me a bit. The whole comic is about Jughead slowly becoming friends with a Burger Lady that advertises outside of Pop’s. He does eventually get asked out by her, and he’s going through the “I have no idea what to do with dates because asexual”.

The only thing I didn’t like is the fact that we don’t really know it’s Sabrina until the end and we don’t get to know her at all. Hopefully, it will be made up for next comic.

Cyborg #1

cyb_cv1_575eefd05a2c38-70731788Title: Cyborg

Written by: John Semper Jr

Art by: Will Conrad

Published by: DC Comics

Release Date: September 21, 2016

Price: $2.99

Summary:“THE IMITATION OF LIFE” part one! Cyborg is thrown into conflict with every robotic threat to the DC Universe as a brand new era begins for Victor Stone, courtesy of writer John Semper Jr. (Spider-Man: The Animated Series) and artist Will Conrad (Angel & Faith)!”

I really like this comic as well. The internal struggle of “Am I still who am I with these robotic parts or am I just a shell of it?” is a really good and it’s better than most of the Rebirth issues where this issue is dropped.

One of the things I really liked is the fact that almost all the characters are black. They could have easily just made Victor and his folks black with everyone being white, but instead, they really take advantage of the Detroit setting. From seeing Blue, the blind veteran that sings the blues, and his friend Sarah, it’s great to see the diverse characters. Even little fans that come up to him while he was trying to be incognito to get ice cream are black and it’s cute.

The only thing I really didn’t like was the reference to Superman in the Justice League (this is the third one this month I noticed) and they were shitting out exposition when Cyborg Rebirth is a thing. If this was fixed, it probably would have been my favorite comic this month.

Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #2

5271496-bg_bop_2Title: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey

Written by: Julie and Shawna Benson

Art by: Claire Roe

Published by: DC Comics

Release Date: September 14, 2016

Price: $2.99

Summary: ““WHO IS ORACLE?” part 3! Batgirl, Black Canary, and Huntress must team up with the GCPD to protect a mafia capo from an attack by his one-time friends! He’s the only man with a lead on the nefarious new Oracle…but dead men tell no tales! Of course, it’s hard to make a team-up work when the team’s ready to tear itself apart on its first mission!”

This comic is very action packed at the beginning, but as we get into more it, it’s a heavy dialogue comic. I did love the commentary except for when Batgirl’s thoughts were interrupting someone while they were talking since it was clunky.

I really didn’t like the fact that Gordon, Barbra’s dad, literally called Batman to help out with this. Sure, he doesn’t know that Batgirl is Babs, but really? Batman? She couldn’t handle this at all herself?

I would have to say that this is my least favorite of the series so far, but it’s not terrible like Powerpuff Girls #3 was.

Wonder Woman #6

ww_cv6_57605bf60db6c5-77380902Title: Wonder Woman

Written by: Greg Rucka

Art by: Nicola Scott

Published by: DC Comics

Release Date: September 14, 2016

Price: $2.99

Summary: ““WONDER WOMAN YEAR ONE” part 3! Diana brings Steve back home, but the reception is not what either of them expected. Amid suspicion and a looming threat, the Patrons pay a visit, and new friendships are forged.”

I didn’t think I was going to like this issue. It started off with a bunch of “They’re going to be love interests” cliches between Diana and Steve as well as “foreigner in a new land” cliches. I wasn’t holding out for much on this one, and sadly, this is the story line I like of the two going on so it would be disappointing.

What instead happen was I ended up feeling bad for Diana. She’s trapped in jail in a world where she doesn’t know the language and little to no one is really trying to help figure out what she’s saying or why she’s here. It’s not even until the end of the comic that someone can attempt to figure it out.

I also really love the cover for this issue. The animals are the Gods visiting her and they really captured how happy she is to have things that understand her.

Batman #7

batman-7-08367Title: Batman

Written by: Tom King

Art by: Riley Rossmo

Published by: DC Comics

Release Date: September 21, 2016

Price: $2.99

Summary: ““NIGHT OF THE MONSTER MEN” part 1! The first crossover of the “Rebirth” era is here! As a huge storm approaches, Batman, Batwoman, and Nightwing try and prepare Gotham City for the worst, but nothing can prepare them for enormous tall monsters rampaging through the streets! Batman will need all of his allies to unite in order to stop these mad science monsters from tearing their city apart!”

This was a very heavy plan story. Batwoman is introduced and she’s there to help with not only the flooding but helping the grotesque monster men that show up near the end of the story. I don’t know much about her, but between this issue and Nightwing, I’m excited to figure out who she is.

One of the little things I liked was the fact that Luke wanted to go out there and be a part of the action. It’s very much a Robin trait and even though he’s not one, it’s cute to see. I also like that Batman told him to “check the syllabus” for when he could go and help out and be ready. Especially since I’m in college now and am always checking my syllabuses (syllabi?), it cracked me up that even Robins get one.

I did like the art for this. Though it was a little nasty to look at the monster men, that means the art style is doing its job!

Justice League #5

justl_cv5_dsTitle: Justice League
Written by: Bryan Hitch
Art by: Sandu Florea and Tony S. Daniel
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: September 21, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““THE EXTINCTION MACHINE” part 5! In this concluding chapter, the race to the corners of the Earth is on for Aquaman as he holds the key to saving our planet from destruction—if he can make it in time before the last doomsday machine powers up! Can Superman survive his trip to the Earth’s core? Is this the final battle between the Justice League and The Kindred—or just the start of something far worse?

We’re finally finishing this fucking plot and I can’t wait for it to be done. This issue really showed all of them working as a team to defeat these creatures, even when they were taking some of their powers. Even Superman actually helped out.

One of the things that I really liked about this was the art. The art looked amazing for this issue. The backgrounds and the textures for the monsters were really awesome. I can’t wait for next issue and see what happens.

Nightwing #5

ntw_cv5_575f4a55bb3568-32152773Title: Nightwing
Written by: Steve Orlando and Tom Seely
Art by: Roge Antonio
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: September 21, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““Night of the Monster Men” part 2! The Monster Men are stomping their way through Gotham City. How can the Bat-team face the monsters and the storm of the century? And when Nightwing goes behind the scenes to discover where the monsters came from, what lurks in the shadows may be worse than the monsters themselves!”

I honestly can’t understand why this plot was continued here and not in the next issue of Batman. I kept sitting there reading this going “Great story. Why is it in Nightwing though?”. I did like this story and it looks like it’s continuing in another comic I don’t get.

It’s sad this isn’t continuing in a comic I’m reading because I want to see what happens to Claire. They threw in this “she dies if she uses more of her power” story and she’s disobeying Batman to just that. I do want to see it.

I really liked the fact that there was a Bat Beacon, which was a recorded message for Gotham to get them to safety. I think it was really sweet and thoughtful of Batman to do that.

Raven #1

raven_cv1Title: Raven
Written by: Marv Wolfman
Art by: Alisson Borges
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: September 21, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““The White Carnival” part 1! In a tale set between TEEN TITANS #24 and TEEN TITANS: REBIRTH #1, Raven takes a break from the team and moves to San Francisco to stay with her estranged aunt and face her most perilous challenge yet: high school! As Raven discovers more about her human side, one of her classmates goes missing under mysterious circumstances, and she must face an evil like none she’s known before!”

This comic is not in the Rebirth series, but I loved it none the less. From the summary alone, I knew I was going to like it, and I was absolutely right.

I loved the fact that Raven sees her cousin praying to God while eating dinner at her aunt’s house. It’s so different from Raven’s world and it’s going to be interesting to see if she will connect with this family.

I love the actual art style (which the comic is not it) and I love her outfit (pictured below) that she’s in. It looks goth like and like her uniform without it screaming “I used to be a hero with the Teen Titans!” I also love the fact that her speech bubbles are different from everyone’s, too. It adds to the style.

raven-1-2-3

Tune in next month to read my October pull box reviews!

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If Courtney Ran Archie Comics Social Media

I often complain about Archie Comics and their pandering social media practices, which got me thinking… what would be different if I controlled Archie Comics social media accounts?

To be clear, I do love Archie Comics for what they produce. A lot of their comics are great escapes from the typical superhero stories that pop up twice a month. Their comics remind me of high school and stress that comes along with it. But as an Archie fan, there are definitely some changes that I would like to see the company make in order to enhance the reader experience, including:

1. Toning down the frequency of advertisments

I understand that Archie Comics, from a business perspective, wants to advertise up-and-coming comics. That’s how I found out that Josie and the Pussycats, Betty and Veronica, and Reggie were getting a new comic, so I have no real complains there.

However, this advertising can be excessive on social media.

For example…

Archie Comics shared on Facebook that they will be at New York Comic Con this yea, but instead of accompanying this post with a photo related to New York Comic Con, they instead chose to include a visual advertisement for Archie Meets the Ramones. It’s just not relevant.

The company also over advertises their upcoming comics on social media, an example being the heavy advertising that led up to Josie and the Pussycats first issue (which came out on September 28). Almost every post for the days up until that point was about Josie and the Pussycats, and while I understand the company’s desire to get fans excited for the comic, forcing advertising down fan’s throats is too excessive.

2. Doing memes….but having them make sense.

i-hate-archie-comics

This. ^

This the exact thing I hate when it comes to companies trying to appeal to teens/trending topics.

How does this make any sense to someone? I get the beginning is a “funny” reference to Billy Joe Armstrong of Green Day and their song “Wake Me Up When September Ends,” but every unoriginal asshole on the Internet uses that joke.

The second part of the tweet is a reference to Mean Girls (one of my favorite movies ever)… another joke I’m totally over.

That last little “buy our comics” bit is so sad and so desperate. This makes me imagine some grown man, probably in his 40s, getting no help from his children on what’s hip, so he’s stumbling around trying to figure it out himself.

How can you do a relevant meme with Archie? Well, the running gag on their Tumblr is that Archie himself runs their social media. If they wanted to be relevant, then they easily could have done a #DescribeYourselfWithThreeFictionalCharacters post. They could have either done three incarnations of Archie himself OR gotten creative and thought of three other characters that might be similar to Archie.

Conan O’Brien chose Archie for one of his three fictional characters, so this would have been the perfect opportunity for the company’s social media page to jump on the trend.

You can be relevant without pandering.

3. Posting fan art.

This one is a little bit of a difficult one.

I feel that Archie could benefit from fan involvement by sharing fan art, but I know the company would never do that. Years ago, they tried suing Fanfiction.net because people were writing fan fictions about their characters, citing that the action would “dilute and tarnish their character.”

You read that right. The company that has had Ashlee Simpson referenced in their comics, did a crossover with Glee and the movie Sharknado, thinks that fans writing stories about characters romantically and/or sexually together would tarnish their character.

Sure, Jan.

I feel like if they did contests for fan art or stories through their social media pages, they could get more fans involved, and it would be a great way to showcase talent.

4. Doing Facebook Live Q and As with writers and artists.

Tumblr recently did a Q and A session with writer Mark Waid, which was very interesting. It made me wonder why these kind of live events don’t happen more often.

Hell, Archie Comics could even do it as a promotional live event with Riverdale with the actors answering questions on the set. This would be a great way for fans to be able to ask questions and feel connected with a comic book brand that has been in their lives for a long time.

These are just some of my ideas with what I would do to run Archie Comics social media. This was mostly in fun, but I think if they did do some of these things, their social media presence would be less cringe worthy.

What changes do you think Archie Comics should make in regards to social media? Let us know in the comments!

 

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‘Afterlife with Archie’: Escape From Riverdale Vol 1 Review

Afterlife With Archie

afterlifewitharchie_bookone_001-600x941Title: Afterlife with Archie
Written by: Roberto Auirre-Sacasa
Art by: Francesco Francavilla
Published by: Archie Comics
Release Date: June 10, 2014
Price: $17.99

Summary: “All hell breaks loose when a fateful accident sets in motion a series of terrifying events that will threaten the town of Riverdale like never before! When the dead begin to rise, craving human flesh, it’s up to Archie, Betty and Veronica, and the Gang to fight for their lives against the zombie hordes led by their former pal, Jughead…”

I previously received a free black and white version of this comic at a festival and instantly fell in love with it!

I’m not usually one for gore or scary stories (To put that into perspective, I got very uncomfortable while watching Deadpool), but weirdly enough, this series wasn’t that terrifying to me.

The story of this comic series is really interesting. Reggie hits Jughead’s dog, Hot Dog, with his car, and Jughead goes to our good pal, Sabrina, to try to bring Hot Dog back to life. After ignoring her aunts’ warnings to not mess with necromancy, they bring Hot Dog to life again and he becomes a zombie. Sabrina is punished by being damned and having her mouth removed, and Hot Dog bites Jughead and turns him in to zombie. Slowly – but surely – Jughead starts turning others into zombies and it’s up to Archie and those who aren’t bit to save the day.

I love this storyline –  it’s very realistic and mature for an Archie comic. This is how Archie does modern day plotlines and pop culture right. There’s no memes or hashtags, it has a great story line, and the art is amazing, so why are we stuck with the stuff coming out now? Obviously this genre sells and does well (without this, we would have no Chilling Adventures of Sabrina!), so why doesn’t Archie do much more creepy horror genre stuff?

The art is amazing. It can be detailed where it needs to be (usually in bloody scenes) and it has amazing backgrounds and minimalist work. The only downside is that the comic is in color! The colors used reminded me a lot of a Halloween store: a lot of black, purple, and orange. I think these are nice color choices, but it gets old quickly. This comic would have looked really cool in black and white, making the novel visually different from the ones currently on the market.

If you want to get a start with Archie Comics, then this volume would be a perfect starting point! I would recommend it to almost everyone, the exception being kids, as there’s quite a bit of violence and sexual references throughout the series.

Check it out, GeekGirl World!

Will you be checking out Afterlife With Archie? Let us know in the comments!

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Courtney’s Pullbox: August 2016

[Spoiler alert for new comics that are currently out]

DC has been releasing comics twice a month thanks to Rebirth, so August should have had a lot of titles for you guys to enjoy!

The list for last month is long (hence why it’s out in September), but these comics were well worth it:

  • Betty and Veronica #1 (new to the box!)
  • Batgirl and the Birds of Prey Rebirth (new to the box)
  • A-Force #7
  • Batman #3
  • Justice League #1
  • Archie #10
  • Wonder Woman #3
  • Jughead #8
  • Titans #1
  • Nightwing #1
  • Batgirl Rebirth
  • Sherlock: A Study in Pink #3
  • Justice League #2
  • Nightwing #2
  • A-Force #8
  • Batman #4
  • Disney Princess #5
  • Wonder Woman #4
  • Powerpuff Girls #2
  • Nightwing #3
  • Batman #5
  • Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #1
  • Justice League #3

Betty and Veronica #1

B-V-1-1f745 Title: Betty and Veronica
Written by: Adam Hughes
Art by: Adam Hughes
Published by: Archie Comics
Release Date: July 20, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “It’s Betty vs. Veronica! The most highly-anticipated debut in comics history is here! Betty and Veronica are America’s sweethearts – until they turn on each other! Pops’ Chocklit Shoppe is being taken over by a huge coffee company. When Betty and Veronica go head-to-head over the issue, all bets are off! Friendships will shatter. Cities will burn. Nails will be broken. Betty and Veronica are back in this all-new #1 from comics legend Adam Hughes (Wonder Woman, Catwoman,Before Watchmen: Dr. Manhattan)!”

I was really excited for this comic! I’ve enjoyed pretty much every new Archie comic, and although I did like this one, I really can’t say much about it besides “ehh.”

The art style of this particular comic is different from the other comics, but it’s okay at best. When the art is bad, it’s really bad. Some of the facial expressions are really weird and though the artist tries to make them appear a bit realistic, it doesn’t work for everyone every time. Luckily, Archie Comics usually changes their artist after a few comic issues, so this likely won’t be a permanent problem.

As far as the story is concerned, the plot involves a small town store (Pop’s) vs a big corporation store (owned by Veronica’s father). The story is average but it will be interesting to see which side the characters ultimately choose – the small town store or the big name store.

The writer should have named this comic Betty vs Veronica, as I have a feeling this whole comic series will end up pitting the two against each other.

Strangely enough, the story is told through the perspective of Jughead’s dog, Hot Dog. It’s really weird.

I’m hoping this comic does not end up being very cliche.

Batgirl and the Birds of Prey Rebirth

batbopTitle: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey
Written by: Julie and Shawna Benson
Art by: Claire Roe
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: July 20, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““WHO IS ORACLE” Chapter One: Batgirl and Black Canary are together again, working a case that strikes right at the heart of their partnership! Someone’s uncovered the greatest secret Barbara Gordon ever kept: her time as Oracle, the most powerful hacker on the planet. And not only do they know her secret, they’re using her name to sell dangerous information to criminals! Now one of those deals has brought some major heat to Gotham City…Helena Bertinelli is out of Spyral, wearing the hood of the Huntress, and making mafia blood run in the streets! Everything you thought was hidden will be revealed if the Oracle has their way…”

I wasn’t sure how much I was going to like this comic, but I ended up really liking this story.

I don’t really know much about Batgirl, Oracle, Black Canary, or Huntress, but I have a good friend that everyone calls Babs, so I really wanted to learn about the character.

The comic delves into character background information that a newcomer still might not fully understand, but is not dumbed-down.

So far I really like both Huntress and Black Canary. I’m a sucker for female led comics, so I have a feeling that I will be really liking this series.

A-Force #7

374911._SX360_QL80_TTD_Title: A-Force
Written by: Kelly Thompson
Art by: Ben Caldwell
Published by: Marvel Comics
Release Date: July 20, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “After narrowly escaping a grisly death at the hands of one of their own, a weary but determined A-FORCE make bold moves to free NICO and the town from Countess’s control. However, saving the day is going to take more than just super-powered punches. A-FORCE is going to have to go deeper than that – changing Countess’s very mind – which is not exactly something super villains readily embrace. Meanwhile, developments with the team’s sparkly THOR rock A-FORCE to the core.”

The art is a little inconsistent in this issue.

Some of the panels have Medusa looking a bit thicker than usual. Though it’s no skin off my bones since I’m always looking for comics with bigger characters, this could be an issue for people who like consistency. But in general, the art style is still very enjoyable.

This was a Dazzler and Thor focused comic, and I ended up enjoying it a lot. This incarnation of Thor slightly looks like Dazzler, so it’s interesting to see the interactions between the two. Dazzler was even allowed to pick up Thor’s hammer, which was awesome to see!

Thor ultimately ends up leaving the comic (bummer), but it was still good!

Batman #3

Batman01Title: Batman #3
Written by: Tom King
Art by: Matt Banning and David Finch
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: July 20, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““I AM GOTHAM” Chapter Three: Batman and Gotham strike out together to get to the bottom of the mysterious attacks against the city. Could this novel and headstrong new hero be everything Gotham City needs…at the cost of the Dark Knight?”

This comic focused mainly on Gotham and Gotham Girl’s backstory, which is supposed to be a bit of a secret, but is very obvious.

We learn that Gotham (also known as Hank) was out with his parents when they were tragically killed. Batman obviously lost his parents in the same way, and this common tragedy ultimately unites them as partners. Strangely enough, Gotham Girl (also known as Claire) gets vivid nightmares about Hank’s partners dying, even though she wasn’t there. It simply doesn’t make sense.

I really didn’t like how quickly Gotham and Batman teamed up. I was hoping for a friendly rivalry, but since both of them want to protect the city for the same reason, I understand why teaming up is a good idea. Even so, a rivalry would have made for a much more interesting story line.

Justice League #1

JUSTLREB-Cv1-ds-3dcc9Title: Justice League
Written by: Bryan Hitch
Art by: Tony S. Daniel and Sandu Florea
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: July 20, 2016
Price: 
$2.99

Summary: ” “THE EXTINCTION MACHINE” Chapter One The oceans rise. The earth quakes. And an ancient power rises to reclaim not just the world, but the universe itself—and not even the combined might of the Justice League can stop it. An all-new era begins with this epic by comic book legend Bryan Hitch (JLA, The Ultimates) and master storyteller Tony S. Daniel (BATMAN: R.I.P., DEATHSTROKE). ”

I’ve been very bored with Justice League, with this issue in particular being a struggle to finish.

I found it difficult to wrap my head around the fact that a whole team of super-powered people are up against what seems to be naturally occurring phenomenons. How is the entire Justice League supposed to stop an earthquake? That makes no sense to me.

Though I was infuriated and confused by this issue, it was still visually nice to look at. Very boring, but still eye candy.

Archie #10

Archie10-666x1024Title: Archie
Written by: Mark Waid
Art by: Veronica Fish
Published by: Archie Comics
Release Date: July 27, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “It’s Team Archie vs. Team Betty! A civil war has broken out in Riverdale — friends against friends, parents against parents, with the entire town torn down the middle by an event that forces everyone to take sides! No joke — the events of this issue will impact Archie and his pals for some time to come!”

I cried reading this comic. Not a good cry, but a sad, hurtful cry. That’s how furious I was at Archie after reading this issue.

Allow me to explain.

Betty approaches Archie and finally has the nerve to ask him why he likes Veronica more than her. His reason? Veronica is more confident in who she is than Betty is.

Archie made this conclusion from the #LipstickIncident (I still hate typing this!), but he doesn’t know Betty’s side of the story. Even though the pair had been together for a long time, Betty apparently doesn’t know what Archie wants in a girl. He says that she’s kind of flip floppy (please hold for irony), which makes Betty cry, which made me cry.

Betty didn’t deserve that comment and they both know it. Based on Archie‘s past pandering, we’re either going to get a lot of “Wow. What’s her problem? #GirlProbs, am I right, teen market?” or the situation is going to get ignored completely. I haven’t figured out which is worse yet.

This is literally the third modern Archie comic where Archie is a jerk with little-to-no comeuppance.

To make matters worse, Archie Comics is desperately trying to scrape plot points together by bringing up the fact that Mr. Lodge (Veronica’s father) is running for mayor. Mr. Collier, a mean teacher who quits after Archie posts a video of him getting mad at a student, is also running for mayor, and by the way, he’s Betty’s uncle! The whole thing smells of a Democrat vs Republican debate, with Mr. Collier being a democrat and Mr. Lodge being a republican. The plot was extremely boring for a comic book.

If I wanted to watch politics, I’d watch the news, thanks.

Wonder Woman #3

ww3cover1Title: Wonder Woman
Written by: Greg Rucka
Art by: Liam Sharp
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: July 27, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““THE LIES” Chapter Two: Wonder Woman must team up with one of her greatest enemies to solve a growing mystery about Themyscira as “The Lies” continues!”

As I get further into the Wonder Woman comics, I’ve come to the realize that I don’t really like the plot of this comic. It’s slow, boring, and it can be summed up with this video:

The plot of this comic is literally my least favorite way to get background out to new readers. I understand when it comes casually or if a whole comic is dedicated to it in a not-so-subtle way, but this comic was in your face with character background, and get it out of here before the reader gets sleepy.

The only saving grace of this comic, besides the art itself, is the characterization of Wonder Woman. She’s very levelheaded and understanding. She is confused by her past and not sure what the truth is, and therefore could have very easily been written as a very overreacting woman. It’s a very nice change of pace to see an overemotional stereotypical woman not leading a role in a comic.

Jughead #8

380390._SX1280_QL80_TTD_Title: Jughead
Written by: Chip Zdarsky
Art by: Derek Charm
Published by: Archie Comics
Release Date: August 3, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “It’s Jughead vs. Archie and Mr. Weatherbee vs…a bear?!! Even the quiet of the wilderness can’t escape the madness that’s raging through all of Riverdale!”

This is the last Jughead comic written by Chip Zdarsky. I really liked his version of Jughead and it’s sad to see him leave, but from the interviews that I was reading, eight Jughead comics were his intention all along.

Either way, I can’t complain.

Jughead time and time again ends up being one of the best comics I read all month, and this issue is definitely no exception. this issue has a cute ending to a short story line, a good character arc for someone who is not usually considered a main character (spoiler alert: it’s Mr. Weatherbee), and finally, FINALLY, someone calls out Archie.

So Archie finally gets called out, and by Jughead no less. Archie flat-out calls Jughead “not normal” for being asexual, which Jughead doesn’t allow him to get away with. I don’t understand how comic writers can make their main character so unlikable without any actions for their consequences, but I’m glad that Archie has finally been told to knock it off.

Hopefully this will last.

Titans #1

Titans-1-DC-Comics-Rebirth-Spoilers-Preview-1-300x461Title: Titans
Written by: Dan Abnett
Art by: Brett Booth and Norm Rapmund
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: July 27, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: “After an old ally returns to the team, the Titans set their sights on a dangerous enemy with the power to change reality itself! But the Titans have never faced a threat this massive before, and with so much on the line, will they be able to stand united as a team? Or will their past mistakes be their undoing?”

This comic is the perfect example of how to do an exposition well.

The Titans are trying to find out more about Wally, and although this mission isn’t a huge part of the storyline, it wasn’t skipped over quickly like it was in Batman. Linda still knows who Wally is and is trying to exploit him, which is a really…terrible. We also get to see the reveal of Abra Kadabra.

The art style still looks pretty good, minus Linda, who’s proportions I found to be very questionable. The weird thing is if you compare the art style of this comic to Nightwing, Grayson looks better in this one. I could actually tell that he was suppose to look human, unlike in his comic where he looks like someone tried to draw Nightwing as Superman and couldn’t draw either of them very well.

Nightwing #1

ntw_cv1_dsTitle: Nightwing
Written by: Tim Seely
Art by: Javier Fernandez
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: July 27, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““BETTER THAN BATMAN” Chapter One: Batman taught Nightwing everything he knows—but what if everything he taught him is wrong? When Dick is stuck with a new mentor who challenges everything Batman taught him, Nightwing has to shatter his concept of justice in order to fight for what he knows is right. Writer Tim Seeley (GRAYSON, BATMAN & ROBIN ETERNAL) launches Nightwing onto a new quest alongside rising talent Javier Fernandez (RED HOOD/ARSENAL).”

The art style is a bit wonky here, especially in regards to Dick and Bruce. Bruce looks more like Dick than Dick does, and that’s how you know the artists have failed. Batgirl (Barbara) looks good and Damien looks good, but Dick doesn’t look human.

To be honest, the story was a bit hard to follow. The issue opens up with Dick talking over a circus acrobat routine and it looks like it’s going to get into his backstory but no, he’s just…there? It then turns out he’s working for this secret organization and gets paired up with Raptor, making him a sidekick again? Barbara was there too for some reason?

Let’s see how this plays out in my next review (which is in this article)!

Batgirl Rebirth

Batgirl-CoverTitle: Batgirl
Written by: Hope Larsen
Art by: Rafael Albuquerque
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: July 27, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““Beyond Burnside” Chapter One: The Batgirl you know and love is going global with Eisner Award-winning and New York Times best-selling writer Hope Larson (A Wrinkle in Time, Goldie Vance) and all-star artist Rafael Albuquerque (AMERICAN VAMPIRE). In order to up her game, Babs travels to Japan on a quest to train with the most elite modern combat masters of the East. But when a chance meeting with an old friend puts a target on her back, Batgirl may need to use her new skills to solve a deadly mystery.”

I wasn’t sure how I was going to like Batgirl since I don’t know much about her, but I’m liking her more and more as I see her throughout these comics.

This was a really amazing first comic because she was backpacking to Japan and readers get to see her be a little normal. She even gets to meet her idol, Fruit Bat, and fight along side her. The story made her more human and it made her seem more real as a character.

This is only the beginning of this series, so I hopefully will have more to say when I review the next issue!

Sherlock: A Study in Pink #3

385599._SX1280_QL80_TTD_Title: Sherlock: A Study in Pink
Written by: Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss
Art by: Jay
Published by: Titan Comics
Release Date: August 10, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “The three-patch problem of A Study In Pink continues to unravel, in this thrilling manga adaptation of the smash-hit SHERLOCK TV series! John is pulled into a web of deceit, as he comes face-to-face with the man who describes himself as Sherlock’s “arch-enemy” – and Sherlock sets a trap for a serial murderer!”

This is a filler comic (at least when compared to the television series), but it does introduce a new character: Mycroft. If I didn’t know the episode this issue was based on like the back of my hand, or if the comic was the only way I’d learn about the story, I imagine it would be pretty boring.

Once again, the medium is wrong for the jokes that are being made. I noticed this with Anthea and John in the car where it’s more apparent that John is a bit of lady’s man and is trying to flirt with her in the show than in the comic. The other scene where this is apparent is when John and Mycroft are in the parking garage fixture meeting for the first time and John says, “Well thank God you’re above all that”. In the scene, you can clearly see how annoyed Mycroft was at being compared to Sherlock.

Speaking of Mycroft, he looks nothing like the actor who portrays him in the BBC series, Mark Gatiss. I finally have figured out the reason why, and it’s the same reason why John doesn’t always look like Martin Freeman: wrinkles would look terrible in a drawing! Gatiss and Freeman have face wrinkles that make their faces look like them and when you bring those features into a comic medium, the end result isn’t pretty.

Justice League #2

Justice-League-2-DC-Comics-Rebirth-spoilers-1Title: Justice League
Written by: Bryan Hitch
Art by: Tony S. Daniel and Sandu Florea
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: August 3, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““The Extinction Machine” part two! Massive earthquakes shake cities to the ground as the ancient intelligence known as the Awakened takes control of the people of Earth, forcing them to turn against anyone with superpowers—including the Justice League! Unable to fight a war on two fronts, Batman asks for help from the one man he trusts less than anyone.”

This comic will never cease to confuse me. Now all the places in the world are dealing with natural disasters and the entire Justice League has to take care of it. At one point, and this is the point where I lose my mind, they decided they can’t solve this whole thing without Superman, who apparently needs to go to the center of the Earth to stop all of this.

That’s not how anything works, but alright!

On top of this, the new Green Lanterns don’t know their powers yet. I’m not reading the Green Lantern comic series, so please, can someone can inform me why are they there if they don’t know their powers yet? Shouldn’t there be a grace period for them to figure out what they can do before trying to save the entire world? I don’t know.

That’s just my thinking.

Nightwing #2

Nightwing2Cover

Title: Nightwing
Written by: Tim Seely
Art by: Javier Fernandez
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: August 3, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““Better than Batman” part two! Nightwing and his new mentor Raptor embark on their first assignment for the Parliament of Owls. Will Raptor prove himself a superior mentor for Nightwing? Or will they both fall prey to the fangs of Kobra?”

I do like that this comic and Batgirl‘s are kind of coming together (plot-wise) and I hope that that will make both comics really interesting. It was interesting when Barbara invited Dick out for a date, only to be stood up so Dick could help Raptor. We’ll have to see how this turns out later!

The plot line with Raptor and Nightwing already has the makings for a huge cliche that I know will be coming into fruition: two polar opposite characters that have nothing in common will soon realize that they are one-in-the-same and will soon become best friends.

It’s going to happen, it’s not clever in hiding it, and I’m waiting for it.

A-Force #8

aforce 8

Title: A-Force
Written by: Kelly Thompson
Art by: Paulo Siquera
Published by: Marvel Comics
Release Date: August 10, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “CIVIL WAR II TIE-IN! Civil War has come to A-FORCE! As the team is wrecked by a personal tragedy things only get worse when a predictive vision proclaims one of A-FORCE is a murderer. CAPTAIN MARVEL attempts an arrest, creating a rift that may very well mean the end of the team, and setting in motion a chain of devastating events that affect far more than just A-FORCE. Meanwhile foul-mouthed, gun-toting ELSA BLOODSTONE just unofficially joined A-Force. Looks like we’re gonna need a bigger boat…and a verrrrry big black censor bar.”

I haven’t read Civil War II so this comic was a little bit confusing. I’m not sure what the whole issue is that they are fighting over (even though it was kind of explained), and I wish they didn’t bring the drama into A-Force.

Much like with the other comics in this pullbox, I really enjoyed the female characters. There were a few new ones introduced, such as Elsa and Misty Knight, who both have prosthetic arms like Nico. I think it’s really awesome that they have such diversity.

When it comes to the story in general, it’s okay, but if you haven’t read Civil War II, you will be as confused as I am. The story is basically that She-Hulk is in the hospital and they don’t know if she’s going to make it. Dazzler and Captain Marvel are arguing and Nico runs away and messes up shit with the Runaways.

I’m hoping that I’ll be getting more into this as the comic goes on.

Batman #4

5357451-04Title: Batman
Written By: Tom King
Art by: Matt Banning and David Finch
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: August 3, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““I Am Gotham” part four. When Gotham City falls prey to true evil, will Batman be abandoned by the new heroes Gotham and Gotham Girl? The Dark Knight must decide who to entrust with the safety of his beloved city if he hopes for any of its citizens to survive.”

I am not shocked at all that Gotham is evil and ends up killing twenty eight people (as well as ruining the Batmobile). This is the beginning of  an evil plot between the two (something I mentioned earlier in the pullbox that I wanted), but this was suppose to be a shock. How? You can clearly see from the beginning the distrust between Batman and Gotham, you can see Gotham being distant, and now Batman is going to pay the consequence for it.

The only positive is the art style, which still looks really nice and has everyone looking like who they are suppose to. Though the background stories are really nice, the art style was the only redeeming feature of this comic.

Disney Princess #5

STL006241Title: Disney Princess
Written by: Georgia Ball and Geoffrey Golden
Art by: Amy Mebberson
Published by: Joe Books
Release Date: August 10, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: “The hit series continues! Disney’s beloved heroines have returned in this hilarious collection of Disney Princess comic strips! Featuring laugh-out-loud stories from the worlds of Ariel, Belle, Rapunzel, Tiana, Cinderella, Aurora, and more, this charming ongoing series will make all your royal dreams come true.”

There is a large variety of stories in this comic, so in favor of time, I’ll only be reviewing my favorites.

Mushu’s Review was really cute! The story is about Mulan’s ancestors giving Mushu a performance review in regards to his guardian job. If he does really poorly, he will no longer be a guardian and will be forced to work for the ancestors again (like in the beginning of Mulan). The art is really cute in this story and I really liked it. I have put Mulan down during every single issue review of this comic, but her stories are usually the best and are definitely cute.

Travel Cat is a Jasmine comic. Jasmine is trying to pack for a vacation, but Rajah keeps climbing into her suitcases to stop her from leaving. I really like the more realistic comics where it makes the princesses seem more like actual humans with real lives. I’m not shocked that Rajah is acting like a typical house cat, but I did love the fact that it took Aladdin and Jasmine pretending to be lovey-dovey to get the chaos to stop.

Belle and Maurice is a Belle comic (obvious). Belle’s father’s invention doesn’t work in the way he wants it, so she finds a unique way to use it. It’s very cute, albeit short, but I really liked it.

Beauty and the Books is yet another Belle comic, and this time Belle decides to have everyone help her organize the library. I really love this comic – all the different ways they try to organize the library is really cute and I could relate to it. It’s so hard to decide what’s the best way to organize bookshelves!

For the record, mine are all by height.

Wonder Woman #4

WW-Cv4-ds-d277fTitle: Wonder Woman
Written by: Greg Rucka
Art by: Nicola Scott
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: August 10, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““Wonder Woman Year One” part two! Paradise has been breached, Ares stirs, and the Amazons must answer with a champion of their own…one who is willing to sacrifice her home amongst her sisters to save a world she has never seen.”

I prefer this story line over the one in the forest – the art style is more unique and the story is much easier to follow.

The art has that Greek art feel to it, and even when it’s clear that the characters aren’t part of the human world, they somehow look human.

I really liked that the writer highlighted that Diana, aka Wonder Woman, is a very strong warrior. She beats the other women to be the one to bring Steve back into the regular world.

Diana’s mom gives her the Lasso of Truth in this issue, and I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Powerpuff Girls #2

PPG-02-pr-1-dcf67Title: Powerpuff Girls
Written by: Haley Mancini and Jake Goldman
Art by: Derek Charm
Published by: IDW
Release Date: August 17, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “A hotshot movie director claims that his new movie is so scary, even THE POWERPUFF GIRLS will be too chicken to watch it! Never ones to back down from a challenge, fall into his trap! Using his “movie magic,” he’ll turn the girls into actual chickens so he’ll be free to enact his evil plans! Can the ChickenPuff Girls save the day?!”

Story-wise, this comic was pretty weird. I was worried that this issue was going to be television-focused again, but as it turns out, the story was more or less just an excuse to use a bunch of chicken and egg related puns.

The art is still really cute – even when the girls are chickens. The new art style still is better in a comic medium, so maybe if the new show doesn’t do well, the story could go there.

Basically, the girls get scared while seeing a trailer for a scary movie on TV. The guy who directed the movie calls them out and says that they’re too chicken to see it and turns them into chickens so he can make an omelette restaurant. It’s a weird plot, but it’s also more aimed at children so not everything has to make sense.

I still kind of liked it and can’t wait for the next issue.

Nightwing #3

NTW_Cv3_ds_57acf86178dd59.03493995Title: Nightwing
Written by: Tim Seely
Art by: Javier Fernandez
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: August 17, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““Better than Batman” part three! Nightwing and Raptor have become the pride of the Parliament of Owls, successfully completing missions for them across the globe—but Batgirl is not happy. Can she convince Nightwing he’s gone too far, or has he fallen too far under Raptor’s influence?”

The story in this one really tries to immediately pull at the heartstrings, but this tactic wouldn’t work unless you were reading Batgirl as well.

The only person I feel bad for in this issue is Barbara, and whether that’s the intention or not, people might not feel this way if they haven’t read her comic and gotten to know her.

Babs immediately wants to beat Raptor up and is actually worried about Dick since she wasn’t sure if he was alive or not. I really like characters that seem human (as I’ve said before) and Barbara honestly is the most human character I’ve ever read out of the Batman series (well, besides Alfred). It’s really heartwarming to see her fears play out.

In the end though, Bab’s feelings don’t really mean that much to Dick since he’s still going to be working with Raptor – something she didn’t want – and he ignored her wishes to stop it and go back to Batman. That’s what irritates me about Nightwing: sometimes he’s too stubborn for his own good, but it’s part of what makes him a multilayered character.

Batman #5

76194134182800511_1Title: Batman
Written by: Tom King
Art by: Matt Banning and David Finch
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: August 17, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““I Am Gotham” part five. In the final chapter of this epic, is Batman truly the hero Gotham City deserves—or does it deserve better? In this ultimate showdown, where the line between allies and enemies blurs, the question will finally be answered…and the fate of Gotham will be decided.”

Oh Batman, please don’t start disappointing me.

This issue started off interesting. Alfred dressed up as Batman to distract Gotham and I kind of wanted him to fight Gotham himself. He was only a distraction, but I can have dreams.

The story is okay up until the point where Batman has to call the Justice League to help him out to defeat Gotham and Task Force X. I do not understand why he had to resort to back up…is Batman that incapable of doing things on his own? Does he always need Superman’s help now? Was that in an issue and I just missed it or something?

The art is great as usual, but the story is…all over the place. I’m going to keep reading, but I’ll be confused and bewildered.

Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #1

bgatbop1Title: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey
Written by: Shawna and Julie Benson
Art by: Claire Roe
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: August 17, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: “Who Is Oracle?” part one! Someone has stolen the name Oracle right out of Barbara Gordon’s past! Hot on this false Oracle’s trail, Batgirl, Black Canary, and Huntress are all tracking the same mafia capo…so it makes sense to team up, right? Problem is, Barbara and Dinah need the secrets locked up in Oracle’s brain…and Helena Bertinelli would rather put a crossbow bolt right through it!”

If A-Force becomes too confusing for me, I might stick only to this comic for my girl team needs.

I like all three women (even though one of them is suppose to be the “bad guy”), and I really like the current plot and the art style.

The art makes all the girls look beautiful, and the colors and outfits highlights the differences between the characters. Though the art is a bit similar to most of the Rebirth styles, it still works really well with these characters. I think Huntress is really gorgeous, especially with all that purple.

I particularly enjoyed that they are all after the same goal: trying to find out who Oracle is.

I’m really excited to see where this story goes.

Justice League #3

JUSTL-Cv3-ds-e515dTitle: Justice League
Written by: Bryan Hitch
Art by: Sandu Florea and Tony S. Daniel
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: August 17, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ““The Extinction Machine” part three! The hive-mind entities known as the Awakened take their vendetta against the Justice League to the next level by changing ordinary people into grotesque monsters bent on hunting down super-humans all over the world. Meanwhile, Superman journeys to the center of the earth to stop the catastrophic quakes that are taking lives all over the world.”

At this point, the plot is no longer just about an impending natural disaster. Superpowered enemies who embody different disasters appear, and once again, the Justice League has to save everything.

Superman is still going to the center of the Earth to stop the chaos, but the best part about that is he doesn’t even know what to do. They send Superman of all people and he doesn’t know what to do.

I have no words.

Be sure to tune in for my upcoming September Pullbox!

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Demographic Pandering: Why this Annoying Practice Simply Doesn’t Work

The media has failed the current generation of teenagers.

Rather than trying to draw in teens and tweens with engaging and compelling stories, big media outlets (such as comics, television, and movies) often choose to pander to the teenage demographic with memes and pop culture references instead.

Although it’s a sentiment that not everyone will agree with, I wholeheartedly believe that teenagers deserve better from their media.

I often mention during my Archie reviews that Archie Comics tries to pander to the younger demographic, not only through the comics themselves, but through social media. Pandering, is, in simple terms, when a media company attempts to target and draw in a specific demographic (usually teenagers) in hopes that they will utilize or purchase their product.

I usually only call out the pandering I see with Archie because I see it happening all the time on their social media (especially on Tumblr and Facebook), but obviously this is a problem with companies and properties across the spectrum.

The reason why the practice of pandering frustrates me so much? Because companies can reach their target demographic without the pandering nonsense. In fact, if the pandering is too excessive, companies may even scare their target demographic away.

A perfect example of pandering gone wrong is the truth.org commercials, which use outdated Internet memes to scare teenagers away from smoking. The sad truth is that these kinds of PSAs will do very little to lower smoking rates among teenagers and young adults. The real way to get kids and teens to stop smoking? Be honest about the facts and don’t try to become friends with the audience.

The buddy-buddy tactic makes companies kind of look like this:

To use Archie comics as a further example, the only current incarnations of the comics that I haven’t seen pandering in is Jughead.

Jughead’s dream sequences are normally the only time the comic uses pop culture references, which I really like because it seems realistic. After all, who wouldn’t want to dream about a high tech future or a Game of Thrones like adventure? Unlike Jughead, Archie overuses hashtags and heavily promotes their social media accounts.

I understand that Archie Comics wants the young demographic to be a part of the comic, but it’s a little weird to see Archie turn towards me and say “Hey! Follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Tumblr @archiecomics! And don’t forget to send ideas for the #LipstickIncident!”

If you ask me, it’s all a little unnecessary.

It’s possible to sell teenagers compelling stories and dramas without pandering, the best example of this likely being Degrassi.

For those who have never been a teenage girl, or never got into it, Degrassi is an almost thirty-year-old (you’re reading that right – next year is Degrassi‘s thirtieth anniversary) teen drama that tends to focus on hot button issues that teenagers might deal with such as STDs, teen pregnancy, and gun violence. Not only did the show feature the issues that would effect teenagers, but all the kids on the show were actual teenagers that usually never had any other acting experience prior to the show, making the viewer experience that more real.

Now I usually don’t have much to complain about since I’ve seen and enjoyed almost every episode of the series, but the original incarnation of the series did not feature any pop culture references, and sadly, with the show’s latest incarnation, Degrassi: Next Class, it’s clear to see from the intro that the show threw the unofficial no-pop references rule out the window.

Now you may be thinking “Okay Courtney, but this is for teenagers! How else are you supposed to be able to relate to them?” How about with compelling stories and only having minor references to anything of today? I understand that the use of technology is pretty huge and discussing it is a great way to keep teens safe, but the intro for the new show really screams “we don’t know what the original intent of the show is anymore!”

One of my favorite stories (and what got me into the show itself) were the episodes “What a Girl Wants (1)” and “What a Girl Wants (2)” from Season 10 of Degrassi: The Next Generation. These episodes told the story of rich girl Fiona Coyne, who was being abused by her boyfriend, Bobby. It pained me watching Fiona suffer with alcohol addiction, eventually even hurting Adam Torres (the first transgender character on the show) by ignoring the fact that he was a boy. The story deep with many levels, and it was relatable for anyone who has experienced a similar situation (like me).

No pop culture was involved in these episodes, sans the use of a cellphone, which Fiona used to circulate photos of herself that made her appear more hurt than she really was (for sympathy, of course). Fiona is a really good example of a multilayered character, and I was happy to watch her story arc as time went on.

Degrassi did a very good job of using technology, but not pop culture, to create good stories.

Another good Degrassi example?

Degrassi High‘s season 2, episode 10 “Showtime (1)”. For a long time, this was the only Degrassi episode that featured a character suicide (Claude Tanner). It was a very serious episode, and it even opened with the actors discussing suicide and how the show dealt with the tragic story line. It was a really good episode, and one I would recommend anyone to watch.

Series like Degrassi prove that compelling storytelling and teen dramas can come hand in hand, so it upsets me when I see obvious pandering in not only the newest incarnation of the show, but in all media targeted at teens.

The next generation seems doomed to deal with corporate pandering and a lack of storytelling for the long haul.

Just in case you’re doubting how bad the issue has become, I leave you all today with a video that perfectly exemplifies how horrifying pandering has become:

And yes, this is a real ad posted by Nickelodeon.

What are your thoughts on demographic pandering? Let me know in the comments!

 

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Movie Review: ‘Sausage Party’

4158_sausage-party_7870Sausage Party Fast Facts

Directors: Greg Tiernan and Conrad Veron
Cast: Seth Rogan, James Franko, Jonah Hill, Kristen Wiig, Paul Rudd, Michael Cera, Salma Hayek, Edward Norton, Conrad Veron, Bill Hader, David Krumholtz, Danny McBride, Nick Kroll, and Craig Rominson
Genre: Comedy
Runtime: 88 minutes
Release Date: August 12, 2016 (US)

Sausage Party is the first rated R 3D animated picture to hit US theaters. It’s about a supermarket where all the food is alive, striving to go to the “Great Beyond” and be chosen by their gods (us humans). Frank (Seth Rogan) is a hot dog who wants to be chosen with his bun girlfriend, Brenda (Kristen Wiig). When a container of honey mustard gets returned and tells the other food items the truth about the Great Beyond, it’s up to Frank to find out the truth from the Non Perishables in the alcohol aisle.

The basic concept does sound interesting, if not admittedly a rehash of the terribly animated and written children’s movie Foodfight! which was an advertising version of Toy Story.

When I saw the trailer, I thought “This sounds like it would be better as a short film” and I was right. This 88 minute monstrosity was really hard to sit through.

The animation in the film was well done (though a little grotesque at times), but sadly this is the only nice thing I can say about Sausage Party.

The first trailer for the film showed an entire scene from the film, and honestly that same scene turned out to be the best part of the entire film. The only time I laughed during this film was in the beginning, when a human character working in the store announced with five minutes until close for everyone to get the fuck out. As a person who works retail during closing, I could really relate to this.

My main issue with this film is its execution. Instead of using its R rating to play up a bit of stereotypes with religion and make the film about how everyone might have their own version of a Great Beyond, it instead wastes the R rating on weed jokes, sex jokes, and terrible racist and homophobic stereotypes. I shit you not, the first few minutes of the film is just the food singing and thanking the Gods, hoping that they get chosen. There’s also a part with sauerkraut and other stereotypical German food saying about how they want to “kill the juice”, accompanied by huge Nazi imagery.

Adult animation can be used to make satirical jokes and make light of serious topics, but instead the writers of this film chose to take the “South Park kids writing a movie” approach. It upsets me because I literally sat there for 88 minutes uncomfortable with the gross stereotypes, a few metaphorical rape scenes, a scene where a used condom was talking, and everyone around me was laughing it up. I was so out of the loop in regards to what was supposed to be funny. Going into the film I knew that maybe I wouldn’t get some weed jokes, but I didn’t understand how cutting off a druggie’s head and seeing the decapitated head casually in the background was something everyone in the audience enjoyed.

Ignoring the stereotypes and bad jokes, the universe doesn’t even make sense. All of the food talk, okay, but so does a a condom and a douche (which becomes the villain?). So can food talk or can all inanimate objects talk? Why do some boxes talk, but the contents inside them don’t? The universe is very inconsistent and isn’t built for audience’s to understand outside of the concept of the Great Beyond.

The writing was also  inconsistent and seemed to be written by a child. I understand that adult animation will have “bad” jokes, but this film wasn’t funny, and I would recommend that most people not watch it.

 

 

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‘Previews’ List: September 2016

Previews is a magazine that – you guessed it – previews comic issues that will be coming out in a few months. September will bring some great titles, and I’m hoping to put them in my up-and-coming Pull Boxes.

Just as a note, some of these titles are books, not comics.

Tarzan on the Planet of the Apes

ECCC16-PRINT-TRZPOTA-d0d3e-665x1028Title: Tarzan on the Planet of the Apes
Written by: Tim Seeley and David Walker
Art by: Fernando Dagnino
Published by: Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: September 28, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “Raised as brothers but separated by slave traders, Tarzan and heis ape brother Caesar renunite when the war between man and ape takes them from the jungles of the Africa to the center of the earth.”

This concept of this comic sounded really interesting to me. Some crossovers just don’t make any sense to me, but this one seems like a logical leap. No art other than the cover has been revealed for this comic, but I do like it. It’s a mix of surreal and cartoon, but it’s not too glaring or ugly. There isn’t much information about this comic to formulate a real opinion, so hopefully I’ll be able to talk about it more when it comes out.

Archie Archives: The Double Date and Other Stories

9781506700267Title: Archie Archives: The Double Date and Other Stories
Written by: Harry Sahle, Ed Goggin, and Bill Vigoda
Art by: Harry Sahle, Bill Vigoda, and Janice Valleau
Published by: Dark Horse Archives
Release Date: November 9, 2016
Price: $19.99

Summary: “Archie Andrews and his calamitous crew of bosom buddies are some of the best-known characters to ever emerge from the pages of comic books. This beautiful reproduced paperback includes 200-plus pages of hilarious high-school high jinks and wonderful cartooning by the great talents who originally brought Archie to life! Collects stories from Pep Comics #46-#50 and Archie comics #7-#10”

I have never really read much of classic Archie and I don’t own any comics that would get me aquatinted with it. I think that this comic the perfect thing to do that. This book seems like it would be a necessity for any big Archie fan, or it would just make a very interesting coffee table book. This is the kind of book that would be a fun talking point or something your guests could read if you’re out of the room for a moment. Either way, I can’t wait to see some classic Archie and be able to add it to my growing Archie collection.

Cyborg Rebirth #1

Cyborg_Rebirth_Vol_1_1_TextlessTitle: Cyborg Rebirth #1
Written by: John Semper Jr.
Art by: Paul Pelletier, Sandra Hope, and Tony Kordos
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: September 7, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: “Victor Stone was once a star athlete and brilliant student with a bright future. But after a tragic accident destroyed over half of his body, Victor was kept alive by merging flesh with advanced technology. Today he is the Justice League co-founder called Cyborg. But is the young hero a man…or a machine that merely believes it’s a man?”

Before I get into the comic, let’s first do a quick explanation of how the DC Rebirth series works.

DC has been putting out two number one issues: the first being the zero zero of the comic and the next one being the actual first. [Insert Character Here] Rebirth #1 is usually the backstory while [Insert Character Here] #1 is the actual first comic. It took me too long to figure this out, and I know I’m not the only one.

There’s only artwork shown is the cover, but it looks so beautiful. I can’t wait to see the artwork for this. DC has really been doing well art-wise (with the exception of Nightwing), and this cover looks absolutely amazing.

Pardon my language, but I’m so fucking excited for this comic. I’ve loved the Teen Titans since I was little, and I still remember the first time I watched it with friends and fell in love with the characters. The fact that Cyborg is getting his own free-standing comic makes me so happy. I already read a Starfire free-standing comic and, as you’ll see later in my list, there’s going to be a Raven one, so a Cyborg comic only makes sense. I hope that this comic shows that Cyborg can do well on his own and cement his own movie in the future.

I can’t wait for this comic to end up in my box!

Teen Titans Rebirth #1

Teen_Titans_Rebirth_Vol_1_1_Textless

Title: Teen Titans Rebirth #1
Written by: Benjamin Percy
Art by: Jonboy Meyers
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: September 28, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: “The Teen Titans are farther apart than ever before…until Damien Wayne recruits Starfire, Raven, Beast Boy, and the new Kid Flash to join him in a fight against his own grandfather Ra’s al Ghul! But true leadership is more than just calling the shots-is Robin really up to the task? Or will the Teen Titans dismiss this diminutive dictator?

I have seen some art for this comic besides the cover, and I’m really excited!

It’s a different style than the other Rebirth comics in that it has a bit of a manga style, where it’s more obvious in some than others. I love how Starfire looks from the few concept arts I’ve seen and everyone overall looks good.

As mentioned before, I love Teen Titans. Based on the summary, this comic sounded a bit like the most recent direct to DVD movie Teen Titans vs Justice Legaue, but after reading it, I realized it was a new concept.

I liked Damien being a part of the team in that movie, but Starfire was the leader of it, so it’ll be interesting to see this concept! I’m excited to read this comic when it comes out.

Raven #1

RAVEN_Cv1Title: Raven #1
Written by: Marv Wolfman
Art by: Alisson Borges
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: September 21, 2016
Price: $2.99

Summary: ” “The White Carnival” part 1! In a tale set between Teen Titans #24 and Teen Titans Rebirth #1, Raven takes a break from the team and moves to San Francisco to say with her estranged aunt and face her most perilous challenge yet: high school! As Raven discovers more about her human side, one of her classmates goes missing under mysterious circumstances, and she must face an evil like none she’s known before.”

Much like with Cyborg and Teen Titans, I’m excited to see what will come of this comic. So far only the cover has been unveiled. The art style is interesting, but I’m not sure what to make of it. I’m not sure if I like it or dislike it yet since it is so different, but I’ll have to see the actual comic to know for sure.

Raven wasn’t a favorite of mine, unlike Starfire who I immediately related to, but I really want to see this story and get into Raven’s mindset a little bit. I’m hoping that this comic will do her justice and won’t be cut short like a lot of the singular character comics that aren’t Batman, Superman, or Wonder Woman.

She Changed Comics

She-Changed-Comics Title: She Changed Comics
Written by: Various. There are over 60 women in different comic fields credited. The whole list can be found at this link!
Published by: Image Comics and CBLDF
Release Date: October 5, 2016
Price: $14.99

Summary: “She Changed Comics is the definite history of the women who changed free expression in comics, with profiles of more than 60 groundbreaking female professionals and interviews with the women who are changing today’s medium, including Raina Telgemeier, Noelle Stevenson, G. Willow Wilson, and more! She Changed Comics also examine the plights of women imprisoned and threatened for making comics and explores the work of women whose work is being banned here in the United States. A must read for all ages, students, and educators.”

If this doesn’t sound like something that belongs on this website, I don’t know what would! As soon as I saw this title in the magazine, I knew I would have to get it and put it on this list. This won’t be going in a Pullbox (since it’s a book), but it definitely will be getting a review all on its own.

Though I know it seems so much like a bad word, I am a feminist, and I do particularly like reading about women working in an industry that is “supposed” to be for men and as such is usually run by men. I can’t wait to see a woman’s perspective about the comic and manga industry.

If anything, this book sounds like it will be an informative and interesting read.

Josie and the Pussycats #1

ea278f49-03f0-42bd-8429-fa77bdea70f2 Title: Josie and the Pussycats #1
Written by: Marguerite Bennett
Art by: Cameron Deordio
Published by: Archie Comics
Release Date: September 28, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “Grab the latest, surefire, top-of-the-charts new Riverdale series! Friends, countrymen, lend me your long tails and ears for hats- the Pussycats are back! In this series kick-off, Josie’s getting the band together to help achieve her dreams of musical stardom. But for the group to last, it needs a strong foundation of friendship and trust. Can the girls get going, or will Alexandra’s plotting put a stop to the whole thing? Don’t miss comics’ supreme songstresses’ return to the limelight in this exciting first issue!

Before I was reading the new Betty and Veronica (which will be in the August Pullbox!), I was really excited for Josie and the Pussycats. Pretty much everything else that has come out from the new wave of Archie comics has been pretty good, but to give a slight spoiler to my reaction, Betty and Veronica was just “eh” at best.

Because of that, I’m worried that Josie will be lackluster.

Josie and the Pussycats is probably my favorite comic series out of all the Archie comics. Three girls forming a band in a small town is a realistic story that can easily be manipulated, but I’m very worried that comic won’t live up to the other Archie comics that are currently out. But from the art to the story summary, it does sound like something good will be coming from this series.

Boo The World’s Cutest Dog

Boo2016-01-Cov-A-Cook-233x350Title: Boo The World’s Cutest Dog
Written by: Kristen Deacon, Audrey Elizabeth, Fernando Ruiz, and Joelle Sellner
Art by: Tony Fleecs, Fernando Ruiz, and Rob Robbins
Published by: Dynamite Entertainment Comics
Release Date: September 7, 2016
Price: $3.99

Summary: “The World’s Cutest Dog comes to comics! He’s Boo, the Pomeranian pup that’s become an internet sensation, and he’s ready for four-color adventures in his first-ever comic book! In this debut issue, Boo and his canine companions Buddy and Blueberry Pie create kitchen chaos when they can’t control their tummy rumblings; our favorite doggie becomes a “Boo-vie star” when he lucks into a Hollywood audition; and finally, Boo celebrates the birthday of adorable eight-year-old Audrey…but the party gets out of hand! Comic readers of all ages will love the whimsical, fun-filled escapades of Boo, the World’s Cutest Dog!”

Sometimes I feel like I’m not a “real” fan of comics. I love Archie comics and my favorite superheroes aren’t the ones that are usually the most popular, but this is one of the comics that makes me debate whether I am a real fan or not.

This is clearly just a kid’s comic, but it does look very adorable. I have a few of the stuffed dogs of this brand because they are so cute, and I love Pomeranians and think they are just so damn adorable.

I like light comics as well as “serious” ones, so I’m hoping that this comic will just be a fun one to read in between DC and Marvel, and it might even be a good read for younger readers that want to get into comics.

Mama Tits Saves the World

MamaTits_01

Title: Mama Tits Saves the World
Written by: Charles zan Christensen
Art by: Terry Blas and Various
Published by: Northwest Press
Release Date: September 2016
Price: $5.00

Summary: “Can one Pacific Northwest drag queen prevail in the fight against hate? Writer Charles “Zan” Christensen and artist Terry Blas-along with guest artists Sonya Saturday, Diego Gomez, and Justin Hall-take Seattle’s most famous activist queen to a new level in the new comic book Mama Tits Saves the World!”

Being pansexual, I try to have an active part in the LGBT+ community. I actively look for media made by fellow LBGT+ members, so seeing this in Previews was awesome, as there’s very few LGBT+ comics out there (and they’re hard to find).

This will only be a one shot comic, meaning only one issue will be released, so I’m hoping it will be very awesome. The art from the cover looks really good and it’s based on a real person so I can’t wait to see what happens.

Stay tuned for more comic reviews and previews!

 

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Comic Review: ‘DC Superhero Girls’ Vol 1: Finals Crisis

DC-SHG_FC_56fc25070cbd98.43152928Title: DC Superhero Girls Vol 1: Finals Crisis
Written by: Shea Fonta
Art by: Yancey Labat
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: June 29, 2016
Price: $9.99

Summary:

 “Preparing for high school exams is hard enough, but at Super Hero High, even the tests are super-tough! Principal Waller keeps an eagle eye on her students, drilling them in math, science, literature—and other subjects like flying and powers! And no one wants to fail, because Principal Waller hands out detention faster than a speeding bullet. In the first-ever all ages DC Super Hero Girls original graphic novel, Supergirl, Wonder Woman, Bumblebee, Batgirl, Harley Quinn, Katana, and Poison Ivy are studying hard—well, maybe not Harley Quinn— when they are each abducted by a mysterious villain! Will the students outsmart their captor, save Gotham City, and still pass their finals?”

Review:

I’ve always really liked the art style, the toys, and all around cuteness that comes with this brand. I never picked up any of the copies of this series until Free Comic Book Day, and I found that specific issue to be very cute but very weirdly focused on just Supergirl. I wanted more, hoping that I would get to see the others female heroes, and this graphic novel definitely provided that.

The story line for DC Superhero Girls is very simple, but not insultingly simple. The girls – which include Bumblebee, Supergirl, Wonder Woman, Harley Quinn, Poison Ivy, Katana, and Batgirl – are all kidnapped by a mysterious someone right before finals! Readers get to see how each girl is kidnapped and how each of the girls help to defeat that mysterious someone, who, spoiler alert, turns out to be Lex Luthor.

There are a few things that I did and that I’m going to just pick on real quick before finishing up this review. One of the things I did like was the nod to other superheros such as my girl, Starfire, and having some items being made by Wayne Enterprises. There was also a few nods to Lois Lane who was a reporter for the school. I thought that was super cute. I thought it was kind of funny that none of them knew who Lex Luthor was, but were ready to fight.

This is the perfect book for all ages.

I know that if this was out when I was a little girl, I would have been begging my mom to buy it for me. I can’t wait for more characters to be revealed (Starfire is already one of them!) and I can’t wait to see more stories in this format.

 

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