Oh my goodness. I’m glad my store recommended this book. Not just for me, but for my daughters. They went absolutely bananas (or maybe they went nuts?) when we read this book together. They were laughing out loud reading the Squirrel Girl theme song. They adored Doreen Green’s smack talk. They are in love with Tippy Toe. I’m not sure if Marvel realizes what a fantastic introductory comic they have here.
Ryan North has done nice stuff with Adventure Time, but he seamlessly transitions into the Marvel U with a smart, quirky, and truly funny take on Squirrel Girl. He knows his stuff, deftly dodging the continuity heavy explanations around his first villain, the convoluted Kraven. I’m a life-long comic reader and I no longer understand what Kraven’s deal is, thank goodness I don’t need to know in order to enjoy this comic.
In addition to Kraven, North has the crowd-pleasing Deadpool trading cards giving extra insight and commentary about guest-stars and villains. For my gals, this humorous insight is invaluable extra information! (I’m not sure I love the extra info in the orange text at the bottom of the page. The jokes weren’t as tight and sometimes ended the page on an anti-climactic note.)
Erica Henderson’s art? Another home run for this book. She captures the fun and quirky joy of being Squirrel Girl on page one. The art is cartoony and non-flattering to our star, at least by modern comic book standards. And that is the PERFECT choice for this book. Squirrel Girl is about being powerful, empowered, and loving life. It doesn’t matter if Doreen is drawn like Lady Death or not. I can’t wait to see future guest stars. I was laughing at the Giganto trading card; I think Henderson needs to start drawing as many Marvel monsters as possible!
I really, really hope that comic book fanboys can look at this art and see it for what it is. I don’t have a lot of faith in us, to be honest. Most of us older fanboys want our comic book ladies looking a certain way, and the art in this book doesn’t hit that target. I’m convinced that is what killed the fantastic She-Hulk series that was just cancelled, so I really hope that this EXCELLENT debut doesn’t suffer the same fate.