Giant Days vol 5 by John Allison

Welcome to Graphics Friday, when I read a comic book if I have time and then I tell you all about it.  Today is a special Graphics Friday.  It’s my birthday!  So, of course I had time to read a comic today.  I MADE time for a comic today.  I realized last night that I had missed the newest Giant Days while I was on maternity leave and I got really excited because I knew exactly what I wanted to read today!

And, do you know, I love these damn comics.

In this fourth volume, even more hijinks ensue!  Esther finds herself in a financial pinch.  Daisy ends up hosting a tour of the college for an unruly-ish group of incoming students.  Susan tries dating.  Plus there is movie making and house hunting and lovers scorned and friends betrayed.  Top all of that off with a clever use of the phrase “Bechdel test” and a character with a Stryper tattoo.

Also, I’m in love with McGraw.

Graphic Friday- Sidescrollers by Matthew Loux

As part of my new, much more relaxed reading plan, I decided this morning that I was going to select a comic from the shelf and read it.  I can say that the end goal is to be more familiar with the comic section at work or to boost reviews on the blog but, honestly, I kind of just want a little thing to look forward to on Fridays that isn’t the BuzzFeed cat newsletter, though I do look forward to that too.

I began with Sidescrollers because I had been meaning to pick it up for a long time and whenever I walk past it it mocks me.

Now, I’m going to do some things that I never do.

First, there were a lot of things that I liked about this book.  It was fun and funny.  It reminded me of a high school movie.  It was kind of like Superbad where everything that can go wrong does go wrong.   I felt like it was full of tropes and stereotypes but they are tropes and stereotypes that I love.  Plus, shenanigans, including evil and good cats, lobsters, and even a scorpion.

But then.  You know, do we have to talk about people being pussies all of the time?  Or, like, do we have to talk about “tang”?  And I hate to be that person because sometimes you have to take things as they are but why do all of the female characters have weird boobs?  Why are they basically only there for boobs?

So, yes, I was amused and I laughed and I enjoyed it but I could not in good conscience give it a glowing review.

Smile by Raina Telgemeier

I want to start by saying that I had no real intention of ever reading the Telgemeier books.  I know that they are super popular and that it wouldn’t hurt me to be familiar with them but they are also the kind of books that I am never going to have to suggest to a patron because they will have already read them.  But Tuesday afternoon I was working away when I slammed with a migraine.  I wanted to do something “useful” but couldn’t trust myself with important work.  I grabbed Smile off the shelf and dove in for a bit.

I loved it.

Really, you know what the coolest thing about this book was?  It was close enough to my own childhood to be nostalgic and relateable.  I had no idea that I was going to be looking back on my time but I sure did spot that NES controller pretty fast.  I recognized the scrunches.  I laughed when one girl said she had Joey McIntyre on her retainer.  I suddenly seemed to remember earthquakes being a thing in the early 90’s.

But it wasn’t just the era that I understood.  Raina’s story about growing up and being awkward and figuring yourself out felt like my own.  This is the story of a girl about to get braces who falls and messes up her teeth even more.  She spends four years fixing them and in those four years she goes from a junior high girl scout to a high schooler.  She deals with crushes and spin the bottle and friends who aren’t really friends.  Telgemeier gets it perfectly, how hard it is to be a girl that age.

If ever called upon, I will definitely suggest this one.

Lady Killer by Joelle Jones

I probably am not going to have much to say about this book, because I am not the best at reviewing comics, but I will lead off right away by saying that it was awesome.  It reminded me of King’s American Vampire I little bit- the art and the gore and the throw back to another time.  It was like the combination of those elements was perfect.

I have a little bit of an idealistic crush on the 50’s.  Don’t get me wrong, I am so proud of all of the advancements women have made and I am a feminist but there is still a part of me that wants to put on a shirt dress and wash the sheets every day.  I ended up in an interesting place in that while I was reading this, I was listening to the Ramona Quimby books by Beverly Cleary on audio.  My 50’s nostalgia was at a peak and it was doused in blood and carried a knife.

On the surface, Josie is the perfect 50’s housewife.  Her mother-in-law lives with her and suspects something is going on though, perhaps an affair.  Josie often leaves her daughters with her while she goes “to the store” or “runs a bake sale.”  What Josie is really doing is double duty as hit woman and in her boss’s mind her family is starting to get in the way of her killing.  Of course, Josie has principles.  She won’t use a gun.  She won’t kill a child she is sent to take out.  And those are things that get her into trouble.  When her boss puts a hit out on her, Josie decides to take things into her own hands in order to save the other part of her life.

I was under the impression that the second volume of this collection was out and now I cannot wait until May.  I loved it and it made me want to be a bad ass with perfectly coiffed hair.

The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home, part 3 by Konami Kanata

I have now officially burned through the three volumes of Chi that are available and I have a problem, you guys.  These books are just too adorable.  Too damn adorable.  Also, I am way too much of a cat lady to handle them.  They seriously make me all mushy and home-sick for the cats.  AND they make me want a kitten, even though I just got one in like May and the last time I mentioned it Hubby actually scolded me.  He literally said, “Bad Rachael!  No!”

If you’ve ever had a kitten, you are bound to recognize Chi’s adventures.  The first time she sees a fish.  The first time she falls from a height.  Trying to play with other cats who may not want to play with her.  I love it when she gets distracted by something like a ribbon or a ball when she’s mad.  These comics seriously manage to capture the essence of kitten.

Man, my cats are going to hate me when I get home tonight.

Chi’s Complete Sweet Home 2 by Kanata Konami

I debated whether I should review this one or not but decided that I would and that I would keep it short and sweet.

In July I read the first volume of Chi’s Complete Sweet Home and I loved it.  I loved this one too.

Chi’s family has found a new apartment that will allow them to have pets.  First, Chi gets to experience a move, when all of her stuff is there but it still doesn’t smell right.  She meets some of the neighbors: a parakeet, a long haired cat, and a barks.  Chi’s new home is great.  She gets to play outside and she doesn’t have to hide all of the time.  She begins to explore the neighborhood and meet other cats, like Auntie Calico and a spunky little kitten who is determined to keep his turf.  Chi is always fun, though, and loves her human family so much.

Again, these are just adorable.  They make me have the feels and need to hug my cats.

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa

I’ve really been enjoying the revival of Archie Comics.  I absolutely adore the new Archie.  I can’t wait for CW’s twisted take on Riverdale, which has been described as “dark” and “noir.”  I tried Afterlife with Archie, which fell flat because I’m not a big fan of zombies.  When I heard about the new Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, I could not wait.  Witches are totally one of my things and this was hyped as playing back to old school horror.

The hype was exactly right.  Warning, this is a comic more suited to older teens.  There is blood and witchcraft and horror.  It’s not the sunny Sabrina that I grew up with.  It is aimed at a specific kind of horror fan but definitely at a horror fan.

That being said, I ended up really enjoying this one after a slow start.  It takes place in the 1960’s and really does pull from those classic horror movies.  The first issue, learning about Sabina’s birth, could be Rosemary’s Baby.  It hit so many of the horror tropes: teen witches, succubi, funeral homes, raising the dead, and insane asylums.  It also used the history of New England and the Salem witch trials in the story line.  Sabrina is part witch and part human and she walks the line between these two worlds.  When she starts human high school, she falls for Harvery, an all-American boy.  Sabrina’s cousin offers to help her do a love spell to attract Harvey’s attention and for a while everything seems perfect.  But as her sixteenth birthday approaches, little does she know that something is being summoned in the woods that will ride into town on a wave of revenge.