Saturday, March 30, 2019

Cartoon Saturday- Super Sons

Pearson, Ridley, Gonzalez, Ile (Illustrations). Super Sons: The Polarshield Project
Expected publication: April 2nd 2019 by DC Zoom
E ARC from Netgalley

In a slightly distant future, the sons of Superman and Batman are dealing with a world that has a lot of problems. The polar ice caps are melting, and the cities along the coasts are flooding and uninhabitable, despite the efforst of the Wayne Corporation to install flood walls. There is a plan to install a shield of dust over the ice caps, and Superman is recruited, so must spend time away from his family. Jon Kent and his mother relocate inland (as does the Daily Planet), where Jon is given a hard time by local kids who don't want to see "flood runners" in their neighborhood. Damian (call him IAN, please!) Wayne is struggling with the fact that his own father has to go to China to try to work out bugs in the flood walls. When Jon's mother becomes sick with a mysterious malady, the two boys team up with Tilly and Candace (who has some mythical ancestry/powers) to try to solve it. The ice cap issue is being repaired, but there are plenty of evil forces at work for the group to fight. This is the first book in a proposed series, and ends in a cliff hanger.
Strengths: It's hard to get the format for middle grade graphic novels right, but this does. The amount of text on the page is perfect, and the font a bit larger than other graphic novels, which helps with the reluctant readers who frequently pick these up. The science/environmental tie in is a good one, and it's nice to see Batman and Superman off fighting climate change. Of course, this leaves their sons to save the rest of the world in good, unsupervised tween fashion.
Weaknesses: The graphic novel format does not lend itself to deeply developed characters or plot. I love Pearson's writing and was hoping for a good new adventure book, so I was a bit disappointed. While I had no idea that Jon and Damian were established characters, they apparently appear in comic books, and Damian is of Arabic/Asian descent.( Clearly, this is problematic in the greater scheme of things if you know the story already. I would have been completely clueless if I hadn't read Goodreads reviews. I just didn't understand why he was so nasty. The son of Batman is evil? Not getting that.
What I really think: If Follett does a prebind of this, I will purchase it, but I was clearly not the target demographic. This left me with way more questions than it answered.

Peirce, Lincoln. Big Nate: Payback Time
March 19th 2019 by Andrews McMeel Publishing
Copy Provided by the Publisher

Schulz, Charles. Lucy: Speak Out!
March 12th 2019 by Andrews McMeel Publishing
Copy provided by the publisher

It makes me incalculably sad that students don't read the newspaper, not even the comics! How do they get through their days? Now that the Columbus Dispatch has dropped Peanuts (I can't fault them, but it speaks to the enduring quality of Schulz' work that they kept the strip running until almost 20 years after his death!), I find myself picking up these AMP! collections from time to time for my Snoopy fix. It's impossible to describe how integral a part this comic was in the life of a child of the 1970s.

Lucy: Speak Out! Is a particularly fascinating collection of strips, many of which focus on women athletes, Title IX, and Lucy's interest in women's rights. I sort of want a Lucy t shirt to go along with my much longed for and yet never realized Hamster Princess one ("I am something that happens to other people!")

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