The last volume in the series! I'm sad to see this one come to an end, but it really makes sense to wrap things up here, story-wise. Everyone has grow...moreThe last volume in the series! I'm sad to see this one come to an end, but it really makes sense to wrap things up here, story-wise. Everyone has grown so much from where they were when the series first began, and I'm sure they will continue to grow in the future. I'm giving this one 5 stars in recognition of how much I've enjoyed the series as a whole, and for the fact that I feel like the author wrapped up the story in the best way possible.
Maria has made it clear for a while now that the only guy for her was Shin, and that she planned on remaining true to him indefinitely, regardless of the distance between them. I still don't get why they can't call or email each other -- that seems pretty ridiculous, so I'm choosing to believe that when Shin returns to the states, they will start actually communicating on a regular basis. I love that Maria and her friends became youtube stars, but that shouldn't be the only way Maria can communicate with Shin, especially when he doesn't even comment back on the videos. I'm so glad that Maria finally realized the joy of communicating with a wide audience, and decided to truly become a singer. And most of all, I'm SOOOO happy that she didn't decide to just pack up and move to America to be with Shin, and that he didn't actually expect her to. One of my favorite lines in this volume is from Maria: "Did you think I have nothing better to do than to cling to some guy I like? I haven't even graduated yet! Not to mention, I only just realized what my dream is. After Shin arrived, I realized that I want to become someone I can be proud of, like he did." So, all you teenagers out there, take this to heart! Just because you like/love someone doesn't mean you should change your life around to be with them right away. Follow YOUR dreams, regardless of where they take you. If the person you love really loves you back, they will respect you for that decision, and support you in it.
My favorite character in this whole series remains Yusuke, the most loving, sweet, generous guy in the world. I don't blame Ayu for getting mad at Maria for not realizing how good she has it, to always be on the receiving end of Yusuke's blazing smiles. He is truly a remarkable person, and everyone around him realizes that, thankfully. Yes, it is sad that Maria doesn't romantically love Yusuke, because I want all his dreams to come true. In the end, though, the fact that they are able to be honest with each other, to respect each others thoughts and feelings, and truly care of other other: those are the most important things. Shin and Maria are both able to express to Yusuke how much they love and appreciate him, not only for what he's done for each of them personally (and it's been A LOT), but for who he is as a person. It's enough for me, and enough for him, too.
I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the other great friendships that developed during this series, all of which were reinforced during this finale. In volume 1, you never would have guessed that Maria, Ayu, and Tomoyo would have ended up the best of friends. Despite their differences, and despite things like Ayu's love for Yusuke and jealousy over his feelings for Maria, these three truly came to love and depend on one another. There are always going to be bumps in any relationship, but as long as you are willing to admit you are wrong and apologize, to fight for your relationship, you can get through anything, and these girls have realized that.
Maria's relationship with her father and grandparents is one that has slowly developed, and it was nice to see her shift perspective from feeling like she owed them something for the help they've provided to feeling the happiness that comes from being fully supported by your family, no strings attached. Shintaro has been a key element in bring about this reunion, and though he's been annoying persistent in thinking he has a chance romantically with Maria, in the end, he seems to be content with just being her little brother, a permanent member of her family circle.
Overall, a great series, and one I thoroughly enjoyed. Maria is a unique character in manga-land, and though she is far from perfect, we can learn a lot from her, as many of her friends did along the way.
So, if you haven't heard of it yet, this is a book that is based on a web series that is based on a book. Sounds convoluted when you spell it out like...moreSo, if you haven't heard of it yet, this is a book that is based on a web series that is based on a book. Sounds convoluted when you spell it out like that, but it's really not. The new media-based, video-blog-style The Lizzie Bennet Diaries is an adaptation of the Jane Austen classic Pride and Prejudice, a book that has been adapted in many forms, but never one quite like this. I started watched The Lizzie Bennet Diaries in 2012, about 15 episodes in, and it was a joy to follow week to week in a medium that included not only youtube videos from Lizzie, but also videos from her sister Lydia, as well as tweets and tumblr posts from the all the characters, all in "real time." That's not necessarily the same experience you can have now, if you are just happening upon the series, but you can still watch the whole series (either via the DVDs, or the original youtube channel, or the Lizzie Bennet Diaries website.
As a bonus, if you are just coming to the series now, you can watch the videos and simultaneously read this book, which is the behind-the-scenes diary account of everything that happened over the course of Lizzie's video diary year. I wasn't very far into the book when I first thought, "How cool would it be to be watching these videos AND reading the diary entries, at the same time??"
The conditions required for shooting Pride and Prejudice as a video blog meant that there were a lot of scenes that had to take place off-camera, and then afterwards, reenacted or simply retold on the videos. All of the sisters' interactions with their parents were off-camera, as were most of the significant meetings and events, especially in the first half of the series. We weren't introduced to Caroline or Bing on-camera until Lizzie and Jane went to stay Netherfield, and we didn't get to see Darcy until the fateful confession day at Collins and Collins. Although these were conditions required by the medium used to tell the story, the creative way they were worked around and used turned them into an asset rather than a hinderance to the storytelling. The costume theater was hilarious while still allowing us to get to know all the characters (at least from Lizzie's perspective). Not seeing Darcy in the flesh until episode 1 million (just kidding, it was episode 60) was a form of torture that made his eventual reveal even more swoon-worthy.
What we saw, though, was definitely filtered through the lens of what would be acceptable to show on the internet, even if you did have a contract with your viewers to be honest with them. Lizzie never shared the content of Darcy's letters with the viewers, never told any of Gigi's story until Gigi came on to tell it herself. Many of my favorite moments from the book between Lizzie and her father weren't really included because there wasn't an easy or convenient way that made sense to do so. For all the things they couldn't put into the show and more, there is this book, to help fill in the gaps and enrich the show. To be fair, this book is good enough to stand alone as an entertaining and unique adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, but there's no reason it has to be limited to that. Yes, we were able to see Lizzie's true emotions during her video blogs, but "Lizzie" always knew she had an audience watching and viewers paying attention, some of whom she personally knows. This diary delves even deeper into Lizzie's thoughts and emotions, and tells us the things she will barely even admit to herself, and I love it.
I couldn't recommend this book and this series higher, even if you have no interest in Jane Austen or Pride and Prejudice. If you do include those among your interests, however, these are not-to-miss, and honestly, how have you not heard of them yet? ;)(less)
I've been reading this ongoing webcomic since it's first day in 2012, and it's only gotten better over the years. Though I'm sad it will be coming to...moreI've been reading this ongoing webcomic since it's first day in 2012, and it's only gotten better over the years. Though I'm sad it will be coming to an end eventually, I personally prefer completed story arcs to never-ending adventures, so in the end, I think it's a good thing. And the fact that all the comics will be compiled into a published book is the icing on this delicious cake.
Hmm. Well, I suppose I'm glad I finished this series, as I would have been curious about how exactly it was going to end if I hadn't. My main issue, t...moreHmm. Well, I suppose I'm glad I finished this series, as I would have been curious about how exactly it was going to end if I hadn't. My main issue, though, is that there are still so many questions that are left unanswered. It seems like that was done by design, but I still find it annoying.
Since I can't talk about what questions were answered and what weren't without spoiling things, I will keep everything behind a spoiler tag. Don't read unless you've finished this book (or want to be spoiled). (view spoiler)[
So, Thomas, Brenda, Minho, and the rest of the 200 immune survivors escape (by design of the newCreators) and restart their lives in this glorious land where nothing is ruin and there are mountains and ocean and forest and nothing is ruined and everything is perfect. Am I getting that right? Where exactly is this glorious Heaven? It sounds like the Olympic peninsula, but how is it possible that an area only a few states north of Colorado would be fine when Denver is such a Crank-infested mess? Wouldn't Seattle be the same? Maybe the peninsula is isolated enough that it survived relatively unscathed? Seems a little bogus to me, but whatever.
Teresa's death felt a little pointless. By that point in the story, Thomas didn't trust her enough for me to really care if she survived, other than it would have been nice to hear what memories she'd acquired that made her realize that WICKED was, in fact, not good. But instead of getting an explanation, we got Teresa squished by a rock and Thomas not even able to really say goodbye to her because he has to escape the collapsing building. I actually had to re-read that scene, because the first time through, it barely hit me. Suddenly, I thought, "Wait, did Teresa just die? I think she did. Huh."
The only death that really made an impact on me was Newt's, mostly because he was one of the few people Thomas trusted the whole time, but also because Minho was so affected by his death. Minho had a pretty tough exterior most of the time, but when it came down to it, Newt had been one of his closest friends for the past 2 years, and it was hard for him accept that, by some random twist of fate, Newt was the only one of them that wasn't immune to the Flare. It didn't seem fair. As for Newt's desire to die before becoming a crank, before getting past the Gone, it makes sense in a way. He knew there wasn't going to be a magical cure; he knew what he would eventually become; he knew he didn't want to end up that way. What I don't get is why it was necessary for Thomas to have to kill Newt, and why Newt was so mad that Thomas hadn't opened his mysterious note sooner and killed him before he was taken to Crankville. Couldn't Newt have just killed himself? He was going to be dead either way, and now Thomas is going to have to live with the nightmare of having Newt attack him, and the memory of having to shoot him in the head. Maybe Newt figured that memory was a small price to pay for getting to survive through the nightmare? Regardless of the reasoning, it's probably a smart idea that Thomas never tell Minho that he was the one to kill Newt. It's probably a smart idea if they never talk about Newt again.
Brenda's role in this whole thing is also curious. Even though Thomas trusts her, I never really felt the trust, or felt that connected to her. She kept telling him, "even though I met you because of my job, my feelings for you are real," but is that even the truth? We find out in the end that Brenda and Jorge were planted with Thomas and the others as a failsafe, to get them to the Promised Land and start another life if necessary. So their defection from WICKED to Team Thomas was all part of the plan, right? And so was Brenda's whole relationship with Thomas? Or no? That's another frustrating thing that's up in the air, and a question that will never be answered.
And of course, unsurprisingly, we find out that the government was behind the release of the Flare virus, a poor attempt at population control after the sunflares damaged so much of the planet. That's really not that shocking considering all the other stuff they and WICKED did. To a BUNCH OF KIDS, I remind you. (hide spoiler)]
In the end, I enjoyed reading this series. It was fast-paced and had some interesting action. Where it fails, and where it disconnects for me, is in the character development. The characters were too matter-of-fact and two-dimensional, and I didn't end up caring much about any of them. There were a few highlights, but really, I should have cared about Thomas and Teresa and Brenda and Chuck and the others just as much as, if not more than, I cared for Minho. As a result, it didn't really matter to me that the global population had died out, and that there were basically left with about 200 people to re-populate the world. That is a massive tragedy, but I didn't really feel it.
I'm very interested in seeing the movie of this series, the first one of which comes out in September. A lot of the things that annoyed me from the book (lack of character development) can easily be fixed in a movie adaptation with a good script and good acting, and the action parts I liked should play out really well in a visual context. This may be one of the rare occasions where I can truly say that I prefer the movie to the book. I'm looking forward to it!["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
I definitely liked this book in the series better than first. It's possible I've just gotten to know the characters more and care about them, or maybe...moreI definitely liked this book in the series better than first. It's possible I've just gotten to know the characters more and care about them, or maybe I read this one faster and was engaged more, or maybe it just had more action and less sit-around-and-wait mystery. Actually, it's probably that last one.
There's still a lot that is confusing. Although we've learned more about Thomas before he entered the maze, and we know how important he is to the creators (who we now know aren't even the original creators, but ones trained by Thomas and friends), there is still a lot we don't know.
There are so many things I don't understand. Why was it so important that Thomas feel betrayed by Teresa? What could that have possibly done that would change anything? How were she and Aris so convincing, too?
Also, Brenda. Was she really just a rando they happened to run into in the City, or was she planted by WICKED? Did she really talk into Thomas' mind, or was that part if his dream? The guy on the Berg seemed to be surprised to see her and Jorge, but we've learned that things aren't always what they seem, and you can't trust anything.
The problem with this is that it leaves us as readers hanging in limbo. Usually you can at leave trust your narrator to reliably tell his experience, but even Thomas' perspective is suspect, when there is so much he doesn't remember or understand. Add to that he has no idea who to trust, and you have us completely confused and lost.
The only conclusion I've come to is this: Thomas is important. They wouldn't have saved his life of he wasn't, and he wouldn't have been separated from the rest of the group at the end if he wasn't.
Now, in the last book, it's time for all the questions to be answered. How exactly is the world ending? How can any of these kids possible help? What was the point of the trials? Why were they necessary? How was Thomas involved or responsible? (hide spoiler)]
Now that the final book is here, I expect answers. Right now, the only person I love and trust and care about is Minho, because that guy has proven time and time again that he is brave, bold, and doesn't take crap from anyone. It's time for the rest of characters, including Thomas, to prove that they are worth my time and emotions.
And if they kill off Minho, or he ends up being a traitorous jerk, I'm going to be pissed. PISSED.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
I'm sad this story is over, if only because it didn't exactly end the way I wanted it to. It's not like I expect all sunshine and roses and happily ev...moreI'm sad this story is over, if only because it didn't exactly end the way I wanted it to. It's not like I expect all sunshine and roses and happily ever afters, where bluebirds sing and rainbows poor out of buckets of gold. I only ask for at least a satisfying reason why people were doing the things they do. But maybe the point is, not everyone always has a good reason for being a jerk, or for loving who they love, or for murdering hundreds and thousands of people.
In case you've read this series and are curious about what exactly I didn't like, let me break it down for you. If you haven't finished the series, you really will not want to read anymore, as what follows will be extremely spoilerific. (view spoiler)[
So. If you've been following my reviews, you'll know that from early on, I thought that Yorick's obsession with Beth was ridiculous. I always had this weird feeling that the whole fated-to-be-together thing was crap. So, you'd think I'd be overjoyed to find out that, wouldn't you know, Beth really was going to break up with Yorick before the world collapsed. She really didn't want to be with him anymore at that point. Of course, when the world changed, so did Yorick, and Beth liked the new man she saw in front of her: the fighter, the survivor. The problem was, Beth hadn't earned the right to stand by that man's side. She hadn't stuck by him and helped him grow into a better, braver person. No, the person who had been by Yorick's side the whole time, unconditionally, was 355.
Of course, we'd all had suspicions that 355 really did have feelings for Yorick. We knew they loved each other in a we-will-always-be-family way, but the question remained: was there something more? And finally, we knew. There was. It was a vision of 355 that brought Yorick out of his suicidal state, that convinced him there was more to live for. And sure, there was a lot to work through in their relationship, but that was the exciting part. They would get to heal together, grow together, live their lives together, open their hearts to one another. 355 finally told Yorick her name. And then YOU, Brian K. Vaughan, ruined everything. Yes, it was a stupid, suicidal, self-obsessed woman named Alter who shot and killed 355 right at what should have been their happiest moment, the turning point, the beginning of the rest of their lives, but you're the one that let it happen, and took away the life that 355 deserved.
Let's talk for a second about the stupid reasoning Alter used to chase Yorick around the world, killing her friends and enemies alike, assassinating both Yorick's mother and his best friend. Because she wanted to be killed in battle BY A MAN. That is the only reason. She wanted to die, and felt like she deserved for a man to kill her and not a weak woman. Are you kidding me? Seriously, are you kidding me?? I can't even compute, it makes me so mad.
The jump to the future doesn't bother me. It makes sense to show us society 60 years down the line. Society is moving on and appears to be thriving, despite the fact that there are still barely any men around. The cloning is finally successful, but as they point out, you can't make an exact clone of someone because we are so shaped by our experiences, it wouldn't be the same person. I was relieved when Yorick instantaneously rejected the idea of cloning 355. She would have hated that, and it would have broken his heart all over again. The clones of Ampersand at least seemed to bring him some comfort, though none of them were like his really little buddy. It makes sense that, given the situation, Yorick would try to make a family with Beth II and his daughter, baby Beth, but I'm not surprised that he ended up wandering most of his life. (hide spoiler)]
In the end, I feel like maybe what this book is trying to tell me is deeper than I really want to dig. I like my brain to be stimulated, but not stabbed with a hot poker and jumbled around. I was honestly going to give this last volume 5 stars, because I really have enjoyed the series as a whole, but after that one thing (you know what), I just can't. And I honestly couldn't even give this ending 4 stars. So 3 stars it is. I definitely recommend this series, though, for an entertaining read and especially if you don't necessarily read comics, but are curious about the medium. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Once again, and hopefully for the last time, I was wrong about the identity of Dr. M. I think I'm either really gullible or easily led, because I have...moreOnce again, and hopefully for the last time, I was wrong about the identity of Dr. M. I think I'm either really gullible or easily led, because I have yet to guess right about that character. Of course, Dr. M turned out to be (view spoiler)[Dr. Mann's father, aka the only other man alive, and the one who believes he started the plague by cloning his own daughter. Is it a coincidence that the second his first clone was born, all the men, save himself, Yorick, and Ampersand, died almost spontaneously? I don't believe this whole "everything is connected" thing, but can there be another explanation? (hide spoiler)] We also find out that Dr. M was indeed responsible for engineering Ampersand and attempting to send him to Dr. Mann, though we now know that the goal was for the monkey to make Dr. Mann sick enough that she lost her own baby-clone. And when the monkey was misdirected, Toyota was sent to literally poison Dr. Mann's food and cause her abortion. So, her clone being born prematurely and dead had nothing to do with the plague.
Somehow, through this all, our team has managed to miraculously survive, with the help of amazing surgeon Dr. Mann's mom. Although seeing Dr. Mann part ways with Yorick and 355 is sad, it had to happen eventually, as their goals and paths diverged. Now that Dr. Mann has Yorick's DNA to clone and a pregnant monkey carrying Ampersand's special genes, she can get to work on cloning men and protecting them with whatever it is in Ampersand's DNA that makes him so protective. And Yorick and 355 head to France to find Beth I. Of course, they have no clue that Paris also contains Hero, Beth II, Baby Beth, and others waiting for him, too. I can't wait for this last volume!
Also of note in this one, as we start to wrap up storylines: Waverly the grave digger, who organizes a gorgeous state funeral for Yorick and Hero's mom, and the reappearance of the rat population. Say what?? Also, I LOVED the commentary of comics being more than just entertainment, and the comic in a comic that is I AM WOMAN, a gender-swapped version of Yorick's story. And I love that he was reading it on the train to meet Beth(s).["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
As this story starts to draw to a close (I didn't realize until I'd finished this volume that there are only 2 left), we are finally making headway on...moreAs this story starts to draw to a close (I didn't realize until I'd finished this volume that there are only 2 left), we are finally making headway on getting all of our main characters in the same location, and figuring out how exactly the men all died in the first place.
We finally know that the "Dr. M" that Toyota works for is not Dr. Mann's mom, like I previously suspected, but Dr. Ming, her dad's once-research partner and lover. Both of those scientists were involved in bio-research and cloning, and since it seems as though Dr. Mann's dad is dead now, the number one suspect for "killed all the men" seems to be Dr. Ming. Dr. Mann's mom now seems like she was actually trying to save the world when she genetically altered Ampersand and sent him off to Dr. Mann.
Speaking of Ampersand, yay, he's back safe and sound! That CanadianPopStar/YazukaBoss was a strange lady, and as much as she kept calling Ampersand her baby, I'm glad they were able to liberate him from her control, considering she seemed a bit unhinged, mentally. All the drugs will do that to you, I guess.
Speaking of babies, it's lucky that Yorick was able to call Hero and tell them he was heading to Paris, otherwise they might not ever have connected again, but it's going to be quite a bit awkward when both sleeps-with-Yorick Beths and Yorick's-baby Beth are all three in the same location. Especially since Yorick doesn't even know about baby Beth. And Beth I has no clue about Beth II.
I'm glad Yorick and 355 had some time in Tokyo to clear the air between them and finally be honest about everything they've been through in the last 4 years. At one point it seemed like they were headed to makeout city, but I'm really glad (hopefully) they didn't take it that way. I think it's been made clear that Yorick and 355 care about each other very much, but not in a romantic way at this point.
We're learning more and more about the history of the main players coming into the final conflict. Dr. Mann's troubled relationships with her mother and father and her broken relationship as a twenty-something, which all led to an even deeper cynicism about love. Alter's soldier obsession after her pacifist sister's death. It'll be interesting to see how things pan out when everyone meets up in Paris, given the wide range of priorities of each character.(less)
Friends have been recommending me this book for a few years now and I finally picked it up from the library. Why did I wait so long?? I can only blame...moreFriends have been recommending me this book for a few years now and I finally picked it up from the library. Why did I wait so long?? I can only blame my incredibly long to-read list. Not only is the art fantastic, with great style and color, but the story is unique and interesting.
We've seen lots of zombie stories in recent years, but despite the fact that people are eaten in this story, there aren't any actual zombies. The idea of someone being able to read whatever they are ingesting is fascinating, and I love seeing the implications that power has on Tony Chu's life. It might seem to be an advantage, helping him solve crimes and all, but when you can't eat anything for fear of knowing the gross conditions it comes from, life has to be at least a little sad, if not totally miserable.
On top of the interesting characters, they live in a sort-of post-apocalyptic world where chicken has been outlawed due to a deadly avian flu outbreak - or is that all a lie? Tony's not looking for the truth, but he might end up finding it.
This first volume was action-packed and enthralling, and I'm so glad I already requested the rest of the volumes, so I don't have to wait to read more! (view spoiler)[I loved the twist that Savoy is, in fact, a "bad guy," or so it seems to Tony. Regardless of Savoy's motives, Tony can't help but hate and want to hunt down a guy who ripped his ear off and it holding it hostage, threatening to kill his whole family. They seem like great opponents, and I can't wait to see them face off. (hide spoiler)] I'm also looking forward to inevitably seeing more of Amelia, Tony's currently-lost crush, whose magical writing powers might be his only shot to actually enjoy food.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
I feel like we're finally making progress with whatever the heck is going on in this story. It's been three years since all men (but one*) died, and a...moreI feel like we're finally making progress with whatever the heck is going on in this story. It's been three years since all men (but one*) died, and although there is still no cure, at least we know why Yorick and Ampersand survived, and why Ampersand was so different: she was genetically altered to be that way. By Dr. Mann's mom, apparently. Of course, we still don't know WHY her mom did that, and then tried to send the monkey to a place where Dr. Mann would eventually gain access to her, but I guess we shouldn't be greedy.
Despite Dr. Mann's insistence that monkeys and humans alike are just primates and don't feel things like love or attachment, it seems clear that Ampersand genuinely loved Yorick. Either that, or he could just sense that Yorick was a nice, sweet guy, just like he senses that Toyota is a terrible monster. I was so relieved to see Ampersand escape from her, especially once it became clear how Toyota had been torturing him. The next question is how did he make it to Tokyo, and what is he doing in an android-manned brothel?
We've reached the point in the story where there are just too many Beths. We didn't get to see anything of Beth I this volume, but it was nice to see Yorick's insistence that he be allowed to try and track her down when they were in Australia. It would have been lame if he had just let it go, and sailed away without even looking. And now we know that Beth I really did believe her dream that Yorick is alive, and headed to Paris to try and meet up with him at the top of the Eiffel Tower, something they had joked about during happier times.
Meeting Beth II again was quite the shocker, but I guess it shouldn't have been so surprising. The vatican kidnapping was also a twist I didn't expect, though I guess you have to wonder about women showing up pregnant when there are no men around to impregnate them. Even though he didn't know the situation, I'm glad Yorick suggested Beth II and Hero stick together, because at that point, they both needed a friend, and who better to trust than the EMT aunt of your future baby? Plus, an underground compound in the middle of America with a bunch of doctors seems like a fairly safe place to bunker down. Yorick is going to be shocked when he finds out about Beth III, aka Junior.
Other things of note in this volume: a moment of silence for Congresswomen Mom. I didn't see that one coming. I'd kinda forgotten about the Israelis, to be honest, and that they wanted Yorick for their breeding program. That was it, wasn't it? Of course, the whole world knows about him now because of the photo in the tabloid. Whether they truly believe it or not is the question. Though I suppose it's confirmation for Beth I about her dream, so that's good. We also got some great insight into 355's sad childhood and how she became an agent for the Culper Ring, as well as the unfortunate demise of the previous 355.
This volume moved a lot quicker than the last few have, so much so that I rolled into the next one without realizing. Oops! :) (less)
What do you know, Beth aboriginal-induced-psychic-dreamed her way into figuring out that maybe Yorick's alive. That is, if she actually believes that...moreWhat do you know, Beth aboriginal-induced-psychic-dreamed her way into figuring out that maybe Yorick's alive. That is, if she actually believes that dream. I hope she does. To be honest, we've seen so little of Beth over the course of this story that I never really emotionally connected with her, or was interested in why Yorick loved her. Even these few glimpses into their past together, via her dreaming, have made me understand and like her more. Hopefully, now that Yorick is actually headed to Australia, that means we'll see more of Beth.
So, Australia. The gang was headed to Japan, but of course, their "medical provisions" cruise ship was actually a "heroin drug running" cruise ship. And of course, another woman immediately wanted to keep Yorick and live and sleep with him. I do feel for Kilina, though, I don't get why Yorick being alive means she is no longer the main character of her own life. Like many women we have come across before her, it appears she felt marginalized her whole life, and the plague seemed like a new start to her. Also, when you think your generation will be the last in the world, it doesn't seem to matter as much if you are ruining said world. I'm glad she found a way to save Yorick from being exploded. And they have a new monkey friend to keep them company.
My main question is, considering Yorick's main goal this whole time has been "get to Australia to find Beth," how are they going to talk him into immediately leaving for Japan, without even looking for her, even if it is so they can find Ampersand?(less)
Another super-fun book. I once again really enjoyed how each little story, told from a different kid's perspective, interconnects to the next. This on...moreAnother super-fun book. I once again really enjoyed how each little story, told from a different kid's perspective, interconnects to the next. This one especially felt interconnected, even more like we were seeing a complete story arc, just from different angles.
I liked this one even more than the first one, maybe because I know the characters better and appreciate seeing their deeper connections. This is such a great book for kids because it emphasizes the importance of forgiving people and being open with your heart, without being condescending and self-important about it. I love that Hakata and Thalia end up liking each other because they felt comfortable enough around each other to share their stories, and found a connection. I love that Tak, even though he was sad and jealous, because he liked Thalia first, found it in his heart to forgive them, because he appreciated their friendship. It was also nice to see that the "evil villain" birds didn't necessarily start out that way, and acted the way they did for a legitimate reason. Nothing is ever black and white, or all good or all evil. Also, those security bears were about the cutest thing ever. "So definitely BFF and not OTP?" Lol.
I just wish there were going to be more volumes of this, but I kinda got the feeling at the end that there wouldn't be. But I could be wrong! I hope I'm wrong! I'm gonna cross my fingers and go ask the internet. :)(less)
This comic. I can't even. I was laughing so hard at times. The whole Hawkeye wants to be a normal dude for once and actually move into his apartment a...moreThis comic. I can't even. I was laughing so hard at times. The whole Hawkeye wants to be a normal dude for once and actually move into his apartment and want his tv show without spoilers was cracking me up. And when Grills is calling him Hawkguy. "Just like on MASH." So many lols!
Of course, Clint ends up in some majorly bad crap, too. All the trouble he's gotten in during the previous issues catches up with him, including a giant swarm of tracksuited, vaguely Russian dude bros with bats. Clint seems to have some serious insecurities, and they all appear in a depressed cloud of "no one would miss me" "I'm the worst Avenger" "I don't deserve to be a person" thoughts. Luckily Clint has Kate to smack some sense into him and call him on his crap and not accept his self-loathing-filled excuses. "You're one of the good guys, so be a good guy!" I like Kate. Even when all the other people in Clint's life are telling her to run away, that he'll only drag her down and disappoint her, she tells them to get lost. Even when Clint himself tells her he's no good. She has his back. At least until the end issue... I think... It seemed like she was maybe hooking up with that bad guy (who she didn't know was a bad guy), and then she appears to be leaving, at least from Lucky's point of view from her passenger seat.
That last issue was so great, told from Lucky's perspective. I liked how we are told what he thinks about things and people with the iconography associated with them, how he only understands a few things people are saying, how excited he got when Clint said "Good boy." I'll be curious to see in the next issue if we get to see Clint and Kate's fight from a human perspective. I'll admit, I was as surprised as Clint when Lucky followed Kate out the door. Poor guy. Now even his dog has deserted him.
I really do love the Fraction-Aka combo of writing + art. Also, in my review of volume 1, I mentioned how integral the color scheme is in setting the tone. I was happy to see that continued in these issues, and excited to see the background on his process that colorist Matt Hollingsworth provided at the end on this collected volume. I knew the limited colors were intentional, but it was cool to see how he goes about coloring an issue as a whole, rather than as separate parts and pages.
So, my next dilemma is, do I wait the read the next volume until it is collected in book form and published? Or do I find the individual issues and read them now, like I am tempted to because I need to know what happens next? Decisions, decisions...(less)
I've never read many actual comics from the Marvel universe. My exposure to these characters has mostly been through movies. Following the Avengers mo...moreI've never read many actual comics from the Marvel universe. My exposure to these characters has mostly been through movies. Following the Avengers movie last year, though, I followed a cute comic rabbit down the rabbit hole into tumblrville and ended up following a bunch of cool artists who love comics. I've been wanting to read this particular one, since I first heard about it from Flatbear, a great artist and fantastically skilled pusher of comics. And it was everything I'd want in a comic and more.
First of all, the story and art were both great. Although female comic book characters are still drawn too ridiculously sexy for my taste, at least these were on the less-ridiculous side of sexy. And it helped that they were kicking butt and generally being amazingly awesome while being sexy. The time travel storyline was a little confusing at first, but I appreciated the introduction it have us to who Carol is, and who her heroes are.
The best part, though, is how fantastically powerful and interesting a character Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel is. She fights for what she wants, empowers other women to be who they are, and never gives up. She's certainly a great superhero and role model to all girls and women out there.
I'm looking forward to reading more volumes of this title as they are released. Though I'll probably wait until they are in collected in book form like this one. Makes for more conjoined reading.
By the way, I appreciated the detailed history of Carol Danvers in the back of this book. Not knowing anything about her, it informed me of her past and personal connections without me having to wade through piles of old comics, which would have been quite daunting. Man, she's already had a crazy life.(less)