Loyal readers, in a perfect world, you would get this delightful weekly column without fail every Tuesday. But in that perfect world, no one’s co-workers get unexpectedly fired right before the holidays, and therefore your devoted columnist has time to write instead of spending hours trying to negotiate a settlement package to make sudden unemployment at least slightly less miserable for him. So until we achieve utopia or I randomly become very wealthy and don’t need to work, I ask for your forgiveness and promise to do my best going forward.
Ah, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, my first fan love. The new comic is coming in early 2016 and is maybe the ultimate nostalgia trip for me. My little fangirl heart that went on to love the serial storytelling of X-Files and Buffy first started with the saga of Power Rangers. Every episode was must-see TV and theories were debated with friends during lunch. I was in elementary school when this debuted and watching the evil Green Ranger plot unfold was the height of fictional drama. Tommy, the maybe-evil Green Ranger was the breakout character with the juiciest story lines, so I’m not surprised he’s getting a comic spin-off in Green Ranger: Year One. Come on, this was the bad-boy Power Ranger with a ponytail, of course he deserves a solo miniseries! I’m not sure if this series is actually going to be fun for kids OR if the plot will hold up at all to my adult tastes…but I can’t deny that the Kevin Wada variant cover with the original Rangers makes my heart go pitter-patter. Look at how pretty they all are and imagine how a cast like that could make a pre-pubescent queer girl’s heart flutter.
Speaking of hearts going flutter (but not in a fun way), Christopher Sebela’s announced Heartthrob, a new series centered around a terminally ill woman whose last-minute heart transplant gives her a new lot on an increasingly strange life. It turns out Callie’s new heart comes with some strange ties to its owner’s old life…including what looks like a bit of romance and crime. And maybe it’s set in the ’70s? I’m not 100% sure just where this story’s going, but after High Crimes and We(l)come Back, I’ll read pretty much anything Christopher Sebela writes. The preview art from Robert Wilson IV and colorist Nick Filardi look like a good fit for the story too and walks the line between realism and vivid strangeness nicely.
I was delighted to read this piece about how the creators crafted Princeless: The Pirate Princess, which not only explores the often-ignored design process that leads to the final art but also why Princeless is such a delight for adults and young readers. I also had no idea that this book was artists Rosy Higgins and Ted Brandt’s first published work because, wow, the character design and page layouts in this book are incredible.
And how great is it that comic readers are going to be getting another edition to ‘badass princess’ genre with Another Castle from Andrew Wheeler and Paulina Ganucheau? What I love about this book is how unapologetically feminine the protagonist, Misty of Bedlora, can be in her design without it being a disguise or somehow clashing with her status as the kickass heroine of the story. I love characters that subvert the expectations of the pretty princess and explore all the problems of femininity being mandatory for women, but not when that simply gets reduced to femininity being demonized and characters hated just for being ‘girly.’ There should be room for all kinds of female characters with all kinds of aesthetics, damn it!
And, of course, no discussion of princesses in comics is complete without a plug for Strangely Katie’s short webcomic Princess/Princess which is the adorable same-sex fantasy romance of my HEART.