WWACommendations: What Does the Fox Say?, Gwenpool, Silver Spoon, and More

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Happy March! What comics are you reading lately? Every month, WWAC contributors share about some of the comics we’re especially enjoying. In addition to my pick below, I’m also planning on rereading Kelly Sue DeConnick’s run on Captain Marvel in honor of the movie (which I absolutely loved!). Let us know on Twitter what comics you’re enjoying most lately!

Emily Lauer: This month, a book I had been waiting a long time for finally arrived! My pal Alison Wilgus was working on Chronin in some form for almost as long as we’ve known each other, and thus I was totally thrilled to read the first volume, published by Tor, the very day it came out. Chronin tells the story of time-travelling university students who get stuck in mid-nineteenth century Japan, and alarmingly begin to affect history. In addition to great characters and meticulous historical research, I particularly enjoy the panels with beautiful vistas. I’m a sucker for trees, what can I say? Chronin is a duology, and the second volume, which concludes the story, will be published in early September.

Louis Skye: One of the members of the comic book club I go to recommended I read Gwenpool, and I have basically found my new favourite Marvel character. Gwenpool is not part of the Deadpool family–she’s an ordinary girl who was pulled into the Marvel Comics universe, and uses her knowledge of Marvel to beat the plot.

With that central premise, I had no choice but to marathon-read her series in two days! Gwenpool is cool, funny, irreverent, and she’s a comic book geek just like us. What’s not to love? Plus, the art was outstanding and really pushed the limits of what one imagines can be done on a two-dimensional page. I am devastated that her series was cancelled (almost as devastated as Gwen herself was when she found out), but I understand that Gwenpool is now a member of the West Coast Avengers, which makes me very happy because she really wanted to join the Avengers. Dreams do come true (at least in comic books)!

Wendy Browne: I’ve just discovered that the Hoopla library app has a whole bunch of fairly recent comics on it, including some on my book club reading list. In perusing what they had to offer, I stumbled on Unnatural Volume 1: Awakening, which was featured on the app. I absolutely borrowed it based on the cover alone — checking that category off of my WWAC Reading Challenge — because Mirka Andolfo’s art is a gorgeous, seductive array of colour and imagery. 

The book is about Leslie J. Blair, a hardworking pig girl who just wants to find love before she’s forced into a government sanctioned same-species relationship when she comes of age. But steamy dreams involving a sexy wolf keep edging her toward breaking the law. This initially seemed like it could easily be described as erotic Zootopia, but there’s something far deeper and more insidious going on with those dreams…

Lisa Fernandes: Have I mentioned yet how good the new Elvira series is?  ‘Cause yep – it’s time for me to mention how good the new Elvira series is.  A parody of The Shape of Water, Elvira is 100 percent sure her co-star is just a stunt guy in a mask — until some rather fishy clues start adding up.  While the mainstream line for this series has had its ups and downs, this one has been gold from start to finish.

Draven Katayama: I binge-read twenty-four episodes of What Does the Fox Say? in one night. This intense, slowburn romance comic by Team Gaji is about three women: Sungji, a new employee at a game developing company; Sumin, Sungji’s team lead and supervisor; and Seju, president of the company and Sumin’s close friend since high school. Sungji and Sumin are instantly attracted to each other, but Sumin and Seju have their own secret romance.

I had seen this comic included on lists last year of best queer comics, and it lives up to the hype. You’ll quickly empathize with Sumin’s unsureness about her place in others’ lives, while delighting in Seju’s capriciousness and Sungji being at the center of everyone’s attention.

Alenka Figa: Oh hey WWACommendations, I’m back with more manga! Recently, a coworker let me borrow the first six or seven volumes of Silver Spoon, written by Full Metal Alchemist creator Hiromu Arakawa! Silver Spoon is about Yuugo Hachiken, a first year high school student with no background in animal care or farming who chose to attend Ooezo Agricultural High School. Hachiken initially believes he’ll be at the top of the class because he’s surrounded by “dumb farmers,” but quickly learns that each of his classmates has specialized knowledge and talent that makes them pretty amazing.

Silver Spoon is both a sweet, slice of life story about teens learning to bear the weight of familial pressure and a thoroughly researched look into the world of Japanese farming. If you get queasy when it comes to butchering animals you might want to sit this one out. Hachiken spends a good deal of time confronting the fact that the meat he loves to eat starts out as live animals, and while his philosophical journey is fascinating to follow, Arakawa doesn’t hesitate to illustrate or discuss some of the gorier aspects of raising and ultimately slaughtering livestock. I am very much enjoying following these sweet, buff teens as they grow and learn!

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Draven Katayama

Draven Katayama

Writer at Sidequest and WWAC; past executive editor of Kollaboration and writer at Newsarama and Comicosity. I'm a huge fan of Life is Strange, The Last of Us, TWICE, Blackpink, and ITZY. My MyDramaList: https://mydramalist.com/profile/loudlysilent Ko-fi: https://ko-fi.com/loudlysilent Tell me about the fandoms you love! @loudlysilent