Today I Read… Die Kitty Die

Today I read Die Kitty Die written by Fernando Ruiz and illustrated by Dan Parent.Image result for die kitty die

Kitty used to be the teen witch with the hottest comic around, but sales haven’t been so great lately. So the CEO of Kitty Comics has come up with a brilliant idea to generate interest and sell more Kitty comics. Kill Kitty- for real! Can Kitty survive old friends, old relatives, and worst of all old husbands? Or will Kitty die, Kitty, die?

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The cover caught my eye at the Toronto Comic Arts Festival this year, and I’m glad I picked it up. This is a satire of Sabrina the Teenage Witch, drawn of course by Dan Parent who drew the Archie comics. The entire book is set up like an Archie comic, with the one page shorts, fashion pages, and silly ads of the classic series, but with a more adult, sexual, satirical bent. The most obvious example is the recurring joke of Kitty’s enormous boobs. This is a book meant for adults who grew up on Archie comics, and definitely not a book for kids. You really need to have read Archie comics comics to get the jokes, as this book is very meta. This was a Kickstarter project, but I asked them and they are planning volume 2, which I for one am planning on keeping my eye out for. This is a hilarious look at what might happen if Sabrina was real and really pissed off about how she’s been treated in her own comics. Characters can get as sick of reboots as readers, you know. Maybe comic companies need to try being a little bit nicer to their characters. After all, you might not know who you’re dealing with…

Image result for die kitty die

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Word on the Street Toronto 2014 review

This past Sunday was the 24th annual Word on the Street festival, and despite the dire predictions of rain all day long, it was a lovely sunny day (by the time I got there after having lunch with friends). I didn’t end up volunteering this year, since I’m currently working a full-time library job and a part-time retail job, and Sunday was my first day off since Labour Day (for the record, that was 19 days straight of work. Yes, I’m crazy).

It was a hugely busy day–I went by the HarperCollins table 3 times before I could get close enough to see the table, though I wouldn’t expect much else from a $3 and under table. The third¬†Hobbit movie had an artist drawing you as a Hobbit, and the line for that one was very long–a friend of mine waited for close to three hours, and got cut off at the end, and then someone else butted into the line and got her drawing while my friend didn’t. ūüė¶ The TPL library workers had a booth set up to get your picture taken with a cutout of the mayoral candidate of your choice, and information about where all three of the major candidates stand with regards to public library service. Polkaroo was back with the TVO Kids booth–I didn’t get a picture this time, but I swear I saw him!

Oh yeah, and I might have picked up just a few new books…Because when I have two shelves full of new books to read, a laptop full of ebooks, a whole new library where the kids all think I’ve already read every single book in it, and a very large backlog of reviews to write, I definitely need new books. Really, I do.

  • TD and TVO Kids were handing out¬†Boy Soup by Loris Lesynski, with pictures by Michael Martchenko, which was the 2013¬†TD Grade One Book Giveaway book. It also included a cute activity book for the TVO Reading Rangers Book Club.
  • I bought Bi-Curious George by Andrew Simonian, because it’s bloody hilarious. But I don’t think that I’ll be reading the story of this curious little monkey to Tiny Niece anytime soon. ;p (The review can be found here.)
  • I bought¬†Fan Fiction: The Comic Strip, written by Sam Noir and art by Dave Franciosa, again because it’s hilarious. This one is definitely for nerds with a lively sense of humour about their favourite characters. And Sam Noir was drawing free sketches for people! Here’s mine of Max the vampire bat from Munchsters, his new web comic, with custom rainbow vest!Sam Noir bat
  • I found a cool and (signed!) comic called¬†The Power Within written by Charles “Zan” Christensen and illustrated by Mark Brill. You can buy a paper copy for $4.99 or download a free copy here¬†from the publisher Northwest Press. It also includes some resources and bonus pages from¬†Gail Simone,¬† Phil Jimenez, Greg Rucka, Matthew Clark,¬†Stephen Sadowski, Dan Parent, Donna Barr, Andy Mangels,¬†and Carla Speed McNeil.
  • I was given a free copy of¬†Freddy and Margewich¬†written by Adena Trevor and illustrated by Chelsea Trevor at the Author Solutions booth–they had been doing free book signings all day for various authors, and at the end of the day they gave away all their remaining books. It’s two short stories in a picture book, and the art is by the author’s granddaughter.
  • I bought¬†Branded by the Pink Triangle by Ken Setterington because I read it earlier this year and found it a powerful read, about the experience of gay men in Nazi Germany.
  • I bought¬†Project Superhero,¬†written by E. Paul Zehr and illustrated by Kris Pearn because it looked cool. It’s about a girl in grade 8 who loves superheroes and starts researching them for a school project, and it includes her interviews with real-life people including athletes, police officers, comic book writers, and astronauts. (The review can be found here.)
  • I bought¬†Pain, Porn and Complicity: Women Heroes from Pygmalion to Twilight by ¬†Kathleen McConnell, because even though the title implies that there was a woman hero in Twishite instead of a badly-written Mary Sue, she includes an essay on¬†Dark Angel (which was great and cancelled too soon, damn you FOX), and the essay on Catwoman is called “Flex and Stretch: The Inevitable Feminist Treatise on¬†Catwoman” and I’d forgive a lot for that brilliant title. And academic fandom and feminism are both interests of mine, so this book looks right up my alley.
  • And finally I bought Mini Myths:¬†Play Nice, Hercules!¬†by Joan Holub and illustrated by Leslie Patricelli, but this one is for Tiny Niece. Hercules is proud that he’s so strong, but he has to learn to play nicely with his little sister and not make her cry.

So, this should keep me occupied for awhile. At least, until the next book fair…

Today I Read…Kevin Keller

Kevin KellerToday I read Archie’s Pal Kevin Keller, with story and pencils by Dan Parent, which contains the first 6 issues of the Kevin Keller series.

Riverdale has a new resident, and he’s quick to fit in with Archie and the gang. Kevin Keller has eating contests with Jughead, talks journalism with Betty, pals around with Archie, and has Veronica panting after him. Too bad she doesn’t have a chance with him, but they all make great friends! Will Kevin become a journalist after high school, or join the military like his father, or become the president? Who knows? Right now, he’s having a great time with his new friends in good old Riverdale!

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Kevin Keller is, of course, the well-publicized new gay character in the world of Archie. He was introduced in February 2012, and won the 2013 GLAAD Media Award, which celebrates outstanding images of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community in the media. He’s a little bit of a Marty Sue character, since he’s¬†perfect in just about every way, but that actually makes him fit in with the rest of the Archie cast quite nicely, so I’ll forgive him for that. On one hand, the worst thing that ever happens to him is that¬†the odd bigot tells him to try out for the girls’ track team and he throws up when he has to speak in public–not exactly realistic. On the other hand, it shows a strong, positive role model–Kevin is kind to others, smart, athletic, ambitious, and has a loving, supportive family and friends who accept him for who he is. Kevin Keller is what happens after “It Gets Better”. While it is clear that Kevin is a gay character, it is also clear that he is not only ‘the gay character’–that he has more sides to his identity that just his sexual orientation. All in all, he’s a welcome addition to Archie’s gang in the 21st century.