Monday, October 24, 2016

The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #13 Review and **SPOILERS**

It’s the Little Things

Writer: Ryan North 
Artist: Erica Henderson 
Trading Card Artists: Anthony Clark, Hannah Blumenreich 
Color Artist: Rico Renzi 
Letterer: Travis Lanham 
Cover Artist: Erica Henderson 
Cover Price: $3.99 
On Sale Date: October 19, 2016


You know what I did last weekend? I read the Unbeatable Squirrel Girl original graphic novel by Ryan North and Erica Henderson, titled the Unbeatable Squirrel Girl Beats Up the Marvel Universe! I would love to give it a full review, but quite frankly I don’t have the time. So let me just tell you my thoughts about it here! I thought it was great! Really, it was just a long form Unbeatable Squirrel Girl story, which worked well for me because I always wish there was more to read after I’m done with every issue. I try not to give away spoilers in this part of my reviews, but in case you’re worried about spending your money on this work because you’re not sure if it delivers the goods, let me assure you: Squirrel Girl does beat up the Marvel Universe. So to speak. I’ve revealed too much already! Go check that, out, but first check out my review and recap of issue #13!

Explain It!

You’ll recall that Doreen, Nancy, and Doreen’s mom have all been tied to the ground by Enigmo, a guy with a stupid haircut that has the power to split into smaller and smaller versions of himself, and also apparently grow one of those pieces into a full-size Enigmo by consuming enough mass. Sort of a weird power, but I suppose beggars can’t be choosers. Suddently, Tippy-Toe and her Canadian black squirrel comrades burst onto the scene and attack the Enigmos, long enough for Doreen to snap her bonds and free her friend and mom. Instead of sticking around, however, Doreen snatches up Nancy and her mom and bounds away, fearful of Enigmo becoming small enough to get into their lungs, and rightfully so because that sounds horrible. In the woods, Doreen figures out that Enigmo isn’t attacking Canada and New York City simultaneously, the ladies brought some Enigmo spawn there by visiting her mom’s cabin for a getaway! They make it to the nearest town, where a full-grown Enigmo is already strolling about, and there Nancy can get reception on her cell phone. She reads that everything is fine in New York City now that Enigmos hold every important municipal position, which must come as quite a relief to all of them.
Speaking of New York City, Brain Drain is in Doreen’s apartment, wondering about the best course of action to take out Enigmo. He decides he needs someone adept in smallness, leaving him to decide between Lifter and Ant-Man. Brain Drain keeps it nebulous, and I’m not sure why because the cover clearly indicates that Ant-Man is in the issue. Brain Drain comes up with this overly-complicated method for getting Scott Lang to join their anti-Enigmo crusade, one that I don’t entirely understand, and don’t really care to. Point is, Scott comes to Canada, royally pissed off because Brain Drain used and destroyed an experimental jet that Lang had been contracted to protect, but he ultimately decides to team up with Squirrel Girl, at least as long as it takes them to get back over the border in his pre-shrunk Ant-Van. Oh yeah. He’s got one of those.
They’re cruising along, safe as houses, when they are strangely trailed by a dozen cops—who are all Enigmos! Enigmo has taken over the town and he’s ready for a scrapping. Everyone, even Tippy-Toe, gets in on the act, until the Enigmos detonate a bomb that blows apart a section of the bridge they’re all fighting on, and sends Squirrel Girl and her team seemingly to their deaths…seemingly. She’s able to protect them by holding a chunk of concrete over everyone’s heads, like some kind of trailer camper awning, while they discuss their next move—which looks like it will be an Oceans Eleven-style heist of Enigmo’s secret lair or whatever. Seems foolproof, whatever the plan is, except for one wrinkle: an Enigmo was listening in on their meeting!
There are worse comics out there in the world, but this is definitely the worst issue of Squirrel Girl I’ve read in recent memory. I appreciate that it stays out of the big, scary crossovers that always confuse the hell out of me when I read them, but this thing was confusing enough and I just don’t find Enigmo a viable threat. Never mind that no one else is reacting to this takeover of New York City—I suppose they’re involved in those big, scary crossovers I mentioned before—this whole thing will obviously be solved by the world’s biggest rock candy mountain or a special section at the zoo for Enigmo or something equally cordial and fair. Scott Lang reads nothing like the same character in the series by Nick Spencer, but I didn’t really care about what he said so I suppose that point is moot.

Bits and Pieces:

A less-inspiring issue than usual, though still filled with more jokes than you can shake a stick at. Ant-Man makes a cameo, as promised on the cover, but it seems unnecessary and Scott Lang doesn't keep the same character from his solo series. I mean, it is written by different people so the characterization should vary a little bit, but there ought to be some collusion. If only there were an editorial office at Marvel where they could keep such things straight!


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