The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl Beats Up the Marvel Universe
October 6, 2016 12:59 PM - by Ryan North - Subscribe

Artist Erica Henderson and writer Ryan North present Doreen Green, Marvel's Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, in her first original graphic novel, and it's a hoot! A five page preview is available here.

As North describes in this interview, "The joke with Squirrel Girl before we got her was that she beats up villains who are outside her power range, but it always happened off-panel. The fun in our book is that we show how that would happen; you can't do it off-panel more than once because you're cheating the readers. "

The new graphic novel sees Doreen undertaking a slight variation from her normal routine of taking on the likes of Thanos, Doctor Doom, and Galactus: here, she's going after her fellow heroes as well. Why the most optimistic and peacefully compromise-seeking superhero might want to start this kind of static is left as exercise for the reader. Specifically, the exercise of reading this book, because it's 100% pure fun.
posted by Ipsifendus (7 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Oh my god YES, this is so good. I kind of vaguely like superheroes but don't really get into superhero comics, and ever since a friend loaned me one of the TPBs I've been eagerly getting my hands on as much USG as I can. It's amazingly written, the art matches the tone wonderfully, and there's a sense of smart fun about Doreen's efforts not only to kick butts and eat nuts but also to find the underlying causes of problems rather than just get into fights. (Also, I learned to count on my fingers in binary!) Very strong recommend for anybody who likes comics.

(Also the book comes shrinkwrapped because there's a peel-off tab in the back with a code for a digital copy, in case that's something you're into.)
posted by Pope Guilty at 1:52 PM on October 6, 2016

I should mention that the binary thing is from a recent issue, #11, the cover of which appears to be reused for next month's TPB- which is advertised in the back of this OGN.
posted by Pope Guilty at 1:59 PM on October 6, 2016

but also to find the underlying causes of problems rather than just get into fights

There are a lot of things to love about Henderson and North's take on Squirrel Girl, and this might the biggest. I suspect it's one of the things that's driving the character's popularity with younger readers, but the best part of it is that her instinct for conflict resolution isn't being crammed in just because it happens to make her a good role model: it comes up because that's who Doreen is. She's an ambitious, audacious, enthusiastic young person, and while she's proud of being able to kick someone's butt, she's also not going to settle for leaving it at that, because it's not practical. She's a distinctive combination of idealism, empathy, and hard-headedness, which you don't often find in fiction, let alone in comedy-oriented comic books.
posted by Ipsifendus at 3:36 PM on October 6, 2016 [3 favorites]

Squirrel Girl taking out the Hulk was freakin' EPIC.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 10:54 AM on October 7, 2016

When the world is getting me down and I've been reading too many election postings, sometimes the only thing that can pull me back from the brink is Ryan North. He's living proof that not all white straight cis guys are garbage (which is important to me because I am one too).
posted by rikschell at 1:42 PM on October 7, 2016 [1 favorite]

It's like spending 15 years writing Dinosaur Comics*, where the characters couldn't do anything but talk (and stomp), prepared him to not have to lean so heavily on punchings. Anyway, yeah, I'm a huge fan of the character, the writing, and the art.

I'm not otherwise so into comics. Why could Doreen be a Thor?

* which I have been reading and loving since, I dunno, before Google Reader existed anyway
posted by aubilenon at 9:33 PM on April 15, 2017

Why could Doreen be a Thor?

Because she was WORTHY.
posted by ursus_comiter at 11:40 PM on October 7, 2019 [1 favorite]

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