Princess Decomposia And Count Spatula

Image By First Second Books

Andi Watson has created a creepy-cute romance with the new graphic novel, Princess Decomposia and Count Spatula. The Princess is overwhelmed taking care of the business of the Underworld while her father convalescences in bed and complains about his food. In comes a pastry chef vampire, Count Spatula, who sees the stress the Princess is under, and tries to help.

Andi was kind enough to answer a few questions about this sweet gothic tale.

GEEKMOM: What was your inspiration for the story and characters?

ANDI WATSON: As always with a book, several different elements have to come together to spark things off. Most importantly I wanted to create a full length graphic novel for the first time in my career, a challenge I hadn’t met after many years of making comics. At first I was a bit intimidated, knowing I’d have to write the whole thing ahead of time, but that became an advantage as I could go back and forth over the course of the story, adding and taking away scenes and dialogue. I loved being able to clearly see the overall shape of the story, something it’s quite hard to do when I’m serialising. The other inspirations came from my sketchbooks. Both Princess Decomposia and Count Spatula had been lurking in the pages in separate stories for years, but neither of their stories worked alone. It was only when I put them together that the book fell into place. I love it when that happens.

GM: Did you see romance right away for the Princess and Count?

ANDI: One of things I wanted to achieve with the book was tell a relationship story, a romance that would be fun to write and draw. I’ve told “real world” romance stories before, and enjoyed writing the dialogue and creating characters. The slight downside is that I’ve found them a bit less fun to draw. It’s often two or more people in a room talking. That’s a real challenge to keep visually interesting, so I wanted to combine a relationship story with a strong visual element and I found I enjoyed drawing the spooky stuff. Having more freedom to play visually and allowing my imagination a bit more of a free reign was a real treat. That the Princess has the cute bat-wing hair and the Count is a vampire made it extra fun to draw. Add to that, designing all the other characters and I had a blast.

GM: The relationship between the Princess and King changes over the course of the book. What’s the message about father/daughter dynamics?

ANDI: Yes, I thought it would be interesting to explore the family dynamics of who’s in charge and who is driving things behind the scenes. The child has adult responsibilities without being allowed her own choices, while the King enjoys power with none of the obligations. The adult is the child and vice-versa. The shape of the story follows how that balance changes. I’m not sure I have a message about father/daughter dynamics, although I am interested in them, being dad to a daughter myself. One thing that strikes you as a parent very early on is how much and how little power you have over your kids. On the one hand you’re completely responsible for every aspect of their lives, on the other you can’t make a child eat, you can’t make them sleep, and you can’t make them stop crying. You are utterly helpless, as any parent with a crying toddler on a long haul flight knows!  As children grow up that divide is less stark but you’re still trying to juggle how much responsibility to give a child and also the anxiety that comes from letting them go little by little. Perhaps this whole book is about my daughter becoming a teenager and my wanting to take to my bed and hide!

GM: The Count’s fun desserts like Mud Monster Cake and Lemon Drizzle Cake were charming to see and imagine the taste! Do you bake? What’s your favorite dessert to make or eat?

ANDI: Yes, I began baking with my daughter when she was little. We both enjoyed making a mess and eating the results. I hadn’t baked since school so it was the perfect way to begin again as the emphasis was on fun and play, not on some exquisitely presented end product. As long as it was edible we were happy. I’ve continued baking over the years, which is why it was a joy to invent the Count’s set-piece desserts. My job was to flick through recipe books and doodle ideas in my sketchbook… it was tough, I tell you. Sadly, my own skills fall well short of the Count’s, but I do enjoy making quick and simple recipes like cookies, rock cakes, fairy cakes and the like. I’ll have a go with fondant icing for birthdays. Past projects have included Minions from Despicable Me and a crash landed Tardis. I also made a traditional Yule log over Christmas that turned out all right. The recipe my family likes best is a chocolate cake with Terry’s Chocolate Orange ganache. Super sweet and easy to make.

GM: Finally, what project are you currently working on?

ANDI: I have a couple of books in the bag, including my webcomic Princess Midnight which finishes up at the end of January. I’ve also finished a graphic novel for grown ups that I’m hoping to find a publisher for. As for brand new stuff, I’ve finished writing another spooky graphic novel that I’ll start drawing and aim to have done by the summer.

GM: Thanks, Andi!

Princess Decomposia and Count Spatula comes out February 24th by First Second. GeekMom received a copy for review purposes.

The Stratford Zoo Midnight Review Presents Macbeth

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Image by First Second.

“I like how it got all the plot points across, but kept it kid-friendly.”

This was my son’s comment after reading The Stratford Zoo Midnight Revue Presents Macbeth by Ian Lendler and Zack Giallongo. He recently took a Shakespeare course, and Macbeth was one of the plays studied, so I was curious about his take on this graphic novel. My son gave it a thumbs up.

The Stratford Zoo Midnight Review Presents Macbeth is a First Second offering for this fall that will appeal to Shakespeare fans of all ages, but especially the younger set just meeting the Bard. This version is full of animals, food, and humor.

The story takes place in a zoo, where the animals put on shows for each other after the human crowds go home. The audience is as much fun as the cast, with silly-to-witty commentary throughout. I particularly liked the little aside from the vultures with their opera glasses:

“Ooh! I love the witches look!”
“They say warts are the new black.”

Macbeth is played by a lion who thinks he loves food more than anything until he meets the witches, and realizes he’s really hungry for power! However, he would have to eat the king to become king himself. He talks to his wife, Lady Macbeth the leopard (out damn spot… hee-hee!), who hands him a cookbook, “100 Ways To Cook A King,” suggesting they saute in lemon-butter sauce.

“But still, Macbeth refused. Eating someone just didn’t seem polite.”

He finally relents and eats the king: “What follows was horrible and gruesome and definitely the best scene in the whole play…” But of course, we don’t see it because the elephant shows up right then to see the play and blocks the whole stage.

And so the silliness continues in this amusing version of classic theater. The artwork bounds through the pages, with the dialogue and narration clear, but with a kid-friendly twist. Like the best animated movies, the jokes are on a couple of levels, so parents reading this to their children will find it just as fun.

The Stratford Zoo Midnight Revue Presents Macbeth comes out the end of this month, recommended for ages seven and up. Check it out!

GeekMom received a copy for review purposes.

Son of Batman Review

Son of Batman \ Image: Amazon
Son of Batman \ Image: Amazon

DC Comics’ latest animated movie, Son of Batman, follows the first significant moments in Batman’s relationship with his headstrong son, Damien. Even though it’s based on the book, Batman: Batman and Son by Grant Morrison, I can count on one hand how many similarities there are between the book and the animated movie.

The movie starts with an introduction to the League of Assassins and the Al Gul family. Ra’s Al Ghul, family head and leader of the League, is attacked by his former right hand man turned mercenary, Slade Wilson (AKA Deathstroke). One thing leads to another and we find Talia in need of a safe place for her son and everybody knows that there is no safer place than with Batman.

What bothers me most about this movie isn’t that it doesn’t follow the book, but how Damien was conceived and how Batman remembers it (or lack thereof).

When Talia brings Batman aboard her vessel after saving his life against Killer Croc, she asks her beloved (as she affectionately calls him) if he would like a drink. Batman replies with a curt no, because he remembers what happened last time he accepted a drink from her, to which she replies (while hanging on him like a cheap date), “Oh yes. I slipped something into it. It wasn’t all bad though was it?”

To break this down, Talia just admitted to slipping a drug into Batman’s drink and then something physically happening between them. In other words, she raped him.

Now, rape is a touchy topic in all circles, not just comics. Usually the one getting raped though is a female character. In this case we have a male character who was sexually violated and how does he respond? “No. It wasn’t all bad.”

So, he went from being a victim of rape, to being okay with what happened because he ended up having a good time.

This isn’t the first time a male character has been raped recently in a movie/television storyline, and for whatever reason the writers chose to ignore how the character would truly feel after such an experience.

It plays out a bit differently in the book with Batman being held down by man-bat-ninja-assassins and telling Talia (rather angrily) that he remembers being “drugged senseless and refusing to co-operate in some depraved eugenics experiment.” To which Talia replies,”We chose you, the perfect man, to breed the perfect heir to the empire of Ra’s Al Ghul. And believe me, you cooperated magnificently.”

Batman Talia Scene Image Kindle
What was wrong with Batman getting angry over what Talia did to him? \ Image: Kindle

Anyone else see something wrong with this?

What was so wrong with Batman’s legitimate anger at being sexually abused that made the movie writers go, “Nah! Let’s have him enjoy it in the end.”

Once the scene is over, the movie picks up the pace and adds some humor to the mix.

Batman has a few sarcastic moments and Nightwing has a strong presence as well. Damien is the star of the show though and is a hard-headed brat with more of his mother in him than desirable. He has some of his father in him as well; it just takes certain events and some “quality” time with Batman to bring them out in him.

My favorite scene is when Nightwing calls Batman on the phone to ask if he’s “misplaced” something. Nightwing’s physical appearance and Damien’s scowl made me laugh.

Other than that one scene (and Talia’s forgetting to zip up her shirt to cover her always perky, front-and-center boobs), the movie was really good. It’s not as gruesome as Flashpoint Paradox, but it does have its moments that are not for the faint of heart. In the end, I’ve decided that his is one of those rare cases where I recommend you skip the book all together and go straight to the movie.

Son of Batman is available on Blu-ray and DVD.

Father’s Day Gift Guide–Bookworm Edition

These dads are pretty cool! Images Courtesy of 501st Legion Troopers
These dads are pretty cool! Images Courtesy of (top left to bottom right) Scott Will, Savanna Kiefer, Gary Collins, and Bryan Sithari.

Welcome to the Father’s Day Gift Guide for bookworm dads. Here you will find our favorite books for our dads. We hope you will consider them for yours.

Avengers vs. X-Men Companion: For the Marvel dad, check out the Avengers vs. X-Men Companion. This hardbound, limited edition combines all the tie-ins to the Avengers vs. X-Men event. Complete with a digital copy, this is a must have for any Marvel dad. $58.00

Grimm Fairy Tale Omnibus: The Grimm Fairy Tale Omnibus collects the first 50 issues of Zenescope’s acclaimed Grimm Fairy Tales series. Coming in at 8 lbs, this is a heavy but enjoyable comic book for any dad. $40.00

Superman: The High-Flying History of America’s Most Enduring Hero: The ultimate history book for Superman fans is here and just recently released in a softcover format. $13.00 and up

For the Star Wars dad, check out Star Wars: Legacy Volume 1–Broken: Broken v. 1, Heirs of the force: Young Jedi Knights #1 and Heir to the Empire: Star Wars (The Thrawn Trilogy): Star Wars, Volume I all come highly recommended by 501st Legion troopers and fans alike. Various prices

Saga Vol. 1 and Vol. 2: Saga is one of the hottest comic books currently on comic book shelves. Help dad get caught up in the story by picking him up Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 from the bookstore. $10.00 and up

DC Comics Trades: For the DC Comics Dad, Animal Man and Swamp Thing both come highly recommended. I’ve read the first few issues of Swamp Thing and Scott Snyder (Batman) has me hooked! $15.00 and up

Superman: Birthright: It’s rumored that The Man of Steel was partially based off of Superman: Birthright. What better way to prepare dad for the movie than to pick it up for him? I’ve read this title myself and absolutely loved it! $16.00

Backyard Ballistics: This title, by William Gurstelle, is revised with new and expanded projects to make using inexpensive household or hardware store materials. Match-powered rockets, dry cleaning bag balloon, tennis ball mortar, and more for a total of 16 ballistic devices. $20.00

Handy Dad: This title, by Todd Davis, has instructions for 25 projects, some that take only five minutes and others that will take a weekend. We’re talking zip lines, rope swing, climbing wall, stunt dummy, bike ramp, and all sorts of great ideas. $20.00

Craft Cocktails at Home: This book, by Kevin K. Liu, assembles innovative ideas from taste scientists, engineers, and top bartenders. Lean how to make delicious, one-of-a-kind cocktails. $9.00

Cooking for Geeks: This cookbook, by Jeff Potter, has the why and how behind everything culinary. With nearly 400 pages, this science-as-cookbook is jammed with excellent obscurities and useful tips. $22.00

Great Maps of the Civil War: For the Civil War history buff, this is a fun read that is educational for the whole family. $28.00

Lectures on the Theory of Games: For the gamer dad, check this book out and dad will learn about the “modern mathematical discipline known as the Theory of Games.” Sounds fun, right? $28.00

Survival Wisdom & Know How: For the outdoors-man, check out Survival Wisdom and Know How to make sure they know what they’re doing while out exploring mother nature. $15.00

Need more ideas for Father’s Day? Check out our Father’s Day Gift Guide for more geeky gift ideas!

Nothing Can Possibly Go Wrong

First Second Books
First Second Books

I have to admit, when I was sent a review copy of Nothing Can Possibly Go Wrong, a YA graphic novel by Prudence Shen and illustrated by Faith Erin Hicks, I wasn’t as excited as I could be.

I’m a huge fan of Faith Erin Hicks. Her book Friends with Boysis one of my favorites. My daughter and I used it as our selection for our mother/daughter book club. In Nothing Can Possibly Go Wrong, Hicks was only doing the art.

The premise sounded like a cliche high school drama, pitting nerds against jocks. Eh. But I should have trusted that Hicks wouldn’t collaborate on something unless it was worth her mad skills. I, and my two teens, very much enjoyed it. Amusing dialogue, great art (duh), and characters that have fun with their stereotypes, tossing or flaunting them at a whim. Continue reading Nothing Can Possibly Go Wrong

Family Pets — All Digital & Kid Friendly by Zenescope

Family Pets \ Image: Zenescope
Family Pets \ Image: Zenescope

Zenescope has books appropriate for children? Who knew? Not me that’s for sure. When I think Zenescope I think sexy grimms girls or Robyn Hood and her bow and arrow. Family Pets is the latest to come from Zenescope, by Robyn Hood writer Patrick Shand and artwork by Sarah Dill.

It only took the first issue to know that this was something my son and I would both love!

The main character is Thomasina. After her parents died in a car crash when she was five, she’s lived with her Grandmother (aka Abuela) and now also lives with her Uncle and his family. She sometimes feels like the “family pet” and doesn’t care for it to much. My impression of her is that she’s a tom-boy dreamer who just wants to escape the life fate has dealt her. I can relate to her in many ways, including her fashion sense and loner status at school.

Continue reading Family Pets — All Digital & Kid Friendly by Zenescope

GeekMom: Comic Book Corner — October 31st, 2012

AVX: Consequences  Image: Copyright Marvel
AVX: Consequences Image: Copyright Marvel

Happy Halloween and New Comic Release Day! Welcome to another installment of GeekMom Comic Book Corner, where we recap our adventures in comics for the week.

Dakster Sullivan – Avengers vs. X-Men: Consequences

The past two weeks have been torture for me since all of my local comic book stores have been sold out of Avengers vs. X-Men: Consequences. One store told me the popularity of it just came out of nowhere for them. Thanks to a friend at Marvel, I was able to read them digitally this week and get my AVX fix.

AVX: Consequences is a mini series that shows us what happened after the war between the Avengers and the X-Men was over and the repercussions that came from it.

Thanks to Hope, Scarlet Witch, and the Phoenix, the mutant population has started to flourish again and the world is coming to grips with the new influx of mutants popping up. For the most part, everyone is free to go back to the normal lives they lived before the war and others are helping to search for the rest of extermination team (lead by Cyclops).

Hope is trying to figure out where she belongs and just wants to try to be normal for a while. Cyclops is in a high security prison that couldn’t care less if he wakes up breathing. He appears to lack guilt for the deaths he caused and his only desire at the moment is to become a martyr for the mutant cause, a desire Wolverine is sorely tempted to fill.

After reading issues #1 and #2, I hate to say I’m starting to have some sympathy pains for Cyclops. I don’t believe what he did was right, but I also don’t think he should be receiving the torturous care he is getting in the prison. It will be interesting to see how he gets out and what his life will be like once he does. I can imagine his relationships with some of his former teammates is not going to be as great as what he might hope it to be.

I would love to see an issue focus on the school a little and what the students went through while the war was going on. I’m also curious to see what will happen to Hope now that she is free to live her own life for the first time.

The Avengers vs. X-Men graphic novel is up for pre-order on Amazon now.

Curious to know what I’m pulling this week? Check out my pull list on Comixology.

Continue reading GeekMom: Comic Book Corner — October 31st, 2012

Ame-Comi Girls Series: Powergirl

Ame-Comi Powergirl / Image: Copyright DC Comics
Ame-Comi Powergirl / Image: Copyright DC Comics

Based off the sculptures of the same name, the Ame-Comi Girls series is re-writing some of the characters I’ve grown up loving. I started to see subtle changes in Wonder Woman and Batgirl’s issues, but after seeing what they’ve done to Powergirl, I’m convinced of what DC is doing; making this comic book series universe an all woman superhero team.

This series has taken the characters that have been traditionally male and replaced them with a female counterpart or already existing female character.

Jimmy...I mean...James Olsen / Image Copyright DC Comics
Jimmy…I mean…James Olsen / Image Copyright DC Comics

In Powergirl #1 we see Powergirl taking on the role of Superman in Metropolis (complete with a hunky James Olsen, journalist and photographer for the Daily Planet). James still has his famous watch to call for help and has a few good one liners to go with it. His flirting with Powergirl is cute and funny to read and I’m enjoy the moments they have together in the series.

Kara has a very sweet personality while living as one of the people in Metropolis and when she shifts into Powergirl mode, she kicks some serious tail.

In issue #2 we get to see Powergirl open up on some anti-alien terrorists, the Silver Banshees. When our heroine finally gets them taken care of, she gets to focus on their leader, a man she describes as the “one man on Earth who would need a robot that size to compensate for his insecurities.” We never hear his name or see his face, but my best guess would be that it’s Lex Luthor. Since this series is focusing mostly on women characters, I’m thinking his battle was short and sweet to add some action in before the main villianess makes themselves known.

Issue #3 covers the introduction of Supergirl and of all the issues so far, this one goes the fastest. When Supergirl emerges from her ship, she’s in her costume and has full use of her abilities with no training. It’s apparent that just like in Superman, Supergirl is older than Powergirl, but her aging stopped while she was in her ship. The action in this issue is intense and we are left seeing the main villianess make herself known to our Kryptonian heroines.

There are a couple of things that surprise me in Powergirl’s three issues, one of those things being Powergirl’s lack of a double life. This is a staple in most superhero stories, and to see her living openly as Kara and Powergirl is kind of weird. Something else that surprised me is how easy it was for Powergirl to banish someone to the phantom zone. I’ve never heard of Superman just opening a portal and sending an enemy there to punish them. He usually left that to the justice system on Earth. The last thing that threw me off is Supergirl. Her name (as far as I know) has always been Kara, so when she is introduced at the end of issue #3, we have two Karas; talk about confusing.

Despite the changes to the characters, I’m really enjoying this series. I’m liking it because it’s a fresh take on the characters I’ve grown up loving (in the animated series that is). It’s also nice to have a series where with no knowledge of any of the characters, any newbie can jump in and understand everything that is going on. My only complaint is the look of Powergirl doesn’t stay consistent from page to page. Depending on the page/panel, parts of her body may appear larger than in a previous panel.

So far in the Ame-Comi series, each major character has had three issues and they all tie in together very nicely. So far Wonder Woman, Batgirl, Duela Dent, Powergirl, and Supergirl have all had their time in the series spotlight.

The next wave of issues will be focusing on all of the girls in, what I’m guessing, is going to be an all girl version of the Justice League.

Ame-Comi Girls is a digital-only comic book series and is released on Comixology and DC Comics apps on Mondays. Unlike new comic book Wednesdays, you don’t have to wait until 2pm for this one to hit the digital shelves.

I recommend this series for anyone ages 10 and up.

House of Night Vol. 1 By Dark Horse Comics

House of Night Image: Dark Horse Comics
House of Night Image: Dark Horse Comics

The House of Night is the first comic book I’ve read that is not related to any “mainstream” characters. In the beginning, I was a little lost, but as I kept reading I was able to put most of the pieces together for myself. Based off the books of the same name, the graphic novel helps to bring the characters and story to life in a new way.

The story centers on a Zoey Redbird, a young vampyre fledging. We learn early on that the colored in mark on her forehead is a big deal. We also meet Aphrodite, who is upset that Zoey has been chosen to replace her as the leader of the Dark Daughters. I’m not entirely sure what all of this means, but I can tell that it makes her special among her peers and that it’s a big responsibility.

It didn’t take me long to fall in love with the characters. Zoey appears to be really down to earth and cares a lot about fulfilling her responsibilities. Her friends are all unique individuals who vow to stand by her side and help keep her on the straight and narrow path of leadership. Together they go through their handbook to help Zoey learn five lessons that the vampyre Goddess Nyx has set in front of her to learn.

With each lesson having to do with one of the five elements of the earth, we get to hear five different stories of various vamypre women. Each one is different and has an ending that can be considered good or tragic. Through the stories, Zoey must decide what lesson the Goddess Nyx is trying to teach her. Only after realizing the lesson and fully understanding it, will she become the leader of the Dark Daughters.

I was not aware when I started to read the story that it was about vampyre fledgings. I’m happy that I didn’t because it might have kept me from reading it for fear it would be to dark for my tastes. Overall, I was surprised at how light it was. Zoey’s friends all feel like real and relatable people. I feel that some of the lessons Zoey and her friends learn are ones that the young people of today need to learn.

I would recommend this book for anyone ages 13 and up. I wish I could recommend it for a younger group, but I feel that some of the subject matter and graphics may be inappropriate for younger readers.

A copy of this issue was provided for review by Dark Horse Comics.


GeekMom: Comic Book Corner – May 16th, 2012

Image Copyright DC Comics
Image Copyright DC Comics

Happy Comic Book Release Day! Welcome to another installment of GeekMom Comic Book Corner, where we recap our adventures in comics for the week.

Dakster Sullivan — New 52 Green Lantern Issue #9
In the latest issue of the New 52 Green Lantern, we learn about the origins of the Indigo Tribe and how Abin Sur is connected to them. In his attempt to free Sinestro from the Indigo light, Hal Jordan learns more about Abin Sur’s connection to the tribe. We also learn that Nok means “compassion be with you” and is also the name of the Indigo Tribe’s world.

*Spoiler Alert* Continue reading GeekMom: Comic Book Corner – May 16th, 2012

The Undersea Adventures of Capt’n Eli and The Sea Ghost

Image: Nemo Publishing, LLC

On my exciting new journey to becoming a comic book person, I’ve gotten to read the beginnings of a series that is great for both kids and adults. Called The Undersea Adventures of Capt’n Eli and done by Jay Piscopo, this series has origins in the world of root beer, yet has nothing to do with fizzy beverages. It’s about a boy with a mysterious past who is drawn to the sea. He joins others to help keep peace and keep people safe in the sea, and he finds other mysterious beings as well as whole cultures that are hidden from the surface.

The artwork in Capt’n Eli is a cross between old school styles and computer animated images. It contains both at the same time, which sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t. But the drawings are simple and uncluttered. They instantly made me think of Jonny Quest.

I was sent the first two issues of Capt’n Eli to review. They started out with uncomplicated story lines that would be easy for kids to follow and get excited about. Not having a comic book reading background, I have little comic comparisons to make here, but the story beginnings remind me of shows like Scooby Doo and others from my childhood. As an adult, you see the obvious solutions to the problems that come up, but as a kid, you’re just along for the ride.

The series starts off with “The Mystery of Me,” which explains where Capt’n Eli came from and his back story. The series then continues with “The Mystery of the Sargasso Sea,” which takes everyone into the Bermuda Triangle area. Havoc ensues. Time travel figures prominently in the story lines, along with plenty of mystery, adventure, intrigue, and history, all surrounding the sea and its environs.

Image: Nemo Publishing, LLC

To learn more about the history of the characters, the story lines also contain plenty of back story, often well-integrated into the story lines. Also, each issue ends with a bit of a cliff hanger, getting you to buy the next issue to see what happens next.

In the second issue, “The Mystery of the Sargasso Sea” continues. The story really develops here with plenty of sub plots, twists, parallel story lines, and quite a bit more complexity. Perfectly wonderful for kids, but also interesting enough for adults to read, you learn about life under the sea and see more of a glimpse into other characters’ lives. One of the major characters in the series, Commander X, is, to me, the most intriguing character. He, too, has a mysterious past, but is a responsible adult who tends to take matters into his own hands. The back of the first comic has comic book covers from Commander X’s days in the golden age of comics, in a more classic style. They tell his past like it is history, but is in the form of a comic book. It seems that in this universe, history is chronicled in comic books, which is pretty awesome.

The black page borders throughout much of the books make it feel a bit like you’re under water, which is where much of the series takes place. Little jokes are inserted for those who will get them, such as a transmitter called the Anti-M. A parrot is the plucky sidekick who tosses out sort-of-funny lines from time to time.

The Undersea Adventures of Capt’n Eli was also reviewed over at GeekDad in 2008. Check out Brad Moon’s review there. He liked the series, too!

Image: Nemo Publishing, LLC

In response to the reception of the Capt’n Eli books, Jay Piscopo built on one of the characters in the series, doing a stand-alone comic on The Sea Ghost. The Sea Ghost artwork reminds me of the 1970s/1980s Super Friends! It’s a thin paper comic issue, instead of the longer graphic novel format with thicker paper that is the Capt’n Eli books. The plot is as simplistic as some of the beloved 70s shows, and some of the creatures look like they’re from Planet of the Apes. There isn’t a lot of character development and some of the dialogue is a bit corny, but it’s short and fun, and a good read for kids. Plus Sea Ghost’s uniform is awesome: black and white with a seahorse on his chest!

The Undersea Adventures of Capt’n Eli graphic novels retail for $9.99. I recommend them to anyone, the young or the young at heart. Become a fan of the series along with your kids, and you’ll have one more thing in common to talk about. The stories are interesting, complex, and well done.

The Sea Ghost retails for $3.99. It is an interesting side story in the Capt’n Eli universe, but this one is better for kids than it is for adults. The comic isn’t necessary to the main story lines, but adds more background to one of the characters.

In addition to the comic books, there is a Capt’n Eli collectible card game and a coloring book. The Capt’n Eli website also has fantastic lesson plans for geography, history, and art subjects, using the comic books as reference, but expanding on them. For additional information on any of these, check out the Capt’n Eli website.

Note: I received copies of these comics for review purposes.

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