We’ve had a fantastic week here at Rogues Portal and if you missed any of it, well, it’s here to stay so go check out whatever you missed but here’s a snippit:
The Comics Agenda interviews Carly Usdin this week. Insha talks to Allison O’Toole about monsters and the anthology, Wayward Sisters. And Babes in Wonderland are here talking about Thor: Raganarok on their latest episode.
Andrew Rostan shared his thoughts on Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (definitely not a mouthful to say),
Stephanie (that’s me!) and Anelise got a chance to chat with Cecil Castellucci and Marley Zarcone about the Young Animal series, Shade the Changing Girl. And while on the comics train, Christoph talked about his love for Legends of Tomorrow in his latest Dear … column.
That being said, we’ve got some great things for you to check out over the weekend and to carry you into next week. These things are Rogues Portal Staff Approved for Awesomeness so you know they’ll be fantastic. I’m not nearly as great at Staff Picks as our brilliant Managing Editor, Samantha so I’m going to jump right into the things that we’re into.
Stephanie’s Pick of the Week: I finished South Park: The Fractured But Whole last night, just in time to write up my staff pick for this week! The sequel to the very popular The Stick of Truth, the game begins basically before the last one even ended, creating a seamless transition for the “New Kid” to join in the superhero shenanigans.
If you’re familiar with the show and its character, the plot will probably be fairly predictable, and it isn’t as engaging as The Stick of Truth, but it still manages to throw in a few twists and is heavily imbued with the franchise’s signature lampooning of social trends. The game isn’t really about the story though. It’s about reliving elaborate childhood adventures, playing through some wickedly fun turn-based combat, and trying to catch all the references and inside jokes the creators crammed into every corner of the game. It’s probably not the most thought-proving game, but it was nice to just kick back and have a good laugh while playing a pretty fun RPG. But if you don’t enjoy a good fart joke, you’re gonna have a bad time.
Jameson’s Pick of the Week: My pick of the week has got to be Thor: Ragnarok! Specifically, I’d like to talk a little about my feelings about my favorite MCU character, Loki.
Thor was already my favorite of the Marvel franchises – and not just because of Loki. I love Asgard, beautiful and alien but also welcoming at the same time. I love the Asgardians and their likable culture of battling and feasting for glory. But yes, particularly I love Loki, his erratic nature and his complex relationship with Thor, which is sometimes frustrating and other times surprisingly tender.
Ragnarok’s treatment of Loki is near perfect. While he does tend to be the butt of many of the movie’s slapstick jokes, the fact that he can recover from any situation and twist it to his benefit is part of his charm. His motives twist and turn several times over the course of Ragnarok, allowing him to be acting as an antagonist in one scene and fighting alongside his brother in the next – which also gives off the delightful impression that even he doesn’t really know what he’s doing, but he’s just making it up as he goes along. It also skirts around his history with Thor just enough to be sweet but still portray a realistic pair of brothers too emotionally stunted to really open up to each other.
Basically, Loki’s role in Ragnarok transported me back to 2012. (Not just because it awakened my intense thirst for the first MCU character I developed a huge crush on when I was in college!) The buildup for Infinity War is starting to remind me very much of the magical feeling I experienced in the months preceding the original Avengers movie, piecing together what characters and plotlines would be represented. I’m starting to see how Loki is going to tie into Infinity War and it’s my favorite thing about him – the fact that he’s always winning, but at a game that nobody else is playing.
Cameron’s Pick of the Week: My pick of the week is Silver Surfer by Dan Slott, Michael Allred and Laura Allred. When a young woman named Dawn is abducted and imprisoned on an alien world, her life gets flipped turned upside down. She is rescued by the cosmic hero Silver Surfer and becomes his companion as he travels to countless worlds, to the edge of known space and back. Each issue is better than the last and feels like if Doctor Who were reimagined as a high-stakes romantic comedy, with a little Douglas Adams wackiness thrown in for good measure. The series just recently concluded, much to my chagrin but it’s so freaking good. There are roughly 30 issues total, most of which can be found on Marvel Unlimited or you can find trades and individual issues in print or digitally. Do yourself a favor and give the first volume a chance. You won’t be disappointed.
Stacy’s Pick of the Week: My pick this week is Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman. Did you leave Thor: Ragnarok wanting more of Thor and Loki? Neil Gaiman has you covered in these wonderfully accessible stories featuring the realms of Asgard and Midgard from the dawn of time to the end of days. Gaiman is no stranger to tales of gods, and his love of the source material is evident on every page. The stories range from the epic to the comic, and can provide a bit more depth and context if you’re only familiar with the Norse gods through Marvel comics or film. Definitely a great way to while away a winter’s evening, Norse Mythology is worthy of a seat in the halls of Valhalla. And if you’re still not fully sold, it’s Neil Gaiman writing Loki. What’s not to love?
Josh’s Pick of the Week: My pick of the week is a horror, indie comic my friend created called Beaver Damn. A. Shay Hahn is one of those creators that can take the craziest half baked idea and is able to turn it into a fully baked pie. The last one Hahn made was based on creationist Ken Ham’s belief that dinosaurs fought giants à la gladiator style. And thus we were given the over the top insanity that was Gladiasaurs in a matter of two weeks. Beaver Damn is a little more thoughtful, and less straining on Hahn. Set in the 1820’s, we follow some fur traders through Manitoba, Canada as they realize something is terribly wrong with the animals they’re hunting, resulting in the some people dying. Its definitely one of those books you need to read twice in order to full grasp what’s going on. With the first issue being mostly silent, it really drives that horror element home.