Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Review: Lumberjanes/Gotham Academy Trade!

By Reboot

Courtesy of BOOM! Studios
Hey everyone! Reboot here again. It's been a little while since I reviewed a trade paperback collection and what better way to jump back into that than with the big Lumberjanes/Gotham Academy cross-over from BOOM! Studios with DC Comics collecting issues #1 - 6!

Before I jump into it, there are quite a lot of names that should be mentioned so let's start with that. This limited series now collected in a trade paperback was written by Chynna Clugston Flores, penciled by Rosemary Valero-O'Connell, Kelly Matthews and Nicole Matthews, inked by Maddi Gonzalez and Jenna Ayoub, colored by Whitney Cogar, and lettered by Warren Montgomery.Lumberjanes was created by Shannon WattersGrace EllisNoelle Stevenson, and Brooke Allen.Gotham Academy was created by Becky CloonanBrenden Fletcher, and Karl Kerschl. While other people were also involved in bringing this book to life, this is the bare minimum number list of names of those who should be acknowledged before I continue. 

Without a doubt, Lumberjanes and Gotham Academy are two of the biggest YA monthly comics coming out right now; particularly targeting a female readership. As a result, this felt like a very natural pair up. Besides, DC Comics has been doing a lot of crossovers lately anyways, and I'm not complaining.

Without giving too much away, Professor MacPherson from Gotham Academy and Rosie from Lumberjanes both go missing! Each team ends up finding a similar clue as to where they may be and they all run into each other in the woods.

If you're unfamiliar with both properties, that's okay! Lumberjanes/Gotham Academy does a great job at properly introducing both groups in an organic way that's perfect for newcomers and not a drag for those already familiar. That is no small feat and I imagine we owe that to Chynna Clugston Flores’ writing skills. I'm not very familiar with her work, but she handles this story expertly.

Courtesy of BOOM! Studios
Rosemary Valero-O'Connell pencils the first four issues with Maddi Gonzalez inking over pencils. The aesthetic is definitely more Lumberjanes than Gotham Academy, which I enjoy. Because of Whitney Cogar’s excellent vibrant coloring, it's hard to notice that towards the end of the trade is penciled by Kelly and Nicole Matthews with Jenna Ayoub inking over them. While Kelly and Nicole have a very similar style, they lay out some of their pages differently enough and use a few different techniques, so knowing that going in means you can spot it. Overall, the art is very bright and makes this book a great page turner. I read it all in one sitting!

If I were to nitpick this story it would just be that some of the jokes were a bit too corny. I know, I've read Lumberjanes. I get it. It's a thing they do. That's why I'm calling this nitpicking. I also understand I'm not the target audience. I'm probably the secondary audience with all the 80s jokes in it (read it and you'll find out why!). Either way, it doesn't disrupt the flow of the story. And not that I thought this would happen, but just because this is a Gotham Academy comic don't expect any cameos or references to any other fair citizens of Gotham City.

I would definitely recommend you check out Lumberjanes/Gotham Academy. If you're a fan of both, absolutely check it out. If you like one or the other, especially Lumberjanes, you have to read this. If you've thought about reading one or the other and haven't dived into either yet, this is a great place to start.

Lumberjanes/Gotham Academy is available in trade paperback Wednesday, March 2nd.

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