content by

Sam Riedel

The Flash / Arrow Crossover Shows Us What We Might Expect from Batman vs Superman

Wednesday night’s conclusion to a two-part CW television event, as improbable as it sounds, has major ramifications for DC Comics as we know them. The Flash/Arrow crossover, heavily hyped for weeks and christened #Flarrow on Twitter, swept through superhero tropes like lightning (sorry) and cut them down with an arrow in the eye (okay, that one was unnecessary). As good as it was—and believe me, some parts of it were downright magical—there were significant missteps as well, which could easily be repeated in DC’s upcoming Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice if Warner doesn’t learn from this experience while it’s fresh. Spoilers follow.

[Annnnnd Flash pun.]

Batgirl‘s New Creative Team is Already Punching Sexism in the Face — With Science!

I’m a sucker for youthful superheroics of any kind, from the Teen Titans to the Great Saiyaman. But all too often, super-powered kids get written as slightly less verbose adults, with no concern for young people’s actual tastes, tendencies, or—most importantly—problems. The new creators on DC Comics’ Batgirl, on the other hand, are doing a bang-up job portraying college student Barbara Gordon’s hectic life as an academic superstar by day and hip vigilante by night. But what’s coolest of all—besides her kickin’ new outfit—is that Batgirl is finally standing up for modern young women everywhere. And she’s doing it with science.

[Read more…]

Animorphs: Why the Series Rocked and Why You Should Still Care

In August 1996, Scholastic published a book called The Encounter by K.A. Applegate. I wouldn’t read it for several years, but while I remained firmly sequestered from pop culture, The Encounter and the series to which it belonged—Animorphs—would begin rapidly changing the face of young adult SF/F fiction.

Today, it’s hard to imagine how the genre would have evolved without Applegate’s iconic influence (not to mention her husband, Michael Grant, who helped write the series); and yet, the number of young readers who recognize the series is dwindling. That’s a shame, because if you’re a modern kid looking for violent coming-of-age stories that promote gender equality, racial tolerance, and the freedom to self-identify, you can’t ask for a better saga than Animorphs.

[How Animorphs changed YA, and a whole generation of readers…]

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