Review: Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge
Writer: Grace Ellis
Artist: Brittany Williams
Colorist: Caitlin Quirk
Letterer: Ariana Maher
Reviewer: Tony Farina
It’s the first day of summer break in the sleepy town of Liberty View, and young Lois Lane bursts onto the scene with what she knows is a sure-to-go-viral video channel. Okay, maybe her platform only receives two views a week (thanks, Mom), and maybe her best friend, Kristen, isn’t quite as enthusiastic about social media, but when Lois sets her mind on something, there’s no turning back.
At the end of the week, the big neighborhood barbecue and bike race will be the perfect backdrop to Lois and Kristen’s #friendshipchallenge video. But when the girls find out the annual fireworks are missing, Lois doubles down on her efforts for fame, testing her friendship in ways she couldn’t imagine.
With Kristen leaving for sleep way camp after the barbecue and a new girl on the block taking all of Kristen’s attention, will Lois be able to find the missing fireworks, celebrate the summer, and post the best #friendshipchallenge the internet has ever seen? Or will she have to face her challenges IRL?
Artist Brittany Williams is the true star of Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge even though Lois gets top billing. These pages just come to life. The expressive emotion of the teenage girls is spot on. The cat’s reactions are pretty priceless. The whole book feels like it is in motion the whole time. It perfect for the audience, who, to be fair, isn’t really always keen to sit still.
Colorist Caitlin Quirk just makes Williams’ brilliant images jump off the page. This is bright and shiny and essentially perfectly colored. If I handed this to a kid, there is no way she or he could look away.
There is an excellent story here about friendship, but there is an even better story about social media. There are lessons parents can give to their kids and then there are lessons kids will only learn from someone who is not their parents. This is just so well done. It does not condescend to the kids. It speaks directly to them. I think parents and kids should read this one together and then have a chat. Excellent work out of Ms. Ellis.
Lois Lane is a bit of a prat in Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge. I get it. I do. It’s just, I like my Lois Lane to be a bit more forthright. I get it, she is just a kid, but a jerky Lois Lane just does not work for me all the time. It would be different if her intentions were always good, but they are not.
Once again, DC Kids has crushed it. These books are always so fun to read. They speak to kids directly. This is another excellent example of solid story telling, beautiful art packaged in a book that is sure to start kids on the path to comic fandom.