All Ages Comics ^^ 4/23/08

It’s all-mythology picks this week. Having studied cultural anthropology in college, I can’t help but want to promote more books the will foster greater cultural understanding. Stories from cultures that we still see as strange and mysterious can really grab hold of a child’s imagination. And even more than that, expand their understand of other people who think and believe different than them. This week’s picks features both eastern and western myths and fairy tales. I’m also going to start highlighting books that may appeal to the very young. I’m going to label these books Y7, for easier identification.

ARCHIE COMICS
Betty & Veronica #235, $2.25
Betty & Veronica Double Digest #160, $3.69
Sonic X #32, $2.25

BONGO
Bart Simpson Comics #41, $2.99
Simpsons Classics #16, $3.99
Simpsons Comics TP Dollars To Donuts, $14.95

DC Comics/Johnny DC
Scooby Doo #131, $2.25
Super Friends #2, $2.25 ^^Y7 Pick^^

MARVEL COMICS
Marvel Adventures Fantastic Four #35, $2.99
Power Pack Day One #2 (of 4), $2.99
Ultimate Fantastic Four #53, $2.99
Ultimate Spider-Man #121, $2.99

NBM
Classics Illustrated Deluxe HC Vol 02 Tales of the Brothers Grimm, $17.95
Classics Illustrated Deluxe TP Vol 02 Tales of the Brothers Grimm, $13.95 ^^AA Pick^^

VIRGIN COMICS LLC
India Authentic #12 (Andhaka), $2.99 ^^AA Pick^^

Picks:

Super Friends #2 – There aren’t a lot of comics that would be appropriate or even appeal to a young audience. But, I’ve got to give DC credit for at least trying to reach out to this demographic. One of it’s newest entries is Super Friends, using characters from it’s popular Justice League title, but with designs based on the toyline of the same name. The designs are cute, and in this issue, the Super Friends are trying to stop some rampaging dinosaurs from destroying the city. It also features activities and fun facts. This is a title that will appeal to kids and it low on the violence scale that should appeal to parents.

Classics Illustrated Deluxe TP Vol. 2 – Fairy Tales have been a staple of children’s stories for decades, since Andrew Lang made them more “kid friendly” in the late 1800 with his Red and Blue Fairy Talies books. This collection of 4 tales features Grimm Brother’s classics Hansel & Gretel and the Valiant Little Tailor, and two less known tales, The Boy Wanted to Learn What Fear Was, and the Devil’s Three Golden Hairs. These stories try to stay true to the Grimm’s original telling, but in a “tasteful and thoughtful manner”, ie, without Grimm’s gore. Fairy tales are a great way to not only teach morality lessons, but also introduce kids to different cultures.

India Authentic #12: Andhaka – I’ve been interested in Indian Mythology ever since I saw Joseph Campbell’s lectures, Transformations of Myth Through Time. Besides being a great storyteller, the myths he told were fascinating. The pantheon of Hindu gods are very diverse and interesting. The India Authentic presents the story of a different figure from the pantheon in each comic. This issue is about Andhaka, the Blind One. Born blind, and left at the door to the demon kingdom, Andhaka grows up in the harsh environment, and learns to overcome his disabilities. He goes on to lead the demon army to the steps of Mount Kailash, the home of Lord Shiva and Uma, where he must face the sad truth of his birth and karma. Cultural education has really suffered, especially in recent years, so something that will not only entertain, but interest children in finding out about other cultures should be highly encouraged.

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