Joy, oh, joy, faithful Spoilerites! Oni Press has announced their fall slate and I am so excited about what they announced I wanted to give you a little write up about what I think is most thrilling.
First up is their how-to graphic novel Wait, What?: A Comic Book Guide to Relationships, Bodies, and Growing Up by: Heather Corinna and Isabella Rotman.
What do I think is most awesome about this? Rotman is a sex educator! Wait, What? is poised to be the adolescent how-to manual we all so desperately needed when we were coming up in the world. My mind immediately goes to the comparison to Oh, Joy, Sex Toy! but a little more down-to-Earth.
The following quote from Heather Corinna seems to confirm my feelings:
I’ve always done the work I have with full faith and confidence that children and adolescents have the ability to handle challenging parts of life like puberty, their developing sexuality and the development of elective relationships, so long as they’re given good support and sound information that really speaks to them. I’m so glad that we were able to make Wait, What? with this core belief in mind. I love how it so clearly shows the ways readers this age can capably learn complex or nuanced things, can teach and help each other with the knowledge they have, can work together to correct or expand what they know (and can do so with great geeky joy and kindness), and can handle these issues well with the right support.
I’m honored to be working on Wait,What? because of its uniqueness as a sexuality and relationships book for young teens which centers the reader’s comfort in their own body, sexuality, and emotions as a primary focus,” adds Isabella Rotman. “I think comics present a unique opportunity as an educational tool, especially around topics that can be awkward or hard to talk about. There’s something so genuinely non-pretentious about comics that puts most people in a space to learn or have a conversation. We can see these characters really care about each other and themselves, and I hope their feelings and friendships will encourage young readers to love themselves as well. I remember the middle school version of myself version of myself and think, “What did she want? What did she need to hear?
When the fall comes around, readers, be sure to check out the Major Spoilers Podcast for my thoughts on this OGN.
Next Oni offers up Ted Naifeh’s newest project – Kriss: the Gift of Wrath in collaboration with Warren Wucinich.
Personally, I’m a fan of Ted Naifeh’s work since I discovered his Princess Ugg series, so offering me a YA fantasy graphic novel about a young boy looking to discover his destiny I’m going to be hyped from the get-go. If you’re anything like me and familiar with Naifeh’s work, then you’re probably used to seeing him write female protagonists. Should be interesting to see what a male-led story from him looks like and Naifeh addressed this in a statement:
Everyone always asks why I only write female characters. I never had a good answer, so I thought I’d try writing a male protagonist. Warren did a magnificent job coloring Courtney Crumrin and Princess Ugg, so I’m delighted to see him take the wheel and design a whole story world.
Wucinich had equally nice things to say about his collaborator:
Ted has a wonderful knack for turning tropes on their heads and I feel privileged working with him in bringing this new tale to readers. Stories like Kriss are exactly the kind of stories I got into comics to tell.
Then we have Mourning in America by Kim and Kim team Magdalene Visaggio and Claudia Aguirre.
Mourning in America tells the story of the Sick Sisters from Tucker, Ohio on their misadventures across the 1980s. This series seems poised to embrace all of the bad girl charm the team has become known for.
The way the eighties have come to dominate pop culture really fascinates me. I was born in ’84—a year after Morning in America—so I largely missed the decade. While a lot of people are coming at this stuff right now from the perspective of nostalgia, this book is looking into the era from the outside. So many of the pop culture touchstones of my youth have their genesis there, and it’s an era that has always felt mysterious, like a buried civilization. So, for me, something like Morning in America isn’t delivering something comfortable and familiar; it’s exploring a half-remembered world whose influence is omnipresent.
With Aguirre adding:
There’s so much fun in reminiscing the 80s. I guess most of my memories come from watching my parents and older cousins ramble about things they loved, watching movies with them, and my aunt haphazardly hoarding cans of soup (“To get ready for the end of the world!” she’d laugh.) It is with this oddly cheerful energy that Mags and I tackle this story, and how we give you luxury seats to the End of the World.
Rounding out Oni’s fall announcements is Unplugged and Unpopular from Mat Heagerty, Tintin Pantoja, and Mike Amante. It follows Erin Song who is glued to her phone – just like the rest of us! – only to be banned from the device that means the most to her in the world by order (read as: grounding), of her parents.
Only when aliens show up do things get really serious for Erin! You’ll have to pick up Unplugged and Unpopular to discover if she makes it out alive and device-free.
I think a lot of young folks today believe there is no social life without social media. In Unplugged & Unpopular Erin leans that’s untrue and that there’s a whole lot of adventure to be had beyond the glowing screens.
I loved working on Unplugged & Unpopular,” said Tintin Pantoja. “It’s a fun romp about our current obsession with digital devices. The story really got me to let loose on the characters, and of course, the action sequences. It’s got just enough snark and satire to spice up the adventure, and of course, feisty seniors—you don’t get that often!
With Mike Amante adding:
I enjoyed working on Unplugged & Unpopular because I got to color Tintin’s dynamic lineart. The team (Mat, Tintin, and editor Robin Herrera) was really pleasant to work with as well. I’m totally honored that they let me contribute to this wonderful book.
We would love it if you hopped down into the comments section and let us know which of Oni’s fall line up you are most looking forward to!