Graphic Novel Explorers Club
Richard Stark's Parker - The Outfit
Greetings, Explorers! In this episode we return to the criminal world of Richard Stark’s Parker, with The Outfit. IDW published the book in 2010. The late, great Dawryn Cooke adapted and illustrated this book along with three other of the Parker novels. We reviewed the first of his adaptations, The Hunter, in Episode 11. There’s also a Catwoman story in Batman: Ego & Other Tails possibly inspired by the Parker character. We looked at that book in Episode 67.
The Outfit picks up shortly after The Hunter ended, then skips ahead a year later to 1963. Parker got the money owed to him from The Outfit, the criminal organization he went toe-to-toe with in The Hunter. Parker decides to relax in Miami after a getting a new identity and a surgical operation to change his face. Unfortunately, he’s ratted out to The Outfit by one of the few people who knows his real identity. Now The Outfit is hot on his trail. However, what they don’t realize is that while they’re hunting him, he’s looking to take the organization out, from the top down.
Dennis, Johnny, and Aubrey dive in by comparing the loads of misogyny and civilian deaths in The Hunter and the lack of either (or a reduction of) in The Outfit. Next, they compare Parker to The Getaway‘s Doc and Roland from The Dark Tower series. Finally, they question if Parker is in any way a “hero”, even an anti-hero. Additional topics include “conveniently good” vs “accidentally OK”; F-M-K Parker; and rather or not readers should skip The Hunter and go straight to this book. Last of all, but not certainly not least, they look at the storytelling and art of Richard Stark’s Parker – The Outfit.
View all episodes
95. Thank You & Goodbye04:31Greetings, Explorers! The version of the podcast we've made for the past six seasons is coming to an end. Thank you for your support and listening to our podcast all these years! Dennis may bring it back in some form or another, so be on the look out for that. Much gratitude to Frankie and Aubrey for co-hosting! Be sure to check out Aubrey's podcast, Bring Your Own Popcorn. It is a wonderful, humorous, and insightful podcast where Aubrey and her guests chat about movies that made an impact in their lives. It's a been a blast! We cannot express our gratitude for giving us your time over the past six seasons of Graphic Novel Explorers Club! Take care and be kind.
94. She-Hulk26:44Episode 94Greetings, Explorers! It’s the final episode of our sixth season! We’re closing it out with She-Hulk: Law and Disorder. Marvel published the book in 2014. Charles Soule wrote the story, with art by Javier Pulido and Ron Wimberly. Colors by Munsta Vicente, Rico Renzi, and Ron Wimberly. Lettering by VC’s Clayton Cowles.She-Hulk: Law and Disorder finds Jennifer Walters, otherwise known as She-Hulk, starting her own law firm. Her first case involves representing a widow of a villain who claims Tony Stark stole her dead husband’s invention. Next, she helps Doctor Doom’s son seek refugee status in the U.S. However, Doctor Doom isn’t too happy and will go to great lengths to stop them both. Finally, She-Hulk finds herself and several other superheroes and supervillains as a defendants in a lawsuit. The odd thing is, none of them remembers even meeting the plaintive or the incident mentioned in the case.Johnny and Dennis (Aubrey was training in the Danger Room when we recorded) kicks things off by diving into the contrasting, but beautiful, art of Javier Pulido and Ron Wimberly. Next, they ponder if the character design of Princess Fiona had any influence on this version of She-Hulk. Finally, they look at just how you get promotions if you’re the minion of a supervillain. Additional topics include Daredevil not caring about his secret identity; being revived by monkey vomit; and not pulling the lawyer card. Last of all, but not certainly not least, they look at the storytelling and art of She-Hulk: Law and Disorder.
92. The Good Asian, Vol. 137:48Episode 92Greetings, Explorers! Yeah, see. We’re takin’ a look at The Good Asian, Vol 1. Image Comics published the comic in 2021. Yeah, see. Pornsak Pichetshote wrote the story with art by Alexandre Tefenkgi. Additional contributions as follows, ya mug: color by Lee Loughridge and lettering & design by Jeff Powell. Historical consultation by Grant Din.Set in 1936, Eddy Hark is a Chinese-American cop. Actually, he’s the first Chinese-American cop in the country. Eddy returns to San Francisco at the request of the wealthy Carroway family. He’s in town investigating the disappearance of a young woman employed by the family. The Carroways and Eddy Hark have a difficult relationship. His mother was their servant and they took him in after she was murdered. Eddy’s disliked by his fellow police and not trusted by the Asian-American community he serves. But no one hates Eddy as much he does for being a pawn in America’s anti-Chinese policies of the early 20th Century.Aubrey, Dennis, and Johnny begin things by looking back at their histories with noir and mystery novels. Next, they learn about Chang Apana, the real-life inspiration for Eddy (and Charlie Chan). Finally, they delve into the author’s mix of real-world events like the Chinese Exclusion Act in The Good Asian. Additional topics include Eddy’s self-loathing; the language of the times the book takes place in; noir tropes; and if America will ever stop “othering” people. Last of all, but not certainly not least, they look at the storytelling and art of The Good Asian.
91. Ms. Marvel27:16Episode 91Become a Patron!Greetings, Explorers! We're traveling to Jersey City to take a look at Ms. Marvel, No Normal Vol. 1. Marvel Comics published the comic book in 2014. G. Willow Wilson wrote the story with art by Adrian Alphona. Additional contributions as follows: color by Ian Herring and lettering by Letter VC’s Joe Caramagna.Kamala Khan is a Pakistani-American high school student who is a big fan of Captain Marvel. Kamala lives in Jersey City with her older brother and parents. She struggles with finding the balance between her parents' native Pakistani heritage while also growing up as an American teenager. Kamala soon finds herself dealing with new powers that don't come with an instruction manual. Parties, rescuing classmates, studying for tests, stopping a crime ring... what's Ms. Marvel to do?Johnny, Aubrey, and Dennis begin things by fawning all over Ms. Marvel. Next, Dennis enlightens the gang about Terrigen Bombs and how one becomes an Inhuman. Finally, they look at Kamala's journey toward accepting who she is when so many push her to be an "other". Additional topics include polymorphic alloys and polymorphic humans; and pigs with wings. Last of all, but not certainly not least, they look at the storytelling and art of Ms. Marvel - No Normal, Vol 1.
90.5. Week in Geek - Obi-Wan Kenobi18:45Week in Geek – Obi-Wan Kenobi & V RisingGreetings, Explorers! This is our Week in Geek. Every other week we look back at the everything we’ve been geeking out on. That could be movies, shows, books, games, music, and anything else that got our attention. This week we look at Obi-Wan Kenobi.First up, Aubrey shares her latest TV viewing, which is the K Drama Twenty-Five Twenty-One that is currently available on Netflix (as of June 6, 2022). Aubrey is also playing V Rising and No Man’s Sky. Next, Dennis and Johnny both watched Obi-Wan Kenobi on Disney+. Dennis also watched Stranger Things and Young Justice. Finally, Johnny chats about re-reading of The Watchmen after about a decade since he last read it.
90. Doctor Strange: The Oath27:28Episode 90Greetings, Explorers! Will you dare enter the Sanctum Sanctorum of Doctor Strange: The Oath? Marvel Comics published Doctor Strange: The Oath in 2007. Brian K. Vaughan wrote the story with art by Marcos Martin. Additional contributions as follows: Inks by Alvaro Lopez, color by Javier Rodriguez, and lettering by Willie Schubert.The story concerns Doctor Strange trying to save Wong’s life by tracking down a mysterious elixir. However, at the same time, Doctor Strange must figure who is trying to kill him (and why) while he’s searching for the cure to Wong’s illness. Finally, is it possible Doctor Strange’s past behavior and decision making are catching up with him?First, Dennis, Johnny, and Aubrey dive into the history of Wong, both in Marvel comics and the MCU. Next, the gang examines why Marvel heroes insist on calling a doctor “nurse” instead of doctor. Finally, they dive into the motivation of the protagonist(s) of this story. Additional topics include why don’t rich heroes chip in to help poor heroes; the Trolley Problem at the center of the story; when writers should know better; why you don’t recruit minions from Angie’s List; and what Joel and Doctor Strange share in common. Last of all, but not certainly not least, they look at the storytelling and art of Doctor Strange: The Omen.
89. Batman: Zero Year28:09Episode 89Become a Patron!Greetings, Explorers! After a short break due to our co-host Johnny being tied up with up a semester of school, we're back with some new-ish episodes (we recorded the next couple of episodes at the beginning of the year). We're kicking off the rest of our season with Batman: Zero Year. Published by DC comics the story in 2013. Scott Snyder and James Tynion IV wrote the story, with art by Greg Capullo.Set within DC's New 52 Universe, Batman: Zero Year is a new telling of the early days of Batman's career. Additionally, it wraps up Snyder and Capullo's run on Batman comics.Aubrey, Dennis, and Johnny starts things off chatting about Batman: Year Zero's connection to Batman: Last Knight on Earth, which we reviewed in Episode 81. Next, they discuss if Batman stories even need to be told at this point. Finally, they look at the Batman Eggs (Batman + Easter Eggs) in the story. Additional topics include Jim Gordon's coat; the Robin who isn't a Robin, wears a Batman symbol, but isn't a Batman either; the sexual tension between two of the characters (and it's not who you'd expect it to be); finding the time to move to Metropolis; "That rubbed me the right way"; and last, but not certainly not least, the storytelling and art of Batman: Year Zero.
Hiatus02:40Greetings, Explorers! The podcast is going on hiatus for a bit and co-host Johnny lets you know why.