Before I get started, I would like to take the time to help everyone visualize my reaction to finding out that Squirrel Girl is receiving her own ongoing. Please see below.
Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get down to business. As you probably have already heard, Marvel announced that Squirrel Girl will be getting her own ongoing, “Unbeatable Squirrel Girl” via EW this morning. It will feature the dream team of Ryan North (of “Dinosaur Comics” fame) and Erica Henderson (just look at her awesome tumblr! Look!), both of whom are more than capable of handling the built in situation comedy that comes along with the character.
Now if you were a fan of Squirrel Girl before, you probably understand the enthusiasm that seems to be pouring out of everyone’s ears. It’s a bubbly, infectious sort of giddiness that probably should be heralded on embossed acorns or something equally twee. If you’re not, then you’re probably scrambling to Google why this is such a big deal.
The answer is, you might not necessarily be able to figure out why people are freaking out about a teenaged girl with squirrel-like powers and a squirrel best friend named Tippy-Toe getting her own ongoing. It’s kind of hard to boil it down to anything other than enthusiastic chittering noises. But I’ll try.
Doreen Green (aka Squirrel Girl), despite having defeated Doctor Doom and Thanos all on her own (including multiple other Big Bads) is still a relatively normal teenaged girl. Sure, she’s been a nanny for Dani Cage (Luke Cage and Jessica Jones’ daughter) and probably had a fling with Wolverine, but she’s not over-hyped or over-exposed. She takes her job seriously, takes being a part of a bigger team seriously and has dramatically risen above her Great Lakes Avengers roots.
The premise of the new ongoing suggests that we’re to follow her to college and there’s something to be said about going after that kind of story. Doreen doesn’t have a Great Destiny Laid Upon Her or time travel, inter-galatic shenanigans to contend with unless she wants to. Having a hero that doesn’t come from money or have had an accident, but picks this life is important. It’s even more important when that hero happens to be a teenaged girl whose powers aren’t something that inherently sexual.
I hope this series picks up on the fact that there can be just much drama and hilarity mined from figuring out which group of people to hang out with and how you’re going to survive that class with that professor who just doesn’t get it as there is from saving the world. College is about finding out who you are — even if you’ve kind of had that handled since you were 14. Transitions (especially when it means getting out of your comfort zone) are difficult no matter who you are which is something that most people can relate to. It’s about time Squirrel Girl had the chance to show she was worthy of her own title. Which is totally is. It’s called Unbeatable for a seriously good reason.
Long story short: this announcement is kind of a big deal. So big, it feels almost on the level of “New Thor is a Woman” epicness. It seems like it is something that should’ve happened five years ago, but has always been worth the wait. I can’t wait until January to check it out!