Mighty Mouse flies out of the television and into real life…literally.
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Here he comes! It’s time for Mighty Mouse: Saving the Day, Volume One.
Welcome to the Classy Comics Podcast where we search for the best comics in the universe. From Boise, Idaho here is your host, Adam Graham.
Dynamite Comics is a company I tend to associate with kind of hard-edged, noirish comics; stuff that tends to go pretty dark. I was surprised that they were trying to get into all ages comics and kind of surprised by one of the volumes that they did, and it really caught my eye. It’s Mighty Mouse, Volume One: Saving the Day. It’s a five-Issue mini-series written and with art by Sholly Fisch. The book focuses on Mighty Mouse from the classic cartoon era. Mighty Mouse began as Super Mouse, a parody of Superman, and then became kind of his own character with this yellow costume and the name of Mighty Mouse, and singing as he went into action.
When I was a kid Mighty Mouse was one of those characters that was kind of OK, but for the lead character in this book Mighty Mouse is much more than that. Joey gets picked on at school and the story shows that he goes through a lot of bullying. And he also comes home to an empty house as his mom has to go off to work, and so he sits at home watching Mighty Mouse cartoons and is daydreaming. He’s enthralled and he’s wishing that Mighty Mouse were here to deal with the villains, the bullies in his life. And so he draws a picture about Mighty Mouse being there, and so Mighty Mouse flies out of the TV screen. And eventually after some introductions Mighty Mouse flies out into town and they run across a mugger, and he’s about to punch him with the super strength, and Joey stops him and says that if Mighty Mouse hits this mugger it will kill him, he will die. And Mighty Mouse is really taken aback by that because he comes from a cartoon world, and things happen in a cartoon way. And so he says, “Well, what if people fall off a cliff?” And Joey says, “They die! Get blown up? They die! Get run over by a steamroller? They die?” And Mighty Mouse delivers the best line in the comic; he says, “Your world is really terminal!”
But Mighty Mouse’s heroics are detected so they have to get off the street, and not only that but the cartoon is going on without Mighty Mouse, and without Mighty Mouse in his world the villains are taking over, and Mighty Mouse needs to go back and save the day. But before that can happen Joey needs to get sleep and then get off to school, and the police actually show up because they are curious about this whole Mighty Mouse thing, and Joey had been seen at the scene. But they’re able to bluff their way through it with a Mighty Mouse doll in the backpack along with Mighty Mouse. However, when the bully start pushing around Joey at school, Mighty Mouse comes out and saves the day, and he actually hits the bully and his neck does this really weird spiral thingy. And it’s determined that cartoon physics do work in the real world, but only for Mighty Mouse.
When they get home from school they get back on to the whole getting Mighty Mouse home thing, and they get into a very long convoluted attempt to explain how Mighty Mouse got here; and they get into things like the fact that Mighty Mouse needs to save the day and Joey needed Mighty Mouse, but now Mighty Mouse needs to get back to his own world. And so Joey comes up with the solution to draw a portal that goes between the worlds. Unfortunately that allows the villains who happened to be invading Space Cats to come into our world and to unleash havoc on the city. And so the cats from outer space are opposed by Mighty Mouse but there are a lot of them that only wanted Mighty Mouse, and he gets close to being overwhelmed when Joey has the idea that since his drawing power gives him the ability to draw cartoony objects he draws a cartoon cannon to shoot at the enemy. And then he starts drawing more cartoon weapons to hand to the police so that they can effectively fight the cats from outer space, because the bullets and normal weapons don’t work on them. And Mighty Mouse is eventually able to triumph and go home, and at the end of the story Joey finds new courage to face life and bullies.
I particularly like the last panel where he just gathers his courage to face the boys who have stopped beating him up and gone on to beating other kids, and steps in singing, “Here I come to save the day”. Overall, this comic is cute. It’s a fun read, it’s not particularly original, except for the fact that it has a lot more punching than the movie Fat Albert, the plots are nearly identical. But it’s a cute and fun five-Issue story. It’s perfect to give to the right kid. I will say that Dynamite did make an odd choice in adapting Mighty Mouse because Mighty Mouse is far from being an in-thing right now, and is not known by a lot of kids so that may make it hard for them to reach their audience. Still, Joey is a character that a lot of kids will sympathize with due to being bullied, and he makes a case that Mighty Mouse as that great hero who stands up for the little guy has some relevance to our Twenty-First Century world.
Overall it’s a fun story. If you’re a fan of Mighty Mouse check it out. If you’re a parent or grandparent has exposed your kids to Mighty Mouse definitely give them this book it’s a fun read. I will give this one a rating of Somewhat Classy. It’s not particularly original but it’s still pretty fun, and even though there are plot holes it’s a bright, colourful, fun little book. That’s all for now. If you do have a comment email to me firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure and follow me on Twitter @classycomicsguy, and check out the website classycomicsguy.com and be sure and rate us on iTunes. From Boise, Idaho this is your host, Adam Graham, signing off.