In which I don’t think Jem is truly, truly, truly outrageous.
Effin Guy surprised me with this gem (see what I did there?):
I love me some Jem and the Holograms, engaging in mini binges with my teen, singing the songs like a lot, even waiting for the movie, so the show is quite dear to me. I was excited about the comic book and when I first saw the cover art my expectations drooped. While my rational mind knows that there will be some creating license taking over for this reboot, the re-imagining has left me feeling like the people who took over the comics never got up early on Saturday scanning the TV Guide listing hoping that they would be able to enjoy episodes of Jem while scarfing down a bowl of Cap’n Crunch.
Read this: Soundtrack for a Rockin’ Weekend
Spoilers ahead. You have been warned.
The comic opens with The Holograms on stage attempting to make an audition tape for a band contest being held by The Misfits. Jerrica is suffering from crippling stage fright, literally can’t sing and runs off stage. Kimber goes to talk to Jerrica because she is not here for Jerrica’s nonsense. Kimber was ready to jet when their dad passed but stayed because Jerrica promised that she would have her stuff together.
Back in the studio, an argument erupts. They are down to the wire for this contest and the group is divided. Kimber is pissed while Aja feels that they should be patient with her. Shana plays peacemaker. Jerrica overhears them and runs off, getting caught up in a thunderstorm. Back at home she meets Synergy, the hologram from the computer her dad created . Backstory Backstory Backstory and Jerrica is transformed into Jem, a persona she can hide behind so that she can perform on stage without being having to be herself.
Read this: Revisting the 80’s: Jem and the Holograms
In ways, the comic makes sense. On the cartoon there was only a casual reference to them being interested in music before they entered Eric Raymond’s Battle of the Bands and we just went along with the idea. I mean, there was some air guitar playing and drumstick tapping but nothing to show that before Jerrica became Jem, Jerrica sang, that these girls played in a band or even had an interest in music.
There is an egregious lack of mention of the Starlight Girls or Starlight House which was the catalyst for the Holograms competing in the contest in the first place. I’ll allow this; I always wondered just HOW these four women ran a house for a gaggle of kids. HOW they never got caught ’cause if the Starlight Girls are anything like my teen or ME as a teen, then they would have been snooping all around and would have heard Jerrica and co talking about becoming Jem.
So far, no Rio. I’ll allow this as well. Rio was a pain in the ass, jealous and hot headed for no reason. Well, I suppose he had good reasons as Jem/Jerrica would toy with his emotions and the Holograms never let him in on the secret.
I hate the art, however I read that this comic book celebrates body diversity and, as someone who does not often see her body portrayed in a positive light, I will lay off on my grumpiness about the look of the characters for now. I will voice my objection about the band’s bios (I linked to IDW’s site). Shana loves long baths…Dude.
In the next issue, we will meet The Misfits. In this version it’s not just Pizzazz, Roxy and Stormer. We also meet Jetta, the British chick on the cartoons and she is Black.
I see what y’all did for diversity!
I will stick around for a bit. My love of the cartoon may be coloring my thoughts about a new comic or I could be right on the money.
I really hope I am wrong.
Join me each day (ish) for the A to Z Blogging Challenge! Each day I will share a post inspired a letter of the alphabet.