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Synthesis - Columns

From 2008 to 2015 I wrote a weekly column for Synthesis Weekly under the name Zooey Mae. What started as an outlet to review graphic novels and comic books evolved over the years to cover everything from pop culture to whatever menial event was happening in my life. Looking back, I think I spent much too much time regaling Chico with tales of my allergies. 

If You're Female, Single, & Living in Chico...

Originally published in Synthesis Weekly: May, 2009

As a female living in Chico, it's inevitable that you will meet “that guy”. By that I mean that you'll eventually meet the guy who will probably break your heart. However, he's such a sweet talker, you'll probably let him break it more than once. He's that guy that looks great on the surface; intelligent, sweet, and probably has some sort of charming talent. You might date for awhile, and for the first few weeks or months he'll be on his best behavior. Unfortunately, things will crumble, and you'll find there are some major discrepancies in who he led you to believe he was, and the reality of his persona. Maybe you'll find out that he's hiding something; a drug addiction, secret baby, or maybe even a penchant for the opposite sex. You might try to put your foot down, push him out of your life, but that boy, he's such a charmer, and always knows exactly which buttons to push, and what you need to hear. He'll come around when he wants something, and until he's either exhausted your emotional resources, or you've finally come to your senses and kicked his sorry ass to the curb, he'll be a reoccurring nightmare. The worst part about having this vexation being a constant fixture in your life is that for all his obvious faults, there's something terribly endearing about him as well.

Such is the essential plot of Jack of Fables. You might know him as “Jack of Beanstalk Fame”, “Jack the Giant Killer”, “Jack-O-Lantern”, you get the picture. Jack of Fables is a spin-off of the intensely popular Fables series, written by Bill Willingham and Matthew Sturges. Within Fables, there was a brief story arc in which Jack liberated a large amount of money that wasn't technically his, hitched his way to Hollywood, and made it big in the film industry. The Jack of Fables series is the continuation of this story, with all the emphasis on Jack. The beauty of this is that although Jack is an absolutely horrible person, (who is out to do nothing but make money and fuck as many females as he possibly can) he has brief moments of redemption, which make for an interesting balance. It's like reading the exploits of “that guy”, without actually having to be involved in the drama of it all, which is fabulous. The only downside of this series for me was the fact that although it's written by the same author as Fables, the artists are different, and not quite as adept as capturing facial expressions.

On a slightly different note, Bat Comics, is hosting an in-store signing on Saturday, June 27th. The writers and artists who created Hot Zombie Chicks and BrAiNs will be on hand to sign comics, chat with the fans, and maybe sketch a zombie or two. Now I know for a FACT there are many zombie fans in Chico (I'm talking to YOU Dana Moore) so I expect to see you all there!

Arielle Mullen