Geek Parenting: Comics for your Teen Titans
Trying to raise your nerdlings right but not sure what’s age appropriate? Having trouble finding that happy medium between Tiny Titans and Saga? Though people think of comics as the domain of children and teenage boys, it can actually be quite the challenge to find comics suited for the 9-15 crowd. Terrible marketing flaw there, guys. Fear not, good nerd parents, Reviews by Lantern’s Light is here to save the day.
I know, I know, it’s strange for me to push “appropriate reading material” for the “young and impressionable”, given the mission of my blog. But though you can have my comic books when you pry them from my cold, Black Lantern hands, I can understand if parents aren’t quite ready to expose their child to the Joker beating Jason Todd to death with a crowbar or Dick Grayson getting sexually assaulted (Jesus, Batman, protect your kids).
In addition, graphic novels/comic books are so frequently the subject of library challenges and moral panic because parents aren’t sure what comics are geared towards what ages and don’t always read them beforehand. Thus, they end up handing their ten-year-old Elfquest, resulting in their panic and outrage when they realize what exactly is going on with those polyamorous warrior elves. So, to avoid further book challenges, awkward conversations, and lifelong fears of clowns, here are some suggestions from an expert. There’s even an overview of what content you can expect, allowing you the parent/teacher/librarian to decide what is appropriate for your child, your family, and your peace of mind.
Take a deep breath. Even Batman knows raising kids is harder than saving Gotham. Have fun, talk to your kids, and remember: knowledge is power, and with great power comes nerdparent responsibility.
Despite the insistence of people who haven’t picked up a comic since Adam West was on the air, comics aren’t really for kids anymore. Modern comics are full of sex, violence, and all manner of problematic details that a parent might not want their kid seeing. There are, of course, ‘all-ages’ comics, but not all of them live up to that name. Many are aimed at the very young and can leave older readers feeling patronized, while others are simple stories full of easter eggs that go over the head of the supposed target audience and bore pickier comic-fans.
With that in mind, I thought I’d do my part to aid those in the world’s most important profession and give some suggestions to those looking to bring their little nerds up right.
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