I am a Lumberjanes reader from way back when it was hip. (Oh, wait…it’s still hip!) I’m a complete newbie to Gotham Academy. Contrary to my natural instincts, I jumped into Lumberjanes / Gotham Academy #1 without doing a stitch of research – no reading up on the characters, past story arcs, universe, or canon. (Of course, the name Gotham was a helpful clue.)
The plot starts off with the mysterious disappearance of an instructor at Gotham Academy. Simultaneously, the Lumberjanes see an emergency flare go off that they deduce to be a sign their own camp scout-master, Rosie, is in danger. Cue the overly curious Gotham Academy protagonists and the always gung-ho Lumberjanes search-and-rescue team, and we have the preliminary ingredients for an epic cross-over event.
Heading off into the “boonies” means taking the Gotham Academy gang out of their comfort zone (no provisions, no plan, no well-earned wilderness survival badges) and leads up to one of my favorite scenes in the issue as the Lumberjanes appear out of nowhere to save the day, complete with witty puns.
And then, naturally, a trio of humongous monsters shows up.
Even though I’m familiar with just half of the ingredients in this particular cross-over, it’s hard to imagine a more well-suited mixture of characters, writers, artists, and storylines. Everything is mixed together with the very best witty dialogue and humor. The artwork is bold and colorful and seems to retain all of the well-loved elements from both stories.
And I’m completely sold on Gotham Academy (literally…just ordered the Volume One trade paperback). You don’t need much more argument than the intriguing cast of characters, but throw in the serious Harry Potter vibe and artwork by the brilliant Karl Kerschl, and I’ve clearly found the fresh, new Batman-universe story I’ve been looking for.
Cross-over friendship to the max!!