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Monday, May 14, 2012

Jollibee's First Marvel Comic Appearance is Crazy and Amazing

Never thought I’d live to see the day when I could say “Jollibee’s first appearance in a Marvel comic was in...”


But here we are, one Jolli Spaghetti and regular Coke later, and we’ve got Avengers: Menace of the Mole Man #1, an 8-page comic made by Marvel specially for Jollibee as a Kiddie Meal giveaway, in celebration of Marvel’s The Avengers movie. Aside from the fact that Jollibee (the mascot itself!) makes his first appearance in a real Marvel comic, I’d like to let out the kid (or patriot) in me for a moment to say that this comic book is crazy amazing.

It starts off with Mole Man deciding out of the blue to target my hometown, Manila, Philippines, in one of his world domination schemes with an earthquake inducer...which just happens to land in front of a Jollibee store!


The people of Manila are scared, as I would have been too if a supervillain ever came here. But then, something amazing happens: the Jollibee store manager calmly walks up to Mole Man and asks him who he was and what the hell he’s doing there.


It’s insane. Ralph Macchio, the veteran comic book persona tasked to write this story, either gives a lot of credit to Jollibee store managers, or he knows something about them that we Filipinos can only dare imagine, because after Mole Man explains to us his back story, and why he does what he does, the manager brushes off the king of the Moloids and basically tells the man that he ain’t listening to any more of his shit.


Twelve-pound balls of steel.

Of course, the Avengers catch wind of what’s happening in Manila, and they’re sending in a team to help. Who do they send? Spider-Woman? Iron Fist? Nope...they send in Iron Man, Thor, Hulk, Captain America, Hawkeye and Black Widow (who just happen to be the cast of Marvel’s The Avengers). In case you didn’t catch that...they’re sending in the biggest guns of the Marvel universe...to Manila...just to stop Mole Man. I don’t know who should be more honored, Mole Man or Manila!


I’d be remiss if I didn’t say how much I love the dialogue. The book reads like those cheesy old Marvel cartoons from the sixties, and Macchio does his best to sell this stuff to the kids who are obviously the target market for this comic.

So the Avengers arrive, and the requisite superhero fight scene begins! I gotta say, the art is surprisingly high-quality for a free comic book, and it’s obvious that Jollibee pulled all the stops to give kids the genuine Marvel experience. Of course, the kids won’t care who drew this, but a long-time comic fan like me definitely noticed that a lot of big names are attached to this, like veteran inker/ artist Scott Koblish and colorist Veronica Gandini. They even got legendary artist Ron Lim (who penciled The Infinity Gauntlet, for goodness sakes!) to draw the cover!

Koblish draws the final battle with a pizazz you don’t see much in the main comic universe anymore, that no-holds-barred approach to superheroes being super AND heroic, and in no time, the monsters are defeated, and Manila even gets to see Thor bring the hammer down!


Hey, remember that Jollibee store manager who don't take no crap from no Mole Men? After the fight, when the Avengers are about to take Mole Man into custody, Mr. Manager pleads with Cap to have mercy on poor guy, and what happens next is another first in this already trail-blazing comic:


The man, who before all this was probably busy swiping his keycard when a cashier yells, "Sir, pa-void!" and making sure nobody burned the french fries, is now an honorary Avenger, joining the ranks of luminaries such as Jarvis and Captain Marvel in the annals of Avengers lore. Even the Triumph Division can't touch that!

This is amazing. I'm not kidding. I am seriously geeking out at all this. I now demand an in-universe issue where Jose is sent to the US for a courtesy call at the Avengers Mansion and have him bitch-slap Dr. Doom for talking too much about himself.

I know, I basically gave a 600-word essay for an 8-page comic, but the fact that this book exists is just exciting and unprecedented. It's like all those years of eating nothing but Jolli Spaghetti from Jollibee gave me fever dreams about a comic book where the Avengers saved Manila. Except it's not a dream. It's real, it IS a comic book, and you can get one while supplies last when you order a Jolli Kiddie Meal from any Jollibee store.

So what did we learn today? One, the Avengers has got the Philippines' back. Two, we can be the target of US-based supervillains and we might want to prepare for it. And three, Jollibee store managers are some of the toughest, most fearless yet most merciful sonovaguns on the archipelago, and definitely someone I could vote for president.

And I know Jollibee did jack squat in the comic but he's my homie and that's just how he rolls. 


14 comments:

  1. Soooweeeet~ seldom reads what ye call this...reviews? but i read and finished it...guess the Jollibee thing got me interested, hehe...soo where can i get this comic?
    ~ Crono

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    1. Welcome to the blog, Crono :) You can get it when you buy a Kiddie Meal in Jollibee. :) Hurry! Paubos na sya! :)

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  2. Hey, I read everything George and it's interesting to see that the Philippines has become the setting for the comics. Though the PH might have been a setting for past comics, I am not sure but it's fun to read the comic inserts. :)

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  3. Captain A: Last time I was here, we were fighting the Japs.
    Iron Man: Give me one of those Jolly twirly things. And a scotch.
    Hulk: "WHERE'S MY CHICKENJOY?!?" [SMASH!]
    Thor: You cannot sacrifice these people for chicken!
    Black Widow: I got the recipe right here, darling.

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    1. You know, it WOULD have been 10x better if they were fighting over Jollibee food. Thanks for that!

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  4. This is an awesome review! Love that ending :) Thanks for posting!

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  5. I saw this on the menu of Jollibee while I was ordering something. I just brushed it off thinking it was just some cheap Kiddie Meal giveaway, but I didn't expect it to be this! It's amazing!

    Anybody else remember the Triumph Division? ;)

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    1. Most people might not, seeing as how they blew up and stuff :( Really hope we see more of them.

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  6. Seriously dude? This is exciting to you? There really is no accounting for taste.

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    1. I would agree to you! there is nothing amazing about jollibee manager joining the avengers and saving the world!

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  7. Of course, Jollibee's first appearance in DC Comics was during Mark Waid and Greg LaRoque's run on the FLASH way back in `93. Check out "The Return of Barry Allen" or better yet... look here. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=181852365170237&set=a.131283226893818.16237.125191334169674&type=1&theater

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    1. Thanks for the info! Now we know when Jollibee first appeared in both Marvel AND DC :)

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    2. Actually jollibee appeared as a stuff toy back in the late 90's or was it early 2000's in an xmen comic book drawn by leinel yu. He was held by illyana Rasputin.

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  8. I'm happy. This will be some kid's first comic book. I hope it hooks them into the hobby! :)

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