We Live

Review: Squad


As a child of 1980s, I was very fortunate to have been born into a decade where we had a treasure trove of films released that movie fans watch to this day. One of those films was Lost Boys. It had many actors who were at the beginning of their careers and burgeoning at the peak of their talents. It also was a sign of the times.

The movie was a watershed moment in many ways. Genre movies suddenly became mainstream movies and proved that a movie can be many things. It was a movie about vampires but dealt with isolation, other-ism, cliques, and other coming of age issues that audiences are still unpacking to this day. The movie made me feel seen and empowered despite the fact that it was a horror movie, which speaks to the power of aspiration. In Maggie Tokuda-Hall and Lisa Sterle’s Squad, we get a similar take on the horror genre for a new generation, but one that proves to do a better job than that iconic Joel Schumacher film.

We’re taken to Piedmont High where we meet our protagonist Becca. She’s the new girl at school whose newly divorced mom moved her to Piedmont for a better opportunity and whose first impression of the school so far. is not going great. She meets students at opposing ends of the social hierarchy, Marley the popular girl and Heidi the quiet introvert. Both try to pull her into their inner circles. As with most kids her age, she wants to be with the cool kids so instantly she gravitates towards Marley and her “squad” which includes Amanda and Arianna. Becca has never been part of a group before, much less one as socially popular Marley’s group. We also meet Ariana’s boyfriend, Thatcher, who makes multiple passes at each of the girls, much to Arianna’s dismay. Their toxic relationship festers and eventually starts to ruin the group’s dynamics. Becca soon finds out one night things are not what it seems and the friends she has made turn out to be werewolves who have no problem killing.

Overall, Squad is a gripping graphic novel that feels like if the short lived MTV show Sweet/Vicious meets How Do We Get Away With Murder plus werewolves. The story by Tokuda-Hall is immersive. The art by Sterle is astounding. Altogether, it is  one of the best books of 2021 , that proves the world needs more protagonists like Becca, ones that unsure of themselves but eventually discover who they truly are.

Story: Maggie Tokuda-Hall Art: Lisa Sterle
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy

HarperCollins provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

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