Review: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, by Gerard Way, Shaun Simon, and Becky Cloonan

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The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, by Gerard Way, Shaun Simon, and Becky Cloonan

Genres: Graphic Novels, Dystopian

Rating: ✮✮✮✮

“Killjoys never die.”

I’m going to confess something, and it’s going to be pretty monumental. It’s something that I just have to say.

I don’t give a shit about comic books. Or video games, for that matter.

*deep breath.* There, I said it.

Yes, I read manga and I’m totally addicted to anime, and sometimes if I’m bored enough I’ll break open a game of Mario Kart – but I feel like people get the wrong impression of me, at times. At least in real life. I can act like I know what I’m talking about, but the truth is, I don’t know shit.

So, yes. I don’t read comic books. I don’t play video games. I don’t watch Supernatural or Doctor Who (anymore), I have never seen BBC’s Sherlock, and if it weren’t for Tom Hiddleston being such an amazing actor I would never have seen the Avengers or either of the Thor movies.

I’m the worst excuse for a pop-culture nerd, ever.

I’m telling you this because honestly, if it hadn’t of been for Gerard Way and My Chemical Romance, I never would’ve read this book, nor would I have ever read The Umbrella Academy. It’s not that it doesn’t look interesting – like I said, I just don’t care. I’ve tried to, but unless there is something personal that drives me to read it – like, oh, my favorite band’s lead singer or something – I will not care, and therefore I will not read it.

I care about Gerard Way. Therefore, I read his comics.

And you know what? I love them. And perhaps it’s just because Gerard has always been a father figure to me, and my unconditional love has left this opinion completely biased, but I actually do enjoy them. I like his bizarre ideas, his flamboyancy that escapes onto the pages that I know he has in real life. The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys is a wonderful, weird story about a tyrannical mega-corporation called Better Living Industries that thrives on making Battery City clean, and the group of rebels in the desert that are out to stop them. When you think about it, it sounds a lot like every dystopian you’ve ever heard of, except it has ray guns and people in masks, so it’s much more interesting.

If you’ve seen the music videos from MCR’s Killjoys album, then you’ve read the prologue for this book. I think separate, they’re both very confusing, but together, everything just makes sense. The original Killjoys failed to take down BLI, but no one knew why they were trying to protect that little girl. In The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, everything is explained and explored in greater detail, and of course, the allusions to all of MCR’s music brought a smile to my face. Additionally, I love how Korse, the Scarecrow from the videos that took down the Killjoys, transforms into a bit of an underground hero.

The Umbrella Academy will still be my favorite of the two, because I think it has more charm, but Killjoys was a blast to read. I can’t wait to read more of Gerard’s comics in the future.

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