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REVIEW: Softball #1

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REVIEW: Softball #1

3.73/5.0 Stars
Rating if the Book Were a Movie:  PG

Creative Team:

Writer: Bobby Crosby
Artist: Bill Blankenship
Letters: Marco Della Verda
Cover: Admira Wijaya
Publisher: Keenspot

Ratings:

Story: 3.3 Stars
Artwork: 3.6 Stars
Cover Artwork: 4.0 Stars
Dialogue: 3.5 Stars
Mechanics: 4.2 Stars
Editing: 3.8 Stars 

About the Book:

“Softball” #1 is based on the gang from the Dodgerfilms videos we have seen on YouTube. Team Benny and Team Bobby are all tied up in the bottom of the ninth. With two outs Bobby is at bat. He crushes a pitch and sends the ball and sends it towards South America. It should be a walk off home run. Instead, with the help of some footwear that may or may not be legal, Fireball leaps into the sky and makes the catch. Now the gang has to figure out a way to rescue Fireball from the dilemma that his rocket powered shoes have created.

Reader’s Notes:

I first became familiar with Dodgerfilms in 2017 when my family and I were visiting my uncle. Even though he lives in a city that is very passionate about its professional sports teams, sports are not his thing. My son Minion, who was practically born with a ball in his hand, was hoping to watch highlights of the previous night’s baseball games on ESPN. My uncle didn’t have a cable or satellite provider. Instead he had a Roku.

My uncle and Minion got on YouTube and searched for baseball and came across Dodgerfilms. Dodgerfilms is a collection of people that play in softball games on a regular basis. The games are recorded and condensed into a 20-30 minute video showing highlights and the fun players were having. Over the next couple months Minion got a kick out of it until he had gotten caught up to the last game.

During the offseason he discovered the neighbor down the street was happy to work with him on baseball fundamentals on nights I was working and was so wrapped up in his own season that he forgot about it. Truthfully, I had too until I picked up this issue. As soon as I opened it I could hear the pregame cry of, “Who’s going to win?!”

“Softball” is not the “Great American Novel”. It reads like the target demographic is about 11 years old. I love it all the same. First and foremost, I fully support ANYTHING age appropriate that makes kids want to read. This comic is one of the first that Minion has even been remotely interested in for quite a while. I’m not going to discourage that.

I also love how “Softball” proves that there’s a comic book title out there for everyone. It should be held up as an example of what is possible for other creators. There are only so many situations superheroes can be in before everything starts being recycled. Why not go out on a limb?

I liked how the artwork is done for this cover. We have a great group picture of some of the regulars. Fireball holding a fireball is a perfect way to capture someone’s attention while telling a joke for those in the know.

Blankenship’s artistic style on the interior pages is a perfect fit for this story. The artwork keeps the story fun and light. I got a kick out of seeing Fireball flying into the air to Rob that home run.

The parent in me is all for any title that makes my child want to read something other than a scoreboard. The geek on a budget in me believes “Softball” #1 is a great pickup for Dodgerfilms fans and young readers that love baseball. This is one of the only sports titles that I have ever seen that wasn’t a biography about a star player. I hope to see more in the future.

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I grew up loving all things geek. I started reading and collecting comics when I was 8. My personal collection has roughly 8,000 books in it. When I’m not doing something geek-related I love spending time with my amazing wife and kids, gaming, and working on cross stitch projects.

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