REVIEW: ‘Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge’

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Yellow text reads "Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge". Lois stands on the left side texting and on the right there's four snapshots of her friends.

Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge is written by Grace Ellis, illustrated by Brittney Williams, colored by Caitlin Quirk, and lettered by Ariana Maher. Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge is published by DC as part of their line of original graphic novels for young readers. Lois Lane is on a mission to achieve viral fame by completing the Friendship Challenge, a video challenge where best friends tell the story of how they met, with her best friend Kristen. And when the fireworks for Liberty View’s annual Jamboree go missing, Lois and Kristen are ready to solve the mystery and save their summer.  But the real friendship challenge begins when Lois’ distrust of new girl, Izzy insistence that she can solve the mystery herself begins to push Kristen away.

Lois isn’t always a great friend and she makes poor decisions in how she treats her friends. BAs an adult it’s easy to think about how she could’ve handled things in a more mature and rational way. But this graphic novel features Lois when she’s thirteen, and the intended audience is readers around the same age, so it feels unfair to judge her for how she handles things, especially because this is her first real conflict with a friend, and the story is really about her learning how to be a better friend, and a better journalist.

The strength of the writing comes from how Ellis understands what makes Lois, Lois. For the majority of Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge Lois doesn’t want anything to do with journalism, she wants to be a detective. But the tenacity and curiosity one would expect in a Lois Lane story are present, as is her burning desire to find out the truth.

Lois grabs the sign up sheet for the bike race and pins it to the wall of her treehouse.

Williams and Quirk’s art in Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge is adorable. The characters all has their own unique designs while still fitting into the overall stylized look of the book. With the bright, saturated colors, it feels like you’re looking at the world from the perspective of a child when everything is exciting and new, and adventure and mystery are everywhere. It feels like you’re looking at the world through Lois’ perspective, and this contributes to the overall lighthearted feel of the comic.

Finally, Maher’s lettering ties everything together. In addition to the dialogue, Maher shines as she letters notes written by Lois, text messages, and the names of various stores in the background. The way that these things look different from the normal dialogue in the speech balloons adds variety while also helping the world to feel more real. And it’s clear a lot of effort was put into the design.

While there are conflict and a mystery to be solved, the stakes aren’t as high as they would be in a story featuring the adult Lois LaneLois Lane and the Friendship Challenge is a good example of how stories about well-known characters don’t always have to be intense or about saving the world to be fun and valuable. I really enjoyed my time reading Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge because it was a lighthearted escape from the stress of reality. 

Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge is available now wherever comics are sold and online through ComiXology using our affiliate link.

Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge
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TL;DR

While there are conflict and a mystery to be solved, the stakes aren’t as high as they would be in a story featuring the adult Lois LaneLois Lane and the Friendship Challenge is a good example of how stories about well-known characters don’t always have to be intense or about saving the world to be fun and valuable. I really enjoyed my time reading Lois Lane and the Friendship Challenge because it was a lighthearted escape from the stress of reality.