Ryan North sends Doreen back into space for an adventure with the new Sorcerer Supreme.

On December 13, THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #27, from writer Ryan North and artist Erica Henderson, begins a new story arc titled “Forbidden Pla-Nut!” In the first issue, Doreen has to get to the other side of the galaxy to save her friends Nancy and Tippy from an alien world, so she’ll need some assistance in getting there. Naturally, she intends to recruit Dr. Strange, but finds out there’s a new Sorcerer Supreme in town, Loki!

We talked to Ryan about the new arc and how Squirrel Girl is going to get along with the mischievous trickster.

Marvel.com: In “Forbidden Pla-Nut!”, Doreen’s heading into space, but in true THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL fashion, this cosmic adventure isn’t the least bit orthodox. Can you talk a little about the impetus for this story and some of the exciting guest stars?

Ryan North: Sure!  It was part of Marvel Legacy but our book is only 3 years old, so there wasn’t much of a legacy to go back to – we’re still in the middle of making it!  So instead we thought “well, what’s the opposite of going back to basics” and the answer is clearly “shoot Squirrel Girl into space.”

So that’s what we did!  It starts with a kidnapping, features a talking cat, and ends up on the other side of the galaxy.  And that’s just the first issue!

Marvel.com: What drew you to pairing Doreen up with these new characters?

Ryan North: Doreen is of course lots of fun, but the fact that Loki becoming is Sorcerer Supreme now is crazy: it’s a bold twist for the character, and of course Squirrel Girl and Loki have a history, through their mutual friend Nancy Whitehead.  So this was a chance to explore that more, and once you go into space in a Marvel comic you run into all sorts of cosmic characters that I’m very excited to showcase.  If you look at the covers, the Silver Surfer is involved.  Squirrel Girl has a history with his ol’ pal Galactus, too.

Marvel.com: What can you tell us about the villains at play here?

Ryan North: I don’t want to spoil the reveal, but there’s actually a couple of villains appearing at the same time.  One of them is an enemy of Strange who believes (quite reasonably, as it turns out) that Loki is not quite as competent at the whole “sorcerer supreme” business as Strange used to be, and another is a new enemy who is similarly taking advantage of a fortunate (or unfortunate) situation.

It’ll be crazy fun!  IN SPAAAACE!

Marvel.com: What are some of your favorite “going into space” Marvel stories that inspired this arc?

Ryan North: I love the first appearance of Galactus and the Silver Surfer, back in the FANTASTIC FOUR#48.  But in more modern sense, there’s a lot of fun with the Guardians of the Galaxy, and that’s the same sort of fun I’m going for here: that sense of space being full of mystery, and a lot of it is insane, and you’re not going to understand everything but it’s going to be awesome.

That’s what I’m shooting for!

Marvel.com: You and artist Erica Henderson have been collaborating on this book for awhile now. What’s your favorite part of writing for her?

Ryan North: Erica takes what I write and elevates it into a better version of the script, which is terrific, because then everyone thinks I’m better than I am.  IT’S A SECRET, DON’T TELL ANYONE.  So my favourite part is getting back her pencils and seeing what she’s done.  We’ve also got a great working relationship where she feels super comfortable changing things for storytelling reasons, so she’ll sometimes tweak something or move stuff around, and then it’s not just “I get to see the story illustrated” but also “I get to see the story illustrated, and also, better.”  It’s super great!

Marvel.com: Is there anything ridiculous you managed to squeeze into this new story that you’re proudest of?

Ryan North: There is!  We managed to get a fresh take on the Silver Surfer that hasn’t been done in all of Marvel history.

I’m super proud of that but I don’t want to say what it is because it’s a spoiler, so I GUESS EVERYONE WILL JUST HAVE TO BUY THE ISSUE TO FIND OUT!

Readers can do just that on December 13, when THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #27 drops, from Ryan North and Erica Henderson!

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We touch base with writer Ryan North on this special standalone issue!

Squirrel Girl is writing a comic in a comic we—well, Ryan North specifically—wrote about her in UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #26! Why? Because she’s a squirrel girl after our own heart. When? November 8, in a comic store near you! Has Marvel science gone too far?! Never.

But that’s not all; Doreen Green has also nudged and nagged her super-powered besties into writing comic books of their own because she’s great and we love her, that’s why! Featuring a ton of spectacular guest artists—in addition to the ever-wonderful Erica Henderson—this book will surely make you laugh, cry laugh, and take a cereal break but laugh in the middle of eating the cereal because you remembered a funny part!

Ryan North gives us the lowdown on this meta masterpiece…

Marvel.com: Tell us about this special standalone issue #26! The characters are writing their own comic books?!

Ryan North: This is a special Zine Issue of [UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL]! Basically, when a super hero fight destroys a local library, Squirrel Girl makes all the heroes in the fight contribute to her fund-raising zine to help get the library fixed. So you see a lot of these characters outside of their comfort zone, making their own comics for the first time. Some phone it in. Some go all-out. Some of them, it turns out, are really, really good at making comics!

Marvel.com: What inspired this idea and how did you pick which guest characters would write comics? Did Tony Stark bribe you? Blink twice for yes…

Ryan North: [Laughs] Originally there was an idea where Tony Stark would, of course, just pay someone to write his comic for him—but Tony ended up contributing in another more important way, which you’ll see when you read the comic.

The idea comes from a love of the characters: who these people are on their off time when they’re not fighting crime. We know that Nancy Whitehead doodles Cat Thor comics, but what does Howard the Duck write when he sits down to make a comic? What sort of comics would Wolverine make? Brain Drain? What about Galactus? Would Loki be interested in formalist experiments, or would he try to misdirect you? I found that idea fascinating, and the answers are all contained in this book!

Marvel.com: Squirrel Girl can be so wonderfully meta—do you think she knows she’s in a comic?

Ryan North: Nope! She did in her earlier appearances, and originally she was going to in UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL too, but I decided to take that element out. My reasoning was that I wanted her victories to count, and I thought if they were too meta, too “lol this isn’t real,” then—well, it wouldn’t be real. You could walk away from reading the book and say “that woman’s victories don’t count, because Squirrel Girl is a joke character.” But they do count! And they’re really good victories. So this issue is less “Squirrel Girl knows she’s in a comic book” and more “Squirrel Girl has made her own comic book, and gotten her friends to help, and we’ve convinced Marvel to publish that actual comic book she made.” I think it’s going to be a lot of fun!

Marvel.com: How do the various characters’ comic-writing endeavors differ from your own process?

Ryan North: Loki is a lot of fun because he’s the god of lies. His comic is obviously going to be tricky in a way you’ve never seen before. Spider-Man and Kraven both have their own comics, and they obviously have very different processes. Wolverine’s comic ended up surprising me by being one of my favorites in the issue. I think Laura could really have a career making comics, if she wanted!

And I have to say that I spent a good day trying to figure out what Galactus’ comics would look like and how he’d draw them, until I came upon the perfect solution. And I don’t want to say what that is here just yet, but it’s pretty amazing.

Marvel.com: Tell us a little more about these cool guest artists coming onboard for this issue!

Ryan North: Well, for starters instead of drawing, we’ve got a page of comics written by Erica Henderson this issue—and she knocked it out of the park! Rico Renzi drew Tippy-Toe’s comics and colored the issue, so he’s on double-duty. And I got to contribute some art, too, in a pretty fun way! So the regular Squirrel Girl team is there, but we just swapped around some hats.

And it’s not just us! We’ve got an all-time great comics artist contributing—the Chip Zdarsky—as well as a bunch of artists making their Marvel debuts! There [are] comics done by Rahzzah who has such a terrific photorealistic style, by Madeline McGrane, who is bringing Squirrel Girl’s own comics to life, and by a six-year-old child named Iris who drew one of the most important panels in the issue! Tom Fowler did a hilarious story about one of my favorite characters. Carla Speed McNeil took one of the most challenging spreads in the issue and made it even better—which is especially exciting for me and [editor] Wil [Moss], because we’d both wanted to do work with her since forever. We even got Anders Nilsen on board drawing a Wolverine story that doesn’t look or read like any other Wolverine story you’ve seen before. Michael Cho is someone whose work I’ve loved for years and he drew a story, too, which was so amazing! Your eyes will pop out of your head, and that might even happen literally, because these mini-comics are just that great.

Marvel.com: Does Squirrel Girl ever write about a Canadian writer/super hero/dinosaur enthusiast named Ryan North?

Ryan North: No…but I’d like to think if she met him, she’d think he’s okay.

Be sure to squirrel away a copy of Ryan North and Erica Henderson’s UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #26 when it comes out November 8!

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Ryan North outlines Squirrel Girl’s Marvel Legacy!

Squirrel! Girl! In! Space!

On December 13, Doreen Green blasts across the universe in an attempt to save Nancy Whitehead and Tippy Toe in UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #27! As Marvel Legacy begins, writer Ryan North and artist Erica Henderson explore the cosmos in “The Forbidden Pla-Nut: Part One”!

We snagged a few minutes with Ryan to hear some more about Squirrel Girl’s next big journey.

Marvel.com: What can you tease about the Legacy storyline?

Ryan North: This storyline will be about Squirrel Girl’s legacy…which of course means we shoot her into space. So unlike most other Marvel Legacy arcs, where the characters go to where they began, we’re sending Doreen to someplace she’s never been before.

The story centers around Squirrel Girl and Galactus—and the ripple effects their friendship has had. Since they’ve met, the world’s gone through a lot of changes: Galactus is a good guy now and creates planets, for example. But he’s still (dare I say it) hated and feared by large parts of the universe. So the relationship between these two—a cosmic being older than the universe itself and a second-year computer science student—will be at the heart of this new story, but in a fun and pretty surprising way. I discovered that we’ve come up with an angle that hasn’t happened before in Marvel—and that’s a rare pleasure!

Marvel.com: What were your inspirations heading into this new arc?

Ryan North: I actually pitched three different stories to [Editors] Wil [Moss] and Sarah [Brunstad] and one of them ended up being, “Uh…maybe she goes into space?” And from such small seeds, a story emerged.

We shot back and forth some ideas, because Marvel space has all these cosmic chFaracters that you don’t normally get to see. It felt good that our run started with her meeting Galactus—for a Legacy storyline, going back out to space and seeing what effect a regular squirrel woman from Earth defeating Galactus has had on the universe made a lot of sense…and seemed like a lot of fun.

Marvel.com: Legacy explores the history of the Marvel Universe—what does Legacy mean for Doreen, who’s the only Squirrel Girl there’s ever been?

Ryan North: For me as a writer, it presents a chance to tell the most-Squirrel Girl story we can, you know? But for Doreen as a character, it feels like her dealing with the consequences of what she’s already done; she’s dealing with her legacy moving forward, as we all do. We don’t get to decide how history judges us, and we can sometimes only barely influence how our actions get perceived, but we can decide who we want to be.

This story will be about Squirrel Girl dealing with some…let’s say “unexpected consequences.” In fact, let’s say “unexpected and entertaining and hilarious consequences.” Because that’s just what they are.

Marvel.com: What does the legacy of Marvel mean to you—as a writer and as a fan?

Ryan North: For a lot of the older characters, Legacy will be about respecting what’s come before while still building on it and enhancing it. Erica and I didn’t create Doreen Green—she dates back to the ‘90s, when she made her first and (in most other timelines) only appearance under [writers] Will Murray and Steve Ditko. But we did bring back Will to write a new story for her in our special “Squirrel Girl 25th anniversary” story (issue #16!) at the start of this year. That, for me, served as a real picture of Squirrel Girl’s legacy: where she started, where she finds herself now, and where she’s going next.

Squirrel Girl stands in kind of a unique place now—Erica and [colorist] Rico Renzi and I have been working on telling her stories for over 30 issues now, plus an OGN (Original Graphic Novel), so for us, her legacy will be whatever comes next. And I can’t wait to share that with everyone!

Ryan North and artist Erica Henderson’s UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #27 drops on December 13!

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We squirreled away answers with writer and dinosaur enthusiast Ryan North!

When her vacation to the Savage Land with Nancy and Tippy Toe goes awry (also Kraven the Hunter is there — hi, Kraven), Doreen Green somehow finds herself facing down Ultron himself. Oh, and did we mention how HE’S A GIANT ROBO-DINOSAUR NOW? Presenting, THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #25 by Ryan North with art by Erica Henderson! Featuring dinosaurs, dinosaurs, a robot dinosaur, Antonio the Doombot, and the rest!

But will her “unbeatable” reputation remain intact? Will Kraven turn Tippy into a fez? AND WHAT OF ANTONIO THE DOOMBOT?! Writer Ryan North answers all this and more…

Marvel.com: How has everyone — Tippy Toe, Doreen, Nancy, Kraven — been feeling about the Savage Land?

Ryan North: Nancy went into this excited to see some dinosaurs, and she saw some right off the bat, so she’s satisfied. No matter what else goes wrong, Nancy Whitehead saw her some gosh-darned dinosaurs. That said, everything else has gone wrong: the alien machinery keeping the Savage Land alive is failing, the dinosaurs are at risk, and to make matters worse? A piece of Ultron landed here, rebuilt itself as a Tyrannosaurus rex, and is now intent on killing everyone. So it’s been a trip.

Marvel.com: How are the group dynamics between this motley crew? (Like, as in, NO KRAVEN, DON’T TURN TIPPY INTO A FEZ.)

Ryan North: Kraven and Squirrel Girl have a long history now! He appeared in our (first) #1, and he’s been back since then. I think they’ve really grown to like each other. Like, they’re different people, but every time they hang out Kraven comes out of it a better person, and Squirrel Girl really respects him. They’re a pretty unlikely friendship, and I think that’s what they like most about each other.

So Kraven wouldn’t turn Tippy into a fez, out of respect for Squirrel Girl. But, other than that, it IS a risk: this is a man who turned a lion’s hide into his vest. And it’s not just, like, the back of a lion.  He wears the lion’s FACE. Kraven don’t play.

Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #25

Marvel.com: I guess a giant robot dinosaur trying to destroy her has put a little damper on things… but can the vacation to the Savage Land be salvaged?

Ryan North: I feel like a universal truth is this: whenever anyone visits a dinosaur theme park/ dinosaur nature reserve/ dinosaur continent preserved by ancient aliens/ WHATEVER, there is a tiny part of them that thinks, with just a tinge of excitement, “oh man, there’s a chance the dinosaurs will escape and go crazy, I wonder what that’ll look like.”

Ultron has definitely been behind that, so while Doreen is a little bit disappointed her trip hasn’t been the vacation she thought it might be, there is a much larger part of her that is excited because SHE GETS TO FIGHT FRIGGIN’ DINOSAURS.

I think it’s another universal truth that we’d all like to maybe fight a dinosaur sometime. I dunno. Maybe it’s just me.

Marvel.com: How is dinosaur Ultron different from other iterations of him that we have seen so far? Being a t-rex must be somewhat of a rush…

Ryan North: I’d like to think this is Ultron in his purest form. He is a robot man that hates organic life but who always makes himself look like a human. And yes, CLEARLY there’s some issues there that he needs to work out, but I think once he’s tasted being a dinosaur — tasted being a literal TYRANT LIZARD KING — he might show up in this form more often.  He doesn’t blend in as well… but then again, did he ever really? And now he has a tail, awesome teeth, and, frankly, adorable little arms!

Personality-wise, of course, he’s the same homicidal Ultron he’s ever been — only now he’s got the dinosaur body to back it up.

Marvel.com: What kind of dinosaur would you be, if you could robot yourself into one?

Ryan North: I’ve spent over 14 years writing Dinosaur Comics at qwantz.com, so my answer shouldn’t surprise anyone: yeah, I’d totally be a T-Rex, too. What’s not to like?  They’re awesome, they’re giant, they have teeth for days, and they look really good when viewed from the rear view mirror of a jeep. T-Rex all the way.

Failing that, Utahraptor or Dromiceiomimus are both excellent animals, too, and I’m not playing favorites.

Marvel.com: And please tell us that Antonio the Doombot is getting a spinoff… IF NOT, THEN AT LEAST TELL US MORE ABOUT HIM THE PEOPLE NEED TO KNOW FUN FACTS ABOUT ANTONIO THE DOOMBOT, PLEASE.

Ryan North: Antonio the Doombot fun facts!  DID YOU KNOW: every Latverian must be able to build a Doombot from scratch in order to graduate high school? DID YOU ALSO KNOW: Antonio the Doombot is a Doombot built in the Savage Land whose sole purpose is to protect dinosaurs? He has all the will and desire of Doom, but bent solely towards protecting dinosaurs and their environment. Not gonna lie: he’s pretty great.

I can’t say if there will be a spinoff or not, but I know this: he will always live on in our memories.

Scamper on over to a comic store near you for THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #25 (by Ryan North with art by Erica Henderson) — out October 11!

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Writer Ryan North previews Squirrel Girl’s newest challenger—dinosaur Ultron!?

Doreen Green—The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl—has defeated the likes of Doctor Doom, Galactus, M.O.D.O.K, and Thanos in recent years. They don’t call her “unbeatable” for nothin’, folks.

On September 13, witness the next chapter in her invincible story as writer Ryan North and artist Erica Henderson present UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #24! Seen previously frolicking in a nature preserve full of dinosaurs, Doreen gets a big surprise when one of those prehistoric beasts turns out to be Ultron in the form of a Tyrannosaurus rex!

It seems a rumble for the ages awaits in the cards—so, what can we learn about this Jurassic joust before issue #24 hits shelves? Series writer Ryan North probably knows—let’s ask him!

Marvel.com: Squirrel Girl has single-handedly defeated some of the most powerful beings in the universe…but will this newest foe end her winning streak at last?

Ryan North: Obviously you’ll have to read the comic to find out—but we did put “unbeatable” on the cover, so I wouldn’t be dressing up neighborhood squirrels in black funereal garb just yet. But how? How could she do it? Ultron has incredible powers and has previously defeated the Avengers as a group—and she’s alone in the dangerous landscape of the Savage Land.

Seriously, please let me know how she could do it. I have written myself into a corner and need ideas stat.

Marvel.com: What’s it like writing a character that’s so powerfuland so funny?

Ryan North: With Doreen I see this really clever, competent woman who gets underestimated by people who don’t know her—and there’s a lot there that most of us can relate to. In a sense, it’s so easy to write Squirrel Girl because she’s so well-defined; she’s a ridiculously powerful person (she has all the powers of squirrel and girl, after all) and she’s also really empathetic. She’d rather discuss a dispute before heading right into a fist fight. In real life, I try to do the same, and I, too, have had many more discussions than I have fist fights—so in that sense she can be inspired by reality as well.

She also has this slightly skewed view on the Marvel Universe—it’s the point of view of a computer science student (Doreen!) and her friends (Nancy! Tippy-Toe! Brain Drain! And more!) who see everything with fresh eyes.

Marvel.com: What do you think makes Squirrel Girl so unbeatable?

Ryan North: She’s smart, she’s kind, and she knows computer science. Also: squirrels. A literally unbeatable combination—it’s so powerful that I’m surprised it hasn’t shown up in fiction until now!

Marvel.com: What’s your favorite element of this storyline?

Ryan North: Ultron is lots of fun, and turning him into a gigantic Tyrannosaurus rex only makes him even more fun. I am always happy to write a dinosaur, and I hope that my previous Dinosaur Comics work has given me that expertise in writing giant Tyrannosaurs.

I think it’s impossible not to have fun when you’re putting your characters in some sort of “Jurassic” kind of “park”—especially when they’re facing down a killer robot dinosaur named Ultron. There is literally nothing not to love in that sentence.

Marvel.com: So, how did Ultron turn into a dinosaur!?

Ryan North: Well, I don’t want to give it all away (we reveal it in the next issue!) but Ultron always rebuilds himself—even if only a little bit of him survives. In the past, we’ve always assumed that only one part rebuilds, so only one Ultron exists at a time, but if that wasn’t the case…and if that extra part dropped into the Savage Land…

Marvel.com: What makes the Savage Land the perfect setting for this story?

Ryan North: I love the Savage Land because it’s there, in the present day, just, you know, hanging out in Antarctica. Like, everyone in the Marvel Universe just goes about their business, paying their bills and taxes, and never once stops and says, “Hey, wait a minute, there are alive dinosaurs on Earth right now,” and hops on a plane to go see them. It was fun to play up Nancy’s disbelieving reaction to that at the start of the arc, because I had the same reaction when finding out about the Savage Land way back when. It’s a big deal and I think super heroes and regular people should be visiting it way more often!

Marvel.com: Definitely! What will your interpretation of the Savage Land be like?

Ryan North: We really wanted to do the dinosaurs justice. The Savage Land first showed up in Marvel Comics decades ago—but our understanding of dinosaurs has evolved since then. Erica Henderson, the series artist, insisted (she sent me several emails even after I agreed, just to make sure I didn’t forget) that we explain why the Savage Land dinosaurs didn’t have feathers—since we now understand that most dinosaurs did. The explanation in the book (that the Savage Land inhabitants did have feathers but lost them over the 65 million extra years they had to evolve in Antarctica) solved a scientific problem in the Marvel Universe that had bugged Erica for years. We’re always happy to make these stories about super powered people more scientifically accurate!

Plus, if you keep your eyes peeled, you’ll see some of my favorite species of dinosaurs in the Savage Lands. I think this is the best arc we’ve done yet—and I’m really excited that we’ll soon be able to share it all with you!

UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #24, by Ryan North and artist Erica Henderson, launches on September 13!

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Ryan North dispatches Doreen Green into a prehistoric playland!

Doreen Green has pretty amazing powers, including the ability to communicate with squirrels. Too bad that knack doesn’t extend to other animals like, say, dinosaurs!

In the upcoming UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #22 on July 12, Doreen and Nancy Whitehead will find themselves smack in the middle of the Savage Land, fighting dinos and other baddies. Writer Ryan North fills us in on what we can expect.

Marvel.com: Doreen and Nancy will get thrown into the Savage Land pretty abruptly. How will they handle it?

Ryan North: Well, they’re going there because they won a “Mysterious Programming Contest,” so they have time to, you know, pack bags and get excited and stuff.  What they don’t have time to prepare for is what they find when they arrive, which I don’t want to spoil but which absolutely involves dinosaurs and/or the fighting of dinosaurs.

Marvel.com: Dinosaurs live in the Savage Land as you mentioned. How well do you think Doreen’s powers will equip her to go up against them?

Ryan North: She’s got speed, agility, and strength—but then dinosaurs have speed, agility, and strength too, plus the ability to be two stories tall and have a giant mouth filled with teeth. So unlike her regular foes, an angry dinosaur can credibly threaten her in precisely the way a man in a Rhino costume can’t. That said, squirrels and dinosaurs have never actually battled before, so this does present a once in a lifetime opportunity to see what happens when a tiny mammal goes against a Jurassic apex predator.

Marvel.com: What would you consider the top three challenges Doreen and Nancy will have to face in Savage Land?

Ryan North:

  1. Seeing dinosaurs.
  2. Fighting dinosaurs.
  3.  Getting to go to the gift shop right away so she can get official Savage Land merchandise and dress like a dinosaur hunter.

    Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #22 cover by Erica Henderson

Marvel.com: So often, extreme situations like this teach us something about ourselves. What will Doreen learn during her time in Savage Land?

Ryan North: Doreen’s not just fighting dinosaurs: there’s a big bad we haven’t revealed yet, and this is one that she can’t really reason with.  So it’s going to be a chance for Doreen to really let loose with her physical powers in a way she can’t in a heavily populated city like New York. So I’m hoping Doreen will learn that she is even more powerful than she thinks, and also that dinosaurs are awesome—though she already knew that; we all already knew that.

Marvel.com: In addition to dinosaurs, lots of other prehistoric animals live in the Savage Land. Will we get to see any prehistoric squirrels, and can Doreen communicate with them?

Ryan North: [Laughs] No, no prehistoric squirrels! Though the first thing [artist] Erica [Henderson] and I came up with was an explanation for why all the dinosaurs in the Savage Land look like 60s versions of dinosaurs and not the modern reconstructions where they’re feathered bird-like creatures. So rest assured we have a really valid explanation for why our dinosaurs may appear to be less than scientifically accurate.

Marvel.com: Would you like to mention or tease anything else?

Ryan North: This Savage Land arc begins with our issue after next, and it has an amazing painted cover by Erica that is one of my favorite things she’s done. But before we hit that issue we’ve got a special stand-alone installment of SQUIRREL GIRL that’s a Brain Drain + Chipmunk Hunk + Koi Boi extravaganza. It’s gonna be so good: Doreen and Nancy are on vacation so it’s up to the sidekicks to save the day all by themselves. It’s got Brain Drain, aka Brian Drayne, aka a nihilistic brain in a jar on a weird giant robot body. So if you like dinosaurs or robots, you should definitely check out UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL!

Pick up UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL monthly from Ryan North and Erica Henderson!

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Five reasons Doreen Green has met her match from writer Ryan North!

Squirrel Girl may be everyone’s favorite chipper, upbeat super hero, but as we know, Doreen Green’s adventures go far beyond fun and games. She has squared off against some pretty impressive villains. And we’ll soon see her ultimate confrontation with evil entrepreneur Melissa Morbeck in UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #20, available May 17.

We caught up with writer Ryan North, who filled us in on why Doreen’s battle with Melissa promises to be her biggest yet!

Melissa has all the world’s animals on her side
“She’s put chips in their brains that lets her control them. Squirrel Girl can control squirrels, but they are, I am sad to say, pretty useless against lions. I thought maybe they could do some damage but even a pretty wimpy lion can handle them no problem.”

She knows Squirrel Girl’s secret identity
“Doreen Green has been kinda okay at keeping her activities as Squirrel Girl secret, but not kinda okay enough—Melissa has figured it out. And that means she knows how to mess up both Doreen and Squirrel Girl. It turns out dressing up as an animal to go out and punch crime in the face isn’t smiled upon by all branches of law enforcement, despite its strong historical pedigree?”

Melissa has been manipulating Doreen’s life for a while now
“Squirrel Girl got a new flying suit from Melissa, only to find out too late that Melissa could disable it at will. And while she made friends with Chipmunk Hunk and Koi Boi at ESU, it turns out they only met because Melissa wanted them to as well. What does she have planned? And why is she so into being a jerk all the time?”

The world is watching
“A faceoff in New York City between Squirrel Girl and Melissa has gotten the world media’s attention, including J. Jonah Jameson, who is not exactly known for his fair and balanced reporting on animal-themed super-heroes. Sorry, JJJ, but we’ve all seen your Spider-Man articles! Spider-Man was clearly helping that old lady across the street, and I must say your ‘WEB-HEAD MENACE DRAGS SENIOR CITIZEN ACROSS FIVE LANES OF TRAFFIC! / TRAFFIC HAPPENED TO BE STOPPED AT RED LIGHT: ONLY REASON LITTLE OLD LADY STILL ALIVE’ headline fundamentally misrepresents what happened.”

And finally, Doreen has faced off against Galactus before, but even that was easier
“…so you might think that was her biggest face-off ever, but they only fought for a little bit before becoming pals. Melissa, much like everyone on reality television, did not come here to make friends. So that’s a challenge!”

Grab some nuts and sit back for the final showdown between Doreen Green and Melissa Morbeck, coming to UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #20 on May 17, courtesy of Ryan North and Erica Henderson!

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Ryan North provides a guide to less than stellar leaders!

In UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #19, due out April 12, fans will encounter the worst mentor of all time, Melissa Morbeck. In a Marvel Universe resplendent with poor guidance figures of all sorts, we disagreed and took our arguments right to SQUIRREL GIRL writer Ryan North

Professor X and the Original X-Men
The Case:
Of the original five X-Men, one destroyed a planet full of broccoli humanoids and has been periodically dying ever since, one went bad and died, one lost his wings and made a deal with Apocalypse to become the Horsemen Death, and one ended up covered in blue fur. Of the quintet only Iceman has largely dodged life-altering tragedies. Beyond, you know, being hated and feared, of course.

Plus, Professor X had a crush on Jean which certainly qualifies as a bad way for a mentor to feel about his charge.

Ryan North Responds: “If you look at how his mentoring worked, I think it turned out pretty okay! Only one of those five ended up becoming host to an immortal star-killing cosmic entity, and then only for a little while. Professor X gets the coveted ‘You Did Ok I Guess award!’

“Compared to Melissa, Professor X would probably be a better mentor, though it’s still probably for the best to keep Squirrel Girl away from that 1/5 chance of becoming host to an immortal star-killing cosmic entity.”

Hawkeye and Hawkeye
The Case:
Kate Bishop spent much of their relationship patching up Clint Barton’s numerous bumps, bruises, and cuts and playing traffic cop to the multiple women her mentor seemed to be seeing at any given point.

Also, she disappeared to the West Coast for months and never once did he even file a Missing Person’s Report.

Ryan North Responds: “Clint is a man with a bunch of problems, and as much as he’s helped Kate, I think Kate has helped him just as much. Therefore, I would call this mentorship a tie, and both Clint and Kate get prizes. Let’s say…sticky putty arrows.

“Compared to Melissa, both Clint or Kate would be improvements. Plus, the two of them come with a dog, which easily pushes them over the top. Clint and Kate are the true winners of our mentorship competition.”

Odin and Odinson
The Case:
Odin has a temper and consistently deals with his issues with Thor—his son by the way—by exiling him to the world of humans. When not doing that, Odin demands Odinson fight a cybernetic horseman from space to prove himself. Basically, Odin has two moves: “Go away and learn a lesson,” or “Show me how well you fight!”

Ryan North Responds: “Odin is Thor’s father, but he was kind of a horrible mentor. He basically gave him a weapon of mass destruction in the form of Mjolnir and then disappeared for a while to go have an extended nap? That’s some pretty weak mentorship game. However, you do get a fun hammer out of the deal, which must be considered.

“Compared to Melissa, Odin would be an improvement.  Melissa gave Squirrel Girl a flying suit, but then she stuck around and tried to manipulate her to do what she wants. If she had given Squirrel Girl a flying suit and then went to have a nap, then it would’ve been a much shorter story with much less conflict. It’s one of the reasons I went with Melissa when drafting the story instead of her much sleepier twin, Rip Von Melissa.

“That is an original character by me being revealed here for the first time, by the way. She looks like the regular Melissa only she’s wearing a sleeping cap and those old-timey pajamas with a button-up hole on the back that if you don’t button them properly everyone can see your butt.”

Doctor Doom and Kristoff
The Case:
Well, he’s Dr. Doom, for one.

Besides that, though, Doom has had Kristoff stand in for him on multiple occasions, exposing the youth to the possibility of death and dismemberment. And if the monarch’s various enemies do not do it to Kristoff, Doom just might handle it himself, due to the not-actually-a-Doctor’s hair-trigger temper and massive inferiority complex.

Ryan North Responds: “This should not even be a question. The man’s name is Doctor Doom, you do not want him mentoring you in anything except, possibly, in how to choose really suspicious names. You let him teach you anything else, and the second things go wrong everyone’s gonna say ‘Your mentor was Doctor Doom; what did you expect to happen?’

“Compared to Melissa, I’d call it a tie. Doom is an awful guy but he dresses the part, so you know what you’re getting. Melissa looks like a regular lady, so when she turns out to be bad, you can at least be surprised.  If she wore a steel mask and called herself ‘Doctor Doom 2: Better Than Doctor Doom’ then that would at least be something.”

Witness malevolent mentorship in action courtesy of Ryan North and Erica Henderson with UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #19, available April 12!

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Who—or what—might be able to take down the mighty Doreen Green?

Who could defeat the Unbeatable Squirrel Girl?

This question confounds the most powerful beings in the universe. But, on December 7, Taskmaster will use his attack-duplicating moves to go toe-to-toe with Doreen Green in UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #15! The villain’s photographic reflexes make him seemingly purpose-built to keep up with Doreen. Could this be a perfect recipe for her defeat?

So, who—or what—else might be able to take down SG? We hazard a few guesses…

Aunt May
She’s sick, her feet hurt, the cable went out in the middle of her afternoon soaps—she’s mad. And she decides to take it out on Doreen Green by inviting her over for some spoiled meatloaf! The ultimate equalizer: bad cooking!

And if May’s putrid foodstuff doesn’t do the job, she can call in backup from…

The Ghost of Uncle Ben
The shimmering outline of Ben Parker walks directly through a closed door, places his hand on Doreen’s shoulder, and expresses his deep, deep disappointment in her. Doreen wouldn’t stand a chance against the guilt!

A Black Hole
The greatest galactic super villains in the universe haven’t stood a chance against the Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, but what about the might of a collapsing star? Doreen ends up in space somehow and falls into one. You call it “oversimplified;” I call it “physics”!

Nancy Whitehead
Who would Doreen least expect to turn heel? That’s right: her best friend in the world, Nancy Whitehead! Even if Nancy couldn’t physically defeat Doreen, the simple concept of betrayal would!

The Owl, Falcon, Nighthawk
No, not Leland Owlsley, Sam Wilson, and Kyle Richmond; just literally the natural predators of squirrels: an owl, a falcon, and some kind of nocturnal hawk. Go food chain, go!

The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl (2015) #15

The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl (2015) #15

What is Marvel Unlimited?

Nelson and Murdock Attorneys at Law
Not Daredevil, he wouldn’t stand a chance. Doreen would take on the might of a powerful law firm! Partners! Associates! Paralegals! Law clerks! Bad local TV commercials! Good luck, Doreen!

Doctor Doom, Korvac, M.O.D.O.K., Terrax, Thanos, Wolverine, Ego the Living Planet
Just kidding! Doreen already beat all of them!

Malfunctioning Squirrel-a-Gig
Helicopters might be incredibly efficient, agile, speedy modes of transportation—but they’re also super dangerous! One loose bolt or malfunctioning control stick and it’s trouble for the Unbeatable Squirrel Girl!

The Daily Bugle
The power of the media! Yellow journalism, smear campaigns, unethical reporting—forces that give J. Jonah Jameson more might than Thanos! The public loves Squirrel Girl, but wait until they read the story on Page 9!

Squirrel Mutiny
A coup d’état led by Monkey Joe and Tippy Toe! A massive, coordinated insurrection by the squirrels of planet Earth against their former leader Doreen Green! Viva la revolución!

Check out UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #15 by Ryan North and Erica Henderson, out December 7!

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Writer Ryan North commemorates a quarter century of Doreen Green and her heroic alter ego!

Let’s face it, we all love Squirrel Girl, one of the pluckiest, friendliest heroes in the Marvel Universe. Doreen Green has brains and brawn—and a perky personality, to boot.

As she celebrates her 25th year as a super hero, we wanted to take the chance to chat with UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL writer Ryan North about what makes this character so endearing.

Marvel.com: What do you think gives Doreen such lasting popularity?

Ryan North: I, for one, find it fascinating that she lives in this world with mutants, and people who have super powers, and everything else. That world has a lot of angst, but not Doreen. She enjoys having super powers, she feels excited about helping people, and gets super stoked to go on adventures. She has a very optimistic outlook. And her upbeat character makes it fun to write her.

Marvel.com: What have you enjoyed most about writing UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL?

Ryan North: I like that she studies computer science, but she also exists in the larger Marvel Universe. As a writer, I get to play in this giant Marvel swimming pool full of characters and storylines and villains and heroes, but I’m writing through the lens of Squirrel Girl. If it makes sense for one of the several Spider-Men to show up, for example, I can make that happen. I get to run around in the playground of the Marvel Universe.

Marvel.com: What characters in particular would you like to make appearances in the book?

Ryan North: So many! The way to do it is to make it connect to and make sense with the story. Otherwise, we’d just have a story where Doreen, maybe, goes on a bunch of blind dates with super heroes—although she did meet Human Torch that way! I think she could really befriend a lot of characters, and I see so much potential when it comes to having those characters bounce off of each other.

Marvel.com: Each writer who works on a character adds something. Can you tell us about your experience of that with Doreen?

Ryan North: Initially, I faced a bit of a challenge because most of her fights had happened off-panel, so I couldn’t see precisely how it worked. I had fun figuring out how this character, who has the proportional strength of squirrels and can talk to squirrels and leap really far, would take down someone like Galactus or Doctor Doom. That especially showed up in [the original graphic novel] SQUIRREL GIRL BEATS UP THE MARVEL UNIVERSE, where I had to think, “How does she do that? How would Doreen Green beat up the Marvel Universe?” It took me about a week of creating flow charts to figure all of that out.

Marvel.com: As a New Avenger, Doreen works with the new and improved A.I.M., and in issues like UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL #11, you’ve had the chance to really explore some scientific principles…

Ryan North: I pitched that issue as, “Doreen Green has so much skill she can beat super heroes in her sleep.” And I enjoyed telling this super hero story through the lens of computer algorithms—something I’m not sure anyone ever attempted before! I studied computer science in grad school before I started writing comics, so for me it felt like coming home. And if I can intrigue the readers—show them that it’s an interesting field to study—that’s pretty cool.

Marvel.com: Can you tell us a little about working with artist Erica Henderson?

Ryan North: She’s so good! I’ve enjoyed working with her from day one. While trying to figure out what to do with Squirrel Girl in the first issue, I received some sketches of Erica’s that Marvel sent over. The character in those drawings had so much personality. I kept the sketches by my window so that as I was working, I could glance over at them and think, “Oh right, this is the character I’m writing.”

I love the collaborative nature of the process. In the first issue, Doreen fights Kraven, and she beats him by figuring out what his problem is and helping him solve it. But in the first draft, we had her beating him by stuffing squirrels down his pants. Our editor, Wilson Moss, said, “That works, but what if we got to see Doreen as the kind of person who would try to help people with their challenges?” And it felt like reading the answer key at the back of the teacher’s textbook. I thought, “Yes, that’s perfect, that’s exactly who this character is!” I really enjoy how the editors, writers, and artists all work together in this medium. It means that you can create something more than the sum of its parts, and more than you could create on your own.

Marvel.com: Is there anything you’d like to tease about upcoming issues?

Ryan North: We’re doing a special issue for the 25th anniversary, which comes out in January. I don’t want to say too much, but we’ll do something in that issue that we haven’t done for 25 years.

Pick up the latest issue of UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL from Ryan North and Erica Henderson, available now!

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