‘Squirrel Girl’ Named a Top 10 Obscure Superhero

This week Wired Magazine’s GeekDad blogger named his Top 10 list of obscure superheros who deserve their own movies, and my personal favorite is…yep…you guessed it: #2, Squirrel Girl.

As GeekDad explains,

“She has a squirrel tail and squirrel teeth and can control squirrels by talking to them. And she carries nuts in her utility belt. Silly, you say? Well, sure, but Ghost Rider is a guy with a burning skull for a head who rides around on a motorcycle, so silly is clearly not a bar to superhero movies. Seriously, though, we think her story would make a great kids’ movie.”

She originated in a Marvel comics series, and is now part of the “Great Lakes Initiative.” As Wikipedia explains, “Squirrel Girl is a mutant, and evinces a variety of mutations which align with the squirrel theme. During her first encounter with Iron Man, she provided a detailed demonstration of her powers and abilities: a furry, prehensile tail roughly 3-4 feet in length; sizable buck teeth, which are strong enough to chew through wood; and enhanced agility and strength, enabling her to jump between trees with ease. Her fingers have sharp claws on them, assisting her with climbing, and she possesses retractable “knuckle spikes” roughly 2-3 inches in length on each hand. Most importantly, she is capable of communicating with and understanding squirrels.”

For more than you ever wanted to know about Squirrel Girl, read more on her Wiki page.

Squirrels as Art: Mario Ybarra Jr’s Black Squirrel Society

Super-cool L.A. artist Mario Ybarra Jr’s most recent work is inspired by my favorite squirrel, the black squirrel. His latest exhibition, Black Squirrel Society, is on display at the Lehmann Maupin Gallery in Chelsea (Manhattan, NY). It’s urban, it’s hip and it’s squirrels. What’s not to love?

In an interview with ArtInfo.com, Ybarra explains why he focused on squirrels:

“Last summer, … Ybarra encountered a black squirrel on the street and was immediately struck by its unusual color. Growing up in L.A., he says, he never imagined that anything like a black squirrel could exist. … Ybarra began to fantasize about a [record] label with the black squirrel as its emblem, and eventually he decided to make it into a full-scale art project.

The squirrels even have a theme song, a dance number composed by Ybarra called “Paws Down, Tails Up.” There is, of course, more than a dash of tongue-in-cheek humor to all of this. As Ybarra puts it, “It’s funny to think of a bad-ass little squirrel.”

To see his bad-ass work, go to the Lehman Maupin Gallery’s site.