Comic Book / Amelia Rules!

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/GASP_little.jpg
Comic book series created in 2001 by Jimmy Gownley. Ostensibly for "tweens", but thoroughly enjoyable on every level. Consists currently of seven collected volumes: The Whole World's Crazy, What Makes You Happy, Superheroes, When the Past Is a Present, The Tweenage Guide to Not Being Unpopular, True Things (Adults Don't Want Kids to Know) and The Meaning of Life ... and Other Stuff. The 8th (and final) collected volume, Her Permanent Record was released in 2012. One of the stories from The Whole World's Crazy has been released separately (A Very Ninja Christmas) together with a separate story of how Amelia met her friends.

Fourth-grader Amelia Louise McBride moves with her newly divorced mom from New York to live with her aunt in Connerton, Pennsylvania. She quickly becomes friends with Reggie Grabinsky and the enigmatic Pajamaman (who moonlight as superheroes Captain Amazing and Kid Lightning), and just as quickly becomes Vitriolic Best Buds with their other pal, loudmouthed Rhonda Bleenie. The four of them form GASP, the Gathering of Awesome Super-Pals, to defend the neighborhood from evil. Amelia's life in her new neighborhood is fraught with obstacles hilarious and serious, from regular wars with the evil Ninjas from across town to homesickness for New York City and her father.


Provides Examples Of:

  • Adult Fear: When Amelia was injured while biking through the Greenbelt at night in Superheroes.
  • The Alleged Car: The spectacular failure that is the AmazingMobile.
  • Alpha Bitch: Britney. She has a Girl Posse in the form of Christina and Jessica, who look exactly like her.
  • And the Adventure Continues: "And I'm just getting started." May count as a Sequel Hook if the author decides to restart the series.
  • Arc Words:
    • "Insignificant."
    • Later in the series, "You can because you have to."
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: The Legion of Steves is responsible for the Hindenburg, Three-Mile-Island and Dr. Phil.
    Captain Amazing: How... how evil!
    • Also Kyle's observation after seeing Amelia's parents together:
      Kyle: If my parents ever got together their mere proximity to each other would create a burst of antimatter that would DESTROY LIFE ON EARTH! Plus they'd probably argue a lot.
  • Art Evolution: Starting around Superheroes.
  • Art Shift: Anything involving Tanner's or Amelia's mom's childhood is told in the form of comic strip "Li'l Tanner", drawn in the style of Peanuts. Anything after their childhood but before Amelia is drawn as "Tannerbury Tales", in the style of Doonesbury. One flashback strip actually mirrors Dilbert.
  • Better as Friends: Amelia and Kyle.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Violet.
  • Big Applesauce: Amelia hails from New York City and occasionally returns to visit her father.
  • Birds of a Feather: Kyle and Amelia both have Jerkass tendencies, but are good kids at heart, and both have divorced parents.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Superheroes. Trishia lives, but Amelia doesn't find out until years later- and she never sees Trish again.
    • Trisha reappears in a Dream Sequence in the climax of Her Permanent Record but Amelia doesn't even recognize her.
  • Black Best Friend: Sunday Jones, Amelia's best friend in New York City.
  • Breather Volume: Most of The Meaning of Life...And Other Stuff
  • The Cape: Captain Amazing tries to be this.
  • Cerebus Rollercoaster: The comic very often switches between nostalgic childhood hijinks to serious drama about Real Life and growing up.
  • Chest Insignia: All the members of GASP have this, usually an initial from or symbol directly relating to their superhero name.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: A minor character known as "Earth Dog".
  • City Mouse: New York City girl Amelia is suddenly deposited in the suburbs after her parents split up. She even complains that the local nature trail is "too much green" for her.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Elderly babysitter Kate Kadingo.
    • And, to a somewhat lesser extent, Reggie.
  • Cute and Psycho: Mary Ultra Violet is a slightly less homicidal version of this.
  • Darker and Edgier: Superheroes. This volume begins to let the series drift away from ordinary childhood issues, containing more Adult Fear situations like Amelia finding out that Trishia has a heart condition called a ventricular septal defect, and Kyle daring Amelia to ride her bike through the Greenbelt at night to retrieve a comic book. Amelia crashes and ends up at the hospital.
  • Deliberately Cute Child: Rhonda's little pageant-kid sister Reenie. Of course she's a hellion underneath.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: One of the kids in the testimonials video in Her Permanent Record is the main character from Jimmy Gownley's new webcomic Gracieland.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: The earlier volumes feel very different than the later ones.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": Amelia is shocked when her mother's date calls her "Mary"; she's used to her mother being just "Mom".
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Rhonda's new look at the end of The Tweenage Guide to Not Being Unpopular is the same style she's seen wearing in the Flash Forward at the end of Superheroes — an outward sign of her newfound maturity and confidence in herself.
  • Limited Wardrobe: As in Peanuts, everyone pretty much wears the same thing every day, though it changes a bit in later volumes.
  • Meaningful Background Event: So subtle you'll miss it: In a flash forward to high school, we see an over-the-shoulder shot of Rhonda from behind as she chats with Amelia. The jacket she's wearing has an athlete's number on the back topped with the letters "G-R-A-B-I..."
  • Military Brat: Ninja Joan, whose father is deployed to Iraq. He returns in The Meaning of Life ... and Other Stuff
  • Mr. Imagination: Reggie. And how!
  • Official Couple: The ending to Superheroes implies that Reggie and Rhonda will hook up in the near future.
  • Oh, Crap!: Frequently, such as when Amelia realize that Reggie and Rhonda are the school nerds, making her a nerd-by-association. And when she finds out she and her mom was moving significantly farther away.
  • Older Than They Look: Aunt Tanner. It's very easy for new readers to mistake her for a teenager or woman in her early 20's.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Come on, his parents didn't really name him Pajamaman. Word of God even confirmed he has a real name, and there are hints scattered throughout the books.

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