Thursday, March 20, 2014

hey ladies!

        note: this isn't exactly finished, edited, blessed with direction or spell checks,
but at my current rate i'll never finish so here's the rawness.

 boys club.
adolescent male power fantasies.
sausage fest.
big white guys saving weak little women from themselves.

this is the standard perception of comics and comic book fiction.
mostly it's true. (now this is based on the assumption that comics are made only by two companies and are always about super powered cratures in their skivvies but i digress)

but the business/art form seems to be going thru sea changes.
and the tidal wave is coming.

now more than ever there is a proliferation of non superhero comix.
westerns sci-fi action/adventure mystery crime/detective humor goes on and on....
and.......drum roll........
women are reading them....
but wait.........the comics also feature female characters?
and........girls, wymin, double X'rs, female type humanoids also make comics?

fo sheezy.
talented and skilled artists : Becky Cloonan, Emma Rios, Sarah Horrocks, Fiona Staples.
ambitious and gifted writers: Gail Simone,Kelly Sue DeConnick, G. Willow Wilson...

often relegated to editorial staff: Diana Schutz , Katie Kubert are still there and doing their always integral yet under appreciated jobs.
the bullpen is also where esteemed Hall of Fame comic scribe Louise Simonson got her start.

or if they were lucky as uncredited color and ink laborers: Marie Severin
there have always been women in the field.
but rarely on centre stage.

a business built by war vets and Ad Men
pandering high adventure featuring barrel chested Caucasian males to the boys of America.
(worth noting that all these white Anglo-Saxon heroes were germinated by Jews And Italians but much like Hollywoodland this was something you didn't mention or discuss.)

now comix are in a renaissance. enjoying popularity not tasted since the end of DubyaDubyaTwo.
and variety is in abundance.
even the cape and underwear types more and more frequently step outside of their primary colored genre limits.

each of the big companies has a successfull leading lady: DC's WONDER WOMAN and BATWOMAN., Dark Horse's GHOST, Marvel's CAPT. MARVEL and  Sensational SHE-HULK, and ASTRO CITY's WINGED VICTORY for example.

plenty of series feature prominently groups of powerful and empowered chicks.:
PRETTY DEADLY penned by Kelly Sue DeConnick ( who is also the scribe behind the fan favorite Captain Marvel) and illustrated by Carol Corps compatriot Emma Rios , ALL NEW X-MEN(should be X-women maybe) continues to bring mutantkind's most magnificent madmoiselles to the fore.

Scott Snyder and Sean Murphy's THE WAKE feature a brilliant marine biologist as the lead character Kurt Busiek's ASTRO CITY currently finds it's finest feminine fury  under siege by all who would discredit her and her attempts at empowering women.

 and at the top of the list is Brian Azarello's WONDER WOMAN. 
the current WW tales feature nearly the whole of the  Helenist religious pantheon. its themes,          the stuff of gods and monsters: intrigue, betrayal, Machiavellian plots. all hallmarks of Azarello's career expertly deployed to make the first and greatest of Superheroines relevant and readable. featuring not just the titular character but a whole host of fascinating females, goddesses Hera, Strife, Artemis and the wonderfully human and engaging Zola.

this is a good time for comics. quality and variety are at an all time high. i defy anyone to not find at least one title, issues or collection that appeals to their sensibilities.
i've spent much of this article mentioning super hero type fiction but much of this renaissance is attributable to growth and expansion away from this traditional fare. and this is where the medium is really coming into it's own as an art form.
creators on the whole be they women or men, or whatever socio-political and/or ethnic background are pushing themselves and their readers, challenging convention, defying expectation and delivering on a promise that the maverick creators and self publishers of the 80's and 90's set in front of us.

SAGA Vol 3, Ms. Marvel 2 just hit the stands yesterday.
get it while it's hot.

your mom will love ya for it.

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