Women At Marvel Comics Watch – January 2013 Solicits

After checking in on DC for over a year now, we’ve expanded to cover Marvel as well and we’re in our second month.  With the December solicits as a baseline, now we can get a better sense of how Marvel rolls with female creators and characters.  They had a lot of both last month, but was that just an aberration?  Let’s take a look at the January solicits:

  • On the writing side of things, we’ve got Kelly Sue DeConnick on Avengers Assemble #11 and Captain Marvel #9, Kathryn Immonen on Journey Into Mystery #648, Marjorie Liu on Astonishing X-Men #58, AND Robin Furth on Dark Tower: The Gunslinger – Sheemie’s Tale #1.
  • For art, Sara Pichelli is on art and covers for Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #19, while we’ve got a brand new creator, Jana Schirmer, doing the cover for Red She-Hulk #61.  There’s no Stephanie Hans anywhere, though, which is odd… she’s usually on something.
  • And then there’s Monsters, Inc. #2, where Elisabetta Melaranci, Anna Merli, Sonia Matrone, Mara Damiani, and Elena M. Naggi are on art duties while Lori Tyminski and Adrienne Brown do the cover.  That’s an impressive amount of ladies on one book!!
  • There are six new Marvel Now! books in January, and none of them have any female creators, so that’s a bummer.  Also, there don’t seem to be any female leads in Super Spider-Man (apart from Mary Jane), New Avengers, or Morbius: The Living Vampire.  However, 4 of the 6 characters on the cover of Uncanny X-Force #1 are gals (it looks like Storm and a few chicks with swords), Shanna the She-Devil costars in Savage Wolverine, and Ms. America and Hawkeye (Kate Bishop) are in Young Avengers.
  • There’s also a weekly Punisher book called Punisher: Nightmare that doesn’t seem to star any women, though they don’t list the creators so maybe (ie. probably not) some women are writing or drawing the book.

Overall, in January 2013 there are 13 women writing or drawing 8 different books at Marvel, a nice step up from the 11 women on 7 books in December.  However, as we talked about last month, Monsters, Inc. is carrying the bulk of the load.  Of the 13 women overall, 7 are on Monsters, Inc. #2, and that book is done in January.  We’ll have to see whether another Disney property with a similar number of female creators replaces it in February.  If there’s not, the numbers are going to drop drastically.

Even though we’re only two months in, we’re starting to see some patterns.  Marvel has a few women with regular gigs, all of them writers, and the art side seems more fluid.  Sara Pichelli is stepping onto Ultimate Comics Spider-Man for what looks like a few issues, but I doubt it will be a regular gig for her.  Jana Schirmer is brand new to Marvel, and the question now is will she be back next month?  Apart from DeConnick, Immonen, and Liu having regular writing gigs, the rest of the female creators at Marvel are a rotating cast so far.

As for female characters, there’s some decent representation.  However, all of the Marvel Now! books in December had at least one female lead, and only half of the new titles in January do.  It still adds up to 7 female characters co-starring in 6 new books though, and that’s pretty solid.

Overall, January looks pretty good for Marvel, but with Monsters, Inc. wrapped up the big question is what will happen in February for female creators?  Also, what new Marvel Now! books will premiere, and will there continue to be a decent number of female characters?  Only time will tell.  But Marvel looks decent two months in.

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