April looks like a very good month for female creators at DC Comics, but only an average one for female characters despite several new titles and shake-ups. Let’s take a look at the solicits:
- For New 52 writers, Ann Nocenti is on Catwoman #30, Christy Marx pens Birds of Prey #30, Amanda Conner co-writes Harley Quinn #5, and Gail Simone writes Batgirl #30, Batgirl Annual #2, and The Movement #11.
- For New 52 artists, Meghan Hetrick is doing the interior art for Nightwing #30, Nicola Scott is pencilling Earth 2 #22, Rachel Dodson inks the cover of Catwoman #30, Amanda Conner does the cover for Harley Quinn #5, and Emanuela Lupacchino is doing the cover for Worlds’ Finest #22 and the interior art for Supergirl #30.
- Outside of the New 52, Cat Staggs does the cover for Smallville Season 11: Lantern #1, Heather Nuhfer writes Vampire Diaries #4, and Amy Wolfram writes Teen Titans Go! #3.
- At Vertigo, Amy Chu and Cris Peter are part of the new anthology series Vertigo Quarterly: Cyan #1, Caitlin Kittredge writes Coffin Hill #7, and Yuko Shimizu does the cover for The Unwritten: Apocalypse #4.
- There are some big Justice League shake-ups this April. Justice League United #0 launches with Supergirl and Stargirl as part of the team along with 5 guys. Justice League #30 is the debut of Lex Luthor as the leader of the team, along with a few other cast changes, but Wonder Woman remains the only woman on the roster. As for Justice League of America, the book that had 3 female characters? Cancelled in April.
- Batman Eternal is set to launch, and Stephanie Brown is in the mix; she’s due to appear for the first time in the New 52 universe in Batman Eternal #3. DC is also launching a new Secret Origins series, and Supergirl will be featured in the first issue, while Aquaman and the Others #1, an Aquaman spinoff if you can believe it, is 2 of 5 for female main characters.
All together, in April 2014 DC is scheduled to have 15 different female creators working on 16 different books, an increase of 3 and 4 respectively from last month’s numbers. These are really solid numbers for DC, among the best we’ve seen since this project began. Double digits used to be a rarity, and now it’s commonplace. Men still hit well into the triple digits each month, so there’s still a long way to go, but this is definite progress.
Things are moving slower on the female character side. Representation in team books is always good to see, though women are always a minority. It’s nice to have Stephanie Brown back, though! That’s been a long time coming. However, while Marvel seems to be launching multiple female-led solo series each month, DC certainly isn’t. Their new books are either teams, one of which has a male hero in the title, or male-led solo books like the new Sinestro #1 (because apparently there’s a lack of Green Lantern books; Sinestro makes 6 currently being published).
Ultimately, the variety and number of female creators is very encouraging, while representation for female characters could be better. Interestingly, as we’ll see in a couple days, the situation at Marvel is the complete opposite. It seems that you can either have female creators OR female characters from a publisher; for whatever reason, you can’t have both.
Tags: Amanda Conner, Amy Chu, Amy Wolfram, Ann Nocenti, Caitlin Kittredge, Cat Staggs, Christy Marx, Cris Peter, DC Comics, Emanuela Lupacchino, Gail Simone, Heather Nuhfer, Meghan Hetrick, Nicola Scott, Rachel Dodson, Women at DC Comics, Women In Comics, Yuko Shimizu