So remember how we adjusted the numbers for DC’s December solicits? The last Wednesday in December is Boxing Day, and DC’s not shipping any books that week. Instead, because January is a five-Wednesday month, they moved all those books to the first Wednesday in January. Thus, when we looked at the December solicits, we added in that January week to get a more accurate view of the numbers. Now it’s time for the January solicits, so we’re going to subtract that first week. Easy peasy, right?
This leaves us with the last four weeks in January, which is a full cycle of DC’s publication schedule. All of the books will come out at their regular rate in that span. The only trouble is, it seems DC forgot to hire female and non-binary creators to work on them. Let’s take a look at who’s doing what this January:
- Agnes Garbowska: Teen Titans Go! #32 (interior art)
- Amanda Conner: Old Lady Harley #4 (cover)
- Amanda Deibert: Teen Titans Go! #32 (co-writer)
- Aneke: House of Whispers #5 (interior art)
- Bilquis Evely: The Dreaming #5 (interior art)
- Cecil Castellucci: Mysteries of Love in Space #1 (co-writer)
- Elena Casagrande: Catwoman #7 (interior art), Mysteries of Love in Space #1 (interior art)
- Emanuela Lupacchino: Wonder Woman #63 (interior art)
- G. Willow Wilson: Wonder Woman #62 (writer), Wonder Woman #63 (writer)
- Joelle Jones: Catwoman #7 (writer, interior art, cover), Mysteries of Love in Space #1 (cover)
- Kamome Shirahama: Wonder Woman #63 (variant cover)
- Kat Howard: Books of Magic #4 (writer)
- Kelly Sue DeConnick: Aquaman #44 (writer)
- Mairghread Scott: Batgirl #31 (writer)
- Marley Zarcone: The Wild Storm #19 (variant cover)
- Mirka Andolfo: Hex Wives #4 (interior art)
- Nalo Hopkinson: House of Whispers #5 (writer)
- Paulina Ganucheau: Hex Wives #4 (cover)
- Rachel Dodson: Wonder Woman #62 (cover), Wonder Woman #63 (cover)
- Zoe Quinn: Goddess Mode #2 (writer)
All together, there are 20 different female creators set to work on 14 different books at DC in January, 4 fewer creators than in the December adjusted numbers and a whopping 9 fewer books. As best I can tell, there are no non-binary creators listed in this round of solicits. And let me re-iterate: This is the same slate of books as our adjusted December numbers. We’ve not lost titles by moving the first week of January back with the December post. Both are four week cycles of DC’s entire line. January just sort of sucks. It looked like the December numbers were a step in the right direction after a subpar autumn for the publisher, but January has DC’s female and non-binary representation on the decline again.
Reading through the solicits was an odd experience, in that so many familiar names were gone. Yasmine Putri usually does a slew of variant covers, but this month there were none. Jenny Frison’s been doing Wonder Woman variant covers for ages, but she’s wrapped up that gig. Julie and Shawna Benson have been writing one book or another at DC for a couple of years now, but they’ve been taken off Green Arrow. So several of our regulars are gone, without much in the way of new names to replace them. We’ve got a few returning favourites; I feel like it’s been a little while since we’ve seen Amanda Deibert, Elena Casagrande, or Marley Zarcone. But there’s no one brand new, nor any real commensurate rise in female or non-binary creators to make up for the losses.
In terms of fictional women, Brian Michael Bendis’ new “Wonder Comics” imprint is rolling out some titles in January that feature a few gals. Wonder Girl and Amethyst are in Young Justice, while Naomi stars an all new female lead. Unfortunately, there are no female or non-binary creators attached to ANY of the “Wonder Comics” books at this point, which is just embarrassing. There are several books, all written and drawn by dudes. Come on now. Elsewhere this month, the only new book with female characters in the mix is the Mysteries of Love in Space special, which has stories starring Hawkgirl and Crush, i.e. Lobo’s daughter.
Overall, this is not a great start to the new year. The drop in creators is certainly noticeable, and the drop in representation across the line is massive. Falling from 23 books to 14 is a huge decline. And things like “Wonder Comics” aren’t helping matters either. How, in 2019, do you launch a brand new imprint with NO women or non-binary creators in the mix? It’s just ridiculous. Especially when the last imprint, “Young Animal,” was a bastion of female creator representation. So yeah, the year’s not getting off on the best foot. Hopefully things will pick up from here.