Posts Tagged ‘DC Women Kicking Ass’

Fallout By Gwenda Bond, A Young Adult Novel Starring Lois Lane, Coming In 2015

August 26, 2014


After a few teases from Switch Press and author Gwenda Bond, DC Women Kicking Ass has the scoop that a new young adult prose novel starring Lois Lane is coming out in 2015. Titled Fallout, the novel will be released next May. Here’s an official description:

Lois Lane is starting a new life in Metropolis. An Army brat, Lois has lived all over—and seen all kinds of things. (Some of them defy explanation, like the near-disaster she witnessed in Kansas in the middle of one night.) But now her family is putting down roots in the big city, and Lois is determined to fit in. Stay quiet. Fly straight. As soon as she steps into her new high school, though, she can see it won’t be that easy. A group known as the Warheads is making life miserable for another girl at school. They’re messing with her mind, somehow, via the high-tech immersive videogame they all play. Not cool. Armed with her wit and her new snazzy job as a reporter, Lois has her sights set on solving this mystery. But sometimes it’s all a bit much. Thank goodness for her maybe-more-than-a friend, a guy she knows only by his screenname, SmallvilleGuy …

Author Gwenda Bond added her own thoughts about Lois and the book on her blog today, writing:

Lois is an icon, of course, a superhero without any superpowers . . . except her unmatched bravery and smarts. Not to mention her sense of humor and her commitment to truth and justice. She’s also one of my all-time favorite characters — which is why I jumped at the chance to write a novel featuring a teen Lois, moving to Metropolis and becoming a reporter for the first time. As I said yesterday, it’s been an incredible honor to do this project and work with the fantastic teams at Capstone/Switch Press and DC. And, most of all, to get to put Lois front and center in the starring role, obviously. (Also fun to write lots of banter with her maybe-more-than-a-friend from Kansas, screen name SmallvilleGuy.)

Bond is clearly a huge Lois Lane fan, which is great to hear. Her past work includes the young adult novels Blackwood and The Woken Gods, neither of which I have read but I’m trying to get a hold of them now to check them out. Her newest novel, Girl on a Wire, comes out in October.

This is a very exciting announcement, and yet another step by DC Comics to reach a female audience as of late. Marvel tried a similar move last year with the young adult novels The She-Hulk Diaries and Rogue Touch, which were okay but departed from past incarnations of the characters in significant ways. Fallout appears to have a solid grasp on Lois, and is exploring a part of her life that hasn’t been covered very much, so Bond has lots of room to do her own thing while staying true to the character.

Switch Press has released two teasers for the book this week. Here is the first:


And the second:


The publisher seems very enthusiastically behind the book, so hopefully that will mean a big push from Switch Press and DC Comics as publication nears. I’m really looking forward to this book, and I’m glad to see Lois Lane finally getting some attention. It’s long overdue!


A New 3 Chicks Review Comics Podcast With A Special Guest Host: Me!

July 28, 2014


This weekend, I had the pleasure of guest hosting one of my favourite comics podcasts, “3 Chicks Review Comics.” The podcast’s regular hosts are Sue from DC Women Kicking Ass and Kelly Thompson from “She Has No Head!” on Comic Book Resources and the massively popular Kickstartered novels The Girl Who Would Be King and Storykiller.

The show was a ton of fun to do. We started off by talking about Wonder Woman Unbound and dug into a few corners of Wonder Woman’s history, which is always a good time. Then we reviewed two new comic books, Storm #1 which I loved but Sue and Kelly only liked, and Saga #21 which we all loved because Saga is just amazing. Up next was a chat about my women in comics stats, which led into a discussion of the big Comic-Con announcements and how not a lot of them involved female creators. Unfortunately we taped on Saturday morning, and were finished before the first image of Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman was released; we would’ve had a lot to say about that! But we covered all of the other big Comic-Con news and worried that we might come out of the weekend without any female-led superhero films, which sadly came to pass.

So go give the episode a listen! It’s on iTunes and Podbean and generally quite easy to get a hold of. It’s always a great show, and I had a blast doing it.

Wonder Woman Is Front And Center In Several New Kids’ Books

April 3, 2014

DC Women Kicking Ass, always on the ball when it comes to all things involving DC women, is reporting that several new kids’ books due out later this year feature Wonder Woman in a prominent role. First up is DC Comics: My First Book of Girl Power by Julie Merberg, a 20 page board book that showcases a variety of DC women with some classic José Luis García-López art. The publisher describes the book as:

A celebration of girl power for budding super heroines featuring beloved DC characters from Wonder Woman to Batgirl.

Exploring attributes from physical strength to intuition, this introduction to DC’s super heroines is also a catalog of role models for little girls. From Wonder Woman’s ability to find the truth to Black Canary’s powerful voice to Batgirl’s keen mind, readers will find much to admire.

And here’s a look at the art:



This looks really cool. I love the idea of using comic book heroines as a way to teach young readers that girls are strong and awesome, and moreover that they are strong and awesome in a variety of ways. It’s an important message that can sometimes be lost amidst the sea of princesses that dominate every sort of product aimed at little girls. Hopefully by the time the little girls who read this book grow up enough to read comic books, representations of female characters there will have continued to improve. Things seem to be getting better, but there’s still a ways to go (coffcoffStarfirecoffcoff).

There are also two Wonder Woman themed education books on the way, Wonder Woman’s ABCs and Wonder Woman: A Word Adventure! With books like that, soon your kids will be able to spell words like “Themyscira” and “Hekatoncheires” with no problem at all.

It’s great to see DC licensing their characters in products aimed at young girls. It’s easy to find anything with Batman or Superman on it, but representation for female superheroes is rather poor. Getting kids into superheroes at an early age is how you develop lifelong fans, and showcasing female characters presents little girls with heroes they are more likely to identify with and embrace. It’s smart marketing, plus it’s just good for everyone to have a superhero to look up to.

Wonder Woman Unbound: The Curious History Of The World’s Most Famous Heroine Is Out TODAY

April 1, 2014

First off, this is not an April Fool’s Day joke!

Second, my book is out today! It’s called Wonder Woman Unbound: The Curious History of the World’s Most Famous Heroine, and it traces Wonder Woman’s history from her creation in 1941 to the present day, focusing on her unusual journey to becoming a feminist icon. It’s been getting some very nice reviews, including profiles in Bust magazine and Salon.

Here’s what the book looks like:

Wonder Woman Unbound Cover

And this is what Trina Robbins had to say about the book:

I’ve never seen more information about Wonder Woman than in Wonder Woman Unbound. Tim Hanley tells us everything we’ve never asked about Wonder Woman because it simply never occurred to us: from her mythic Golden Age origins through her dismal Silver Age years as a lovesick romance comic character, and worse yet, when she lost her costume and powers in the late 1960s. Our favorite Amazon’s saga becomes upbeat again with the 1970s advent of Gloria Steinem and Ms. magazine, and Lynda Carter’s unforgettable portrayal of her on television. And it’s all told with a dollop of humor!

If you want to know more about Wonder Woman Unbound, I’ve put up a series of previews showing panels from Wonder Woman comics that highlight key points of the book. I’ve also written a post for DC Women Kicking Ass that addresses several misconceptions about Wonder Woman and offers a few peeks at material from the book.

Wonder Woman Unbound is available from all major retailers (Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and also Chapters if you’re Canadian) in paperback and every ebook format. It’s not out in comic shops yet, but I’m anticipating that it will be available there in the next week or so.

I’m obviously a huge Wonder Woman fan, so it was a lot of fun to write this book and I’m so excited that it’s out now. Wonder Woman’s history has been largely forgotten, eclipsed by her iconic status and often simplified and sensationalized on the rare occasions it does come up. There is some crazy stuff in her past, to be sure, but there’s a lot more to this great character and I think that a fuller understanding of her past leads to an even better appreciation of Wonder Woman today. Her many incarnations are fascinating both in their similarities and contradictions, and I hope that you’ll enjoy reading about Wonder Woman’s history as much as I enjoyed writing about her.

Grant Morrison Interviewed About Wonder Woman: Earth One

June 27, 2013


For a book without a release date yet, Grant Morrison and Yanick Paquette are certainly doing a lot of press lately for Wonder Woman: Earth OneYesterday, the Los Angeles Times’ “Hero Complex” blog posted an interview with Morrison about the book that revealed some interesting tidbits.  Obviously, any judgment will be withheld until the book is actually out and I’ve read it, but from what I’ve heard about the book so far, I’m not particularly enthused about it and there are a few comments from the interview that I thought were worth discussing.

When asked if Wonder Woman was a character he’d wanted to tackle, Morrison replied:

Kind of. I’d done it before in “Justice League,” but she’s always been a kind of presence. And there’s something about the character that really annoyed me, to be honest, because I couldn’t quite get a hook on her.

I’m never a big fan of having someone write a book about a character where the approach is “I don’t particularly like this character, but I’ll try to figure out a way to make it work.”  This was the same sort of thing we heard from Brian Azzarello about Wonder Woman, and while his Wonder Woman has some good components, the weakest part of the book by far is his treatment of Wonder Woman herself.  I find that when someone doesn’t have a good handle on a character to begin with, in trying to figure them out they often veer off into weird, new directions that don’t necessarily well reflect what the character has meant to readers for generations.  I’m all for updating and innovation, but when you compare the way Morrison talks about Wonder Woman to, say, the way a writer like Greg Rucka or Gail Simone talks about her, you can see a huge difference.

This comes across for me strongly when Morrison discusses the Golden Age Wonder Woman and the work of William Moulton Marston.  Sue at DC Women Kicking Ass has been doing regular posts about Wonder Woman: Earth One and how often Morrison goes on about sex in relation to the book, which is often, and this interview is another example of that.  After mentioning Marston’s theory that men should submit to women, he says:

It’s about the sexes and how we feel about one another, and what a society of women cut off from the rest of the world for 3,000 years might look like, and what kind of sexuality, what kind of philosophy, what kind of science would that have developed, and how would that impact our world if it actually suddenly became apparent that these women existed. So for me, that was always the original Wonder Woman story, but when you hear it retold, there’s a lot of potential in there to talk about the way we live today and the way the sexes view one another, especially in an age when pornography has become so ubiquitous, to go back to this sort of strange eroticism that Martson had.

My issue with Morrison’s sex focus is that while yes, Marston had his kinks and early Wonder Woman comics had a sexual element, it was very much a below the surface, between the lines kind of thing.  It also had a lot of layers; there was the bondage element, Marston’s justification of the bondage element as a critique of the harshness of patriarchal society, the degree to which this justification falls apart upon closer examination, and the way Marston’s other kinks and fixations seem to almost inadvertently slip into the book on a regular basis.

The “strange eroticism” of Marston was complicated and not particularly overt; the bondage imagery and lesbian subtext is there if you’re looking for it, but you have to look for it.  Morrison, on the other hand, seems to be bringing it to the fore.  Frankly, I think rather than tackle Marston’s approach to sexuality head on, a far more interesting tack for Morrison to take would be to do his own Wonder Woman and eschew any past influences and see if any of his own personal kinks and feelings about sexuality bleed into the book the way Marston’s did.

As much as I question Morrison’s entire approach to this book, I did appreciate what he had to say about female readers.  When asked if he was hoping to attract a female audience, Morrison replied:

Absolutely. We’ll see what happens. It all depends, I guess. It has a lot to do with marketing and the kinds of interviews that we do. But yeah, I was speaking the other day, and I said, “This is a book for mothers and their daughters,” so hopefully that will stand.

It’s good to hear that he’s committed to reaching out to a female audience.  As we all well know, this isn’t DC’s strong suit, but if Morrison is pushing for it than hopefully something will happen.

Morrison also talked a bit about Yanick Paquette’s art, which I’m sure will be gorgeous despite my qualms about the story itself.  Describing Paquette’s art for the opening of the book, Morrison says:

The first 15 pages are basically a retelling of the Greek myth as filtered through the original Wonder Woman story, where Hercules has enslaved the Amazons, and Hippolyta’s in chains, and basically the Amazons escape and declare that they will establish a paradise island far from the gaze of men. So he’s sent in that entire sequence now, and it’s just this beautiful mural, and he’s done all this amazing decorative stuff with baubles and shattered shards of Greek pottery. And all the scenes are drawn in this flat, graphic style of Greek art, so it really is the most amazing thing.

This sounds super cool.  Paquette’s an amazing artist, and from this description it seems that the art posted above, the only art from the book we have thus far, is part of this sequence.  However, while that sounds lovely, Morrison then goes on to say that Paquette “captures those aspects of it, which I wanted it to have — the eroticism of Wonder Woman” and we’re back to talking about sex again.

Anyway, now we’re all caught up on the latest news about Wonder Woman: Earth One.  It still doesn’t have a release date and, generally speaking, I’m very concerned about it, but I’m optimistic that it’ll be pretty at least.

DC Women Kicking Ass’ “The Worst Of 2012 For DC Women”

January 2, 2013


The annual rundown of the best and worst for DC Comics’ women is up at DC Women Kicking Ass, and I got to participate in the worst list along with great ladies like Kelly Thompson, Liz Pfeiffer, Lisa Fortuner, and Corrina Lawson.  It was rather distinguished company!!

I got to comment on Wonder Woman #7 and the revelation that the Amazons are rapists and murderers, which I found rather upsetting, and on the Wonder Woman/Superman romance, which was a bad idea that’s continuing to play out poorly.  I agree with the rest of the list as well.  It wasn’t the best year for women at DC in several ways.

However, there were a few bright spots in 2012.  Ann Nocenti and Christy Marx joined Gail Simone as regular writers, and then Gail Simone joined them after she was fired and re-hired.  Wonder Woman, despite the whole Amazon thing, has had good moments over the year, and Batwoman and Batgirl have been consistently good and well-reviewed.  I don’t hear much about Supergirl, but I’m still enjoying it, particularly the way Mahmud Asrar draws her in a classy manner.  On the digital side of things, there are gals all over the place, more so than in print (and then eventually in print, I suppose… nothing is exclusively digital yet).  The year definitely had it’s bad moments, but it certainly wasn’t all bad.

Head over to DC Women Kicking Ass and check out the full Worst of 2012 list!!

My Case For Wonder Woman To Win The Most Kick Ass DC Woman Tournament At DCWKA

November 14, 2012

For the past three years, the fantastic site DC Women Kicking Ass has run a tournament to name the most kick ass DC woman of the year.  This year, the final four are Batgirl (Barbara Gordon), Black Canary (Dinah Lance), Stephanie Brown, and Wonder Woman.  Yesterday and today, each woman’s case has been made in a guest post, and I got to make the case for Wonder Woman:

My argument boiled down to the fact that Wonder Woman has been kicking ass the longest, and in so many ways over the decades while overcoming so many obstacles, that she is the DEFINITIVE kick ass DC woman.  The post takes a look at how Wonder Woman was awesome by decade, starting in the 1940s and running to today.  Plus it’s got lots of fun pictures!!  So go give it a read, and vote for Wonder Woman in the semi-finals and, hopefully, in the finals too!!

I’ve got a feeling that it might be Stephanie Brown’s year as a sort of protest vote, since Stephanie Brown outrage remains strong.  I love Steph too, but Wonder Woman is far and away the most kick ass DC woman and has already lost the tournament twice to former Batgirls!!  Let’s right that wrong this year.  Look for the final voting rounds to begin in the coming days at DC Women Kicking Ass.

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