Posts Tagged ‘Rachel Dodson’

Women & NB Creators at DC Comics Watch, July 2019 Solicits: 18 Creators on 20 Books

June 17, 2019

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July is a month with five Wednesdays, which usually means more comics from DC. Typically, we get annuals and other one-shot specials in that last week, since most of their ongoing books are released on a regular schedule (Wonder Woman is out on the second and fourth Wednesday of every month, for example), and there’s a bit of that here. But we’ve also got a lot of new books throughout the entire month, both ongoing and mini-series. DC trimmed back their line earlier this year, and now it seems to be growing again. Does that mean we’ll see more female and non-binary creators moving forward? Well, so far, no. Let’s take a look at who is doing what at DC this July:

  • Adriana Melo: Female Furies #6 (interior art)
  • Amanda Conner: Wonder Woman: Come Back To Me #1 (co-writer, cover)
  • Bilquis Evely: The Dreaming #11 (interior art)
  • Cecil Castellucci: Batgirl #37 (writer), Female Furies #6 (writer)
  • Emanuela Lupacchino: Wonder Twins #6 (variant cover)
  • G. Willow Wilson: Wonder Woman #74 (writer), Wonder Woman #75 (writer)
  • Jenny Frison: Lois Lane #1 (variant cover), Wonder Woman #74 (variant cover), Wonder Woman #75 (variant cover)
  • Joelle Jones: Catwoman #13 (writer, interior art, cover), Female Furies #6 (cover)
  • Kat Howard: The Books of Magic #10 (writer)
  • Kelly Sue DeConnick: Aquaman #50 (writer)
  • Lea H. Seidman: Teen Titans Go! #35 (cover)
  • Mairghread Scott: Batman Secret Files #2 (co-writer)
  • Nalo Hopkinson: House of Whispers #11 (co-writer)
  • Rachel Dodson: Justice League #28 (variant cover), Wonder Woman #75 (cover)
  • Sandra Hope: Superman: Up In The Sky #1 (inker)
  • Taki Soma: Pearl #11 (variant cover)
  • Tiffany Turrill: Lucifer #10 (cover)
  • Yasmine Putri: DCeased #3 (variant cover), Red Hood: Outlaw #36 (variant cover)

All together, there are 18 different female creators set to work on 20 different comic books at DC this July, the same number of creators as in June across three more books. As best I can tell, there are no non-binary creators listed in this round of solicits. Given that DC is putting out 11 more books in July than in June, the fact that the number of creators stayed the same is disappointing. As we’ve talked about over the past few months while DC’s output decreased, it’s reasonable to see a commensurate drop in the number of female and non-binary creators as the line dwindles. But you’d expect to see the numbers go up when it grows, which hasn’t happened here.

However, DC’s jumped up to 62 new books after putting out only 51 in June, and with female creators on 20 of those books, that means women will work on 32% of the publisher’s comics in July. This percentage is very comparable to what we’ve seen over the past few months. The overall representation across the line is steady, but there aren’t more women or non-binary creators doing the work. It’s a small number of people doing more work, which is a bit of a mixed bag. Talented creators should get lots of work, for sure! But it’s good to grow the ranks as well.

And DC didn’t do a lot of that this month. Lea H. Seidman looks new but she’s actually Lea Hernandez, who we’ve seen a bunch on Teen Titans Go!, now using her married name. And while I feel like we haven’t seen Taki Soma in a little bit, she’s nonetheless a familiar face at DC now that her pal and occasional collaborator Brian Michael Bendis is there. Everyone else are our wonderfully talented usuals.

In terms of female characters, we’ve got a couple new books to look forward to. DC’s repackaging their original Walmart comic stories for the direct market, which means new mini-series for Batman, Superman, and, most important of all, Wonder Woman with Wonder Woman: Come Back to Me. And the Superman line is expanding with a Lois Lane series, FINALLY. It’s long overdue and I really wish there were more female creators working on it, but I’m happy it’s going to exist nonetheless. Doom Patrol is coming back as well, with a few female characters in the mix there.

So, another ho-hum month at DC, really. Their numbers for female and non-binary creators have been consistently underwhelming all year long, and it looks like that’s going to continue into the summer. Representation just doesn’t seem to be a big priority at DC right now.

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Wonder Woman #71 Review: A Colossal Discovery

May 22, 2019

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We’ve had a bit of a talky go of it lately with Wonder Woman. Atlantiades is not the sort of villain you stop with fisticuffs, or even a villain at all, really. More an interesting conundrum, a deity in a strange place doing what only comes natural to them, seeking worship. And toying with mortals, of course. The gods are always toying with mortals. It’s brought us an interesting glimpse into Wonder Woman’s love life, along with some cool discussions on free will and happiness, and it’s all been quite excellent. That plot is largely resolved this week, but with little in the way of awesome punching and action fun.

That’s why it’s handy that Maggie and Aphrodite went off exploring and found a new foe. One that’s definitely going to need some punching. There’ll be no thoughtful, introspective discussions with this adversary. Just a classic beat ‘em up. I love that Wonder Woman is a book that can give us both. G. Willow Wilson’s dug into some heavy subject matter since she took over the series, but she’s also made time to have Diana bust up some rock giants and now what appears to be a massive living statue of some sort. That’s just quality comic booking all around. We’ll dig into it all, but first:

SPOILER ALERT!!

We’re going to discuss everything that happened in this issue!

Turn away if you haven’t read it yet!

Also, as always, you should be reading this book!

Before we get into all the fun, I don’t know who keeps telling Terry and Rachel Dodson that Steve Trevor is in the book, but he is not. And yet, he keeps showing up on the covers. He actually popped in for a scene or two a couple weeks back, but wasn’t on the cover then. And now he’s back on the cover once more, with nary a mention of the man inside the book. It’s such a nitpicky thing, I know, but I wonder about the disconnect. Was Steve supposed to be in the book at one point and plans got changed? Are the Dodsons just drawing what they think will look cool? I mean, their covers are always amazing. I’m not even annoyed. Just curious and confused.

Anyway, onto the story. We get a resolution of sorts with Atlantiades, as they realized what they’d hoped to achieve in the town had failed. They thought that letting people be free of the expectations of their ordinary lives and indulge in their desires would bring the town happiness, but it most definitely did not. Actions have consequences, and the weight of these consequences snapped the townsfolk out of Atlantiades’ spell. They got them back momentarily with a display of divine power, but Diana talked them out of continuing the experiment. Atlantiades is clearly dealing with a lot, including a strained relationship with their mother, and hopefully we can see some growth on that front moving forward. They’re a selfish character, but I think they have a good heart. They’re just a bit lost and hurt, and likely have been that way for centuries. I’m excited to see what they make of the opportunities in this new world, having learned from this experience, and I hope Wilson checks in on them from time to time if this town escapade is indeed wrapped up for now.

The only thing I didn’t like about the resolution was that Xermanico didn’t draw the last few pages of it. This is understandable. Bi-weekly comics are an insane grind and you’re going to get some fill-in pages. Tom Derenick and Scott Hanna stepped in to finish the scene, and while the artwork was serviceable, it failed to capture the characters well, especially Atlantiades. Xermanico brought a compelling androgyny to Atlantiades that befit their mythological background. Derenick and Hanna failed to replicate that, leaning much more into the feminine aspects of the character. Atlantiades ended up looking like a twin of Diana rather than the unique take Xermanico had obviously carefully developed.

Xermanico’s work on this arc has been exceptional, from character design to panel layout and beyond, and I’m sad that the strictures of the schedule prevented him from being able to close it out himself. As much as I love getting Wonder Woman twice a month, I deeply hate the onerous demands that bi-weekly books put on artists. This is a run that should be collected for years, even decades to come, and putting out subpar artwork now to fit this unreasonable schedule is a short term compromise that will lead to disappointment long term. I know nobody likes late books, but I feel like editorial could do a better job of planning out the artwork.

But I digress. There was a whole other story to this issue, with a dang colossus in it! At first I thought it was just a giant minotaur, but Aphrodite called it a colossus and the golden head confirms her words. This appears to be a massive statue brought to life somehow, perhaps with the same power that got us stone giants in the Rockies. As far as I can tell, this is an original invention by Wilson and not based on an existing statue or anything. There have been various colossal statues throughout history, most famously the Colossus of Rhodes, which was a statue of Helios, but none of them were a minotaur, I don’t think.

So yeah, we’ve got a fight on our hands now! I love that the sword has emboldened Maggie, and that she was prepared to take on the colossus by herself. She’s been a great addition to the cast, and I’ve enjoyed watching her trepidation give way to courage over the past few issues. Not even Aphrodite dared face off against the colossus, and she’s a dang god! Luckily Wonder Woman arrived just in the nick of time and now they can make a good fight of it. I’m excited to see them throw down in June, and to see what mysteries these underground pathways hold. Well, “underground.” I’m guessing there’s some dimensional travel at play or an underworld sort of situation. Either way, adventure awaits!

Women & NB Creators at Marvel Comics Watch, June 2019 Solicits: 35 Creators on 36 Books

May 16, 2019

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On the one hand, Marvel will have nearly twice as many female and non-binary creators as DC this June. On the other hand, Marvel is also putting out nearly twice as many books as DC this June. It’s hard to compare the two publishers directly these days, but what’s undoubtedly true is that while DC’s got a core group of female creators in their solicits each month, Marvel’s got a wide ranging assortment of women and non-binary creators month in, month out, some well established on regular gigs and others breaking into the industry on smaller jobs. The breadth of the line means more opportunity, finally. So let’s take a look at the long list of who is doing what at Marvel this June:

  • Alitha E. Martinez: Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #44 (interior art), Miles Morales: Spider-Man #7 (interior art)
  • Amanda Conner: Captain Marvel #6 (cover), Captain Marvel #7 (cover)
  • Annapaola Martello: Captain Marvel #6 (interior art), Captain Marvel #7 (interior art)
  • Annie Wu: War of the Realms: New Agents of Atlas #3 (variant cover)
  • Ashley Witter: Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #33 (cover)
  • Audrey Mok: Marvel Rising #4 (cover)
  • Becky Cloonan: Wolverine: Exit Wounds #1 (variant cover)
  • Charlie Jane Anders: War of the Realms: War Scrolls #3 (co-writer)
  • Elizabeth Torque: Black Cat #1 (variant cover)
  • Emanuela Lupacchino: Immortal Hulk #19 (variant cover)
  • Erica Henderson: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #45 (cover)
  • Eve L. Ewing: Ironheart #7 (writer), Marvel Team-Up #3 (writer)
  • Gail Simone: Domino: Hotshots #4 (writer), Tony Stark: Iron Man #13 (writer)
  • Gurihiru: The Unstoppable Wasp #9 (interior art)
  • Irina Nordsol: War of the Realms #6 (variant cover)
  • Jen Bartel: Guardians of the Galaxy Annual #1 (variant cover), Marvel Tales: Spider-Man #1 (cover), War of the Realms: Journey Into Mystery #4 (variant cover)
  • Jody Houser: Star Wars: Tie Fighter #3 (writer)
  • Kate Niemczyk: Age of Conan: Belit #4 (interior art)
  • Kelly Thompson: Captain Marvel #6 (writer), Captain Marvel #7 (writer), Mr. and Mrs. X #12 (writer)
  • Kirbi Fagan: Shuri #9 (cover)
  • Leah Williams: Age of X-Man: X-Tremists #5 (writer), Giant-Man #3 (writer)
  • Meredith Finch: Savage Sword of Conan #6 (writer)
  • Nilah Magruder: Marvel Rising #4 (writer)
  • Nnedi Okorafor: Shuri #9 (writer)
  • Rachael Stott: Shuri #9 (interior art)
  • Rachel Dodson: Star Wars: Age of Rebellion – Darth Vader #1 (cover), Star Wars: Age of Rebellion – Luke Skywalker #1 (cover)
  • Rainbow Rowell: Runaways #22 (writer)
  • Sana Takeda: Age of Conan: Belit #4 (cover)
  • Seanan McGuire: Age of X-Man: The Amazing Nightcrawler #5 (writer), Spider-Gwen: Ghost-Spider #9 (writer)
  • Stacey Lee: The Unstoppable Wasp #9 (cover)
  • Tini Howard: Age of Conan: Belit #4 (writer), Guardians of the Galaxy Annual #1 (co-writer), Thanos #3 (writer)
  • Vanesa Del Rey: Miles Morales: Spider-Man #7 (interior art)
  • Vita Ayala: Age of X-Man: Prisoner X #4 (writer)
  • Yasmine Putri: Thor #14 (variant cover)

All together, there are 35 different female and non-binary creators scheduled to work on 36 Marvel comic books in June, two more creators and one more book than in May. These are big numbers. Again, yes, Marvel is putting out a lot of books right now. But having a commensurate increase in female and non-binary creators while they do so is a pleasant surprise. The Big Two have not been good at that at all. Like, ever.

Speaking of the massive output, Marvel is planning to release 91 new issues in June. With female and non-binary creators working on 36 of them, that’s representation across 40% of the line, an increase of 5% from May. In comparison, DC is at 33%, so Marvel’s a bit ahead, if not starkly so.

It looks like we’ve got a few new creators in the mix as well. As best I can tell, Charlie Jane Anders is doing her first writing for Marvel in War of the Realms: War Scrolls #3, and while Meredith Finch had a long and quite frankly terrible run on Wonder Woman at DC, her gig on Savage Sword of Conan #6 appears to be a Marvel first, too. We’ve also got Russian artist Irina Nordsol doing a variant cover for War of the Realms #6. There are some returning favourites in the mix as well. We haven’t seen Alitha E. Martinez in a little while, it’s been even longer for Annapaola Martello, and it’s always good to see Annie Wu, Gurihiru, and Vanesa Del Rey back at Marvel.

June is a quiet month for new books, with War of the Realms winding down. Things should pick up over the summer, though, and I’m very curious to see what the X-Men relaunch and the cancellation/relaunch of the entire X-line will do to the numbers. But for now, we’ve got one female character on a new title, with Felicia Hardy taking center stage in a Black Cat ongoing series.

Overall, Marvel’s rolling along with relatively strong numbers for female and non-binary creators. As much as there’s always room to grow, the year thus far has shown nothing but sustained representation for writers and artists. I will note that the full numbers haven’t exactly followed suit. When you take into account the full credits, like I do quarterly in my women in comics statistics reports, Marvel’s numbers become a bit underwhelming. But here in the solicits, which are what sell the books, female and non-binary creators have been a solid constant this year.

Women & NB Creators at DC Comics Watch, June 2019 Solicits: 18 Creators on 17 Books

May 14, 2019

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DC is really committed to putting out fewer books now. When they announced that they were cutting back, I was curious to see how long it would last, but they’re sticking with it. We saw a slight uptick in the May solicits, on account of it being a month with five Wednesdays, and now with the June solicits we’re back down again. Down so low, in fact, that it might be the fewest books DC has released since we started tracking these numbers several years back. And fewer books has meant a commensurate drop in female and non-binary creators, which continues this month. Let’s take a look at who is doing what at DC this June:

  • Adriana Melo: Female Furies #5 (interior art)
  • Amanda Conner: Supergirl #31 (variant cover)
  • Bilquis Evely: The Dreaming #10 (interior art)
  • Cecil Castellucci: Female Furies #5 (writer)
  • Elena Casagrande: Young Justice #6 (interior art)
  • Emanuela Lupacchino: Justice League #26 (variant cover)
  • G. Willow Wilson: Wonder Woman #72 (writer)
  • Jenny Frison: The Batman Who Laughs #6 (variant cover), Wonder Woman #72 (variant cover), Wonder Woman #73 (variant cover)
  • Joelle Jones: Catwoman #12 (writer, cover)
  • Kat Howard: The Books of Magic #9 (writer)
  • Kelly Sue DeConnick: Aquaman #49 (writer)
  • Mairghread Scott: Batgirl #36 (writer)
  • Nalo Hopkinson: House of Whispers #10 (co-writer)
  • Rachel Dodson: Wonder Woman #72 (cover)
  • Sandra Hope: The Silencer #18 (cover)
  • Stacey Lee: Wonder Twins #5 (variant cover)
  • Tiffany Turrill: Lucifer #9 (cover)
  • Yasmine Putri: Red Hood: Outlaw #35 (variant cover)

All together, there are 18 different female creators scheduled to work on 17 different comics in June, three fewer creators than in May and one fewer book. As best I can tell, there are no non-binary creators listed in this round of solicits. Given that DC’s dropped from 62 books in May to 51 in June, falling from 21 female creators to 18 seems like a reasonable result. Growth would be preferred, of course, but the publisher is maintaining the same level here.

With the new reductions to the line, we’ve been keeping track of representation on a per book basis, in part due to the fluctuations and in part to have a more accurate comparison with Marvel’s more robust line. With women working on 17 of DC’s 51 titles this month, we’ve got female creators on 33% of the line, which is a slight step up from May’s 29% and very near their 31% level from April. If nothing else, DC is consistent.

In terms of new names at the publisher in this round of solicits, we’ve got one. Stacey Lee is doing a variant cover, and she’s been a mainstay at Marvel for a little while now. Everyone else listed above is someone we’ve seen recently at DC. I think this is an unintended consequence of reducing the line so much. With fewer books, editors are likely to stick with the creators they know and rely on established talent to make sure the limited selection sells well. This means fewer opportunities for new and emerging creators, and doubly so for new and emerging female and non-binary creators, who already have a more difficult road making it into a major superhero publisher. It’s a shame that the limited number of entry points into creating superhero comic books have been reduced even further. That’s really going to hurt the development of new talent, and make it more difficult for this list to grow.

June is a quiet month for female characters as well. The blockbuster Event Leviathan is set to launch, and I understand that Lois Lane is going to be a big part of that, which is cool. The first solicit mentions Talia al Ghul as well. Apart from that, the only other new series is the prestige format Superman Year One, which looks very terrible. Frank Miller’s never written Superman well, and John Romita Jr. was an odd fit for the Man of Steel back when he was on the regular series. Lois will probably show up in that book eventually, too, though with Miller writing it all I’d honestly rather she didn’t.

So overall we’ve got another steady if underwhelming month from DC Comics. Female and non-binary creators don’t seem to be a priority for the publisher, and they’ve certainly made no moves with their June plans to expand the ranks. It looks like they’re good with the limited (albeit excellent) assortment they have now, and while the steadiness is better than losses, it’s still rather disappointing. Perhaps the summer will bring some changes? You never know.

Women & NB Creators at Marvel Comics Watch, May 2019 Solicits: 33 Creators on 35 Books

April 22, 2019

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Marvel’s solid 2019 is set to continue in May as the publisher’s female and non-binary creator representation remains high. It’s a stability we’re not used to seeing at Marvel, but it’s a welcome change. There’s been a strong core of creators with regular gigs thus far this year, as well as a rotating group of creators who bounce from specials to minis to random ongoing issues and help keep the numbers high. And they’re even higher now. Let’s take a look at who’s doing what at Marvel in May:

  • Alti Firmansyah: The Unstoppable Wasp #7 (interior art), The Unstoppable Wasp #8 (interior art)
  • Amanda Conner: Captain Marvel #5 (cover)
  • Ashley Witter: Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #32 (cover), X-23 #12 (cover)
  • Audrey Mok: Marvel Rising #3 (cover)
  • Carmen Carnero: Captain Marvel #5 (interior art)
  • Devin Grayson: War of the Realms: War Scrolls #2 (co-writer)
  • Erica Henderson: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #33 (cover)
  • Eve L. Ewing: Ironheart #6 (writer), Marvel Team-Up #2 (writer)
  • Gail Simone: Domino: Hotshots #3 (writer), Tony Stark: Iron Man #12 (writer)
  • Jen Bartel: Black Panther #12 (interior art), Marvel Tales: Avengers #1 (cover), Marvel Tales: Iron Man #1 (cover), Thanos #2 (variant cover)
  • Jen Soska: Black Widow #5 (co-writer)
  • Jody Houser: Star Wars: Tie Fighter #2 (writer)
  • Kate Niemczyk: Age of Conan: Belit #3 (interior art)
  • Kelly Thompson: Captain Marvel #5 (writer), Mr. and Mrs. X #11 (writer)
  • Kirbi Fagan: Shuri #8 (cover)
  • Leah Williams: Age of X-Man: X-Tremists #4 (writer), Giant-Man #1 (writer), Giant-Man #2 (writer)
  • Mariko Tamaki: X-23 #12 (writer)
  • Michelle Delecki: Age of X-Man: The Amazing Nightcrawler #4 (cover)
  • Natacha Bustos: Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #43 (cover)
  • Nilah Magruder: Marvel Rising #3 (writer)
  • Nnedi Okorafor: Shuri #8 (writer)
  • Rachael Stott: Shuri #8 (interior art)
  • Rachel Dodson: Star Wars: Age of Rebellion – Boba Fett #1 (cover), Star Wars: Age of Rebellion – Han Solo #1 (cover), Star Wars: Age of Rebellion – Jabba the Hutt #1 (cover), Star Wars: Age of Rebellion – Lando Calrissian #1 (cover)
  • Rainbow Rowell: Runaways #21 (writer)
  • Sana Takeda: Age of Conan: Belit #3 (cover)
  • Seanan McGuire: Age of X-Man: The Amazing Nightcrawler #4 (writer), Spider-Gwen: Ghost-Spider #8 (writer)
  • Stacey Lee: The Unstoppable Wasp #7 (cover), The Unstoppable Wasp #8 (cover)
  • Stephanie Hans: Age of Conan: Belit #3 (variant cover), Marvels Annotated #4 (variant cover), Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #32 (variant cover)
  • Sujin Jo: Amazing Spider-Man #21 (variant cover), Magnificent Ms. Marvel #3 (variant cover), Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #43 (variant cover), The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #33 (variant cover), The Unstoppable Wasp #7 (variant cover)
  • Sylvia Soska: Black Widow #5 (co-writer)
  • Tini Howard: Age of Conan: Belit #3 (writer), Thanos #2 (writer)
  • Vita Ayala: Age of X-Man: Prisoner X #3 (writer)
  • Yasmine Putri: Star Wars: Age of Rebellion – Han Solo #1 (variant cover)

All together, there are 33 female and non-binary creators set to work on 35 different books at Marvel in May, two more creators than in April across five more books. The lengthy list above is an amazing compilation of talented creators, and the publisher had done a solid job keeping a solid portion of them employed across the line for several months running now. They’re working throughout the books as well. A lot of covers, as always, but a lot of writers, too, and a growing number of interior artists.

We’re also now keeping track of the number of books as well, what with DC cutting back their line and Marvel appearing to expand theirs. They’re set to publish 99 books in May, a massive numbers of titles. With female and non-binary creators working on 35 different books, that accounts for representation on a smidge over 35% of the books, which is a drop of 4% from April. Marvel is set to publish twenty additional issues in May, and they haven’t hired women or non-binary creators at a proportional rate for all of these new books, which is somewhat disappointing to see.

For new names, we’ve got Sujin Jo on several variant covers. I should also point out that there are a slew of Asian artists working on other variant covers across the line and, while I’ve been able to track down some of them, a few remain mysteries to me and I can’t determine their gender. Most of them are based in Asia, with websites in their native languages, and I can’t glean the information I need. So there may be even more new female and non-binary creators in the mix. I’m going to keep searching, and hopefully I can track everyone down in time for my more detailed full stats count.

May isn’t a big month for new female creators, apart from team books. Elektra is in Savage Avengers, while a range of War of the Realms tie-ins have Black Widow, Captain Marvel, Freyja, Ms. Marvel, She-Hulk, Silk, and a handful more superheroines in the mix.

Overall, while Marvel’s numbers for female and non-binary creators aren’t exactly keepin up with May’s big jump in titles, representation remains high at the publisher. And across a wide range of books as well, not just ones headlined by female characters. It’s been a relatively impressive run for Marvel, and we’ll be back next month to see if it continues.

Women & NB Creators at DC Comics Watch, May 2019 Solicits: 21 Creators on 18 Books

April 9, 2019

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DC trimming back their comic line has resulted in some shifting of the numbers for female and non-binary creators over the past few months. Representation has declined more or less in line with the drop in the number of books, and we see this trend holding with the May numbers, just in the other direction. DC had 54 comics in their April solicits but that’s jumped to 62 in May, and the numbers have gone up accordingly. Let’s take a look at who is doing what at DC this May:

  • Adriana Melo: Female Furies #1 (interior art)
  • Amanda Conner: Supergirl #30 (variant cover)
  • Bilquis Evely: The Dreaming #9 (interior art)
  • Cecil Castellucci: Female Furies #1 (writer)
  • Elena Casagrande: Catwoman Annual #1 (interior art)
  • Emanuela Lupacchino: The Green Lantern #7 (variant cover)
  • G. Willow Wilson: Dog Days of Summer #1 (co-writer), Wonder Woman #70 (writer), Wonder Woman #71 (writer)
  • Jenny Frison: Wonder Woman #70 (variant cover), Wonder Woman #71 (variant cover)
  • Joelle Jones: Catwoman #11 (writer, cover), Catwoman Annual #1 (writer, cover)
  • Kamome Shirahama: Shazam! #6 (variant cover)
  • Kat Howard: Books of Magic #8 (writer)
  • Kelly Sue DeConnick: Aquaman #48 (writer)
  • Lea Hernandez: Teen Titans Go! #34 (cover)
  • Mairghread Scott: Batgirl #35 (writer)
  • Mariko Tamaki: Dog Days of Summer #1 (co-writer)
  • Nalo Hopkinson: House of Whispers #9 (co-writer)
  • Rachel Dodson: Wonder Woman #70 (cover), Wonder Woman #71 (cover)
  • Sarah Leuver: Teen Titans Go! #34 (interior art)
  • Tiffany Turrill: Lucifer #8 (cover)
  • Yasmine Putri: Red Hood: Outlaw #34 (variant cover)
  • Zoe Quinn: Goddess Mode #6 (writer)

All together, there are 21 different female creators scheduled to work on 19 different books at DC this May, four more creators than in April and one more book. As best I can tell, there are no non-binary creators listed in this round of solicits. So a gain of four is a solid jump, but one that’s generally in line with the increase in the number of books DC is releasing. The publisher still seems to be trying to figure out what’s a good level for them, and I anticipate that the numbers will continue to fluctuate with their scheduling experimentation.

Last month, in an effort to come up with a more comparable metric, we figured out what percentage of the line had female and non-binary creators. They were on 17 of DC’s 54 books in April, resulting in a total of 31%. This month, female creators appear in 18 of DC’s 62 books, landing us at 29%, so we’ve got a slight drop there. Nothing too big, but certainly not an improvement. While one would hope that more books would lead to more opportunities, that doesn’t seem to be the case.

In terms of new names, it’s a pretty quiet month. I think we’ve seen everyone before. There are some returning favourites, though! First and foremost, Jenny Frison is back doing variant covers for Wonder Woman and I am delighted about that. She’s so dang good. Mariko Tamaki is back as well, on the Dog Days of Summer special, and I’m hoping her sporadic but still somewhat consistent appearances at DC mean that a more permanent gig is in her future.

For new books, a few have some female characters in the mix. Batman and the Outsiders has been re-solicited, and that brings us Katana and Orphan. Wonder Woman’s going to be in the Dog Days of Summer special, while Lois Lane will be part of the Superman: Leviathan Rising Special. That latter one is an exciting bit of news, because it sounds like a Lois Lane series will be happening soon, finally. Albeit one that doesn’t seem to have any female creators in the mix if this special is any indication

Overall, DC’s female and non-binary creator representation remains underwhelming. It’s been steadily subpar for some time, rising and falling with the amount of books but otherwise holding firm. It’s been a story of missed opportunities so far this year, really. The Wonder Comics imprint and the upcoming Event Leviathan have been ridiculously dude-centric, and there haven’t been many big creative changes elsewhere. Most of the creators listed above are holdovers from changes in the fall, which is great, but not many have been added since. DC’s just not stepping up when it comes to representation right now.

Women & NB Creators at Marvel Comics Watch, April 2019: 32 Creators on 31 Books

March 21, 2019

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Thus far, 2019 has been a strong year for female and non-binary creators at Marvel Comics. And the streak goes back further than that, too. Marvel came out of the summer with some solid gains and by November they were pretty near the level they remain at today. That’s six months of decent representation now. Are there still WAY more dudes? Of course. It’s superhero comics. Change is slow. But this kind of consistency is rare, and encouraging to see. Let’s take a look at who’s doing what at Marvel this April:

  • Alti Firmansyah: The Unstoppable Wasp #6 (interior art)
  • Amanda Conner: Captain Marvel #4 (cover), War of the Realms #1 (variant cover)
  • Amy Reeder: Ironheart #5 (cover)
  • Ashley Witter: Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #1 (cover), X-23 #11 (cover)
  • Audrey Mok: Marvel Rising #2 (cover)
  • Carmen Carnero: Captain Marvel #4 (interior art)
  • Erica Henderson: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #43 (cover)
  • Eve L. Ewing: Ironheart #5 (writer), Marvel Team-Up #1 (writer)
  • Gail Simone: Hotshots #2 (writer)
  • Jen Bartel: Star Wars: Age of Rebellion Special #1 (variant cover)
  • Jen Soska: Black Widow #4 (co-writer)
  • Jody Houser: Star Wars: Tie Fighter #1 (writer)
  • Kamome Shirahama: Hotshots #2 (variant cover)
  • Kate Niemczyk: Age of Conan: Belit, Queen of the Black Coast #2 (interior art)
  • Kelly Thompson: Captain Marvel #4 (writer), Mr. and Mrs. X #10 (writer), West Coast Avengers #10 (writer)
  • Kirbi Fagan: Shuri #7 (cover)
  • Leah Williams: Age of X-Man: X-Tremists #3 (writer)
  • Mariko Tamaki: X-23 #11 (writer)
  • Michelle Delecki: Age of X-Man: The Amazing Nightcrawler #3 (cover)
  • Natacha Bustos: Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #42 (cover)
  • Nilah Magruder: Marvel Rising #2 (writer)
  • Rachel Dodson: Star Wars: Age of Rebellion – Grand Moff Tarkin #1 (cover), Star Wars: Age of Rebellion – Princess Leia #1 (cover)
  • Rainbow Rowell: Runaways #20 (writer)
  • Rebekah Isaacs: Age of Conan: Belit, Queen of the Black Coast #2 (variant cover)
  • Sana Takeda: Age of Conan: Belit, Queen of the Black Coast #2 (cover), War of the Realms #1 (variant cover)
  • Savanna Ganucheau: Marvel Rising #2 (varaint cover)
  • Seanan McGuire: Age of X-Man: The Amazing Nightcrawler #3 (writer), Spider-Gwen: Ghost-Spider #7 (writer)
  • Stacey Lee: The Unstoppable Wasp #6 (cover)
  • Sylvia Soska: Black Widow #4 (co-writer)
  • Tini Howard: Age of Conan: Belit, Queen of the Black Coast #2 (writer), Thanos #1 (writer)
  • Vita Ayala: Age of X-Man: Prisoner X #2 (writer), Shuri #7 (writer)
  • Yasmime Putri: Avengers: No Road Home #8 (cover), Avengers: No Road Home #9 (cover), Avengers: No Road Home #10 (cover), Star Wars: Vader – Dark Visions #2 (variant cover), Uncanny X-Men #16 (variant cover)

That is a lot of names to spell correctly and books to italicize! All together there are 32 different female and non-binary creators set to work on 31 different books this April, the same number of creators as in March across four more titles. I’m not used to seeing steady numbers from Marvel in any form, much less at a relatively high level. This year has been solid for the publisher so far.

Also, we’re introducing a new element to these posts, where we look at the number of titles being released. DC’s trimmed back their line noticeably, and so an apples to apples comparison doesn’t really work so well anymore. This April, Marvel has 79 new books on their schedule, which means there are female and/or non-binary creators working on 39% of their titles. We’ll use that as a baseline for comparisons moving forward.

In terms of new names, April looks to be pretty quiet. For as far back as I’ve been keeping track, we’ve not seen Rebekah Isaacs at Marvel before. She’s got a variant cover on the new Age of Conan: Belit, Queen of the Black Coast spinoff. Savanna Ganucheau looks to be new as well, with another variant, this time on Marvel Rising. The rest of the list are regulars, I think.

It’s also a low key month for new female-led titles at the publisher, which is unfortunate because there certainly are a lot of new books. War of the Realms is kicking off, with all sorts of tie-in mini-series and the like. Few have any female or non-binary creators in the mix, and while there are a handful of female characters in a couple of the team books, it all looks a bit dude forward. I miss Lady Thor. Unbeatable Squirrel Girl is going to tie into the event, so there’s that, I suppose. And Ms. Marvel is starring alongside Spider-Man in a new Marvel Team-Up.

Overall, the numbers are steady at Marvel and female and non-binary creator representation is holding relatively strong. There remains, as always, a lot of room to grow, but this has been a decent streak for Marvel. I’m curious to see if they can keep it up or even hit higher levels in the months to come.


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