Posts Tagged ‘Tess Fowler’

Women & NB Creators at DC Comics Watch, October 2018 Solicits: 21 Creators on 20 Books

August 15, 2018

womenatdcOCT

After a dismal round of solicits for September, female creator representation is on the rise at DC Comics this October. Not to any impressive levels, though. September’s numbers were terrible and thus does October look much better, but October’s numbers in and of themselves are nothing to crow about. DC remains well below their recent highs, continuing what has become a disappointing year for the publisher in terms of female and non-binary creators. Any potential for growth we saw in the winter months has fizzled out into a long stretch of under achievement. Let’s take a look at who is doing what at DC this October:

  • Adriana Melo: Plastic Man #5 (interior art)
  • Amanda Conner: Old Lady Harley #1 (variant cover), Supergirl #23 (variant cover)
  • Becky Cloonan: Cursed Comics Cavalcade #1 (co-writer, interior art)
  • Bilquis Evely: The Dreaming #2 (interior art)
  • Cheryl Lynn Eaton: Batman Secret Files #1 (co-writer)
  • Elena Casagrande: Batman Secret Files #1 (interior art)
  • Emanuela Lupacchino: Superman/Top Cat Special #1 (variant cover), The Terrifics Annual #1 (cover), Wonder Woman #56 (interior art), Wonder Woman #57 (interior art)
  • Gail Simone: Plastic Man #5 (writer)
  • Jenny Frison: Hex Wives #1 (variant cover), Wonder Woman #56 (variant cover), Wonder Woman #57 (variant cover)
  • Joelle Jones: Hex Wives #1 (cover), Catwoman #4 (writer, cover)
  • Jordie Bellaire: Batman Secret Files #1 (co-writer)
  • Julie Benson: Green Arrow #45 (co-writer)
  • Kat Howard: The Books of Magic #1 (writer)
  • Mairghread Scott: Batgirl #28 (writer)
  • Mirka Andolfo: Hex Wives #1 (interior art)
  • Nalo Hopkinson: House of Whispers #2 (writer)
  • Rachel Dodson: Justice League Odyssey #2 (variant cover)
  • Sandra Hope: Sideways Annual #1 (cover)
  • Shawna Benson: Green Arrow #45 (co-writer)
  • Tess Fowler: Plastic Man #5 (cover)
  • Yasmine Putri: Green Lantern/Huckleberry Hound Special #1 (variant cover), Red Hood and the Outlaws #27 (variant cover), Wonder Woman #56 (cover),Wonder Woman #57 (cover)

All together, there are 21 different female creators set to work on 20 different comic books at DC in October, 6 more creators and 6 more books than in September. As best I can tell, there are no non-binary creators scheduled for this month. The gains are good, of course. Being in the teens in this day and age is just embarrassing, what with the scores of talented women and non-binary creators working in comics now. But DC is barely out of the teens now, and that’s not a great look either. Creators lost in a string of recent cancellations have yet to come back elsewhere, and no new creators have taken their place. Thus this current unimpressive run.

Speaking of, we don’t have much in the way of new faces scheduled for October, but there are a few notable additions. Cheryl Lynn Eaton is brand new to DC, and she’s writing a story in the Batman Secret Files oneshot. Jordie Bellaire, who is a colorist by trade, is also penning a tale for the book, so that’s exciting to see. And Kat Howard is starting her Books of Magic series for the “Sandman Universe” line, and thus we should be seeing her for a while. In terms of returning favourites, we haven’t seen Tess Fowler in a while, or Elena Casagrande, and both are back this month with a cover and art for a short story respectively.

While representation for real women is somewhat lacking this month, fictional women have some things going on. Wonder Woman is the star of a crossover event that will see her regular series tie into Justice League Dark and a couple of special issues. We’ve also got the debut of Old Lady Harley, which I presume is a humorous take on Marvel’s Old Man Logan, and the debut of the new Vertigo series Hex Wives. There’s also a sort of Halloween special with Cursed Comics Cavalcade that will feature stories about Wonder Woman and Zatanna.

So there are two ways to look at DC’s October. First, it’s a lot better than September, so hooray for that. But second, it’s well below what the publisher is capable of achieving. If DC is trying to bring in female and non-binary creators, then they’re really struggling at it. And if they’re not trying, well that’s an even bigger problem. Whatever the case, the numbers remain weak.

Women at Marvel Comics Watch, March 2017 Solicits: 37 Women on 33 Books, A New Record

January 16, 2017

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Marvel’s on quite a run with female creators rights now. March will mark the publisher’s eighth straight month with more than 30 different female creators in the mix, and Marvel is set to best their record number for combined female creators and books that they set in December. It’s really quite an impressive streak, all around. So let’s see who’s doing what at Marvel in March 2017:

  • Afua Richardson: Black Panther: World of Wakanda #5 (cover)
  • Alitha E. Martinez: Black Panther: World of Wakanda #5 (interior art)
  • Amy Reeder: Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #17 (co-writer, cover)
  • Becky Cloonan: The Punisher #10 (writer)
  • Brittney L. Williams: Patsy Walker, a.k.a. Hellcat! #16 (interior art, cover)
  • Elizabeth Torque: Black Panther #12 (variant cover), Captain America: Steve Rogers #14 (cover), Captain Marvel #13 (cover), Elektra #2 (cover), Inhumans Prime #1 (variant cover), X-Men Prime #1 (variant cover)
  • Elsa Charretier: The Unstoppable Wasp #3 (interior art, cover)
  • Emanuela Lupacchino: Guardians of the Galaxy #1.MU (variant cover), Hulk #4 (variant cover)
  • Erica Henderson: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #18 (interior art, cover)
  • G. Willow Wilson: Ms. Marvel #16 (writer)
  • Gabby Rivera: America #1 (writer)
  • Gisele Lagace: Gwenpool, the Unbelievable #13 (cover)
  • Gurihiru: Gwenpool, the Unbelievable #13 (interior art)
  • Hannah Blumenreich: Amazing Spider-Man #25 (co-writer, interior art)
  • Helen Chen: Silk #18 (cover)
  • Jen Bartel: Black Panther: World of Wakanda #5 (variant cover)
  • Jordie Bellaire: Uncanny Inhumans #20 (variant cover)
  • Joyce Chin: Deadpool the Duck #5 (variant cover)
  • Kamome Shirahama: Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #5 (cover)
  • Kate Leth: Patsy Walker, a.k.a. Hellcat! #16 (writer), The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #18 (variant cover)
  • Kelly Thompson: Hawkeye #4 (writer)
  • Leah Williams: The Totally Awesome Hulk #1.MU (co-writer)
  • Margaret Stohl: Captain Marvel #13 (writer)
  • Mariko Tamaki: Hulk #4 (writer)
  • Natacha Bustos: Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #17 (interior art), Power Man and Iron Fist #14 (variant cover)
  • Nicole Perlman: Gamora #4 (writer)
  • Nik Virella: All-New Wolverine #18 (interior art)
  • Paulina Ganucheau: The Unstoppable Wasp #3 (variant cover)
  • Roxane Gay: Black Panther: World of Wakanda #5 (writer)
  • Sara Pichelli: Monsters Unleashed #5 (variant cover), Spider-Man #14 (interior art, cover)
  • Sophie Campbell: Spider-Gwen #18 (variant cover)
  • Stephanie Hans: Gamora #4 (variant cover), Man-Thing #1 (variant cover)
  • Tana Ford: Silk #18 (interior art)
  • Tess Fowler: Doctor Strange #18 (variant cover)
  • Veronica Fish: Spider-Woman #17 (interior art)
  • Yasmine Putri: Gwenpool, the Unbelievable #13 (variant cover)

All together, there are 37 different female creators set to work on 33 different books in March, 6 more women than in February and 10 more books. And while 37 different women ties Marvel’s December record, they were only working on 25 books then; in March there will be just as many ladies in the mix as that record setting month, distributed even more thoroughly through Marvel’s lineup. These are very good numbers. Writing this post each month used to take me ten minutes or so, since there were only ever a handful of women in the mix, like 4 or 5. Now there’s dozens! It’s a lot more work for me, but it’s the good kind.

In terms of new names at Marvel, we’ve got scores of returning favourites this month but also some debut and returning creators. Gabby Rivera is coming on board to write the new America series, Hannah Blumenreich is doing her first official Marvel work (finally!), I don’t think I’ve seen Jen Bartel at Marvel before, I think Leah Williams is a new name as well, and this might be Paulina Ganucheau’s premiere at Marvel as well. And maybe Tess Fowler too? I know she’s done some stuff at DC. So yeah, a busy month for new creators!

March is typically “Women of Marvel” month, where they put out a bunch of variant covers by female artists, and while Marvel doesn’t seem to be doing that explicitly this month, there are scores of variant covers in the list above, far more than usual. Several of them are part of a themed “Venomized” variant program, so it looks like Marvel might be continuing the spirit of “Women of Marvel” without the specific fanfare. Or they’re just hiring a lot of women to do covers because they know a lot of rad female artists. Either way, there are a lot of variants in the mix this month.

Not a lot of new books, though. We’ve got a few oneshots for the IvX event and a new Iron Fist series, but the only new book with a female lead is America. And it looks FANTASTIC. A queer WOC headlining her own series is a huge step for Marvel; they haven’t been great on the LGBTQ+ front as of late, with little rep and a lot of shying away from the rep they did have. This is a big deal for them, and hopefully something we’ll see more of moving forward.

Overall, March looks to be a great month for women at Marvel, all across the board. The publisher’s on an excellent streak, female creator representation is the highest it’s ever been, and America Chavez finally has a comic book! Things are swell.

Women At DC Comics Watch – September 2016 Solicits, 28 Women on 21 Books

June 28, 2016

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DC’s not had the best run with female creators over the course of their past few rounds of solicits. Since their “Rebirth” relaunch began in June, the numbers have been well below their usual level, and far off from their previous highs. It looks like September might mark the end of this skid, but I’m not entirely sure that this increase in female creators is going to last. We’ll discuss more, after we look at who’s doing what at DC Comics in September 2016:

  • Amanda Conner: Harley Quinn #3 (co-writer, cover), Harley Quinn #4 (co-writer, cover), Harley Quinn and her Gang of Harleys #6 (cover)
  • Amanda Deibert: Wonder Woman ’77 Special #4 (co-writer)
  • Amy Chu: Wonder Woman ’77 Special #4 (co-writer)
  • Babs Tarr: Doom Patrol #1 (variant cover)
  • Becky Cloonan: Gotham Academy: Second Semester #1 (co-writer)
  • Bilquis Evely: The Flintstones #3 (variant cover)
  • Carmen Carnero: Astro City #39 (interior art)
  • Cat Staggs: Wonder Woman ’77 Special #4 (cover)
  • Claire Roe: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #2 (interior art)
  • Emanuela Lupacchino: Green Lanterns #6 (variant cover), Green Lanterns #7 (variant cover)
  • Fiona Staples: Gotham Academy: Second Semester #1 (variant cover)
  • Gail Simone: Clean Room #12 (writer)
  • Holly Black: Lucifer #10 (writer)
  • Hope Larson: Batgirl #3 (writer)
  • Jenny Frison: Clean Room #12 (cover)
  • Joelle Jones: American Vampire Anthology #2 (interior art)
  • Julie Benson: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #2 (co-writer)
  • Kamome Shirahama: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #2 (variant cover)
  • Marguerite Bennett: American Vampire Anthology #2 (writer), DC Comics Bombshells #17 (writer)
  • Meghan Hetrick: Red Thorn #11 (interior art)
  • Mirka Andolfo: DC Comics Bombshells #17 (interior art)
  • Nicola Scott: Wonder Woman #6 (interior art)
  • Rachel Dodson: Superwoman #2 (variant cover)
  • Sandra Hope: Cyborg: Rebirth #1 (inker), Gotham Academy: Second Semester #1 (inker)
  • Shawna Benson: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #2 (co-writer)
  • Tess Fowler: Wonder Woman ’77 Special #4 (interior art)
  • Trina Robbins: Wonder Woman ’77 Special #4 (co-writer)
  • Tula Lotay: Everafter: From the Pages of Fables #1 (cover)

All  together, there are 28 different female creators set to work on 21 different comic books, an impressive gain from August’s 20 and 21, respectively. September also marks DC’s best total since March, quite a lull for the publisher, though as I mentioned at the top, the numbers are still far from their past highs.

And also probably fleeting. Between a couple of anthology books (Wonder Woman ’77 Special #4 and the resolicited American Vampire Anthology #2) and variant covers, at least a third of the gigs listed above are unlikely to be back in October; they’re one-shot jobs. It’s great that these books are loaded with female creators and that so many women are getting cool variant cover gigs, but it’s not a stable position like writing or interior art tends to be. Next month could drop off quite a bit.

Though there are some new, more stable gigs in the mix. Gotham Academy: Second Semester returns with regular jobs for co-writer Becky Cloonan and inker Sandra Hope, while the new Everafter: From the Pages of Fables could prove to be a consistent cover position for Tula Lotay. Three more regulars is good news.

In terms of female characters, Supergirl is officially launching her new title in September, the return of Gotham Academy means more fun adventures for Olive and Maps, and there’s also a Raven mini-series. In new team books, Wonder Woman will be a key player in Trinity, while Raven and Starfire will be part of the new Teen Titans. So it’s a pretty solid month across the board for fictional women too, and a great month if you happen to be a Raven enthusiast.

Overall, September looks to be a strong month for women at DC, but I’m not sure that it will last. Gerard Way’s Doom Patrol is set to premiere then, though, which may mean that the rest of his line is rolling out soon; that would be good news, because several female characters have been attached to those projects. It’ll take several new books to keep these numbers up in October, and we’ll find out in a month or so if DC is up to the task.

Wonder Woman’s September 2016 Covers and Solicits

June 21, 2016

DC Comics’ solicits for September were released yesterday, and it looks like Wonder Woman’s got some fun adventures ahead of her, as well as a new series in which she co-stars. How lovely it is to be looking forward to all of the Wonder Woman comics coming out in a given month; it’s been so long since that’s been the case. So let’s see what Wonder Woman will be up to in September, starting with her eponymous series:

septww

WONDER WOMAN #6
Written by GREG RUCKA
Art and cover by NICOLA SCOTT
Variant cover by FRANK CHO
“WONDER WOMAN YEAR ONE” part 3! Diana brings Steve back home, but the reception is not what either of them expected. Amid suspicion and a looming threat, the Patrons pay a visit, and new friendships are forged.
On sale SEPTEMBER 14 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T

WONDER WOMAN #7
Written by GREG RUCKA
Art and cover by LIAM SHARP
Variant cover by TBD
“THE LIES” part 4! One god down—how many more to go? Diana takes another step closer to the truth, and Steve Trevor confronts his past!
On sale SEPTEMBER 28 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T

The cover this month (we’re still only getting one of the two for some reason) is by Nicola Scott, and it’s fun to see Wonder Woman with her animal pals. Perhaps they’re planning an adorable prison escape? I’d be down for that. It sounds like the Amazons don’t love that Wonder Woman has brought Steve to their home, seeing as she’s in jail and all. But the world’s cutest jail break is on the way.

In the present, well, the solicit is very vague. It sounds like a bad time for the gods, since one of them is down and all, but we don’t know in what capacity they are down. Or if they’re even the real gods, I suppose. Everything is in question! Nothing is true! The gods sit on a throne of lies! It’s all very mysterious, but it should be a lot of fun.

Wonder Woman is co-starring in a new book, too:

septtrinity

TRINITY #1
Written by FRANCIS MANAPUL
Art and cover by FRANCIS MANAPUL
Variant cover by TBD
“BETTER TOGETHER” part 1! Together again for the first time! Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman. The core of the World’s Greatest Heroes…but with a new Man of Steel, the bonds these three share will be tested and redefined by super-star writer/artist Francis Manapul. In this premiere issue, see the trio travel from Metropolis to Gotham City and beyond to learn what forces launched their heroic careers. But how will this journey of discovery lead them to a new threat?
On sale SEPTEMBER 21 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T

Team up! It’s just like Batman v Superman, but hopefully not so terrible. With Francis Manapul at the helm, it could be pretty cool. It’ll be gorgeous for sure, at least. His art is always spectacular. Plus we’ve got the good Superman back now since the New 52 Superman is dead; I’m optimistic, and I’m going to have to check this one out. We’ve got another pretty vague solicit here, but “superheroes teaming up for an adventure” is something I can always get behind if it looks bright and fun.

Finally, we’ve got another Wonder Woman ’77 special, though no cover yet:

WONDER WOMAN ’77 SPECIAL #4
Written by MARC ANDREYKO, AMY CHU, TRINA ROBBINS and AMANDA DEIBERT
Art by TOM DERENICK, DARIO BRIZUELA, TESS FOWLER and CHRISTIAN DUCE
Cover by CAT STAGGS
After narrowly escaping Wonder Woman (and the law) once before, Gault (actually his disembodied brain!) plots revenge…and seeks a new body to house his evil! Plus, “Worlds Collide” when a tape full of government secrets gets swapped for some excellent Super Funk! We peek at “The Man Behind the Curtain” when a dictator tries to fulfill his daughter’s final wish. And in “Seeing Stars,” Wonder Woman proves herself not a just the protector of Earth…but of the universe.
On sale SEPTEMBER 21 • 80 pg, FC, $7.99 US RATED E • DIGITAL FIRST

Just look at this line up of creators! There are so many amazing people in the mix here, both writers and artists. It should be a fantastic issue. Plus with that last story, “Seeing Stars”, is Wonder Woman going to space? That would be rad. Lynda Carter in space sounds like an exciting time, and exactly what the series is for, i.e. cool things the show could never have afforded to do. Looking forward to this one.

Be sure to pick up all of these books in September! It looks like it’s going to be a great month for Wonder Woman.

On Sexual Harassment In The Comic Book Industry, And Choosing Empathy Over Incredulity

November 20, 2013

kateca

For the past week, the biggest news story in the comic book world has centered on sexual harassment within the industry.  Here’s a timeline of the events, but the short version is that after talking about being harassed by an unnamed though easily surmisable comic creator, artist Tess Fowler got several emails from women with similar stories about the same man, called out the creator, Brian Wood, publicly, and people have been talking about sexual harassment in comics since, not just about Wood but about how common it is throughout the industry.  There have been many thoughtful and powerful posts on the subject, and mine will be just a drop in the bucket, but I’ve been thinking a lot about it and thought I’d say something.

Several women have come forward to talk about their experiences, and these reports have obviously been disheartening.  I expect better from the comic book community.  We have all the superheroes; we should be the good guys.

However, the bravery of the women speaking up about these issues has been inspiring.  It can’t be easy to talk about harassment, dredging up past feelings and dealing with the inevitable blowback.  Coming forward in the hopes of changing things so other women are safer within the community is a noble purpose, and I’m blown away by their courage.  I also know that for every woman who comes forward, there are several who can’t, either for painful personal reasons of for fear of professional repercussions.  These reports have shown what a widespread problem sexual harassment is in the comic book industry, but it’s just the tip of the iceberg.

What’s astounded me most about this situation is that so many people have responded to these reports with suspicion.  Lots of people have rallied around the cause, to be sure, but there’s also been a great deal of incredulity.  I’m not talking about morons who dismiss these reports of harassment as outright lies by women who just want attention; those people are idiots, and there’s no point in trying to deal with them.  I’m talking about a more insidious response, along the lines of “She’s making a bigger deal of it than it needs to be” or “It was probably just a misunderstanding.”  For many, it seems that the go-to response is one of doubt, defending the harasser at the expense of invalidating the experience and feelings of the harassee.  This makes no sense to me.

First, having compassion for someone who’s been wronged is just basic human decency.  Second, more than any other group in the world, the comic book community should be sympathetic to harassment.  You may be surprised to learn this, but we’re a bunch of nerds.  As such, at some point we’ve probably all been harassed to some degree.  Not in as offensive and demeaning a way as sexual harassment, but harassment nonetheless.  Most of us are likely to be familiar with the experience of someone with a superior size or position preying on us, making us feel small and worthless, and the shame and humiliation that goes along with that.  It’s deeply unpleasant, and it sticks with you.

Thus, when someone reports that they’ve had a similar, worse harassment experience, how can we react with anything but empathy and support?  We know what it’s like to be on the bad end of that equation.  We shouldn’t be turning things around on the harassee, throwing suspicion at them and treating them dismissively, trying to protect the harasser.  Innocent until proven guilty is all well and good, but that doesn’t mean that our immediate sympathies and concern should go to the harasser and not the harassee.

The reason so many women don’t report sexual harassment is because they’re automatically faced with harsh suspicion.  People try to discredit them, and the whole thing gets turned around on them.  The comic book community needs to be a place where people can talk openly about their experiences so we can learn from them and be a better, safer place for everyone.  To do that, we need to have empathy for those reporting harassment.  It really shouldn’t be that hard.  If your immediate response to a story of harassment is to doubt the woman reporting it, you need to stop and put yourself in her shoes.  It might feel more familiar than you’d think.

The art at the top of the post is from Kate Leth’s “Say Something” strip at Comics Alliance.


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