Posts Tagged ‘Women In Comics’

Women at Marvel Comics Watch – May 2017 Solicits, 22 Women on 24 Books

March 20, 2017

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Marvel posted a new record for female creators in their solicits in March, an achievement so impressive that Christine Ro wrote it up in an article on Vice earlier this month. Christine chatted with me for the article, and one of the first things I told her was that this high probably wouldn’t last. Lo and behold, the numbers fell in April, and now they’re down even further in May. These stats are an up and down journey that ultimately moves in a positive direction, but Marvel’s quite far off their high right now. Let’s take a look at who’s doing what a Marvel in May 2017:

  • Becky Cloonan: The Punisher #12 (writer)
  • Christina Strain: Generation X #1 (writer), Generation X #2 (writer)
  • Elizabeth Torque: Captain America: Sam Wilson #22 (cover), Captain America: Steve Rogers #17 (cover), Elektra #4 (cover), The Mighty Captain Marvel #5 (cover)
  • Elsa Charretier: Star Wars: Darth Maul #4 (variant cover), The Unstoppable Wasp #5 (interior art, cover)
  • Erica Henderson: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #20 (interior art, cover)
  • G. Willow Wilson: Ms. Marvel #18 (writer)
  • Gabby Rivera: America #3 (writer)
  • Gurihiru: Gwenpool, the Unbelievable #16 (interior art, cover)
  • Helen Chen: All-New Wolverine #20 (cover)
  • Jody Houser: Star Wars: Rogue One Adaptation #2 (writer)
  • Kelly Thompson: Hawkeye #6 (writer)
  • Margaret Stohl: The Mighty Captain Marvel #5 (writer)
  • Marguerite Sauvage: Jean Grey #1 (variant cover)
  • Mariko Tamaki: Hulk #6 (writer)
  • Myisha Haynes: Gwenpool, the Unbelievable #15 (interior art)
  • Natacha Bustos: Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #19 (interior art, cover)
  • Paulina Ganucheau: Gwenpool, the Unbelievable #15 (cover)
  • Stephanie Hans: Jean Grey #1 (variant cover)
  • Yasmine Putri: Secret Warriors #2 (variant cover)
  • Yona Harvey: Black Panther and the Crew #2 (co-writer)
  • Yusaku Komiyama: Zombies Assemble #1 (co-writer), Zombies Assemble #2 (co-writer)

All together there are 22 different female creators set to work on 24 different books at Marvel this May, 2 fewer women than in April though 5 more books. The increase in books is encouraging; it’s always good to see gigs spread across the publisher. But another drop in the number of female creators is unfortunate.

We do have a couple of new names in the mix, though. Christina Strain had a brief gig at Marvel last fall, and now she’s back with a regular series. Also, as best I can tell, Yusaku Komiyama is a woman; I’m not terribly well versed in manga and a lot of the stuff written about Komiyama is in Japanese, but there were a couple sites that identified her as a woman. The bigger story this month is who’s missy, though. Patsy Walker, a.k.a. Hellcat! ended in April, meaning that we’re missing Kate Leth and Brittney Williams, and for some reason Amy Reeder isn’t on Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur this month, which is odd.

There are also several new books with female leads. Jean Grey is set to debut her own solo series, while a few team books feature women: Daisy Johnson, Ms. Marvel, and Moon Girl are all in Secret Warriors, Gamora is in the All-New Guardians of the Galaxy, and Generation X stars Jubilee and some gal with antlers I don’t recognize but who looks really cool.

All together, May looks to be an okay month for fictional women at Marvel but another step down for the real ones. They’re on more books but in fewer numbers, and are way down from their recent high. A rebound seems inevitable; things always go up again at some point. We’ll see what the numbers bring as the summer begins to unfold.

Women in Comics Statistics: DC and Marvel, January 2017 In Review, Plus Female Characters

March 15, 2017

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It’s a whole new year of “Gendercrunching,” and my latest article is up now at Bleeding Cool. We saw last month that 2016 marked the highest overall percentage of female creators at both DC and Marvel since this project began, so it should be fun to see where 2017 takes us.

Both publishers began the year down from their December totals, however. DC ticked down slightly to 18% female creators overall, while Marvel tumbled to 16.1%. It’s not the most auspicious beginning to the New Year, but both are average performances relative to each publisher’s recent totals.

We also take a look at female characters in our biannual check in. Women account for 32.4% of the characters on DC’s covers, down slightly from July, while they account for 35.8% of the characters on Marvel’s covers, a big jump from their last total. The percentage of comics with female leads is up at Marvel as well, as it is at DC albeit much less so.

Head over to Bleeding Cool for the full stats and analysis!

Women at DC Comics Watch – May 2017 Solicits, 28 Women on 21 Books

March 6, 2017

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May looks to be a decent month for female creators at DC Comics, with the publisher set to post their highest number of different women for the year thus far. While the total is still somewhat below the highs that DC hit last fall, the numbers have been moving up for a couple of months now and are nearing the 30-range, a relatively strong bar for female representation at either superhero publisher. Let’s take a look at who is going what at DC in May 2017:

  • Amanda Conner: Harley Quinn #19 (co-writer, cover), Harley Quinn #20 (co-writer, cover)
  • Audrey Mok: Shade, the Changing Girl #8 (writer, interior art)
  • Becky Cloonan: Gotham Academy: Second Semester #9 (co-writer), Shade, the Changing Girl #8 (cover)
  • Bilquis Evely: Wonder Woman #22 (interior art, cover)
  • Carmen Carnero: DC Comics Bombshells #26 (interior art), DC Comics Bombshells #27 (interior art), Detective Comics #957 (interior art)
  • Cecil Castellucci: Shade, the Changing Girl #8 (writer)
  • Emanuela Lupacchino: Green Lanterns #22 (variant cover), Green Lanterns #23 (variant cover)
  • Genevieve Valentine: Detective Comics #957 (co-writer)
  • Hope Larson: Batgirl #11 (writer)
  • Jen Bartel: Shade, the Changing Girl #8 (variant cover)
  • Jenny Frison: Wonder Woman #22 (variant cover), Wonder Woman #23 (variant cover)
  • Jill Thompson: The Flintstones #11 (cover)
  • Jody Houser: Mother Panic #7 (writer)
  • Julie Benson: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #10 (co-writer)
  • K. Perkins: Superwoman #10 (writer)
  • Kamome Shirahama: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #10 (variant cover)
  • Laura Braga: DC Comics Bombshells #27 (interior art)
  • Lilah Sturges: Everafter: From the Pages of Fables #9 (co-writer)
  • Marguerite Bennett: Batwoman #3 (co-writer), DC Comics Bombshells #26 (writer), DC Comics Bombshells #27 (writer)
  • Marley Zarcone: Shade, the Changing Girl #8 (interior art)
  • Mirka Andolfo: DC Comics Bombshells #26 (interior art), DC Comics Bombshells #27 (interior art)
  • Msassyk: Gotham Academy: Second Semester #9 (interior art)
  • Nicola Scott: Red Hood and the Outlaws #10 (cover), Wonder Woman Annual #1 (interior art, cover)
  • Rachael Stott: DC Comics Bombshells #26 (interior art)
  • Sandra Hope: Gotham Academy: Second Semester #9 (inker)
  • Shawna Benson: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #10 (co-writer)
  • Tula Lotay: Everafter: From the Pages of Fables #9 (cover)
  • Yasmine Putri: The Hellblazer #10 (variant cover)

All together, there are 28 different female creators set to work on 21 different books in May, 2 more women than in April though 3 fewer books. Things were a bit more concentrated this month; rather than women across the board, a few series like Shade, the Changing Girl and a double shot of DC Comics Bombshells had a lot of women in just a few places, thus the drop in different comics despite the gains in female creators overall. All together, it was a solid month for DC, and the nearest the publisher has come to their fall highs thus far in 2017.

In terms of new names, I think we’ve got a few women making their DC debuts, though they are known for their work elsewhere in the industry. According to my records, Audrey Mok, Jen Bartel, and Rachael Stott are all appearing in the DC solicits for the first time since this project began, and it’s always enjoyable to see pros from other kinds of comics pop in to do some corporate superhero fun. We’ve also got a couple of returning favourites; we haven’t seen Carmen Carnero, Genevieve Valentine, or Jill Thompson in a while, and it’s cool to have them back in the mix.

There’s not many new comics set to premiere at DC in May, much less ones with female leads. Things have been pretty steady at DC for a while now, so much so that I can’t help but expect a new wave of books sometime soon. June will mark a year since “Rebirth” began, so perhaps we’ll see some new titles then? DC’s been sticking with this lineup for several months now.

All together, May looks to be a decent month for women at DC Comics. There remains, as always, a massive amount of room to grow, but increases in female representation for two months running is a positive sign, as is posting the highest number of the year thus far. Hopefully June brings more growth, and perhaps some new series.

Support “The Adventures of Penny Patterson,” A Short Film About a Superhero’s Love Interest

March 1, 2017

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So often in superhero narratives, the focus is on the superhero to such a degree that supporting characters rarely get fleshed out in any meaningful way. This is especially true for female love interests, who are regularly limited to a “damsel in distress” role in which they are there solely to further the male hero’s story. The Adventures of Penny Patterson is a new short film that’s set to flip this perspective. It’s a superhero origin story told from the point of view of the hero’s girlfriend, a high school student who just wants to get her science fair project done.

The short is the graduate thesis film project of Stephanie Donnelly, an NYU student and a lifelong comic book fan. She’s writing and directing the short, and has started a campaign at Seed & Spark to finance the project; she’s looking to get $12,000, and is 39% of the way there already at just a week into the campaign.

I got to read the script for the project, and it’s both a fun story and a pointed commentary on the traditional tropes of the superhero genre. Stephanie brings a sharp, feminist perspective to the underrepresentation of women not just in comic book narratives but also in the film industry as a whole. Stephanie’s a female writer and director, and has created a project with a female lead because to intentionally counter the lack of women protagonists in film today. As she explains, “As a filmmaker, I strive to change those statistics by telling more stories about strong, complex women. I think now more than ever, we need to see more empowered female characters in superhero movies.”

The Seed & Spark campaign has a variety of reward levels, ranging from thanks in the credits to a digital download of the finished film to getting to be an extra in the project and even an associate producer. That last one will get you on IMDB, by the way, which is all sorts of cool. It’s a great project with a smart perspective that looks like it’s going to be really entertaining as well. I encourage you to check out the Seed & Spark page, see the video they’ve put together and read up on the project, and consider sending some money their way to help the project come to fruition. You can also sign up to follow the project; more followers can help it get featured on the Seed & Spark homepage and thus reach more folks.

The superhero genre can always use more women in starring roles, and The Adventures of Penny Patterson gives us just that! Check out the project and support it if you can!

Women in Comics Statistics: DC and Marvel, December 2016 in Review PLUS Year End Totals

February 27, 2017

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My latest “Gendercrunching” column went up at Bleeding Cool last week, and the year closed with decent numbers for female creators at both major superhero publishers, as well as several positive signs for increased representation in 2017.

DC’s overall percentage of female creators ticked down slightly to 18.6%, but it was their third highest total of the year and the past three months at DC have been among their best ever. After a bit of a slump, Marvel jumped a couple of percentage points to land at 17.6% female creators overall, below their recent highs but one of their better showings in some time.

We also take a look back at the year as a whole and both publishers’ numbers for female creators, overall and by category, are noticeably higher than they were a year ago. Also, at DC the monthly numbers are trending in a positive direction in several categories, which bodes well for 2017. Marvel’s trend lines are a little more mixed, but all of the interior art categories saw strong gains and few of the declines were steep.

Head on over to Bleeding Cool for all of the stats fun!

Women at Marvel Comics Watch – April 2017 Solicits, 24 Female Creators on 19 Books

February 20, 2017

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After posting the highest number of female creators we’ve ever seen from either DC or Marvel last month, Marvel failed to match their record this month. In fact, they weren’t even close. Now, this isn’t a huge surprise; the story of these stats is always two steps forward, one step back. A high is rarely followed immediately by another high. Instead, new highs tend to be followed by a slightly lower plateau and an even further drop back before the numbers surge again. Marvel’s skipped the plateau this time around, though, and have dropped to their lowest number of female creators in over a year. Let’s take a look at who’s doing what at Marvel in April 2017:

  • Amy Reeder: Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #18 (co-writer, cover)
  • Becky Cloonan: The Punisher #11 (writer)
  • Brittney L. Williams: Patsy Walker, a.k.a. Hellcat! #17 (interior art, cover)
  • Elizabeth Torque: Elektra #3 (cover), Spider-Man #15 (variant cover), The Mighty Captain Marvel #4 (cover)
  • Elsa Charretier: The Unstoppable Wasp #4 (interior art, cover)
  • Erica Henderson: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #19 (interior art, cover)
  • G. Willow Wilson: Ms. Marvel #17 (writer)
  • Gabby Rivera: America #2 (writer)
  • Helen Chen: Silk #19 (cover)
  • Jody Houser: Star Wars: Rogue One Adaptation #1 (writer)
  • Kamome Shirahama: Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #6 (cover)
  • Kate Leth: Patsy Walker, a.k.a. Hellcat! #17 (writer)
  • Kate Niemczyk: Man-Thing #3 (interior art)
  • Kelly Thompson: Hawkeye #5 (writer)
  • Margaret Stohl: The Mighty Captain Marvel #4 (writer)
  • Marguerite Sauvage: America #2 (variant cover)
  • Mariko Tamaki: Hulk #5 (writer)
  • Myisha Haynes: Gwenpool, the Unbelievable #14 (interior art)
  • Natacha Bustos: Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #18 (interior art)
  • Nicole Perlman: Gamora #5 (writer)
  • Paulina Ganucheau: Gwenpool, the Unbelievable #14 (cover)
  • Sara Pichelli: Spider-Man #15 (interior art)
  • Tana Ford: Silk #19 (interior art)
  • Yona Harvey: Black Panther: The Crew #1 (co-writer)

All together, there are 24 different female creators set to work on 19 different books in April, 13 fewer women than in March and 14 fewer books. That’s quite a decline. Last month was clearly abnormal; there were loads of variant covers with female artists that helped Marvel break their record total. But Marvel’s had at least 30 female creators for several months now, going back to the fall. Landing in the 20s is uncharacteristically low for them.

Having women on fewer variant covers is one of the big reasons for Marvel’s drop this month. It also looks like a few creators with regular gigs are on a skip month, with someone else filling in, or the creative teams have been changed and women are no longer working on those books. It’s an odd month all around. For example, there’s only one woman working on more than one comic this month, Elizabeth Torque on a variety of covers. In March, there were six women with multiple gigs. Everything’s contracted across the board in April.

In terms of new books with female leads, there are a handful of team books with women in prominent roles. Manifold, Misty Knight, and Storm co-star in Black Panther: The Crew, Marvel Girl is a part of X-Men Blue, and Kitty Pryde, Prestige, and Storm are part of X-Men Gold.

Overall, April doesn’t look to be a great month for women at Marvel relative to their past year or so. What’s unclear is if this marks a shift for the publisher or an aberration. Aberration seems more likely; Marvel’s established a solid track record with female creators as of late, and I’m expecting to see at least a few missing creators back next month. Time will tell, as always, but I’d expect stronger numbers in May. For now, though, April is a rather underwhelming follow up to March’s stellar numbers.

Women at DC Comics Watch – April 2017 Solicits, 26 Female Creators on 24 Books

February 17, 2017

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Female creator representation in DC’s April 2017 solicits is about par for the course for the year thus far. DC’s been hovering around the mid-20s for months, an okay level but noticeably below their recent highs last fall and Marvel’s current highs. Given the progress both major superhero publishers have made in expanding their female creator ranks over the past few years, DC’s run in 2017 thus far is slightly underwhelming. Let’s take a look at who’s doing what at DC in April 2017:

  • Afua Richardson: All Star Batman #9 (interior art and cover)
  • Amanda Conner: Harley Quinn #17 (co-writer, cover), Harley Quinn #18 (co-writer, cover)
  • Aneke: DC Comics Bombshells #25 (interior art)
  • Becky Cloonan: Gotham Academy: Second Semester #8 (co-writer), Shade, the Changing Girl #7 (cover)
  • Bilquis Evely: Wonder Woman #20 (interior art, cover)
  • Cecil Castellucci: Shade, the Changing Girl #7 (writer)
  • Eleanora Carlini: Green Arrow #20 (interior art)
  • Emanuela Lupacchino: Green Lanterns #20 (variant cover), Green Lanterns #21 (variant cover), Supergirl #8 (cover), Trinity #8 (interior art)
  • Gail Simone: Clean Room #18 (writer)
  • Hope Larson: Batgirl #10 (writer)
  • Jenny Frison: Clean Room #18 (cover), Wonder Woman #20 (variant cover), Wonder Woman #21 (variant cover)
  • Jody Houser: Mother Panic #6 (writer)
  • Joelle Jones: Supergirl: Being Super #3 (interior art)
  • Julie Benson: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #9 (co-writer)
  • K. Perkins: Superwoman #8 (writer)
  • Kamome Shirahama: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #9 (variant cover)
  • Lilah Sturges: Everafter: From the Pages of Fables #8 (co-writer)
  • Marguerite Bennett: Batwoman #2 (co-writer), DC Comics Bombshells #25 (writer)
  • Marguerite Sauvage: Shade, the Changing Girl #7 (interior art, cover)
  • Mariko Tamaki: Supergirl: Being Super #3 (writer)
  • Msassyk: Gotham Academy: Second Semester #8 (interior art)
  • Nicola Scott: Red Hood and the Outlaws #9 (cover), The Flintstones #10 (variant cover)
  • Sandra Hope: Gotham Academy: Second Semester #8 (inker)
  • Shawna Benson: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #9 (co-writer)
  • Tula Lotay: Everafter: From the Pages of Fables #8 (cover)
  • Yasmine Putri: The Hellblazer #9 (variant cover)

All together, there are 26 different female creators set to work on 24 different books, 2 more women than last month though 3 fewer books. DC’s now settled into their “Rebirth” lineup, and there’s not a huge amount of change from month to month, so most of the women above tend to have steady gigs, but the ranks don’t seem to be growing much. The numbers are stable, but below what DC has shown they’re capable of.

In terms of new names, Aneke is someone I don’t think we’ve seen at DC before; she’ll be drawing an issue of DC Comics Bombshells that brings back the universe’s Suicide Squad, so that should be a blast. K. Perkins is back too, though I don’t know if her writing gig on Superwoman is a onetime thing or she’ll be there moving forward. Finally, it’s very cool to welcome Lilah Sturges to the list! She’s been working on Everafter for a while now, but she’s recently transitioned to living openly as a woman and this is the first batch of solicits that reflects this change.

There aren’t any new series set to debut in April. As I said above, DC’s lineup is pretty set right now. We’ve got a new book or two since 2017 began, but not much else. I’m guessing they’ll be a new wave of “Rebirth” titles at some point soon, but for now things are pretty steady and uneventful.

Overall, April doesn’t look to be a bad month for women at DC, but it’s another average outing that doesn’t near their past highs. Nonetheless, it’s an impressive group of creators doing great work. The ranks are just leveled out right now. I wouldn’t expect much change until DC launches some new books or has a major creative overhaul.


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