Posts Tagged ‘Women In Comics’

Women at Marvel Comics Watch – July 2016 Solicits, 25 Women on 18 Books

April 27, 2016

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Just as we missed the first month of “Rebirth” at DC because I was busy travelling and being a bad blog person, we also skipped the first month of Marvel’s Civil War II, with all of its various  mini-series and tie-ins. The June numbers were strong, with 29 different female creators on 19 different books. There was a lot of grouping therein; Marvel seems to like to keep their ladies congregated on a limited number of books. But 29 different women was big for Marvel, and their second best total of the year. So let’s see how July stacks up by looking at who’s doing what at Marvel in the July 2016 solicits:

  • Amy Reeder: Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #9 (cover, co-writer)
  • Annie Wu: Gwenpool #4 (variant cover)
  • Becky Cloonan: The Punisher #3 (writer, variant cover)
  • Brittney L. Williams: Patsy Walker, A.K.A. Hellcat! #8 (interior art)
  • Chelsea Cain: Mockingbird #5 (writer)
  • Elizabeth Torque: Civil War II: Gods of War #2 (variant cover), Hyperion #5 (cover)
  • Erica Henderson: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #10 (art and cover)
  • G. Willow Wilson: Ms. Marvel #9 (writer)
  • Gurihiru: Gwenpool #4 (interior art)
  • Helen Chen: Silk #10 (cover)
  • Joelle Jones: Mockingbird #5 (cover)
  • Kate Leth: Patsy Walker, A.K.A. Hellcat! #8 (writer)
  • Kate Niemczyk: Mockingbird #5 (interior art)
  • Katie Cook: Haunted Mansion #5 (variant cover)
  • Kelly Thompson: A-Force #7 (writer)
  • Marguerite Sauvage: Civil War II: Choosing Sides #2 (interior art)
  • Marjorie Liu: Star Wars: Han Solo #2 (writer)
  • Natacha Bustos: Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #9 (interior art)
  • Robin Furth: Dark Tower: The Drawing of the Three – Bitter Medicine #4 (co-writer)
  • Ruth Gage: Captain Marvel #7 (co-writer)
  • Sara Pichelli: Spider-Man #6 (art and cover)
  • Stacey Lee: Gwenpool #4 (cover)
  • Tana Ford: Silk #10 (interior art)
  • Tula Lotay: Scarlet Witch #8 (interior art)

All together, there at 25 different female creators scheduled to work on 18 different comic books at Marvel in July, a step down on both counts from the June numbers that’s tied for their lowest showing since the February solicits. Nonetheless, Marvel spent ages stuck in the teens (or less) when it came to women working on their books, so consistently landing in the mid-20s is a decent change of pace for them. They’re capable of higher numbers, but compared to last year it’s quite good.

It doesn’t look like there’s much in the way of new names in July; Ruth Gage co-writing Captain Marvel‘s tie-in to Civil War II is about it. There are some returning favourites, though, including Annie Wu, Katie Cook, Tana Ford, and Tula Lotay, who don’t have regular gigs at Marvel right now but pop in occasionally for variant covers and drawing an issue here and there.

It’s a quiet month for female characters innew titles too, with Civil War II in full swing. A couple of mini-series connected to the event launched last month, but they don’t mention many female characters. Kate Bishop’s in Civil War II: Choosing Sides #3 and that look to be about it. I imagine we’ll see some new books spinning out of however Civil War II concludes, so we may not see many big lineup changes for a couple of months yet.

Overall, while July’s a bit of a backwards step for female creators at Marvel when compared to June, the numbers are still relatively strong. It’s not a disastrous decline by any means, and the numbers keep Marvel well within the new, higher range they’ve been in as of late. I’m not anticipating a ton of changes, bookwise, in the August solicits, so I’m curious to see how the numbers shake out then.

Women at DC Comics Watch – July 2016 Solicits: Rebirth Disappoints, 20 Women on 17 Books

April 25, 2016

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We missed the first month of “Rebirth” because I was busy travelling and some things fell by the wayside, but we’re back again for the second month of DC’s new initiative and, like with every single dang new initiative DC’s done over the past several years, there are fewer women involved than in the months before the new launch. DC’s June and July solicits posted their lowest number of female creators thus far in 2016, making “Rebirth” a big step backward for the company at first glance. In June, DC had 19 different female creators on 18 different comic books, their lowest total since last September. Let’s see how things changed in July:

  • Amanda Conner: Harley Quinn #30 (co-writer, cover), Harley Quinn and her Gang of Harleys #4 (cover)
  • Bilquis Evely: Legends of Tomorrow #5 (interior art)
  • Cat Staggs: Adventures of Supergirl #5 (art and cover), Adventures of Supergirl #6 (cover), Batman ’66 Meets Steed and Mrs. Peel #1 (variant cover)
  • Claire Roe: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey: Rebirth #1 (interior art)
  • Elsa Charretier: Harley Quinn #30 (interior art)
  • Emanuela Lupacchino: Green Lanterns #2 (cover), Green Lanterns #3 (cover)
  • Emma Vieceli: Adventures of Supergirl #5 (interior art), Adventures of Supergirl #6 (interior art)
  • Gail Simone: Clean Room #10 (writer)
  • Holly Black: Lucifer #8 (writer)
  • Hope Larson: Batgirl #1 (cover)
  • Jenny Frison: Clean Room #10 (cover)
  • Joelle Jones: American Vampire Anthology #2 (interior art)
  • Julie Benson: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey: Rebirth #1 (co-writer)
  • Laura Braga: DC Comics Bombshells #15 (interior art)
  • Marguerite Bennett: American Vampire Anthology #2 (writer), DC Comics Bombshells #15 (writer)
  • Meghan Hetrick: Red Thorn #9 (interior art)
  • Mirka Andolfo: DC Comics Bombshells #15 (interior art)
  • Nicola Scott: Wonder Woman #2 (interior art)
  • Renae De Liz: The Legend of Wonder Woman #8 (writer, art, cover)
  • Shawna Benson: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey: Rebirth #1 (co-writer)

All together, there are 20 different female creators scheduled to work on 17 different books in July, a slight tick up in women but a slight tick down in the number of comics they’ll be working on. These “Rebirth” numbers are not good; DC’s solicits averaged about 25 different women in the spring months before “Rebirth.” Of course, “Rebirth” is still unfolding and there may be more women in the mix as new books premiere in August and September. But so far, it’s very underwhelming for women at DC.

We do have several new names, though, including Hope Larson writing Batgirl and writers Julie Benson and Shawna Benson along with artist Claire Roe on Batgirl and the Birds of Prey. The latter team combine to join the creative teams of the digital first series DC Comics Bombshells and The Legend of Wonder Woman as DC’s only books written and drawn primarily by women.

For new female characters, with “Rebirth” rolling out another batch of titles we’ve got some ladies across a variety of new series. Batgirl, Black Canary, and Huntress star in the aforementioned Batgirl and the Birds of Prey, and Batgirl has her solo series relaunching in July as well. Women make up 2 of the 7 teammates of the new Justice League (Wonder Woman and Green Lantern) and while that’s still a small minority, it’s better than when the last Justice League launched in 2011 with just one woman on board. We’ve also got a female lead in the “how does this still exist?” series Red Hood and the Outlaws; Artemis will be part of the team along with Red Hood and Bizarro. Finally, DC’s premiering a new Flintstones comic for some reason, and so we should be getting Wilma, Betty, and Pebbles.

So “Rebirth” is off to a slow start with female creators, and looking ahead at the rest of the lineup, I wouldn’t hold out a lot of hope for a dramatic spike in numbers any time soon. I’m also curious to see how Shelly Bond’s firing will affect the Vertigo books; Vertigo has been a bastion of female creator representation at DC for a while now, but cancellations and new titles may be forthcoming. On the plus side, Gerard Way’s weird new line seems to have a bunch of female creators in the mix, but that’s not coming until the fall. For now, the numbers are low at DC yet again as they stick to their tried and true method of two steps forward, one step back.

Women In Comics Statistics: DC and Marvel, February 2016 In Review

April 13, 2016

bleedingcool

My latest “Gendercrunching” column went up today on Bleeding Cool, and while I love all of my stats adventures, I think this one is particularly telling about the state of women in the superhero comic book industry today.

DC and Marvel’s numbers both slipped down from January, with DC falling further and landing at 13.6% female creators overall while Marvel ticked down slightly to 15.1%. Both are relatively decent totals for each publisher, though below their recent highs.

Then we look at who is writing what at DC and Marvel, and get some very striking numbers. Male writers at the Big Two are writing everyone: male characters, female characters, team books. What they write is roughly analogous to each publisher’s overall output, partly because male writers comprise the bulk of it and partly because they get to write all of the characters. Female writers, however, are mostly just writing women. It’s an odd bit of pigeonholing that’s actually gotten more pronounced over the past year. While it’s great to have women writing women, female writers are capable of writing all sorts of characters, just like men are, and I think the next big step in progress at DC and Marvel needs to be women writing everyone across the board.

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

Latest Image Expo has Lowest Percentage of Female Creators Since January 2014’s Expo

April 11, 2016

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Before ECCC started in Seattle this weekend, Image Comics held another of its Image Expos, their roughly semi-annual presentation of new titles that will be debuting over the course of the coming year. There were a lot of intriguing titles in the mix, and I’m particularly looking forward to Motor Crush by Brenden Fletcher, Cameron Stewart, and Babs Tarr, formerly of Batgirl, and Isola by Brenden Fletcher and Karl Kerschl, formerly of Gotham Academy. It’s always fun to see my favourite superhero creators try something new.

The Expo also featured new books from notable creators like Brian Azzarello, Ed Brubaker, Leila del Duca, Jonathan Hickman, Jerome Opena, Sean Phillips, Jen Van Meter, and more. And, as always when given a list of names, I decided to count them up and see what the gender representation was at this Image Expo. The numbers weren’t great, comparitively. Here are all of the new books, with creator information courtesy of Image’s website:

  • AFAR by Leila del Duca & Kit Seaton
  • BLACK CLOUD by Jason Latour, Ivan Brandon, Greg Hinkle, Matt Wilson, Aditya Bidikar
  • THE BLACK MONDAY MURDERS by Jonathan Hickman & Tomm Coker
  • THE DIVIDED STATES OF HYSTERIA by Howard Chaykin
  • GLITTERBOMB by Jim Zub & Djibril Morissette-Phan & K. Michael Russell & Marshall Dillon
  • HORIZON, by Brandon Thomas, Juan Gedeon & Frank Martin
  • THE HUNT by Colin Lorimer, Jim Campbell, and Joana Lafuente
  • ISOLA by Brenden Fletcher & Karl Kerschl
  • KILL OR BE KILLED by Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, Elizabeth Breitweiser
  • LAKE OF FIRE by Nathan Fairbairn & Matt Smith
  • MOONSHINE by Brian Azzarello & Eduardo Risso
  • MOTOR CRUSH by Brenden Fletcher, Cameron Stewart, & Babs Tarr
  • PRIMA by Jen Van Meter, Rick Burchett
  • PRINCE OF CATS by Ron Wimberly
  • ROCKSTARS by Joe Harris & Megan Hutchison
  • ROMULUS by Bryan Hill & Nelson Blake II
  • SEVEN TO ETERNITY by Rick Remender, Jerome Opeña, & Matt Hollingsworth
  • SURGEON X by Sara Kenney & John Watkiss, James Devlin, & Jared K. Fletcher
  • VS by Ivan Brandon, Esad Ribić, Ive Svorcina, Aditya Bidikar
  • WINNEBAGO GRAVEYARD by Steve Niles, Alison Sampson, Stephane Paitreau, & Clem Robins

All together, there were 40 different men and 9 different women across these 20 new titles, so women accounted for 18.4% of the creators announced at this year’s Image Expo. That’s a noticeable drop from the past three Expos, where women posted percentages of 25.9%, 26.4%, and 23.5%. This year’s total is the lowest since the January 2014 Image Expo, which only had 10.5% female creators.

In terms of representation per book, 8 of the 20 new titles have at least one female creator, another drop from the last Image Expo in July 2015 where there was a woman on more than half of the books (12 out of 23). The Image Expo before that was slightly better than this year, too; the January 2015 Expo had 10 women on 24 books, or 41.7% of the titles, while this year’s 8 of 20 is just a step behind at 40%.

So we’ve got a drop in the overall total and a drop in representation across the board. A double slide like this is rather disheartening, especially from a publisher who prides itself on being the anti-Big Two. While these numbers are somewhat better than Marvel’s recent relaunch or DC’s upcoming “Rebirth”, Image isn’t blowing anyone out of the water here. Fewer than 20% female creators is a decidedly average showing, and far below the bar that Image has set for itself in past Expos. Holding fairly steady around 25% for three shows instead of growing was a little bit disappointing, and now they have taken a step back. If Image was really as different and cutting edge as they seem to think they are, we’d be seeing an explosion of female creators. Yet we are not. Here’s hoping for a course correction with the next Image Expo.

Women in Comics Statistics – DC’s Rebirth and the Decline of Female Creators

March 29, 2016

bleedingcool

After DC Comics announced the creators behind their new Rebirth relaunch this weekend at WonderCon, I wrote a special edition of “Gendercrunching” that went up on Bleeding Cool yesterday. It breaks down the Rebirth creators by gender, and compares the numbers to DC’s last two similar relaunch initiatives, the New 52 relaunch in 2011 and last year’s #DCYou mini-relaunch.

The comparison isn’t great. While the Rebirth numbers are better than the New 52, that’s not a hard thing to pull off; there were only two women in the mix back then. The #DCYou mini-relaunch posted a significant increase overall, from 1.7% female creators to 14.7%, but Rebirth is poised to be a big step down, with only 8% female creators in the mix. It’s a disheartening decline after DC showed steady progress with female creators after the fiasco that was the New 52 relaunch. It’ll be interesting to see how the full stats shake down this June when the new line premieres, but these early indications aren’t great.

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

Women at DC Comics Watch – May 2016 Solicits, 23 Women on 20 Books

March 2, 2016

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In the last month before DC Comics relaunches their superhero line yet again, the publisher’s female creator representation is set to be on the low end of their current average range. Thus far in 2016, DC has had at least 20 different women writing and drawing their comics each month, and this May is no exception, but the numbers have ticked down slightly from the two months previous. Let’s take a look at who’s doing what at DC in May 2016:

  • Amanda Conner: Harley Quinn #28 (cover, co-writer), Harley Quinn and her Gang of Harleys #2 (cover), Starfire #12 (co-writer, cover)
  • Amy Chu: Poison Ivy: Cycle of Life and Death #5 (writer)
  • Annie Wu: Black Canary #12 (art and cover), Gotham Academy #18 (interior art)
  • Babs Tarr: Batgirl #52 (cover)
  • Bilquis Evely: Legends of Tomorrow #3 (interior art)
  • Eleonora Carlini: Batgirl #52 (interior art)
  • Elsa Charretier: Starfire #12 (interior art)
  • Faith Erin Hicks: Gotham Academy #18 (writer, interior art)
  • Gail Simone: Clean Room #8 (writer), Secret Six #14 (writer)
  • Helen Mingjue Chen: Gotham Academy #18 (cover)
  • Holly Black: Lucifer #6 (writer)
  • Jenny Frison: Clean Room #8 (cover)
  • Joelle Jones: Scooby Apocalypse #1 (variant cover)
  • Laura Braga: DC Comics Bombshells #12 (interior art)
  • Lauren Beukes: Survivors’ Club #8 (co-writer)
  • Marguerite Bennett: DC Comics Bombshells #12 (writer), DC Comics Bombshells #13 (writer)
  • Marguerite Sauvage: Unfollow #7 (interior art)
  • Meredith Finch: Wonder Woman #52 (writer)
  • Ming Doyle: Constantine: The Hellblazer #12 (co-writer)
  • Mirka Andolfo: DC Comics Bombshells #12 (interior art), DC Comics Bombshells #13 (interior art)
  • Natasha Alterici: Gotham Academy #18 (writer, interior art)
  • Renae De Liz: The Legend of Wonder Woman #5 (writer, penciller, cover), The Legend of Wonder Woman #6 (writer, penciller, cover)
  • Stephanie Hans: Lucifer #6 (interior art)

All together, there are 23 different female creators set to work on 20 different books in May, a double drop from April’s 25 women and 22 books. It’s not much of a tumble, more of a slight shift that we can chalk up to the vagaries of comic book publishing; things fluctuate. It is, however, DC’s second month in a row of lowered numbers, and the total of female creators is a fair bit off from the year’s high of 31 in January. So not disastrous, but certainly below what DC is capable of.

By and large, the women working at DC in May are the usual suspects, and it’s good to see so many female creators getting steady work at DC. For new creators, I don’t think Natasha Alterici has done anything at DC before, and while Stephanie Hans has done a ton of work for Marvel, her art on Lucifer might be her first DC gig, which is very cool.

For female characters, with a relaunch just around the corner there wasn’t anything new on the superhero front, but DC is set to begin their Hanna Barbara relaunch in May. There aren’t any female creators in the mix thus far, apart from a Joelle Jones variant cover, and the number of female characters involved doesn’t seem too high, at least in terms of lead characters. Daphne and Velma will be part of the new Scooby-Doo Apocalypse, and there look to be a handful of women on the cover of Future Quest #1, but the leads all seem to be guys.

So May looks to be a slightly low month for women at DC, but within their average range. June is where things will get really interesting, with scores of new books and special set to debut as part of the “Rebirth” initiative. Hopefully that will be a jump in the number of female creators; we know what books are coming, but we’ve got no official confirmation on any of the creators yet. A number of books will be double shipping moving forward as well, which will probably mean rotating art teams and thus more opportunities for work. It’ll be interesting to see who nabs those opportunities. As well as which books don’t make the cut for the relaunch, and where the female creators working on those books end up. It can’t be worse than the New 52 relaunch, I suppose. Surely there’ll be more than two women in the mix.

Women In Comics Statistics: DC and Marvel, December 2015 In Review

February 12, 2016

bleedingcool

My latest “Gendercrunching” column went up earlier this week at Bleeding Cool, and both DC and Marvel’s overall percentage of female creators ticked up to end the year.

DC had 14.4% female creators overall in December, not a huge gain from their November numbers but an increase nonetheless. Marvel rose a couple of percentage points to 15.1% overall, their highest showing in several months.

We also took a look at the year as a whole, calculating the annual numbers for both publishers as well as charting the full year by category to see the trends. DC and Marvel combined to have the highest overall percentage of female creators since this project began, and both publishers look to be heading in a decent direction for 2016. The numbers always go up and down, so a decline may come, but these are nonetheless the strongest numbers we’ve seen yet at the Big Two, which is encouraging.

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


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