From Marvel and DC Comics specifically.
I guess I better get my two cents in on the Mary Jane washer woman/pole dancer scuffle before it goes completely cold.
You can start reading the massive reaction to the MaryJane Washerwoman Statue, they started on May 12 and go on and on and it’s not pretty, but it’s pretty interesting because many of these posts are not from “comics bloggers.” (Ragnell here and sort of here.) They’re from people who don’t like seeing women degraded in degrading depictions. Here she is, folks in all her 360 degree glory. Or here if you don’t want to click on thumbnails.
So, any thoughts on how to get less misogynistic writing and art in superhero comics? I like the books I read and don’t read the books that piss me off. I think one solution is to get more women who actually write and read comics, and take it seriously, working at the big two. Sorry, Jodi Picoult, you might be a good novelist, but you sucked writing Wonder Woman. There are men writing at the Marvel and DC who do great work that’s not consistently and overtly offensive. Such as Warren Ellis (Nextwave, Warren, all is forgiven [as long as I don’t read your blog]), Grant Morrison (Bulleteer was a sly, well-placed jab at exactly what’s wrong with superhero comics), Greg Rucka (loved his run on Wonder Woman and White Out is on my must read list), and there are probably others, but why aren’t there more? And how do we get more women and less-hostile-to-women men writing superhero comics?
I know the editors at Marvel and DC aren’t listening and don’t care, but, because it is all about money, women would spend as much or more on superhero comics and tchokies if they weren’t so creepy. And adult women have as much disposable income as the fanboys. One of the goals of the J LHLS review site is to provide grown-up reviews for grown-ups, some of whom are women who’d like to start reading comics. So what do we mostly review? Manga and anime. What can I tell ya? I’d love to have more superhero reviews, so if you want to review for us, drop me a line and I’ll set up a log-in for you.
Anyway, pre-tangent, it could take a while to change superhero comics so they’re less offensive to women, but it’s a change worth working for. But how? First establish the goal and then the method. Bitching, sorry, I mean, polemic is only so useful.