What do we do now?
That is the question proposed in this video clip of Reese Witherspoon's Glamour Woman of the Year speech and that question cut me and made me have to evaluate what I watch, read and hear...Every now and then when scrolling through the endless stream of consciousness that is Facebook you will inevitably find a nugget that sparks something. I am left with so many questions...
Witherspoon made the comment that she dreads reading scripts that have no women involved in the writing process because many times she would come across that line of the girl turning to the guy in the crises and asking, "what do we do now?" Witherspoon then begs the question, have you ever seen a woman do this in a crisis? When listening I answered her question from my own knowledge: No. I remember being small and scared and I would inevitably turn to my mom or my grandma for help and advice.
Granted Witherspoon was speaking from the point of view of movies but the same can be said for comic books.
I grew up reading the Sensational She-Hulk and I remember wanting to be like her. She was smart, she was funny and she was strong! (Like Hulk-style strong!) She drove a cool car and flirted with the Thing (I didn't really know about his having a girl-friend at the time since I didn't read Fantastic Four...so oops on that part...) I have now read the newer She-Hulk and was turned off by the fact the introduction of She-Hulk on page one shows the strong Jennifer Walters, college grad, then by page four the reminiscence has ended and she is sleeping with some underwear model...shortly there after she is kicked out of Avengers tower for having too many "overnight guests"...so maybe strong to some people means being very sexually prolific...
I went to look at the writer, editor and editor in chief: all men.
How many of your favorite comic book artists are women? Can you think of many? I sadly am drawing a blank. I know there are many...I have loved reading the Hope comic series that Christine Kerrick wrote.
For the past couple of weeks we (CCAS) have had amazing comic book creators relating their knowledge and process and I was inspired. I have started to write and brainstorm my own comic book. At first I felt inspired, now I feel driven.
Now I pose the question to the interwebs that browse our site: What do we do now? I challenge you, dear reader, to watch the short interview and think on and answer some of the questions that are now percolating in my mind (and share your answers or questions of your own!)
How do we inspire the creation of characters true to those they should represent? How would women in comics change if their stories were written by women? What can we do to change the mindset of women in comics? What are some of your favorite women in comics and why? (favorite characters, writers and artists) What is it in your life that you think you cannot accomplish?
What do we (I) do now?
Paula Richy and Mia Pearce have produced several top-notch graphic stories from Paula's OtherRealms Stuio :https://www.otherrealmstudio.com/index.php?rt=product/category&...
The extremely talented comic illustrator Tazia Hall (https://taziahall.wixsite.com/risenart ) produces both biblically-themed and anthro comic art.
If I started to mention secular comic artists such as Tracy Butler (Lakadaisy cats), Melody Pena (https://windstoneeditions.com/) who does the outstanding webcomic:The Velegent; Longtime Comic creator Margaret Carspeken (http://www.ozfoxes.com/fauxpas.htm).
My apologies to the many I've missed, but I should probably close my list with a conclusion: Most (but not all) of the Comic/graphic novels on my shelves by established names are male; about half of the webcomics on my fave list and artist I follow on Deviat art are female. Perhaps change is already (slowly) happening.