Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Whoop! A Short Bloggy Hiatus...

Yes, the work is piling up and I need to take a break for about a week from the blogging so's I can finish my assignments. In the meantime I leave you with...

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

How George W. Bush Clued Me In On How To Achieve Female Empowerment In The Comic Book Industry

There is a bit of talk right now in the blogosphere about the apparently defunct Friends of Lulu Female Empowerment Fund. This fund was designed to financially help women in the industry who were fighting sexual harassment cases in court. I thought this fund was a super idea. But, for a variety of reasons, it didn't stick around. Some bloggers have publically asked for an accountability on it, FOL responded, a baker's dozen of links on When Fangirls Attack ensued. (My link function is disabled on this browser, but just go to the When Fangirls Attack link on my blogroll for more info.)

While I think such commentators as Johanna Draper Carlson definitely have the right to ask: "what happened to the Fund?" and press for details, reading about all this brought up another point.

For us (wimmins) to achieve empowerment in this industry it might be helpful to start out by observing how men have maintained their empowerment. And instead of focusing on the comic book biz right now I think I'll turn my attention to Politics.

How had the conservative Republicans, under the leadership of George W. Bush, maintained such a stranglehold on political leadership for so long?

Because they stuck together. Even for dumbass things. They had a clear agenda of issues they supported and they stuck together.

In contrast, the Democrats had been scattered, without clear agendas, and occasionally attacked one another. Presenting not so much an united front as a motley crew of disparate ideas and alliances, they were easily undermined.

Now on to comics (or any business situation, strictly theoretical, you understand)

How does a male "bad apple" with a history of harassment, or racism, or whatever, stay in his job?
Because the other males around him stick by him. They "circle the wagons," as it were. Because, outside of the harassment or racist remark, the guy is their "buddy." So they present a seamless united front. Their unity is a brick wall, a very very powerful one.

To really fight things like sexual harassment or racism or homophobia you need to be in a similarly unified situation.

You can't have several scattered icons of comics feminism dotted across the blogosphere occasionally undermining each other (and, while I'm hardly an icon, God knows I've done it). You need a united front. Yes, with f**king "talking points," the whole thing. Just like the Republicans -- and now the Democrats!

Sounds fascist? Sounds crazy?

This is just based on observation. Personally, I know while I've said some cool things on these blogs, I've also said some dumbass things as well. Maybe what I'm saying is also dumbass. I don't know.

But I do know that ok -- maybe the FOL Empowerment Fund is dead. It was a great, noble idea. The Friends of Lulu is a great, noble institution. They are the most visible female empowerment group for comics we have. Let's look towards the future and figure out together how best to promote and protect the interests of women in comics.

What are our set issues?

Are we united?

If one of us gets attacked, how do we respond?

If a younger member of the industry needs help because of harassment or whatever, how do we respond?

Women within the mainstream comics community -- in positions to make a difference -- are they "members" of this alliance or what? Can they publically be in support of this alliance?

What the blazes IS this alliance? Is it organized all under the banner of the Friends of Lulu or what? Let's define all this.

Because without a united front, there is nothing. Without a distinct "platform," there is nothing. Let's get some sort of membership drive going either for the Friends of Lulu or some other thing and get women (and guys who care) to sign up and get moving!!! Let's not leave things with the same old complaining over some Sin City action figures used for a raffle and turn the damned page already. I met like 15 young female artists and writers at the comic con last weekend. What are we setting in place to help them? That's the only question that matters.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Occasional Super Heroin

Best Quote Of The New York Comic Con

"Hi, I'm Occasional Superheroine."
"What? You know where to score some super heroin?"

Sunday, February 25, 2007

What Turns Me On At Comic Conventions

No, I'm not talking about anything sexual (though for Occasional Superheroine the Comic Con can be a bit of a meat market)


Usually the biggest attractions at Cons are the BIG NAMES.

But for me, I'm most energized by talking to the following two groups:

First, the comic book veterans who have put their dues into the business. They've given their lives to this business. They don't get the big books all the time. They may or may not be between gigs. But they have a commitment to excellence in their craft, are dependable, and are a great resource. I like hearing their stories. I always want the best for them.

Second, the young (at least in spirit) up-and-coming new talent. The ones who singlemindedly folow their own vision. The ones who sink their life's savings into self-published comix. The ones that add a much-needed diversity and alternate point of view to this industry.

Both groups consistently leave me jazzed at the end of a Con. They are the real life's blood of this biz. And, though this sounds really corny, naive, and idealistic, interacting with them motivates me more to achieve in this industry so I can be in a better position to assist them and bring their talents to the spotlight.

So I'm going to add a New Talent Spotlight to the blog. I mean, why the hell not?

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Secret Identities and Alter-Egos in Pop-Culture

To me, the whole superhero business boils down to secret identities -- alternate selves that encompass everything one wishes to be or hides from his- or herself.
I've always loved those Academy Awards segments where they show a montage on a particular theme. Through YouTube I've assembled a compilation of various clips that address the topic of alter-egos. What I'm currently writing for my own project focuses in part on this idea, so it's inspiring and informing me as well. But mostly, I'm just a big YouTube whore. Enjoy.

Please Note -- some clips contain spoilers

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

I Think I'll Give Up Self-Loathing For Lent

I Think I'll Give Up Self-Loathing For Lent

I mean, I was thinking of giving up something more standard, like fish or chocolate, but I think I'm going to give this a shot.

Now, self-deprecation I'm not totally giving up, as it keeps me from being a total self-righteous egomaniac.

A degree of self-deprecation keeps you honest.

But self-loathing I'm giving up starting this Ash Wednesday.

And in honor of the holiday, here's a couple of pictures of notable Catholic Supeheroines The Magdalena & The Huntress. Would Pope Benedict approve??? Soldier-chicks for Christ!

Caption This Panel

Caption This Panel

"Two On An Icicle"
"Pardon Me But Your Evil Spike Is In My Abdomen"
"DCU Girls Hot Kinky Action!"
"Why Supergirl Can't Make Any Friends"

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

To Well-Meaning Male Comic Writers Who Put The Rape And Abuse Of Females In Their Books


So we have this periodic Net debate about portraying the victimization of women in comics, etc...

Is it exploitation? Is it a cop-out by bad writers? What?

So I'm writing this comic script and it's basically about my OWN victimization as a child.

No, not writing, wrote, I'm done writing it now, it's finished...

So I'm laying out, panel-by-panel, my own comic book action of getting abused.

I'm giving my artist directions on how to draw my own abuse.

And at some point, during the script, I just make the unprofessional move of writing to the artist,

"Dad beats me really hard for the next several panels. I can't psychologically map the action out; sort of follow the captions."

I didn't really think that sitting down to write this would effect like it did, but it did.

But I'm not sorry about it, because it is important.

But for male writers who put things like this and rape in their scripts,

Please understand just how f**king painful it is from the perspective of the person who lived through it.

I mean, really think it through carefully.

And I'm actually picturing Jack Kirby taking on my script right now, and it sort of makes me laugh...

"Insert Cosmic Crackle here"

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Seven Reasons Why The Comic Book Industry Needs To Create More Teen Role-Models

Seven Reasons Why The Comic Book Industry Needs To Create More Teen Role-Models

Britney Spears Goes Crazy, Shaves Head

So Britney Spears chops off all her hair and ducks into a tattoo parlor. Speculation is, she's gone off the deep end of the kiddie pool. Maybe it's a after-effect of being bought and sold like an idealized commodity since she was six, gee I don't know?

Of course, like clockwork the immediate comic book/sci-fi references fill my head:

though actually my very first thought on seeing her photo was: "Manson Girl."

Friday, February 16, 2007

A Great Way To Catch An Upper Respiratory Infection

A Great Way To Catch An Upper Respiratory Infection
And they are not fun let me tell you. Sore throat, tons of phlegm that just fills up your lungs, and you can barely talk. That's why you must always cover your neck and the top halves of your breasts when flying through the air fighting crime, especially during the colder months. I use a shawl or simply button up my peacoat.

Will Date For Ghost Rider Premiere Tickets

Will Date For Ghost Rider Premiere Tickets

Actually happened:
"Browsing" one of those online community bulletin board types of things -- you know, for research -- and a guy had an ad for the Ghost Rider premiere, he had one extra ticket and wanted to take a lady.

And I was like, "damnit, I want to see "Ghost Rider!"


My e-mail (more or less): "Hi, I normally don't do this sort of thing but I'm a big comic book fan and I would like to go to the Ghost Rider premiere with you. I hasten to mention that I really never answer ads like this, but I really want to go. I'm 5'9", 125, and reasonably good-looking. With a great sense of humor. Also, I'm female."

His response: "The premiere already ended tonight. Sorry."

My response: "No problem. But if you get tickets for Spiderman 3, let me know."

Now, this ad was clearly under the "strictly platonic" section of the bulletin board so it wasn't like I was whoring myself for Ghost Rider premiere tickets. Of course, I gave a description of my physical features, but this was just so he would know what I looked like so when we met up he'd recognize me.

What I'm trying to say is,

I'm a liberated woman and I don't need to turn to bulletin boards to score me some Ghost Rider tickets.

Damnit, after work I'm going to see Ghost Rider!

I'm liberated! I score my own comic book swag!


Nick Cage is weird and a little self-important but I'm totally into him. Anybody who names themselves after second-string Marvel characters from the 1970's has a level of self-realization that I am only now starting to achieve.


In an interview, Cage credited Karen Carpenter as one of his inspirations for "Ghost Rider." I immediately thought this was because she was bony. Sometimes, I'm a frickin' idiot.


Will date for "Supergirl" comps. But only if they are of good quality and paint a picture of blond blue-eyed alien adolescence that squares away with my own set of values. If they are generally exploitative and have all the depth of a later episode of the the "Saved By The Bell" canon (after Mario Lopez left), am only willing to talk on phone for ten minutes about weather and politics.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

"You Had Me At Goodbye" -- The Stalker And You

"You Had Me At Goodbye" -- The Stalker And You

I was trying to come up with an appropriate theme for Valentine's Day, and...

In my experience, stalking is not a phenomena particularly endemic to the comic book industry or fandom. I have never had a comic book fan stalk me per se, though I have had some close calls.

There was the jail-bait chaser (the Occasional Superheroine drinking game -- every time I write "jail bait" you take a shot) who loved Phantom Girl (classic, mind you, none of this post-1980 bullshit) so much he apparently wanted one for himself. I'm not sure when I realized he had crossed the line from friend to potential John Hinckley, though finding out that he told his mother we were going steady and near marriage was a clue. This fellow, sort of a Philip Seymour Hoffman on evil pills type, apparently had some idealized vision of me in his mind as this etherial, fucked-up teenager -- his comic book collecting Ophelia.

Here a point must be made. Women with stronger personalities -- aggressive, outgoing types -- get stalked much less. They get sexually harassed less. This is not to say that more soft-spoken, passive females are at fault when they are stalked & harassed. But this is just my general observation. The flip-side is that while a Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi, or Nancy Grace type might get stalked and harassed less, they also are more likely to be hated for demonstrating the very same characteristics that would be praised in their male counterparts. I have dealt with such frustrating Catch-22s in life by watching a lot of old Ronald Colman movies and eating Lindt truffles.

To the stalker, "no" never just means "no" -- it means "I am secretly deeply in love with you because I realized that you were really my reincarnated soulmate from the time I was a Carpathian noblewoman."

To the stalker, "goodbye" simply means "try harder."

And so the stalker tries harder.

I've been stalked by some really grade-A stalkers. Tree-climbers, ersatz private investigators, and amateur riflemen. My run-ins with such creatures have been relatively milid, as I never had to get a restraining order. I've known many women who had to go the extra mile in this department.

I met one of my best friends in college through a professor who stalked both of us. She was into something called "big ass buddha-tits hard core witchcraft." A petite woman with long, Ophelia-esque blonde hair and her own Little Red Riding Hood cloak, she used to get stalked a lot. She had even got attacked. Then she encountered the wonders of the female spirituality movement and sort of went off on her own way with it. Of course, there is no need to go to such extremes as my friend, though her particular methodology for handling stalkers was rather colorful.

Stalking is a phenomena not bound by gender, looks, or economic/social status. For example, 2007's "Runaway Bride," Astronaut Lisa Nowak, is female, reasonably attractive, and...a freakin' astronaut! She was so obsessed with her sweetie that she wore diapers on her race to intercept his alleged girlfriend and "just talk" to her while carrying all the equipment necessary to theoretically rig up this chick's car so it looked like she killed herself with the exhaust. What dedication! What ingenuity! What stinky diapers!

The only real sort-of stalker I had in comics was a well-known freelancer who eventually had to be told by my boss not to call me anymore. This man was attractive, outgoing, talented, and extremely successful. He could also apparently read my brainwaves with his psychic powers and empathically "feel" when I was in distress. Of course, he was causing the distress, but why split hairs in the face of the miraculous?

My favorite cinematic example of the stalker is Bill Pullman from "Mr. Wrong." Yes, there is a certain allure about having the Han Solo guy from "Spaceballs" chase you across the country, " I Want To Know What Love Is" blaring, but his pseudo-Harrison Ford mystique can only be carried so far. Also, if you're Ellen Degeneres in that movie, you most probably have other issues going on besides terror over hearing "Foreigner" at a Mexican rest-stop.

So as you tote your bundle of roses and enjoy a romantic night eating stale twizzlers, getting felt up, and watching "Norbit," please do not forget that much-maligned flava in Cupid's stable o' love -- the red-blooded American stalker. And if you are having any problems with such dedicated individuals, there is a certain witch I can put you in contact with.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

World's Finest: Supergirl VS. Occasional Superheroine in "Hands Off My Mimbo!"

World's Finest: Supergirl VS. Occasional Superheroine in "Hands Off My Mimbo!"

Okay, the title of this post has nothing to do with a damn thing...

But here's a comment from "Supergirl" writer Mark Sable left under my recent "Supergirl Redux" post.

"I'm Mark Sable, who was mentioned in the much debated DC Nation column as co-writing Supergirl from issues 16-19 (right now only 16 is certain, though). I've spent a good portion of this past week engaging with fans who were not happy with Eddie's column. Obviously anything I say here is my own opinion, not DC's, Eddie's, or any of the other creators or editors involved with Supergirl. That said...

First off, I wanted to thank you for defending Eddie. Although I don't know him as well as you do, I do know him well enough to say that he was well intentioned, and I don't think deserved to be singled out.

I also wanted to echo the following statement you made:

"And this System WILL change. Please do not think that your letters and editorials do not get noticed up on Mount Olympus. Please do not think that higher-ups more higher-up than the higher-ups don't read this stuff -- or at least get briefs on it by their assistants."

I'm certainly not on Mount Olympus (although I get to visit once and a while, and they write my checks), but speaking for myself I can say that creators DO listen.

I know that there was a particular note to the artist that I would never have written had it not been for your "broken vagina monologues" in the script for SG #16 (I don't feel comfortable sharing it only because it's now the property of DC, not mine).

The back and forth with bloggers etc. has at the very least exposed me to voices I might not otherwise have heard. And should I continue on the title past the issue I've already written will undoubtedly influence what I write (if not on Supergirl, than on my other work).

I realize these may be small steps, but in my current capacity as a freelance/indie comic writer they're all that I can take.

Just thought you and your readers should know that your words don't fall on deaf ears. "

Some thoughts:

1) Cool points for comic creator Sable for his sensitivity & willingness to communicate w/the readers.

2) Here's hoping he doesn't get the old boot in his behind for the trouble; some new independent voices on these titles are a good thing.

3) This all said, I haven't read the new "Supergirl" issue in question so I can't comment one way or the other. Though I'm always open for review copies -- they can be sent in the same envelope as those single comp copies I was promised as a courtesy but never received of "New Frontier" and "Solo" and "Identity Crisis" and several other titles I assisted on at the time I left three years ago.

4) My broken hoohah is doing relatively ok. It's not really broken anymore, just somewhat neurotic and addicted to old Ronald Coleman movies.

Art Imitating Life Imitating Art?

Art Imitating Life Imitating Art?

Geez, it's 3:00 in the morning, I was sorting some photo ref, and I came across this little syzygy:

The photo has a lot of meaning to me as it was taken when I was 16, minutes before I left my family to have a parentally-sanctioned "run away from home" (which is a long story for another day). Right after this photo was taken, I lived on my own and essentially had the life of an adult -- my childhood ended. It was absolutely depressing and horrible and if you can read the expression on my face, I have absolutely no idea what the hell is going to happen to me; it's staring into the abyss.

The panel is from Uncanny X-Men #199, part of my all-time favorite run that featured Rachel Summers as Phoenix II. This is right after -- feeling alienated and out-of-her-time in this alternate universe where she never existed -- she absorbs all the power of Phoenix.

It's funny, I've been very familiar with both images but never picked up a similarity until now. Trivial I know, but that's the sort of thing that strikes a person at 3:00 A.M.

Swipe file, dude!
Time for bed!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Anna Nicole Smith: The Annotated Biography

Anna Nicole Smith:
The Annotated Biography

Let’s see, I was born near Houston, Texas. (There is nothing else regarding either my family or childhood that I have any pride or happiness in, nothing I could tell you that wouldn't break the illusion. My past is a gremlin, a nothing, a sour dismal patch that I have been trying to run away from all my life.)

I'm an international model and have been on numerous magazine covers worldwide. I was crowned Playboy Playmate of the Year. I was also the Guess! Jeans Model. (I realized early on that I had no inherent worth outside of my body; this bothered me, but I decided to embrace it and use it like a tool, as passionless and calculating as a sliderule. When I was stripping I would see these women who let it hurt them, who dared opened their hearts, who dared think that maybe they deserved better and let that dangerous presumption batter their lives with guilt and shame. Victims. And if there is one thing I want you to know, more than anything else, it was that I was not a victim. It was all an equitable exchange of goods. I never attached my heart to it. It didn't hurt me. That is what I want you to know. Don't pity me. Don't you dare fucking pity me.)
I'm also an Actress. (Was it easy for me all the time to be only sought after for my tits and ass, quarters tossed my way so I could flash some leg, flash some photog, given fat checks to show up at parties and events lit and half-conscious, like a clown, like a bovine sacrifice to point at so you could feel better about your own little lives? You think I didn't respect myself, that I didn't want more for my life, when in reality I was a master at making the most of what I had. I was a fucking great actress.)
I had my own show on E!. (Yeah, I realize that E! was just making fun of me the whole time, but I used them as much as they used me. I gave them nothing for their money, just shit, and then they shovelled that shit to the public. And the public laughed at me but the joke was on them because they were the ones watching the shit. Now who's more pathetic?)
Is it just me or does controversy seem to follow me around? (I had a charming way of acting all Shirley Temple on sexual overdrive, lisping and putting my index finger to my lips, as I joked about those things that were killing me, didn't I?)
And, of course, I am TRIMSPA’s most famous customer. (Losing all that weight in such a short time to fulfill my contract...did you really think it was all TrimSpa? Remember that phrase, "results not typical?" I mean, duh... But of course I'll bet you already knew that, what a fucking phoney I was, because you're just such a better person than a fucking dumb whore like myself, right? Dumb silicone bitch Anna? I guess it was all for nothing anyhow, in a way. But I looked really good when they wheeled me out; I must have pictured that scene a thousand times, but I was concerned about all the vomit. I'm glad they cleaned the vomit out of my mouth before they took the pictures. I don't think Marilyn vomited, did she? Or maybe she did but they cleaned her mouth out; that's what I think happened.)
There’s so much more, but bios are boring and I don’t feel like writing any more. (You can lecture me about "the life left unexamined is blah blah blah terrible," but trust me you don't want to go there, you don't want to stare at that blank canvas of ceiling as your eyesight stutters in and out and you feel the depth-charge in your chest as the vomit erupts and you're too exhausted, too dizzy and stoned-up to care. In the end, it was just that hotel ceiling; to get away from it, I tried to lull my head into my pillow, at least that was soft and dark and discouraged examination. Besides, everything you need to know about me you already know, right? Probably better than myself? Are you so sure of yourself and what you read on the Internet and what CNN and Fox and Entertainment Tonight tells you? You think I was such a miserable person, worthless, a gold-digger, a prostitute, a terrible mother, a drug addict -- you all think that but you can't stop talking about me. What does that say about all of you? What do you know about being poor and female and idealized as a sexual object since puberty? I should have "respected myself more," right? What do you know about having no future and no husband, a teenager with a two-year-old child working at a no-name fast food joint, feeling loveless and desperate, just like my mother was?

What else do you need to know? (I've taken it -- the real me -- to the grave. I won. You might have laughed at me, called me a cow, a dumb bitch, but I got the last fucking laugh. They all touched me, saw me naked, whatever, but nobody got to that golden spot inside of myself. See? I didn't let them get there. I won.)

Friday, February 02, 2007

Supergirl Redux

Supergirl Redux

So the proverbial s**t has hit the proverbial fan regarding all things Kara...

Regarding my previous post --

First, for those who were offended by my claim that adults who date minors are poopy-heads, let me say on the record that I was all for the Laura Ingalls/Almanzo Wilder pairing. But I still think that 90% of grown-up men who sleep with 16-year-olds are poopy-heads. When we return to an agrarian society with strong moral values and a life-expectancy of about 40, maybe I will adjust this opinion.

There's an excellent Supergirl blog called "Maid of Might" who did a good editorial on the whole "Women Who Needs Them I Do" plea for more female "Supergirl" readers. The blogger makes the point that institutionalized sexism makes sexists out of women. Somewhere in that sentence, I think I got a little dissed -- but rightly so. My suggestion to put Benes on "Supergirl" was, as far as I can remember, completely devoid of any other motivation than to impress my superiors with my keen comprehension of what "sells" -- sex. Looking back on it, I am rather shocked myself.

When I started working in the industry, I had these really high-faluting goals of "promoting women in comics," etc. I came from a highly feminist college situation -- women's empowerment groups, women's literature groups, women's health fairs, sexual harassment counseling, etc. A lot of us got into the whole "female spirituality" thing -- you know, rejecting the Judeo-Christian God as a tool of the patriarchy and empowering women by seeing the female form as divine. We would go through books of goddesses and find one to honor and use as a role-model. These goddesses each had their own super-power, costume, accessories, even mascots. So basically, instead of finding our role-models through comics and other entertainment -- which didn't seem to really give a s**t about us anyway -- we got ours from ancient mythology. When you give up on the media of the day to find your heroes on cuniform tablets -- something's wrong with the society.

But when I got into the comics industry, my priorities changed. Because I wanted nothing else than to succeed in the comics industry. That was it. That's all I wanted. And I observed how to make it and I proceeded to do so. And so I turned my back on all that "women's empowerment" stuff I was into in my academic days.

Which brings up the question -- was all that feminism I was into in my previous life all bulls**t, just a "hip" thing to do to pass the time? Was it meaningless?

You see, I don't think it was. I think it's what, ultimately, prevented me from being completely comfortable with the System. It's what made me physically sick, when mentally I was fully plugged-in with the System. I was saying "yes" to sexy art on what is essentially a "teen" book and giving my thumbs-up to "rape pages" and then I would sit in the lavatory for like twenty minutes with my heart racing and feeling nauseous and not understand why.

But when it is your job to bring in the numbers, when you are getting judged month-by-month on how your sales are doing, when your head is caught in the vise of such pressures, what do you do? And I was just an assistant with no dependents. What if you have an entire family to support? What do you do? Do you play the "iconoclast?" Do you put your family's medical insurance on the line so you can make a point about feminism? To risk getting fired so you can step forward and say, "I am Spartacus?"

"Supergirl" editor Eddie Berganza took a lot of flack online for his editorial asking women to give his book another try. I knew Berganza. I had lunch with the man two or three times a week. I babysat his kids once or twice in the offices while he was in meetings. As the father of a teenage girl -- who is probably the age Kara is by now -- you could not get any better. He raised this girl with an incredible sense of self-esteem and self-empowerment. He encouraged her to be active in sports, excel in school, and to be forthright, strong, and independent. Talking to her, I was quite impressed -- I was like, "this kid is going to be President of the United States one day; and if not that, probably any damn thing she wants to be." And if a guy tried to sexually harass her she'd probably karate-flip him into a plate-glass window. You don't raise girls like that by being a rampaging misogynist. I should know, because I was raised by a rampaging misogynist.

Which is not to say that parts of Berganza's editorial didn't make me go "D'oh!" I mean, if I had the power of The Beyonder from "Secret Wars" I think I'd go through time and erase the word "Mimbo" out of existence.

But the problem is the System. It's a groupthink philosophy of looking at things that starts from the top.

The System has to change. And it stands a better chance of changing from without than within. Within the System, you're sort of trapped. I could not do a damn thing for "women in comics" of any value until I was out of that particular System. All the articulate, empassioned bloggers and posters out there who agitate for change is what's going to change this System. Letter-writing campaigns are what's going to change this System. Voting with your wallets is what's going to change this System.

And this System WILL change. Please do not think that your letters and editorials do not get noticed up on Mount Olympus. Please do not think that higher-ups more higher-up than the higher-ups don't read this stuff -- or at least get briefs on it by their assistants.

But I don't know if singling out one person -- other than the actual policy makers -- really does a lot of good. I'm not saying this for sentimental reasons, I am saying this as a matter of practicality.

For example, I worked at Acclaim Comics for 2 & 1/2 years. Working there, under the leadership of Fabian Nicieza, I NEVER felt pressured to "tart up" my comics. I NEVER felt the need to betray my own gender to get ahead or to think that my gender had anything to do with getting promoted. That whole idea was never even on my radar. That was the System of Acclaim Comics under Fabian Nicieza. It started with him, the type of person he was.


As for what direction to put "Supergirl" in -- I dunno, can't it be like the early Peter David stuff, or like "The Young Avengers," and "The Runaways," or like old-school Perez "Titans" and "Wonder Woman," anything like that? Or bite the bullet and have a solid, teen-friendly book like "Spider Girl" and stick with it and make your money back on licensing her to TV, clothing, etc.


Geez, now I want to go to Blockbuster and rent "Spartacus."