This THORsday comes with Patsy Walker, aka Hellcat [The Book Depository]. If you haven’t read this trade already, do it, because it’s hilarious. The artwork is fresh, funny and inspiring. And the script is simply a masterpiece of laughs. Hellcat is jobless and fighting crime. In the first pages we discover that the She-Hulk has to fire her because of a lack of work. Despite this, she keeps on the positive side of the street and keeps fighting crime. Even if she has to work in retail!
One of the things that I like the most are the explanations with kitty-shaped panels. These are funny, fresh and make the resumes on what’s going on amazingly.
Do you remember Milo Manara’s Spider-Woman variant cover for Marvel and all the fuss that it created? Well, Manara has made it again. And he has managed to make it even worse. How? Making her perfectly naked!
Milo Manara and Frank Cho hosted a panel in Lucca Comics and Games 2016, in Italy. The panel was titled “Frank Cho, Milo Manara and Women – A dialogue between two Masters.” Here, Manara presented a Spider-Woman illustration to Cho as a present at the end of the panel. Now, the problem is the picture if you put it in the wrong genre, and the attitude of both artists regarding the illustration and what it represents.
The History of Comics, including Women, continues with the Era of Retrenchment. Here we see the rise of the television. The TV becomes the dominant mass media preferred by people, especially by kids. While the TV offered Superman’s adventures for free, comic books still cost 10 cents an issue. The Golden Age saw the birth of more publishers than the market could ever sustain later on. So, they had to change their preferred genres to survive. While Superhero comics were losing sales; romance, westerns, crime and horror saw a rise in their sales.
In 1955 the Comics Code was implemented. Some genres were banned with the code, like crime and horror. One publisher that was selling these in sheer amounts, EC, ended up leaving the business. EC tried to stay two more years in business with their “New Direction.” Other publishers found that publishing comics based on the TV was a great way for their sales. For example, Dell published Gunsmoke in 1956 and DC The Many Loves of Dobie in 1960. These comics easily qualified for the Comics Code Authority.
Welcome to a Comics THORsday! Today we’re reading Silk, the life and times of Cindy Moon. Silk was bitten by the same spider that bit Peter Parker when she was a teen. It gave her powers similar to those of the Amazing Spider-Man. However, afraid that she could harm her family, and that spider-hunters and murderers called the Inheritors could murder them, she locked herself in a bunker for ten years. Whose idea was it? Ezekiel Sims, a super rich man who, theoretically, wanted to help her. He died, and Spider-Man found her. But when she goes out of the bunker, she is unable to find her family. Where are they?
(C) Marvel. Silk, the life and times of Cindy Moon
Did you know that you can read some old comics online? Some are just madness while others are jewels. I decided to create some lists from time to time so you can join me and discover vintage comics. Vintage comics can be challenging: you end up wondering what the authors were thinking when depicting some stuff in the covers and panels. They are also an excellent way to see how comics and stereotypes have changed through the ages. I’ve chosen a list of misfits and jewels.
I admit it: some of the covers are bewildering if not disturbing. However, in this list, there are two jewels that you will enjoy a lot. Even if the whole collection isn’t available.
These first set of comics comes from Ziff-Davis Publications. And yes, some of the covers are super weird. We start with Alice New Adventures in Wonderland, from 1951. The series available online are from July/August to September/October 1951. And, yes, someone is spanking Alice!
Amazing Adventures has a fascinating cover. It was published in 1950 and run till fall 1952, with a total of 6 issues. Romance is all over the place, with all types of characters.
The History of Comics, including Women, continues with the Era of Diversification. This is an era where Superheroes falter and other types of comics shine, like funny animals (Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories from Dell), youngsters (Archie), crime comics (Dell’s Dick Tracy). Now we have Superheroes, funny animals, romance comics, westerns, crime comics… While Dell set up to print Walt Disney’s Comics in 1940, 1941 is the year in which the most famous teenager of all times saw the light: Archie. His success was so staggering that he’s still published today.
Surprisingly, it was a team of two men created Young Romance #1. Joe Simon and Jack Kirby created romance comics back in 1947, a genre that reached its popularity in the 50s. (Of course, this would be what men thought women would like to see in the pages of a comic.)
Comics THORsday comes hot with Kim & Kim, Snotgirl, and Gweenpool. I’m only going to talk about Kim & Kim and Snotgirl and leave Gwenpool for another time. Let’s start with Kim & Kim, a comic by Visaggio-Cabrera and Aguirre-Saam-Rex. I don’t like the artwork at all, but I got issue #1 just because one tiny detail: Catalans. As far as I know, Catalans live in Spain, in Catalonia. Since I was born in Barcelona, this makes me one of them. However, in this comic, Catalans aren’t friendly folk who love eating, creating human castles and hunt mushrooms. They’re an elite group of bounty hunters in a place called the Omniverse. So, imagine my face when I started reading the comic, and I discovered that we don’t really hunt mushrooms but all types of galactic scum. How could have I missed that!?
The History of Comics, including Women, continues with the Era of Intention part 3. In part 2 we discovered the pulp heroes that would influence Superheroes of the Depression. But before talking about tough times, let’s explore the pursuit of flappiness. During the 1920s, we could find Flapper girls. Flappers were an entire generation of young and liberated Western women who wore short skirts, bobbed hair and listened to jazz. They drank a lot, partied a lot, and had casual sex as well. The Roaring Twenties gave girls some freedom to explore themselves just as men did.
Clara Bow Brewster, Flapper girl.
During this period we find Art-Nouveau style Flapper strips and Art-Decó style Flapper strips. Some Flapper strip artists got so famous as to dictate fashion with their comic strips! One of them was Nell Brinkley (1886-1944), a comic strip artist we saw in the previous post. She had set the style for almost all the women cartoonists during the 1920s. Her Flapper girls were elegant and had incredible hair styles. But, these ladies also created tons of controversy and fan mail!
I found a treasure on Comixology: a feminist lesbian Viking comic called Heathen, and it blew my mind. I usually read traditional comics, not digital ones. However, some treasures can only be accessed digitally. Surfing Comixology I found a cover that caught my eye, the first issue of Heathen. I love all things Norse, so, it was easy to start reading this comic. The art of Natasha Alterici, the author, is fresh and fabulous. The colors are also thrilling, plus the characters are both delicate and vigorous.
Aydis is a Viking girl that has been cast out from her community because she likes girls. According to tradition, her father should be the one to kill her. However, she sets her free.
Comics THORsday pretends to go nuts with the Unbelievable Gwenpool #1. This issue is running its second printing, which means that it’s having a blast! Gwenpool is fresh, hilarious and crazy. What else can we hope for a Superhero title with a “pool” in it? Everything and more! We’re in front of a Superhero without super powers, a crazy comic book fan who wants to do what her favorite Superheroes do: fight the baddies. Gwen jumped from our Universe to the Universe of comics. How did she do it it’s a mystery. However, it worked for her. She comes from Howard the Duck pages and now she has her own super flashy title. She is very confident and a geek to the bone. In fact, many of her solutions are what I would do in her place: inspiration in video games, blind faith in the indestructibility of Superheroes, and so on.