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CSBG Archive

She Has No Head! – Time To Retire?

You guyyyys!

So this past week has shown not only Marvel announcing ANOTHER female-led title for 2014, this one featuring a young woman of color stepping into the Ms. Marvel role, but an incredibly exciting deal with Netflix to launch four new Marvel-based series including one for JESSICA JONES.

The cause for celebration in my world right now is enormous.

And this happens just shy of my four year anniversary here at CSBG (why thank you, Marvel, and I didn’t get you ANYTHING, I’m so embarrassed).

shnh time to retire copy

Leaves me wondering if I can finally hang up this gig.

Well, okay, maybe hanging it up is indeed premature. But for now, let’s pop the champagne and enjoy ourselves, yes?

One small step and all that nonsense!


– Kelly

ps – shortest SHNH ever – by like 800+ words!


Obligatory: I give it 6 issues.

Don’t retire! This is all well and good, but the momentum necessary to keep positive changes like this in the comic sphere coming is through blogs like this. Plus I need someone on this website whose opinions I agree with on occassion.

retirement is a good idea. it’s not like it’s going to regress after you step up

The whole Captain Marvel/Ms. Marvel thing is interesting, but I am in the ‘wait & see’ camp. Diversity characters in legacy lines do not have a great track record. If DC Comics can dump John Stewart back to the C-list after JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED in favor Hal-f***ing-Jordan, then no one is safe from regression.

The Netflix deal, on the other hand, is awesome. Neither Jessica Jones, not Luke Cage, are derivative of anyone. They are their own deals. Luke Cage has a solid commercial history, but doesn’t quite feel like a movie character. The same is true of his buddy Iron Fist. Jessica Jones has a stellar creative history as ALIAS is probably the best work Brian Michael Bendis has done. And, of course, all these characters sort of fit together.

The economic model of Netflix means the viewership hurdles aren’t too high. That should enable creative risks that we’d never see on The Avengers movies. None of the characters really demand a huge budget either. Awesome. I could not be more excited.

I can’t even begin to count the number of things wrong with making Supergirl a Red Lantern. So thanks for that, Thompson. (winky face denoting non-seriousness of the last sentence)

I think that when DC finally reveals a Wonder Woman movie, this columns days might be numbered. :)

Plus, as Ms. Marvel literally has no head in the cover to #1, maybe that’s a sign.

I am ecstatic about the new Ms. Marvel. I’m looking forward to the other lady-centric solos (especially Elektra, because Mike del Mundo), but I’m a sucker for teen superheroes, and a solo about a teen superhero that also happens to be not white? YES PLEASE. It seems to be getting tons of press, too, including from places like Stephen Colbert, so hopefully that will bode well for its sales. And I’m already seeing fanart turning up on Tumblr; it looks like the Carol Corps has embraced Kamala as one of their own.

she has a head, dave, you can even see her nose!

I wouldn’t say that the comics industry embracing female characters is a reason for you to quit. I know you were mostly joking, but if someday things finally right themselves and our entertainment medium of choice truly becomes an equal reperesentation of genders, sexualities, cultures, etc., I don’t think that would be the time for you to hang up your hat.

It just means the focus of the column shifts from “This needs to be fixed” to “Isn’t this awesome?” If anything, that seems like it be a much more enjoyable thing for you to write about.

I know you were joking but Kelly, I just want you to know that your blog here has really open my eyes to female superheroes, how they are drawn and protrayed. I am a huge Kitty Pryde fan, she isn’t really ever drawn overly sexy or in ridiculous bathing suit costumes. But then your blog has spotlighted how silly it is that Batman and Superman are fully clothed and then there is Wonder Woman, standing out of place.

Now I pay more attention to items like that now. Thanks!

Though that new Ms. Marvel series, sounds not very good but we do need more female leads.

Hey all

Thanks for the nice comments. As most of you supposed, I’m mostly joking. There’s plenty to write about, even if there are NEVER any more problems (unlikely!) there’s a lot worth celebrating as well.

@dave: Yeah, I wouldn’t say that cover qualifies as “no head” – she’s got a head, most of one in fact, just no eyes really, and the image isn’t sexualized or any way trying to suggest her head is unimportant. If anything I think of it as being more of a reference to hidden identities (since frequently only the eyes of supes are covered by silly eye masks). As noted around the web it’s also an homage to this Gary Frank Supergirl #1 cover: http://robot6.comicbookresources.com/2013/11/pichellis-ms-marvel-cover-gives-nod-to-franks-supergirl-1/

@jill: Hi John! Thanks for stopping by! If you’re unhappy then my day is a success! That alone is enough reason to keep on going!

@Dean Hacker: I agree. Who knows if it will last, or even be any good (either project) and to be honest I have not had a lot of success in connecting to Wilson’s writing in the past, but still worth celebrating the effort, yes?

Well, now I’m glad I didn’t come on here and say that, while I understand it’s ultimately your decision, I hope you don’t retire because I find your column interesting, and insightful, and a great place to pilfer reading recommendations—to say nothing of the fact that the presence of numerous female led books doesn’t necessarily guarantee excellence of execution (See: Nu52 relaunch, which for me managed to infuse and then deflate my first ever interest in DC in a matter of months . . . and then there’s Wonder Woman) nor eliminate the need to keep a watchful eye out for backsliding—especially seeing as you were just having larks. I would have felt right silly.

No, you know what Kelly? FUCK MARVEL.

Seriously, fuck ‘em.

Just when I start to think they’ve gotten their heads out of their asses when it comes to the X-Men, they screw me again. they’ve had so many positive moves in the past few years (Wood’s 2 X-Men runs, original Uncanny X-Force and Cable and X-Force, plus the new Spurrier one looks good, keeping Peter David on X Factor still even now, Wolverine finally stepping up and calling Cyclops out in Schism, Wolverine and the X-Men, the new Amazing X-Men, etc.), but they continue to pull shitty moves.

First, they give Bendis not 1 but 2 (2!) flagship X-books, dropping WatXM down from flagship status, while also stealing half it’s creative team in Chris Bachalo; these books COMBINED aren’t even on the same level as WatXM in dialogue, plotting, character development and, despite losing Bachalo, art too. this sucked, but I could deal with it. then, after giving Aaron a second book (which, unlike Bendis, he has EARNED), with a solid art team and he get’s to bring back a very sorely missed X-Man, so now I get a book that covers the school and one focused on the teachers, they yank away WatXM from me. And guess where Nick Bradshaw is going? that’s right, Bendis’s Guardians of the Galaxy.

they did the same thing to Scarlet Spider – Stegman’s off the book after like 5 issues and it’s cancelled in January despite the fact that it’s just as good as what Slott is doing on Superior.

So yeah, I applaud what they’re doing with diversity in race, gender, religion, etc. in their books and they deserve some props for that. I’ll still pick up Wood’s X Men, Aaron’s Amazing X Men, and Spurrier’s X-Force because they are or will be good. But they still make dumb-ass moves like what I just described just as much as DC, and I’m not going to support them with my money the way I have in the past. A least DC is making smart moves when it comes to the Batman books, so they’ll be getting more of my money.

And that’s why I say FUCK MARVEL.

Btw, Kelly, thanks for posting a Marvel-positive article so I could use it as an outlet for some recent news.

@Sarah: I don’t know what story you’re referring to. What happened? I sure hope it’s unfounded, because he is one of my favorite writers and has always written female characters that I liked and respected.

Also, they’ve wasted the magnificence of Joe Madureira on a Matt Fraction written book (Matt fucking Fraction?! Really?!), when he should have been on something more X-team related after Wolverine, cuz then he could still draw Wolverine, which Marvel knows he likes and would be a good incentive to him to stick around. A book that would have been perfect in matching the tone of previous artists, like say, WaXM.

But now that I’m done venting, this new Ms marvel seems like an interesting character, but I’ve never been all that interested in the Marvel-name heroes besides when Jim Starlin was writing Cap and Claremont was writing Ms. Marvel. Otherwise, I’ve found them way too bland. I hope his one succeeds though, since the market can always use more variety.

Joe Madureira is not a roomba. He’s not just being pointed in a direction and he goes. He’s a grown man, a professional, and a veteran. He also likely has a lot more respect for Matt Fraction than any one fan could.

@Lizzy: Well, thankfully it appears that he responded in a mature and apologetic way, including urging the industry to look at the situation as a whole. And she appears to have accepted his apology and echoed the call to arms. It looks like that specific chapter is closed.

I guess none of us will ever know what happened (possibly even them: that long ago, he may have been more of an ass than he remembers being, or he may have been less of one than she remembers him being), but hopefully this opens some eyes. It sucks how many times we’ve had to say stuff along the lines of “hopefully this opens some eyes”, but all we can do is try to make things better.


Whether or not he was an ass, he was attempting to cheat on his pregnant wife and he got away with several times before he hit on tess. I’m dropping X-Men now, I won’t feed the income of an adulterer. Because of this I’m now down to four books by Marvel by the time the New year rolls around:

yost’s New Warriors
Amazing X-Men
X Factor
Spurrier’s X-Force

As someone who’s averaged 12-15 Marvel books the past half decade or so, this is just sad for me.

*books a month

I understand your decision and won’t argue with it, but I can’t bring myself to stop buying one of my favorite new comics. I don’t know if having a daughter made him a better person who understands how to treat women, or if he’s actually a complete piece of shit who’s just amazing at faking it when writing female characters, but either way I love his work.

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