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She Has No Head! – Second Annual Awesome Women In Comics Holiday Gift List, 2010!

Welcome back to my annual female positive comics holiday gift list – yes, I’ve done it twice now, so it’s officially an “annual thing”.  And if you love lists, you’re going to be all about She Has No Head! this December as it’s a month of lists – starting with today’s holiday gift list, then a two part list of my favorite female creators of 2010, and rounding out the month with a best (and a few worsts) of 2010 list.  Let’s get started!

So the holidays are upon us and you’ve decided that in these tough economic times you want to support the industry by giving everyone on your list sweet comics.  And not only that, but you want to take it one step further and only give female positive comics…well, in that super specific case you’ve found the right list.

This year, in addition to picking excellent female positive titles, I also limited myself to books released in 2010 only…enjoy!

01. For the collector in your life. This oversized hardcover edition of Wednesday Comics is a gorgeous book that is only superseded in coolness by the original newsprint issues.  Bonus points if you can track those down and deliver both in one gorgeous package that would make any collector salivate.

What it is: Wednesday Comics was a stunning experiment that I hope Mark Chiarello will try to duplicate sometime in the future – an experiment in which he took some of absolute best artists and writers working in comics and told them to do whatever they wanted.  The result is some of the most creative, interesting, and flat out beautiful work I’ve seen in a VERY many years.  Wednesday Comics collects stories from Neil Gaiman, Kurt Busiek, Amanda Conner, David Azzarello, Jimmy Palmiotti, Dave Gibbons, Karl Kerschl, Mike Allred, Ben Caldwell and many others and focuses on a large variety of characters from Wonder Woman and Batman to Sgt. Rock and Metamorpho.

Why it’s female positive: Stories featuring heavy-hitters Wonder Woman, Supergirl, Catwoman (among others), plus 12 huge beautiful Supergirl pages by artist Amanda Conner.

Wednesday Comics. Mark Chiarello (editor). Various Writers, Various artists. DC Comics. $49.99. Full Color.  Hardcover (large format size). 200 Pages.  Release date: June 1, 2010.

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She Has No Head! – Linda Medley’s Castle Waiting

Castle Waiting.  Linda Medley (creator/writer/artist).  Fantagraphics.  457p.  $29.95.castle waiting cover

I was planning to write about the first issue of the new Spider-Girl mini-series, whether I loved it or not, but I just couldn’t gear myself up for a full column slamming it.  It was so incredibly mediocre and uninteresting, and completely what doesn’t inspire me about comics these days that I just couldn’t bring myself to devote the column inches to it.

Instead I decided to talk about a book that I recently discovered, and don’t know how I could have missed all these years – Linda Medley’s excellent Castle Waiting.

It’s not that surprising that I missed it I suppose, considering my sporadic relationship with comics (periods of obsessive love followed by periods of complete burnout), when you also consider Castle Waiting’s own valiant but sporadic publishing history.  In 1996, Medley was awarded a Xeric Grant and self-published the first seven issues of Castle Waiting in 1997 and 1998.  Cartoon Books then stepped in as the publisher of issues #8 – 11, followed by Medley self-publishing on her own again in 2001 and taking the series up to issue #16.

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