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[personal profile] helloladies
On the final day of our Super Women & Comics theme week (*sniff*) short story writer, blogger, 'reader, and media addict' Memory Scarlett joins us to talk about the shape-shifting, pink haired star of Noelle Stevenson's popular web-comic, Nimona.


It’s a popular story across all forms of media. A schlubby guy gets involved with a SuperAwesomeAmazing woman. She helps him realize his full potential via a training montage or two, complete with inspirational music and/or narrative captions that clue us in to his emotional struggle. And when the dude knows everything he’s got to know--ie, in no more than two months--the SuperAwesomeAmazing woman relinquishes much of her own power in the face of his shiny new abilities.

Yeah, she’s been training her whole frickin’ life, but it’s not like she could possible be more interesting/talented/suited to fighting injustice than this guy. I mean, she’s a girl.

Noelle Stevenson, creator of the recently-completed webcomic NIMONA, is clearly aware of this story--and keen to smash it.

Warning: implied spoilers below. )
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[personal profile] helloladies
Enjoying Superwomen & Comics Week, and hungry for even more content? Our contributors are more than happy to oblige. Check out their carefully selected lists of links below.


Read more... )
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[personal profile] nymeth
Cover for The Secret History of Wonder Woman by Jill Lepore, showing a vintage comic picture of Wonder Woman

A riveting work of historical detection revealing that the origin of one of the world’s most iconic superheroes hides within it a fascinating family story—and a crucial history of twentieth-century feminism

Wonder Woman, created in 1941, is the most popular female superhero of all time. Aside from Superman and Batman, no superhero has lasted as long or commanded so vast and wildly passionate a following. Like every other superhero, Wonder Woman has a secret identity. Unlike every other superhero, she has also had a secret history. Harvard historian and New Yorker staff writer Jill Lepore has uncovered an astonishing trove of documents, including the never-before-seen private papers of William Moulton Marston, Wonder Woman’s creator.
(...)
The Secret History of Wonder Woman is a tour de force of intellectual and cultural history. Wonder Woman, Lepore argues, is the missing link in the history of the struggle for women’s rights—a chain of events that begins with the women’s suffrage campaigns of the early 1900s and ends with the troubled place of feminism a century later.

Wonder Woman has been fighting for women’s rights for a very long time, battles hard fought but never won. This is the story of her origins—the stuff of wonders, and of lies.
Before I start telling you about Jill Lepore’s The Secret History of Wonder Woman, I need to tell you a little bit about myself: my history as a reader has undoubtedly influenced my experience with this book, and so it seems reasonable to talk about it.Read more... )
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[personal profile] helloladies
Today, all round media devotee Clare explains how she got hooked on Harley Quinn and why you should too.





Harley Quinn got me into comics.

Like every geek in the late nineties and early aughts, I had consumed a metric ton of anime and manga (Yu-Gi-Oh!, anyone?), but, unlike every geek in the late nineties and early aughts, my only experience with Western comics was with my brother’s lovingly curated Asterix collection. A collection which I had vandalized as a small child and was thus banned from touching. After my brother went off to college and my father and I began raiding his possessions, I finally came across his Big Two books: Marvels, Kingdom Come, and, most importantly, Les Daniels’ Marvel.

Daniels’ extremely biased account of the rise of Marvel gave me a quiet hankering for good old-fashioned superhero comics, although my fond childhood memories of Batman: The Animated Series and The Adventures of Lois and Clark steered me towards DC. I investigated the 1998-2003 Young Justice and liked what I saw (namely, nineties Superboy, who is my forever Superboy), but I could never quite get into it. Casting around for something else, I stumbled across the 2001 to 2003 Harley Quinn and devoured it in one of my teenage self-soothing media binges.

So when the first issue of The Unwritten finally lured me into a comic book store in 2009 (it was a dollar!), it made perfect sense to supplement that purchase with Gotham City Sirens, which started around the same time. I still give people that advice when they want to break into comics: find a character you like and just focus on them for a while to get your feet wet. Those two comics were the first in my now small but sizable comic collection, and Gotham City Sirens was the first comic I ever owned in its entirety in single issues. They’re special to me.

But reading Gotham City Sirens made me realize how lucky I was to start reading Harley Quinn comics with, well, Harley Quinn.

Read more... )
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[personal profile] renay
cover of a Finely Woven Thread


You've seen Black Widow as an Avenger and even an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. But on her own time she searches for atonement for her past as a KGB assassin — in ways of which those teams just wouldn't approve. The Black Widow goes undercover in Russia, but from its cold streets, the Hand of God reaches out to crush her...and it is as merciless as its name implies. Outmatched by the brute force of a powerful new villain, Natasha faces her deadliest test, and discovers a deadly plot unfolding that spans the entire globe. (source)


My introduction to Natasha was in Iron Man 2, where her relationship with Pepper was one of the few redeeming things about that outing beyond Tony and J.A.R.V.I.S. snarking one another. She also got to a) use part of Tony's suit, and b) stab Tony in the neck, which was really good for me.

The Natasha we meet in the MCU, though, is by circumstance, often only hinted at because she's not the main character. Her development in The Avengers was pretty good, but in Captain America: The Winter Soldier it was amazing, and it was The Winter Soldier that solidified my desperate need to know more about her and her past. Seeing as how Marvel is determined to crush my dreams of Natasha ever getting her own film under their heel before diving into the vault of money à la Scrooge McDuck, I decided it was time for me to head to the comics.

Sidenote: has someone made that animated gif yet, with Scrooge McDuck's head replaced with the Marvel logo? I need gif making skills. PRETEND IT WAS HERE. Read more... )
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[personal profile] helloladies
Vidder extraordinaire, [personal profile] beccatoria covers why, when and what to care about when it comes to comics (and then sets you free to make your own judgements). Lady Business accepts no responsibility if her recs cause you to lose your money and your heart in a comic book shop.





So to begin, the title is a lie. At the very least it is misleading. I hope very much that this will work as a guide, but not as a one-size-fits-all feminist negotiation of comic books. I hope this will help you create your own guidelines — I hope it will help you decide on the angles of your own approach.

If I had only one thing I could say to you it would be to set your boundaries and to guard them fiercely, but to make sure you are setting your boundaries.

With that in mind, there are really three things I think we need to cover:
  1. Why should I care?
  2. When should I care?
  3. What should I care about?
Read more... )
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[personal profile] helloladies
Get in our invisible plane, losers - it's time for a Lady Business theme week.

Over the next seven days, we'll be presenting a host of posts about Super Women & Comics from a team of smart, persuasive readers and comics enthusiasts. And what better way to kick off the week than with words from Wonder Woman superfan, chaila?

chaila has previously written posts about awesome action stars Sarah Connor and Mako Mori for Lady Business. Now she's back to convince you that Diana of Themyscira is essential to your life. You can try to resist her but, frankly, I don't like your chances.

Wonder Woman might be the most famous superhero that people know the least about. Before I started reading Wonder Woman comics just over a year ago, I thought I knew enough to know I wasn’t interested. I knew something about an island of women, and something about bracelets that stop bullets. She seemed to be associated with a kind of “empowerment” feminism that didn’t seem very complex. I wondered why she couldn't wear pants. Mostly, I knew her as a vintage pin-up: a face on a t-shirt, symbol of superficial girl power, mostly devoid of content or context, who perhaps had been relevant thirty years ago and but didn’t really seem so today.

Oh how much I was missing!

Wonder Woman blocking arrows with her bracelets

tl;dr Diana is amazing )

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