Lillian Robinson, principal of Women's Studies at Concordia University's Simone de Beauvoir Institute, has been hanging out at the comic book rack - all in the name of academic research.
Over the years, Robinson has studied sex-trade workers and the impact of globalization on women. In her new book, Wonder Women: Feminisms and Superheroes, which hits bookstores tomorrow, she turns to the influence and mythology behind bosomy comic icons like the Invisible Woman, She-Hulk or Canada's little-known Nelvana of the Northern Lights.
[. . .] Robinson is intrigued to see how comic heroes, plots and attitudes have evolved - and how they haven't. In one recent storyline, Wonder Woman's boyfriend was "a beautiful black man with dreads" who worked for the United Nations in sustainable development. "Of course, he had to die, as a sacrifice to Zeus."
I must have missed the big THIS ISSUE: THE BLACK GUY DIES cover in the shops. Was that before or after Rucka took over? Been thinking about picking up #200, just because. . .
Update: And as long as I'm talking comics -- stopped by the shop and picked up the first volume of Osamu Tezuka's BUDDHA, on Karin's recommendation -- if, like me, you know just enough to be confused about Image's Faction Paradox, and were wondering if they were that Faction Paradox:
While this is its first appearance in comics, the idea has been around since writer Lawrence Miles' 1997 novel Alien Bodies.
The editorial describes that as a "BBC sci-fi novel", and goes on to mention that the Faction also turned up in some other BBC books. The two words which the editorial seems keen to avoid are "D*ct*r" and "Wh*." Years after the show went off the air, the BBC continued to licence and produce a ton of Dr Wh* novels, which from what I gather became increasingly nuts over time. Oddly enough, at least from a comics standpoint, the writers who contributed to those novels seem to have retained their rights in the original characters who they contributed. The result has been several books such as this - Dr Wh* supporting characters spiralling off on their own, unable to mention exactly where they came from because the characters aren't available, but moving on to a bizarre sort of afterlife.
Or, in the case of Faction Paradox, perhaps an entirely new life divorced from its roots in BBC Publishing. This book seems consciously intended to appeal to a wider audience than just the hardcore Dr Wh* faithful - and indeed, as they promise, no knowledge of previous stories is required.
The original X-Axis review doesn't do the pissy thing with the asterisks, that's all me.
I don't want them freaks doing a search and stumbling on my site.
The key bit, of course, is, "Oddly enough, at least from a comics standpoint, the writers who contributed to those novels seem to have retained their rights in the original characters who they contributed[.]" This isn't odd at all in countries with some slightly more. . . do I have to use the term "liberal"?. . . approaches to creators' rights. There's be something here about T*rry N*t**n and the D*l*ks, but I'm more than a bit worried that I can do it from memory without having to look any of it up. . .
To put this in terms the Americans can wrap their brains around, I'm fairly certain Paramount has made, as they say, shitloads of money from the Borg characters in St*r Tr*k, what with appearances on multiple television shows, and the film, and the merchandise.
Talking completely out of my ass, whoever created the characters got paid for the script.
The constant revenue stream derived from the characters?
Yeah. It's like that. See also: Siegel, Jerry and Shuster, Joe, but not Moulton, Charles. At least partially because the latter doesn't exist. . .