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Metabaron Book 2The Metabarons Series Returns to Form in Newest Volume

Warning: this review contains spoilers for the current volume and the entire Metabarons series. It’s fair to say that Metabarons has now eclipsed Incal as the most famous Jodorowsky-penned sci-fi epic, at least in the… [more]

alexross1The Folly of Male Supermasculinity

When I discovered comic books I was already in college, but their influence was present in my life far before that. I had seen all the Batman films (Burton and Schumacher’s work) and the venerable… [more]

Julian-Darius-smoking-at-Starbucks-in-Hawaii-700x300Julian Darius on the DC Cinematic Universe and the State of Pop Culture

What’s your feelings about Batman v. Superman teaser trailer? Do you like it or does it make you bored? My original reaction was underwhelmed. I know it was only a teaser trailer, but there’s not… [more]

BATGIRL LOGO LEVEL 4Will Brooker on the Similarities Between My So-Called Secret Identity and the New Batgirl

Dr. Will Brooker has published studies of comics and pop culture since his Batman Unmasked in 2001. In 2013, he launched the comic book My So-Called Secret Identity, which he writes. The series, illustrated by… [more]

jennifer_s_body06Spotlighting Underrated Films: Jennifer’s Body (2009)

I have a soft spot for brave-but-flawed movies that are rewarded for their efforts with Worst Movie of the Year awards. Jennifer’s Body has its problems, but it is one of the best “mainstream” films… [more]

from Swamp Thing #158, by Millar, Hester, DeMulder et al.“So Many Questions are Left Unanswered”: The American Superhero Comics of Mark Millar, Part 39

Continued from last week. For the third time in ten months, Millar’s Swamp Thing had presented abortion in a wholly negative light. Nothing that he’d write in the remainder of his tenure on the book… [more]

from Swamp Thing #152, by Millar, Hester, DeMulder et al.“Her Deepest, Hidden Secrets”: The American Superhero Comics of Mark Millar, Part 36

Continued from last week. As so often before, Murder In The Dark saw Millar indulging in two of his greatest fascinations: body horror at the expense of helpless female victims and the tradition and dogma… [more]

catwoman-sexThe Politics of Batman, Part 4: Sex, Sexism, and the Dark Knight

[Note: The following is reprinted from the book War, Politics and Superheroes] One of the main problems Batman has had from the outset of his career as Feudal Lord crime fighter is that he cannot… [more]

f3e46584dd18ebe7-CRS_Day_three_SusanMarieDavis0125Failing to Defend Anita Sarkeesian

Can you debate a critic of Anita Sarkeesian? Is discussion even possible on the topic? As a casual fan of Sarkeesian and her well-constructed, well-argued, and entertaining Feminist Frequency videos, I’ve been appalled to read… [more]

Erica as Thor GirlWhy Can’t Erica be Thor?

This is Erica. She will be the first to tell you all about the meaning of her name, and how it’s described in various books as the name for a female warrior, with adjectives like… [more]

Pam NolesAn Apology to Pam Noles

Early this year, I wrote an analysis of an interview Alan Moore did with Pádraig Ó Méalóid. One day after it went live, I learned that the “Batman scholar” referenced in the interview (whom I’d… [more]

dont rapeStop Sexually Assaulting Women at Cons!

Convention season has become a really sad time for me. What was once a fun, light gathering of comics fans has become a Bingo card of sexual assault. Women of a sadly growing number are… [more]

Scott LobdellWhy We Shouldn’t Have to Play Detective When it Comes to “DB,” or Why Douchebags Need to Be Named and Shamed

On December 18th, MariNaomi, author of Kiss & Tell: A Romantic Résumé, Ages 0 to 22, posted an article on popular feminist website xoJane.com. It detailed how she was publicly humiliated and heckled by a heterosexual man… [more]

Bechdel TestThe Bechdel Test and a Sexy Lamp: Detecting Gender Bias and Stereotypes in Mainstream Comics

Recently, the Swedish Film Institute began sponsoring a movement spearheaded by a number of theaters who are now making use of the “Bechdel Test” to evaluate their films in order to determine the extent of… [more]

Star Trek (Gold Key) #1 (July 1967)On the Very First Star Trek #1

Star Trek has a long history in comics. In fact, the very first Star Trek comic book began in 1967, at the end of the original series’s very first season. This first series was published… [more]

MSCSI PREVIEW FRONT PAGE DAHLIAWill Brooker on My So-Called Secret Identity

Will Brooker is Reader in Film and Television Studies at Kingston University, London, and editor of Cinema Journal. He is also author, editor or co-editor of nine books, including Batman Unmasked, Using the Force, Alice’s… [more]

scan1On The James Bond Omnibus Volume 004, by Jim Lawrence and Yaroslav Horak

Did we really used to take this pretty much for granted? In what was considered a respectable, family newspaper? It seems absurd now.

twoOn the Ethics of How and Why Hank Pym Created a Wasp (Part 2)

By design and chance, Tales to Astonish #44 had presented a fledgling romance between Pym and Van Dyne which had the potential to constantly and plausibly generate both conflict and reconciliation over and over again.… [more]

rr1On Rorschach #1

In which the blogger attempts to review Rorschach #1, despite the experience proving a thoroughly enervating one. Visitors should be aware that what follows contains spoilers and, uniquely for this article, a moment or two… [more]

AnorexiaOn Body Typing in Comics: What We’re Not Saying and Why It Matters

This is not an essay I wanted to write. Doing so, I’m conscious of wading into waters famous for their landmines. This is at least the sixth full draft of this essay. Most of the… [more]

VoodooNot the Way We Play the Game

I’ve never once criticised the work of another blogger in public, so why start now? Yes, Gene Phillips’s Making a Dirty Breast of the Matter (parts 1 and 2) are appallingly written pieces which express… [more]

from Red Hood and the Outlaws #1, page 10, as originally colored (with Starfire in a transparent bikini)How Could They Do That?: Understanding Scott Lobdell and the New Comics Criticism

I’m quite certain writer Scott Lobdell, writer of Red Hood and the Outlaws, didn’t intend to make Starfire in any way diminishing of women. I know this because it’s leaked that DC was concerned, prior… [more]

Red Hood and the Outlaws #1, page 10Sexism, Sexuality, and the DC Relaunch

Last week’s DC relaunch offerings didn’t prompt much serious debate over which title was the best, but they launched a flurry of reactions against their portrayal of women. But first, a warning: my goal here… [more]

Uncanny X-Men #541On Feeling Compelled to Boycott Greg Land’s Uncanny X-Men

I can’t do it, I just can’t. It doesn’t matter how much I admire Kieron Gillen as a writer, and admire him I most certainly do. He’s undoubtedly one of the best half-dozen writers currently at… [more]

Super-hero comics have a long history of depicting or suggesting sexual assault.Colin Smith on Comics Criticism, Part 2

Continuing from part one, we now move on to discuss when it’s fair to criticize a work for depicting human rights violations such as torture and rape, writing personally, and comics culture.