Another week has passed, and it’s been quite a week in the world of comics!
- Best Graphic Story
The Sandman: Overture written by Neil Gaiman, art by J.H. Williams III (Vertigo)
- Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form
Jessica Jones: “AKA Smile” written by Scott Reynolds, Melissa Rosenberg, and Jamie King, directed by Michael Rymer (Marvel Television; ABC Studios; Tall Girls Productions; Netflix)
Not having read Gaiman’s new Sandman story, I don’t have much to say about it, other than to say that it’s not really a surprise. But the winner for Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form was! “AKA Smile,” is the season one finale of Jessica Jones, and it definitely packed an emotional wallop. I’m always glad to see more love for the Jessica Jones series, and I’m sure the Hugo statuette will look lovely next to the Peabody. And just to remind you, we’re still waiting for season 2, which has been greenlit and if you thought you were alone wanting Jessica and Trish to finally get together….
— Chloë Grace Moretz (@ChloeGMoretz) August 14, 2016
This past week also saw the announcement of the Ignatz Award Nominees. The Ignatz Awards are at SPX, and if SDCC’s Eisner’s are comics version of the Oscars, then SPX’s Ignatz Awards are like comics own Sundance film festival. A repeat of last year’s all-women sweep of the Ignatz Awards will not be possible this year, as several categories have only male nominees. By the numbers, 21 men were nominated, with 6 men (Daniell Clowes, Kevin Huizenga, Noah Van Sciver, Adrian Tomine, Simon Hanselmann and Kim Deitch) receiving nominations in two categories. 18 women were nominated, with two women, Tillie Walden and Carolyn Nowak, receiving nominations in two categories. Interestingly, women dominated the Outstanding Online Comic and Promising New Talent categories, but were shut out from Outstanding Story category. Check out the full list of nominations here.
It seems as though Marvel saves their really cool announcements for when I’m doing the news roundup, because it was announced this past week that Zendaya, who has been attached to the Spider-Man: Homecoming movie in an unnamed capacity, will be playing Mary Jane. There’s, predictably, been some outrage from certain parts of the internet, but even iconic Spider-Man writer Dan Slott tweeted out his support.
And he’s still adding more tweets of support, days later.
Spider-Man was created 2 yrs B4 segregated water fountains went away. Times change. It's ok if heroes change w/ them https://t.co/a3y31y3wah
— Dan Slott (@DanSlott) August 20, 2016
Mary Jane is many things to Spider-Man, but she’s traditionally been defined as solely his love interest. One of the things I enjoyed a lot about The Amazing Spider-Man and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 was how Gwen Stacy, who had been, in the comics, even more relegated to being defined as a model/love interest, was reimagined as Peter’s intellectual and academic equal, and an independent character in her own right, with her own story arc and character arc. I’m very interested in how Spider-Man: Homecoming will approach Mary Jane, and hope that they can, with Zendaya, reimagine the character in a fully-rounded way.
Also, in case you missed it, this is a video of Tom Holland and Zendaya dancing with professional dancer Deja Carter which was posted on Instagram. It is all of the adorable.
But my excitement and joy over Zendaya as Mary Jane was, I admit, overshadowed by the news that Hulu is going to make a Runaways TV show.
I am both Annie and Shirley in this gif. I am so incredibly excited but also screaming and terrified. It’s a seeming contradiction that is perhaps best embodied by that time Kristen Bell was told there was going to be a sloth at her birthday party.
I don’t know if I love Runaways as much as Kristen Bell loves sloths, but Runaways was one of the first comics I read. It was a comic that got me into comics. The characters are more diverse than is usually the norm, a group made up of 50% POC, with a range of ages, genders, and sexual and romantic orientations. MTV went so far as to say that Runaways could be the answer to Marvel’s glaring diversity problem, and it would certainly be more diverse than any other Marvel show out there, especially if you add in body diversity into the equation. But only if they do it right.
Runaways was the first time I saw a girl in comics whose body was more like mine than like a supermodel’s. And I’m going to come out and say that if they cast someone who looks more like Cara Delevingne than Rebel Wilson that is doing a serious disservice to the character, and to millions of young girls across the country. Television needs more body diversity, and I’m not going to be satisfied if they cast someone who is “curvy” or worse, someone like Mae Whitman, who was round-faced enough to play the “Designated Ugly Fat Friend.” Just. No.
Kickstarters & Patreons You Should Know About And Support If You Want To
Moonshot 2, an anthology that highlights the work of indigenous creators, is currently on Kickstarter. Back it!
The Poop Sheet Foundation, which just opened its zine database, is now on Patreon. Support them too!
You have only 10 more days to get your “This is Fine” plush dog. Do it.
Chester Brown has also started a Patreon and has one of the most honest explanations for why Patreons are becoming so popular:
I’m hoping that being on Patreon will provide me with a stable source of income while I work on my next graphic novel. Royalty income is up and down — sometimes it’s good, sometimes it’s… not so good. And government arts grants are like lotteries. While I was grateful for the arts grants I received, the governmental system does not seem like an ideal method of supporting artists. As I understand it, the justification for governmental arts grants is that they replace the old system in which individuals would act as patrons for artists. Patreon, as an updated method of having individuals act as patrons of the arts, looks like it’s probably a better system than the governmental grants system.