Welcome to Cover Girl. Each month, we gather a team of WWAC contributors to analyze a new and notable comic book cover featuring one or more women. This month, Louis, Wendy, and Lisa discuss Fay Dalton’s cover of Red Sonja and Vampirella Meet Betty and Veronica #2 from Dynamite Entertainment.
What is your initial reaction to this cover as pieces of comics art?
Lisa: They’re beautifully drawn, and I love the tableau, but definitely heavy on the cheesecake side, which is kinda awkward since Betty and Veronica are minors. In fact, they’re so cheesecakey that they’re deficient of their usual personalities—Betty looks ready to sneeze, and Veronica just kinda looks disappointed. I do love Red Sonja standing tall and touch as a football heroine though!
Wendy: I love the detail and the composition of the cheesecake deadliness. It’s reminiscent of Franzetta covers, complete with damsels in distress, subverted by damsels who like to cause distress. But the Betty and Veronica are really throwing me off because, while the reactions from them over finding a dead body in their locker room might ring true, it just doesn’t really look like them.
Louis: I’ve had to stare intently at the cover to figure out which character is who. The only one who stands out is Red Sonja because of her hair. I do love this realistic art style. It is totally my jam. But it’s also hyper-sexualised and, as Lisa mentioned, Betty and Veronica are minors, so that is bordering on gross. But, Red Sonja, football star, is something I never knew I wanted. I’d read it just for that!
What do you think the artists are trying to achieve?
Lisa: Norman Rockwell, but more cheesecake—or super retro fabulousness.
Wendy: Definitely an “If Norman Rockwell painted warrior women and buxom teens instead of Santa and kids” vibe.
Louis: Definitely getting that Norman Rockwell vibe, which I love. It gives the story a time stamp more visually than anything else could. Also, I feel like the artist might be trying to subvert expectations—this is the kind of scene one would expect to feature male characters, but instead it’s female characters? If that is what they were going for, I like it.
Extracurricular activities might be a problem, but what do you think the rest of their school day looks like?
Lisa: Lunch, a little bit of bloodletting, home economics.
Wendy: Vampi gets tired of her science teacher droning on about basic shit and takes over the class to teach her classmates how to synthesize the blood she needs so that she won’t eat them, while Sonja inadvertently starts food fights when she angrily tosses trays around the cafeteria, frustrated that there is no ale on tap.
Louis: I think Betty and Veronica would go about their day as normal. Red Sonja is giving me hella jock vibes so she would probably bunk class for football practice. Oh, and she totally fights the school bullies and protects her fellow classmates. And she’ll team up with Vampirella, who will charm the bullies before, bam, she drinks their blood.
Out this month, Red Sonja and Vampirella Meet Betty and Veronica #2 features several different covers for a story that is surprisingly, just what both series clearly needed. Read our review of the first issue here.