Good morning. Yesterday was Valentine’s Day, and today is President’s Day. Those are holidays, I guess, not that they mean much, as apparently Presidents can literally incite violence and escape any kind of justice, these days. Speaking of gross misuses of legal power, a hearty “Fuck you” once again to Brandon Graham, who last week sicced his lawyer on us for reporting a thing that actually happened. Eat shit, Brandon!
DC has a new female character in the Bat offices, another villainess with neon hair and a funky style. Her name is Miracle Molly, and she’s apparently an engineering genius who can fix anything. That sounds pretty neat, but I gotta say, there’s just…
What are we calling this, you know? This like…quirky punky anarchist girl? Not manic pixie dream girls, but a descendant of that. Molly obviously takes her cues from cyberpunk aesthetics, but the throughline here is the same for both, these liberated criminal archetypes who share a design ancestor in Harley Quinn. No one would call these girls identical, but no one would blink twice if they were running in the same crew. It’s not that they’re not cool designs, it’s not that they’re not interesting to look at, it’s just like…it feels like being read, you know? Like someone over at DC has the file folder for “modern women in comics” out of the archive and is doing their best to say, “Hey, kids! Biff bam pow!”
Punchline gives me a neat…well, “neat” segue into the next news item, which is this J. Scott Campbell variant cover, sold exclusively through his website, that features the Joker and Punchline playing up racist Japanese stereotypes:
This cover just asked me where I’m “really” from.
This cover just asked me if I could, y’know, see when I smile.
This cover just said “I love Japan. Anime is awesome” to me out of nowhere.
This cover just asked me if I could teach it to speak Japanese or Chinese or whatever. pic.twitter.com/vUOoxEP0MC
— Mallory Yu (@mallory_yu) February 11, 2021
You’ll remember Campbell, of course, from the time he went after our own Adrienne Resha, or perhaps the time he sexualized a character meant to be fifteen years old. Hey, if it’s not the racism, it’s the misogyny, right? Anyway, as usual, this will not matter to the corporate number crunchers on high at Warner Brothers, or HBO, or…hell, whatever they’re calling themselves these days. They do not give one whit about something like this unless it affects their bottom line, as evidenced by the fact that Campbell is a well they just keep going back to. DC, for their part, went on later in the week, to announce an Asian themed one-shot in honor of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, and presumably are content with this token gesture.
On the further subject of uncomfortable racial depictions, Marvel had to reissue some advance art for the new X-Corp book, after the initial art released presented the mutant Monet St. Croix as entirely too light-skinned. Here are the two images together:
The corrected art is…better, but it doesn’t really address the root of the issue, as Adrienne Resha (hey, look at that, full circle) goes into here:
The problem with Monet St. Croix in X-Corp (and other women of color in other X-Men comics) wasn't just the way she was colored but also the way she's drawn and the fact that there's no one (creator or editor) like her in the X-Office.
— Adrienne Resha (@AdrienneResha) February 12, 2021
The subject of how women of color are drawn in addition to how they’re colored is one we’ve touched on before, and it was about the X-Men then, too.