In praise of (comic book) womenWritten by Jim Beard | | firstname.lastname@example.org
“When the weather’s fine/You got women, you got women on your mind.” So says Mungo Jerry and so say Marvel and DC Comics. The two industry giants are exploring their feminine sides with recent releases that help the companies celebrate anniversaries — and women.
This week the big news is Marvel’s “X-Men” No. 1 and “X-Women” No. 1; despite both sounding like the results of a bit of elective surgery, the two books signal a new surge of interest in Marvel’s merry mutants. Jim Collins of JC’s Comic Stop has his eye on, naturally, “X-Women” No. 1.
“This one-shot is written by the ‘father’ of the ‘New X-Men,’ Chris Claremont, and beautifully illustrated by Italian artist Milo Manara,” he said. “Manara is primarily known for his erotic work on ‘Butterscotch’, ‘Click’ and ‘Gulliveriana’ and has worked with Neil Gaiman on ‘Sandman.’ Manara is considered one of the most important and respected comic illustrators in the world, so this is a real treat.”
Not to be caught with their skirts down, DC’s offering to the ladies arrived last week in the shapely form of “Wonder Woman” No. 600. Collins chose the landmark issue for what he calls “obvious reasons.”
“One, it restores the Amazonian Princess to what would be her original numbering. Two, it has new stories and pin-ups featuring such legends as George Perez and Adam Hughes. George’s return to Wonder Woman may be only a short story, but it’s a great one. Amanda Conner’s tale teams Diana with Power Girl for a heart-to-heart tale. ‘Wonder Woman’ No. 600 also features an introduction by TV’s Wonder Woman, Lynda Carter, and serves as the starting point for new writer J. Michael Straczynski of ‘Babylon 5’ fame.”
The issue also brings Wonder Woman’s new costume. Designed by superstar artist Jim Lee, it’s already garnering a girdle full of grief from comic fans. That includes Collins, who says it “looks like something that would be found at Michael Jackson’s garage sale: Bad, bad, really, really bad!”