Pat Lewis (lunchbreak_pat) wrote,
Pat Lewis

MoCCA haul 2009 XX chromosome edition

Today I am thinking about Women In Comics. Before the MoCCA Art Fest this year, there was a big "Drink and Draw Like a Lady" party where women in the "comics industry" got together at a bar to drink and socialize and I guess network, and there is also the organization "Friends of Lulu" which aims to get more girls and women involved in making comics. I guess those are good things, but it seems to me that women are actually pretty well-represented in the world of indie/alternative comics, especially compared to a lot of other fields.

When I was reading through the comics I brought back from MoCCA, it struck me that most of them are by female creators, and there's actually a ton of diversity in the content. My typical complaint about "indie comics" (by both dudes AND chicks) is that so many of the ones I come across are just a bunch of urban twentysomethings hanging around talking about their problems with the opposite sex. None of these are like that at all! Here are some highlights:

Green-Blooded: An Introduction to Eco-Friendly Feminine Hygiene by Cathy Leamy.
I guess one stereotype about female cartoonists is they sit around drawing comics about their periods? Well, this comic is totally about periods but it is great anyway. It's not whiny or "girl power"-y, instead it's straight-up non-fiction. Cathy explores environmentally-friendly alternatives to disposable feminine hygiene products with humor, clarity, and enthusiasm. I love comics like this--it's not a subject I'd ever explore on my own, but one on which I'm totally willing to be educated, if it's done in such an entertaining way.

Too Negative #12 by Jenny Gonzales.
This is like "Archie" if it took place in Hell, was drawn by the love-child of George Herriman and Bob Clampett, and ran in some alternate-dimension MAD Magazine. Jenny takes on stuff like sexual identity, the TWILIGHT phenomenon, body image, racism, HE'S JUST NOT THAT INTO YOU, which I guess are fairly "female" things to think about, but she does it in a way no one else on earth would think to. Really solid old-school cartooning (which I love)!

Lipstick & Malice #3 by Monica Gallagher.
This is a straight-up action comic about a leggy model who is also a highly-skilled government assassin. Each issue tends to highlight the contrast between her two worlds and usually consists largely of an epic kick-ass fight scene.

Freewheel #2 by Liz Baillie.
Although it's too early to tell where exactly this is headed, Freewheel seems to be a sprawling, contemporary young-adult fantasy story about a girl who leaves home and encounters WEIRD STUFF in the forest. Something freaky happens on the next-to-last-page of this issue and Liz draws the hell out of it!

Nurse Nurse #4 by Katie Skelly.
It is nurses in space! But so much more than that. Never predictable, this is a sci-fi epic filtered through Katie's diverse interests: art, fashion, European and Japanese culture, 60's music (the cover is a take on Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazelwood's 1968 album "Nancy and Lee") and more. There is a level of imagination at work that is wonderful and surprising and I hope she makes a million more issues.

There you have it! What a lineup! Honorable Mention goes to Rosemary Travale's super-fun pack of gorgeous stickers, buttons, postcards, original artwork(!) and a tiny comic "Conversations With Craig #1" which is about a funny thing her boyfriend said!

So, to sum up: YAY COMICS

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