Monday, April 26, 2004

Today's Links of Interest

Valentino sets record straight.

Newsarama sat down for an interview with Jim Valentino where he talked about his removal as EIC of Image Comics, and what he felt he did for the company during his tenure. One thing in particular struck out at me:

NRAMA: Looking back at your time in the Image publisher seat, how did you find the place and how did you leave it? What are your proudest accomplishments and what didn't meet your mark?

JV: If we remember, when I arrived Image was awash in titillation books, cross-branding- something I was directed by the entire Board to put an end to, and less than professional looking books - purely subjective, I admit.

Which is something I too have memories of. At one point Image was known for nothing other than softcore porn books, lateness and gimmicks. Under Jim the company really diversified, becoming a company that became far less easier to categorize, and truly living up to the claim of having something for everyone.

Which worked to mature the company as a whole, but probably hurt as the Image brand itself became less descriptive.

I was also sad to read that he in the beginning stages of osteoarthritis, which prevents him from doing any regular creative work. While not as dynamic as some of his other partners, Jim had a good eye for panel layouts and figurework, that I really admired at times.

Whedon X-Men Preview

Newsarama has a wordless, black & white preview of Joss(Buffy:TVS) Whedon and John Cassidy's Astonishing X-Men series. The pages look great, though I wonder at times why all of Cassidy's character always look pissed off.

Johanna's Chick Check

Johanna Draper Carlson does a Chick Check, listing the number of women working on and women characters in the books, of last week DC and Marvel series. Her finding on the creative front especialy are startling,

For DC:
... these titles have at least 7 creators listed each, that means 10 titles * 7 slots = 70 possibilities, of which 9 are women, or about an eighth. Two of those slots are occupied by Lysa Hawkins, who's rumored to have been let go.

For Marvel:
... these titles have at least 6 creators listed each, not counting Editor-in-Chief or Publisher, that means 11 titles * 6 slots = 66 possibilities, of which 11 are women, or one-sixth.

Would any other industry have this little representation, or even allow such? It just seems to me, that women are still not really valued at the big two, and that is why neither has a large female fan base.

If the two ever wake up and see the large numbers places like Viz and Tokyopop get, who do have a much more diverse workforce, thus a much more diverse line of books. Perhaps something will be done. Until then, while I know things may have gotten better than it was in the past, the big two still give off the "boys club" feel. Which will keep them from reaching the huge audience that could be theirs, if they just tried to reach out for it.

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