Every year, hundreds of comic book conventions and the like are held in multiple cities for fans to get together and enjoy themselves. From meeting celebrities, to taking pics of cosplayers, and of course going to panels on topics they’re interested in, it’s a fun time all around.
At the recent Denver Comic-Con though, a small controversy was created. During the Con, a Women in Comics panel was held. Nothing wrong with that. BUT, who was on the panel made it a controversy. Or should I say, who WASN’T on the panel. Here’s a pic of the panel with some details on the panel itself.
Do you see it now? Yes, there were no women on the Women in Comics panel. On a simple level, this may not be an issue. Emphasis on “may”. Mainly because the topic of the panel wasn’t about current women creators in comics, but female characters and how they slowly became more and more abundant.
It’s a little disconcerting that there are no women on the panel with this subject matter, especially with many a female creator bringing several impactful female characters to the forefront of comics in recent years. Like the new Ms. Marvel, Red Sonya, and the revitalization of female characters like Batgirl, Harley Quinn, Catwoman, and more.
The problem comes from the panelists themselves, they were asked by a fan about why there were no women on the panel, and this was their response as quoted by the fan who asked.
“@tjbierschbach I asked why there weren’t women on the panel and they said they didn’t know any. How can you be qualified and not know any?”
This is a problem, because I happen to know that not only was there a historian on Women in Comics there, Trina Robbins, but there were also female artists and writers there as well. Such as Amanda Conner, who has worked on Harley Quinn, Power Girl, and more.
Lest you think this is just a fan issue, or some people “overreacting”, allow me to show you a twitter posting by Mark Waid, a man who is a legend in comics and a current superstar on the Marvel team.
“Is there a list of panelists who were on this all-male Women in Comics panel? I’m in the mood to humiliate.”
He went on (via a conversation with other comic writers and editors) to note that the moment these men noticed there were no women on the panel, they should’ve walked out.
“Doesn’t matter. AT ALL. These men had 50 minutes. Plenty of time to politely withdraw.”
Right or wrong is really subjective here, but what should be noted is that this panel was pitched to the Denver Comic-Con crew, and no one asked any questions about why there wasn’t a female writer, artist, or historian on it. How did that happen? What do you think about all this?