There are things that make me happy in life, and this is one of them. Especially being a female comic reader since I was the age of… god I don’t even remember…. I know I was “reading” them before I even knew how to read (which explained my obsession with ‘Bucky O’Hare’ which I can’t really fully explain as an adult). When I see comments about woman creating drama in the comic fandom addressed in the proper way, I get a little giddy.
I think, oh hey! It looks like they are finally getting it. Thanks Marvel!
So, first, let’s put this mysterious “thing” I have been talking about into some context.
Brian Michael Bendis, one of the more prolific writers of Marvel (essentially if you can name a Marvel title, he’s probably done it), received the following anonymous message on his Tumblr:
I understand trying to make comics female friendly, but aren’t you guys worried that you’re going to lose your core audience which is male? In the X-books you’ve had more focus on the likes on these females like jean and kitty while it should be Cyclops who has been the star of the X-Men comics for years. What warrants these characters more page time than him? Jean and kitty are secondary characters. You guys listen too much to women bitching. They cause so much freakin drama in comicdom.
As someone who has to address this about six times every hour at every con I’ve ever attended (which is a lot), I was worried about what Bendis’ response was going to be. After all, I’ve seen Marvel writers blunder on this question (Jonathan Maberry, unfortunately), further alienating female fans. So I steeled myself.
Bendis’ response? Well, I’ll let it speak for itself:
Wow. you are the first person who I am kind of glad asked your question anonymously because I don’t want to know you.
as a reader of my work I want you to listen to me very carefully: you have major major issues. almost every line of your question reeks of complete misunderstanding of yourself as a man and of women in general.
it’s okay to find yourself more interested in something than others, of course it is, it’s okay to like Cyclops more than Jean Grey, but for you to draw the line at women characters not being interesting to you because you are a man or that you think I am being manipulated by some bitching women is really out there.
and as a reader of the X-Men whose entire philosophy is about tolerance and understanding… you are missing the point.