Spider-Woman: Can Jessica Drew Carry an Ongoing Solo Title?
Posted September 30, 2009on:
There isn’t much going on at Marvel that I’m interested in right now, which isn’t terribly surprising. Marvel tends to be a boy’s club (said the female comic geek) and even though I’m sure Marvel Divas is fine if you’re into that sort of thing, I’ll start buying what Marvel markets to women when they can stop wrapping it in Pepto-Bismol pink. I like comics, ok Marvel? When you name a comic book “Divas” I half expect Celine Dion to show up. I’m not saying Divas is bad, I haven’t read it yet. For all I know, it’s the best book ever; but when comics are running $2.99+ an issue, I damn well do judge them by their covers. I don’t need a cutesy looking book, DO YOU HEAR ME JOE QUESADA? Just get some kick ass writers to write kick ass female characters and try not to call them Divas and wrap them up in SPECIAL FOR GIRLS TPB pink. Girls who LIKE comics are insulted, and girls who don’t like comics still aren’t going to buy them.
That said, thank you for Spider-Woman. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I like Bendis (Ultimate Spider-Man is one of the four Marvel titles on my regular pull list, thankyouverymuch) so I picked up Spider-Woman last week. I know next to nothing about Jessica Drew, except that the Skrulls impersonated her and used her likeness to fuck a lot of shit up, but now the real Jessica is back. That’s it. That’s all I know. Well, other than the fact that along with Ms. Marvel, she’s one of only two women in the Marvel U carrying her own title right now.
The only other female Marvel character I can think of who’s carried her own title in recent years is She-Hulk, and they keep shoving her into the Fantastic Four and the Lady Liberators. Oh, and cancelling her book. Most of Marvel’s female characters weren’t created to be standalone heroes, but to be part of a team. When a character is created to fill a specific role in a group, he or she is hard-pressed to carry a successful solo series. Wolverine is the exception that proves the rule, but come on, would you really buy a Cyclops solo book?
Jessica Drew might be able to carry a solo title longer than Jennifer Walters has ever managed to. She-Hulk’s never had much going for her. Seriously. There just aren’t that many places to take a watered down, big-boobied version of the Hulk. She-Hulk is completely derivative of the male Hulk which makes her one dimensional at best. Besides, the only time she actually seems to get used these days is in courtroom scenes anyway. Spider-Woman, on the other hand (name not withstanding), exists outside of Spider-Man continuity. Her powers are different from Peter Parker’s, her origin isn’t remotely related to his and she’s been screwed far more thoroughly than he has. Between the crazy scientist parents, the being raised in stasis, the HYDRA brainwashing, the Skrull invasion, Jessica is indeed the most screwed person in the universe. At this point she’s been screwed over just as hard, if not harder, than Wolverine – a comparison Bendis makes in issue one.
Bendis has proclaimed his love for the character a million times over; I love it when the powers-that-be give a good writer the chance to reboot a personally beloved character. Take a seasoned writer and let him have at the character he’s wanted to write for years and I guarantee you it’s going to be a blast to read. I never watched more than a preview of the motion comic version of Spider-Woman, and while I know this book was designed specifically for that format, I didn’t notice. Spider-Woman is dark, brooding, gritty and hot damn! Abby Brand shows up within the first ten pages, gives Jess a skrull detector and sends her off to Maripoor to wreck shit.
The Big Two have finally begun to put some serious effort into growing their female ranks. Rucka’s Batwoman should get her own title when Bruce gets back from the dead (sort of) and wants Detective Comics back, if she doesn’t get one it’ll be a crime. Abby Brand has become the female Nick Fury (Abigail Brand: Director of S.W.O.R.D. anyone? Close enough.) and if the first issue is any indication, Spider-Woman is going to be kicking ass for a while to come.
I drank a chilled glass of UV Pink Lemonade over ice with Spider-Woman. This is what happens when we start to run low on booze.