After all the controversy over women in comics and working in comics swarming around DC these last couple of weeks, Jim Lee and Dan DiDio posted the following on the DC website.

Over the past week we’ve heard from fans about a need for more women writers, artists and characters. We want you to know, first and foremost, that we hear you and take your concerns very seriously.

We’ve been very fortunate in recent years to have fan favorite creators like Gail Simone, Amy Reeder, Felicia Henderson, Fiona Staples, Amanda Connor, G. Willow Wilson and Nicola Scott write and draw the adventures of the World’s Greatest Super Heroes.

DC Comics is the home of a pantheon of remarkable, iconic women characters like Wonder Woman, Lois Lane, Batgirl, Batwoman, Catwoman and Supergirl as well as fan favorite characters like Black Canary, Katana, Mera and Starfire. We’re committed to telling diverse stories with a diverse point of view. We want these adventures to resonate in the real world, reflecting the experiences of our diverse readership. Can we improve on that? We always can—and aim to.

We’ll have exciting news about new projects with women creators in the coming months and will be making those announcements closer to publication. Many of the above creators will be working on new projects, as we continue to tell the ongoing adventures of our characters. We know there are dozens of other women creators and we welcome the opportunity to work with them.

Our recent announcements have generated much attention and discussion and we welcome that dialogue.


Jim Lee & Dan DiDio
DC Entertainment Co-Publishers

via The Source


About Author

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment. You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...


    • brainypirate on

      I’m not sure the artists know how to create a Sapphire costume for a guy, since that would mean sexualizing him in ways that would probably make most artists uncomfortable. I guess we need a Dave Cockrum design for that — maybe Nicola Scott could make it work???

    • i must have missed all the uproar.

      batwoman and the question are both lesbians.

      come to think of it. bruce wayne sure does spend a lot of time out at night with boys in tights….

      no. no no.

      • brainypirate on

        Yes, but at this point, Bruce is so asexual I’m not even sure he’s taken his clothes off in years….

          • brainypirate on

            The one in which Selena comes on to him while he’s pumping iron? Or was that Batman Inc.?

            I mostly just skim the Batman titles, so I may have missed some good Bruce action, but he seems like he’s in Bat-drag 90% of the time.

  1. It is sad that he could not just give a list of all the female characters and then all the female writers, artists, and inkers.

  2. I love political correctness run amok. We don’t event SEE the people writing and drawing books so why is there an uproar over their sex or race? I wouldn’t care if a person was a Bushman from Australia or Sven from Scandinavia if their stories and art are good.

    As far as “diverse” characters, it seems that DC decided rather than to go out on a limb and create more of their own they imported several from Wildstorm. Although Batwoman’s the most high profile gay/lesbian character in the DCU right now there has already been The Pied Piper, Obsidian, The (current) Question, Scandal Savage and others that were left a bit ambiguous over the years.

    DC also already has a plethora of female characters and has always seemed to lead Marvel in the are of female heroines/villains. Marvel’s “Big Three” alternate between Thor, Cap, Iron Man, Spiderman and Wolverine while DC’s historically had their “Trinity” of Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman.

    Diversity simply for the sake of “seeming” diverse is not something to aim for. Diversity for the sake of making good, entertaining stories and art is good. Let’s hope the folks at DC don’t overlook this.

    • Diversity simply for the sake of “seeming” diverse is not something to aim for. Diversity for the sake of making good, entertaining stories and art is good. Let’s hope the folks at DC don’t overlook this.

      I think the problem is the fact that they are presenting this as intentionally being AIMED AT diversity. If you go out of your way to show how awesomely diverse your CHARACTERS are, it’s pretty disingenuous to do it with only one female in ALL of the creative teams.

    • brainypirate on

      There’s also the problems at arise when hetero white men–even well-meaning hetero white men–try to tell stories about women, gays or people of color. Sometimes it works, often it’s a disaster. (Read Toni Morrison’s book-essay “Playing in the Dark” to see an example of such problems.)

      I’m not saying that all women characters should be written by women, gays by gays, blacks by blacks, etc. But I do think that having a much more diverse pool of writers will benefit the industry across the board by allowing better representation (especially avoiding stereotypes) of minority characters. White writers learn how to write better Latino characters, men learn how to write better women, straights learn how to write better straights, etc. Everyone wins.

      • I agree. Having a diverse creative staff allows for brainstorming that can help everyone understand how to write outside of their (for lack of a better description) demographic and thus improve overall.

        • Correct…as long as the members of the creative staff are adding to the story, characters, art, etc. Just bringing on someone because of their race, sex, culture, etc. and then expecting that to result in good stories, characters and art does not necessarily work and when a company starts to paint with the diversity “brush” that sometimes happens and products fail because of a lack of “passion” (no pun intended) for that art that someone that may or may not have been a female or minority does possess. Diversity is important but should be considered as a “whole package” of the artist as an individual and member of the team.

          As to the reaction of the DC panel to the question at the conference I think that especially Dido (hey, you get paid to lead…you hold the bag) let his pride and ego get in the way this time and now it’s “Damage Control” by their PR.

          • Again, I see your point, but I think you’re missing something. It’s not that people are saying “Force women and people of color into creator roles.” They’re saying “Why have you not hired any of the myriad women or people of color who are talented, and who WORKED FOR YOU RIGHT BEFORE YOU CAME UP WITH THIS RELAUNCH?” There’s a difference, in that it seems like they’re shoving people aside in order to create a ‘good old boy’ network.

            And they didn’t do any favors by implying that the female creators have been removed from the books because their game wasn’t up to snuff (as Didio’s comments seem to imply.) I applaud this decision, and simply point out this: J.T. Krul is among the creators of the new 52. If we’re measuring entirely on quality, that fact ALONE destroys the “best in show” argument…

  3. The real problem I had with this news was the original reaction at the comic-con which said much more about attitudes than some tossed off press release probably written by PR people and lawyers. The hyper-defensive answer from Morrison, Didio and Lee as well as the reaction of the audience was very disappointing. All the woman (who was there with her daughter! and both were clearly fans) did was ask a very legitimate question when Didio is banging on about the diversity to new line-ups. (I’ll not mention that the new Justice League seems LESS diverse than it was/is) His reaction was to humiliate her infront of her daughter and a room full of people. When that’s coupled with the actual comics (eg Star Sapphires, the way women are drawn) I sometimes wonder whether some comics fans/makers care about bringing them into a dying niche medium.

    • I think that’s where the outcry really started – not with the question itself but with the frazzled, needlessly angry response. I can get that the editors might be frustrated, but answering like they did was unprofessional at best and snowballed the whole issue.

      Frankly, I just can’t wait to see November’s stuff to see if Amanda Connor is back on a book.

  4. ~wyntermute~ on

    I’d rather pick up a Gail Simone or an Amanda Connor book than I would [insert most white-male writers here]. Those two ladies make good comic books. I have nothing more to say that is either true or relevant. :)

  5. litanyofthieves on

    I’m glad to see this. While it does indeed sound like a little like your standard PR move, I’d like to think that this is maybe from Dan and Jim taking what has been said and digesting it. I don’t fault them for getting defensive immediately after this stuff happened – that’s a normal human reaction to being criticized. It’s more important that they actually think about what people are saying, even if their first reaction is to defend their choices (whether those choices are good or bad is another question entirely). I don’t think Dan and Jim are inentionally shutting women out. There are plenty of studies that hiring is often subconsciously affected by race and gender, and I think that they just aren’t considering that.
    I think that if there’s one thing DC has been doing recently is listening. Even if it takes a little while for them to take what they’ve heard and implement it, it’s clear they’ve been trying, which is awesome.

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