Bits and Bytes: June 29, 2011

The site will be undergoing an overhaul in the next couple of weeks. Just giving any visitors a heads up that existing formats may be a bit wonky for a time.

And with the site overhaul comes another Ormes roundup! There are so many women out there who have disregarded the mainstream and print and instead have embraced the web as a method for distributing their art. Still, remaining in small deviantArt and Tumblr clusters doesn’t help with widespread recognition! And widespread recognition helps bring steady paychecks from established companies (and a professional reputation and health insurance). If you are a black woman creating comics, I want to know about you. I want to know about you so I can yell at you and ask you why you haven’t been promoting yourself in areas of the web that editors frequent. I want to know about you so I can ask you why you are not submitting to Image. I want to know about you so that you can get picked up by Marvel or DC. I want to know about you so that you can get some damn money. You know the drill. Email. Reblog. Network. Submit. C’mon, son! It’s just five damn pages! Get out there.

It seems that I was wrong about two of the characters in my previous post! Unfortunately, the Atom shown is not Ryan Choi, but the original Atom, Ray Palmer. I’m terribly disappointed by that. I feel that Choi has a great deal of potential, not only in comics, but in television as well. The Atom would make for a wonderful children’s cartoon. Of course, I’m referring to Choi and not the aged divorcee Palmer. As for my remaining error, it seems as though the Element Woman depicted in the promotional image is a new character from Flashpoint and not the character last seen in Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series. So, we have lost an Asian character, but we have gained one as well. Unfortunately, we’ve gained one that is so deformed by her powers that she appears to be a bizarrely colored humanoid. We have the same issue that pops up in Teen Titans. The white characters are all clearly depicted, with no deformities that prevent one from determining their race or gender. Characters of color? Inhuman skin tones, hair hidden by power signatures, and bizarre appendages. And there’s always the occasional occurrence of being reincarnated in the body of a white guy. Comics, everybody! I was joking with Ragnell on Twitter about what the fan reaction would have been had DC randomly changed the appearance/ethnic background of its most popular characters with the reboot. I almost wish DC had done it. I’d rather have an olive-skinned, Latina Cassie Sandsmark than a new black heroine with purple skin, fire for hair, and the exact same face as the two other white girls on the team.

And finally, can I just say that I love what is being done with Batman, Inc.? And that I hate it at the very same time? The fact that this new direction is able to spotlight characters from a wide variety of cultures and also show how a difference in culture leads to very different methods of being a hero is wonderful. Fan-freaking-tastic. The fact that all these different heroes forego developing their own myths to expand and represent a myth derived from one hero (Bruce Wayne), one subculture (white, American, Christian), and one class (wealthy) just bugs. Oh, how it bugs. Oh, Batman. I love you like I love hip-hop. And though hip-hop belongs to the world now, we all know damn well who started it and where and who its roots and essence spring from.