Welcome to Wham! Bam! Thank You, Ma’am!, Geeks OUT’s newest monthly recap that focuses on the trials and tribulations of a different Marvel Universe SFC (Strong Female Character) each month. July’s spotlight shines on a fan-favorite X-Man who can go toe-to-toe with Emma Frost in regards to powers, attitude, and money… Monet St. Croix (a.k.a. M).
Welcome to Wham! Bam! Thank You, Ma’am! Geeks OUT‘s newest monthly recap that focuses on the trials and tribulations of a different Marvel Universe SFC (Strong Female Character) each month. With the latest superhuman civil war in full swing, it only seems appropriate that June’s spotlight shine on one of its key players, Carol Danvers, a.k.a. Captain Marvel.
The 1980s was the decade that took excess to the maximum. Neon-sprayed hair was jacked up to Jesus, shoulder pads were no longer just for football players, and the music was leagues beyond the tripe that currently clogs “Top Ten” Spotify playlists. From this shimmering era of cocaine and new wave synths came a superhero for the times. A beacon that descended like a glittering disco ball and quickly developed an unshakable fan base that still thrives to this day. Alison Blaire a.k.a. the mutant songbird known as Dazzler.
Unlike her genetically empowered counterparts, the X-Men, Alison was more concerned with furthering her career in music as opposed to heroism or contributing to the human/mutant cohabitation plight. She preferred to only use her powers of sound-to-light transduction to entertain audiences instead of proactively snuffing out criminal activity. This conflict would be part of the driving force for most of the Dazzler ongoing series that Marvel Comics published from 1981 through 1985.
Roughly thirty years later, the comic book market is seeing a massive influx of female-led titles and Alison Blaire is right in the thick of things as one of the prominent members of the all-female team, A-Force. With a fresh fashion makeover, several unresolved storylines, and a fantastic roster of potential co-stars, has the time has come for Marvel to flip the record to side B and give Dazzler a well-deserved encore?
It has been almost two years since the conclusion of Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie’s memorable run on Young Avengers. In addition to winning a GLAAD Media Award, the title broke new ground by having not one… not two… but literally an entire team that consisted of characters who identified as either gay, lesbian, bisexual, pansexual, or at least a little curious (I’m looking at YOU, Kate Bishop). Readers were also treated to cameo appearances by notable “out” characters like Victor Borkowski (Anole), Julie Power (Lightspeed), and Lucy in the Sky (Karolina Dean).
Few Marvel titles of equal queer caliber have since come close to healing the ga(y)ping wound left in Marvel’s monthly lineup after Gillen and McKelvie closed up shop. Books like The Unbeatable Squirrel-Girl, Spider-Gwen, and Silk all feature off-beat, quirky, and often underestimated Strong Female Characters that many, if not most, gay readers identify with and root for. However, the LGBTQ themes and/or characters in these titles are few and far between.
Enter: Patsy Walker a.k.a. Hellcat, Marvel’s latest addition to its monthly catalog of female-led titles. Yes, “IT’S PATSY!” and she’s here to add some always-welcomed queerness into the Marvel Universe.
With the post-apocalyptic event, Secret Wars, still in the throws of its penultimate issue, the ripple effects of the “multiversal incursions” and fate of Battleworld are already being felt across the All-New, All-Different Marvel Universe.
To briefly sum up the current catastrophe that has befallen the Marvel Universe, one has to go back to Jonathan Hickman’s recent (and brilliant) run of New Avengers and the pan-dimensional disasters that were discovered by the Illuminati.
Victor Von Doom’s patchwork planet, Battleworld (as seen in Secret Wars), was crafted as a result of the cataclysms known as the “multiversal incursions.” Setting aside the “how” and “why,” the incursions spanned the near-infinite multiverse and occurred when one universe’s Earth slammed into a neighboring universe’s Earth, resulting in the obliteration of one/both Earth(s) and respective universe(s). Not even Earth-616 (Marvel’s main continuity) and Earth-1610 (The Ultimate Universe) were spared.
2016 is quickly shaping up to be quite a spectacular year for Marvel and its roster of Strong Female Characters. Ongoing series starring Angela, Thor, Silk, Spider-Gwen, and more will continue with new volumes and, for the most part, the original creative teams intact. Dennis Hopeless will continue writing duties on (now visibly pregnant) Spider-Woman’s title and G. Willow Wilson’s all-female A-Force lineup will battle on past the conclusion of Secret Wars.
Joining these established titles will be James Robinson’s Scarlet Witch, Tom Taylor’s All-New Wolverine (starring X-23), and Amy Reeder’s Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur. With new books and team rosters being announced daily, this is merely the tip of the iceberg.
If you are reading this, it means you have successfully navigated and survived yet another New York Comic Con experience. Whether you have emerged from said event both physically and mentally unscathed is another matter. With crowd totals roughly reaching 167,000, NYCC continued its upward trend of packing the Javits Center like a sardine can full of geeks from every possible walk of life. With a census like that, one can’t help but wonder if the venue is slowly morphing into Manhattan’s own version of the TARDIS.
2015 was our fourth year attending NYCC with the first being extremely hectic and stressful with little to no preconception as to what to expect other than “a lot.” We have since figured out how to dial down the chaos factor in order to enjoy ourselves while still managing to cross off as many bullet points as possible from our agenda.*
*NYCC Sanity Retention Tips: pack lightly, bring snacks/ibuprofen, and get as much done on Thursday/Friday as possible. Otherwise, you run the risk of being in too much pain to finish your mac-n-cheese.
Whether you prefer panels over signings or shopping over photo-ops, NYCC 2015 provided a bevy of fantastic highlights to quench the palate of even the most discerning geek.
November 20th, 2015. She will no longer be obscured by an alias or buried amongst the pile of forgotten superheroes on Marvel’s d-list. Jessica Jones is finally pushing her way to the head of the queue and earning some long overdue respect and acknowledgment. The world will know her name.
Originally conceived by Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Graydos for their gritty 2001 Marvel MAX series, Alias, Jessica Jones was once a fledgling superhero with a less-than-exciting career until a chance encounter with Zebediah Killgrave (a.k.a. The Purple Man) left her traumatized enough to give up costumed heroics. She went on to open her own P.I. firm, Alias Investigations, and later assisted the Avengers on numerous occasions.
Whether you are one of the many that have stuck with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. since the beginning or you abandoned the helicarrier somewhere in the middle of season one, one thing is certain… the Inhumans are coming and <cliché> the Marvel Cinematic Universe will never be the same </cliché>.
By now, even the most casual of AoS viewers should be well aware of how the events of season two concluded and that the MCU equivalent of the 616 Terrigen Bomb has been unleashed on the world. While the methodology was far less explosive than that which was depicted at the conclusion of Infinity, the end results should prove the same. All human beings possessing the applicable DNA and are exposed to the Terrigen Mists (Are they still consider “mists” if they come in the form of fish oil supplements?) will begin the Inhuman metamorphosis. With this transformation comes a myriad of potential physical mutations and ability manifestations.
With the second season of Marvel/Netflix’s Daredevil looming on the horizon and casting rumors for Doctor Strange coming at fans like a swarm of locusts, now seems the appropriate time to discuss the pseudo-obscure, nocturnal medical professional who has tended to the health and well-being of both titular characters… Night Nurse. Is it really possible that this lone, “d-list” SFC (that’s “Strong Female Character” for you newbies) can be the knot that ties several of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s television shows into a wonderfully cohesive bow? Can she honestly make the MCU’s “shared” universe feel more, well, shared? If Marvel is smart with how they play their hand, the answer is a resounding “YES!”