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Posted by G-Man (30304 posts) 9 months, 3 days ago

Poll: Comic Book Question of the Week VOTING: Treatment of Female Characters (427 votes)

DC Comics 28%
Marvel 41%
Dark Horse 3%
Image 23%
Dynamite Entertainment 1%
Other 4%

The treatment of women in comics has come a long way. If you've read any Silver or Golden Age comics, you'll likely come across some scenes and dialogue that are pretty far out there and pretty wrong. While things have gotten a lot better and we are seeing more and more female readers enjoying mainstream comics, for ever two step forwards, the industry occasionally takes a step back.

This was something that was brought up on Twitter over the weekend (using the hashtag #ComicWomen). There are those that strongly feel some publishers are doing it right or simply doing it better. The question is, which publisher do you think is handling the portrayal of women the best. Try to consider all their characters.

The poll will remain open until Thursday morning (ET). Once the poll is locked, a new article will hit the homepage with the results and more. And, if you want to go the extra mile, go ahead and share with the community some "must read" stories for the character who earned your love. That'll allow other people to potentially check 'em out and see why you dig the character so much.

#1 Posted by flazam (2465 posts) - - Show Bio

Marvel

(first)

#2 Posted by Wolverine08 (38092 posts) - - Show Bio

None of these companies treat women particularly well to the point where I'd say one is the "best".

#3 Posted by dagmar_merrill (6029 posts) - - Show Bio

Doesn't really matter.. but not Dynamite.

#4 Posted by Husk (359 posts) - - Show Bio

umm...none?

#5 Edited by tbone1225 (234 posts) - - Show Bio

Apparently, token non-sensical female team comics are better appreciated than strong female characters with their own titles.

#6 Posted by superior_prime_maybe (287 posts) - - Show Bio
#7 Edited by Nahuel (382 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't know much about small publishers, but from what I've read of the big 2, I have to say Marvel!

#8 Posted by Bierschneeman (3838 posts) - - Show Bio

Doesn't really matter.. but not Dynamite.

that would be me...with all apologies I was trying to hit other (can we change are votes? or is it permenant) i have always hated marvels treatment of women...and lately DC is specifically trying to win a prize for the worst lately (with the downfall of two of its greatest heroines)

#9 Edited by IrishX (2266 posts) - - Show Bio

Apparently, token non-sensical female team comics are better appreciated than strong female characters with their own titles.

Voted for Marvel... just for you.

#10 Edited by Kwodam (94 posts) - - Show Bio

image saga baby

#11 Edited by EliCrofoot (40 posts) - - Show Bio

I would have said DC for Batwoman...but because of the recent bullshit about Mags and Kathy's marriage, my vote goes to Marvel.

#12 Posted by SlickyMike88 (207 posts) - - Show Bio

Marvel defiantly.

#13 Posted by microwave25 (109 posts) - - Show Bio

This isn't even close. Saga, Fatale, Lazarus, Morning Glories to name a few and now with Rocket Girl and Pretty Deadly about to be published also, Image is the beacon of light in the comics industry for strong, respectable and original female characters.

#14 Posted by judasnixon (6092 posts) - - Show Bio

#15 Posted by desmond006 (595 posts) - - Show Bio

I went to the dynamite website to refresh my memory of the female characters, they might be the worst.

#16 Posted by Wolverine08 (38092 posts) - - Show Bio

@irishx said:

@tbone1225 said:

Apparently, token non-sensical female team comics are better appreciated than strong female characters with their own titles.

Voted for Marvel... just for you.

LOL.

#17 Edited by Vortex13 (12221 posts) - - Show Bio

Dark Horse for the most part In my opinion. Looking at the company as a whole and it's portrayal of most of it's female characters to me the company has the best track record over the years. They have genuinely strong female characters that usually are not wearing skin tight body suits or super revealing costumes/clothing. They are probably the best at it these days and for the past decade really.

#18 Posted by RedhoodFlashLantern (51 posts) - - Show Bio
#19 Posted by 2cool4fun (1344 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't know, i'll vote for DC, cause they have wonder woman, who is the best and first female superhero, though they did lose credibility by turning harley and catwoman more sexual :/

#20 Posted by The Mighty Monarch (2217 posts) - - Show Bio

HOW THE HELL CAN MARVEL BE WINNING? They don't even have a singular iocnic solo female character. Seriously, what the hell?

Also, Image. Hands down. But they're basically best at everything anyways.

#21 Posted by Mucklefluga (2503 posts) - - Show Bio

Dark Horse easy.

#22 Posted by Vortex13 (12221 posts) - - Show Bio

I went to the dynamite website to refresh my memory of the female characters, they might be the worst.

Two words, Top Cow.

Doesn't really matter.. but not Dynamite.

This doesn't matter, but who would win a fight in a crossover does? I realize that's not what you were saying but I haven't seen a comment or at least remember one saying it "doesn't really matter" on one of the battle polls that come up each week. Not calling you out or trying to pick a fight at all. Just an observation of the comment, not the person who posted it.

#23 Edited by EvilPenguin543 (174 posts) - - Show Bio

DC has been putting out a great Wonder Woman title lately, but their treatment of Batwoman and the still-missing characters cancel that out. Marvel's stuff has been hit-or-miss, with Captain Marvel (I think) being their only solo female ongoing, and even that has vanished from the solicits; however, there is the She-Hulk ongoing coming out. I've heard others say Dynamite is a strong offender and I'm not sure how Dark Horse handles their female characters (except any in the Star Wars Universe). Image has been killing it lately with Saga, but I love my Star Wars comics too much. Image is a close second, but I have to go with Dark Horse.

#24 Posted by Vortex13 (12221 posts) - - Show Bio
#25 Posted by new_onslaught (53 posts) - - Show Bio

Comic fans are... I'm not gonna say it. But how is it possible Marvel and DC be first!!!??? I voted other for Valiant. I know they don't have a female lead book (yet) but their female characters in Harbinger and Bloodshot get a great threatment. They're not damsels in distress, but very often they come to save the day.

#26 Posted by Booster_Bronze (204 posts) - - Show Bio

Probably Image. When I think of the companies, I can't think of very many if ANY scantily clad sex-symbols in Image books. The women in Image are treated realistically, and in some cases (like Fatale), while they do appear nude, it doesn't feel exploitative or cheesy.

#27 Edited by sinestro_GL (3030 posts) - - Show Bio

DC.

The treatment that Wonder Woman has had over generations is far more than what any other publisher has done for a particular female character.

Whereas Marvel's flagship characters are Captain America, Spider-Man, and Hulk, DC's trinity is Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman. Even though in past years, Wonder Woman's status amongst DC's big three is under threat by Hal Jordan, the position of Wonder Woman as a flagship character is far more notable than the most popular Marvel female characters, such as Storm and Black Cat.

#28 Edited by greenlucario (207 posts) - - Show Bio

@the_mighty_monarch: Don't really see the point in arguing this. Improvement is needed across the board, especially for the big 2. What you're labeling "iconic" is only among readers, otherwise there's isn't much in the line of iconic female comic characters from anyone because the random person on the street probably couldn't name a single example (even the obvious one). When asked to name an iconic comic character they'd name Spider-Man, Batman, Superman, or someone from the Avengers because those are well known aka iconic.

#29 Posted by Elixir95 (388 posts) - - Show Bio

I think Marvel has, especially in the past 2-3 years. DeConnick's Captain Marvel and McKelvie's redesign was awesome. And this has been adopted across the board i.e. Psylocke and Storm's far less sexualised costumes in the latest Uncanny X-Force.

I hope Captain Marvel is Marvel's choice for one of their upcoming films. I know she didn't experience a resurgence until mid-2000s, but they've utilised her well since.

#30 Posted by batshrine (969 posts) - - Show Bio

So Marvel and DC should not be in the lead...they both have their issues of treating women poorly. Image seems to be the only one that people only have positive things to say with hardly a negative comment.

#31 Posted by MadeinBangladesh (5870 posts) - - Show Bio

image but marvel comes close second. He put out a lot of female team books

#32 Edited by Shallbecomeabattoo (363 posts) - - Show Bio

Marvel??? Don't make me laugh. Apart from Captain Marvel, maybe. Most marvel women are still dressed like strippers all the time (Psylocke for example).

DC still all the way. Wonder Woman is leaps and bounds ahead of every other female lead comic out there and it doesn't stop there.

Batwoman is awesome and a great character, who gets treated the same way as male characters (in story at least)

the JLD ladies are great

Abby in Swamp Thing is an awesome character, who gets treated absolutely right

Batgirl is treated right, even if don't like the stories

Hawkgirl is one of the best character in Earth 2

Harley more or less leads Suicide Squad and gets her own ongoing. They even get some distance between her and the negative relationship with Joker.

Talia was a huge villain and insanely capable in Batman inc. in a way no marvel villainess was ever

Mera is a huge badass and still retains her femininity as the queen on Arthurs side

All females in Animal Man are great written and used characters, especially Buddys daughter

Say what you want about women in fridges, but DC is good to their female characters.

#33 Edited by Perfect 10 (945 posts) - - Show Bio

has to be image because: dc keeps female books but dont give them proper respect, marvel only puts out a female book every couple of years for no more than 20 issues (usually less) (oh i am talking from inception NOT just what they have done in the past year or so, yes we have three female books now but that is shockingly new and surprising from marvel and one of them has a male title as a new but i digress). dynamite overly sexualizes women but i like my women sexy and fierce so not complaining. image has yet to disappoint and i have no complaints from them.

#34 Posted by Sovereign91001 (3959 posts) - - Show Bio

DC

#35 Posted by fables87 (918 posts) - - Show Bio

I'm going to go with Image on this one just for the fact most of there comic actually star a female character rather then having them as secondary characters, less then the male character, or just as a throw in character.

#36 Edited by AprilTaylor (31 posts) - - Show Bio

Between the Big Two I would say that DC is better with their usage of female characters. Marvel has a habit of sticking to a certain female or small group of females for each of their franchises; Spider-woman, Storm, Invisible Woman, Captain Marvel, Emma Frost,Black Widow, Psylocke, Red She-hulk (to an extent) are just of the few that have been used ad nauseum over the past couple of years even though Marvel still has a large category of unused female characters, but still even when those select few women were used they barely get the same panel+story+development time that their male counterparts are getting.

DC has a bit more balance with their female superheroes/villains/side characters. Just sticking for the new 52 for now you can see that there's been a lot of female characters with headlining solo or team books since new 52 started. Batgirl, Batwoman, Birds of Prey,Catwoman,Hawk and Dove, Justice League Dark, Legion Lost,Legion of Super-Heroes, Red Hood and the Outlaws, Red Lanterns, Justice League of America,Suicide Squad, Supergirl, Teen Titans, Voodoo, Katana, Wonder Woman, World’s Finest are just some of the few that showcased a variety of leading ladies in one way or the other.

DC's treatment of their characters is piss poor all the way around, but mostly their females suffer from terrible writing and the curse of fridging for some dude's manpain, however, at least DC tries to expand their character use.

Although, they've been getting a little better lately Marvel still will just stick to the same ole', same ole' character roster without thinking of giving someone else a chance to shine.

All that being said, I still prefer Top Cow over both the Big Two, lol. But Image as a whole has been the best to female characters these past few years, so I voted for them

#37 Posted by The Stegman (22751 posts) - - Show Bio

Dark Horse

#38 Posted by MannEffest (1193 posts) - - Show Bio

Just on the bases of how good Captain Marvel is, and Marvel's treatment of her has their current main female hero. I would say Marvel. Carol is just a "badass"! She takes no crap from anybody, well maybe Spider-Woman (who is just as amazing).

#39 Posted by frogjitsu (476 posts) - - Show Bio

Marvel's X-books have had strong female heroes for most of their history. Heck X-men only has strong females on the roster, and X-Force is mostly female.

But Marvel heroines couldn't sustain a solo on-going if their lives depended on it. Well I guess that's not fair. NO X-man can sustain a solo on-going but Wolverine (who has 2, lol), and even most of the Avengers don't have their own on-going. Marvel just likes them some team books.

Of course Rouge did headline Legacy for a while, and X-force has mainly been a Betsy engine, so that's something. And Peter David's X-Factor had a buch of strong females.

Anyways, having a solo doesn't mean the characters aren't treated well. Marvel is just hostile to solos. Spidey, Wolverine, Cap, Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, DD and Punisher are the only heroes I can think of who probably will always have an solo ongoing at Marvel. Anyone else is fair game for cancelation. Even some of those Avengers are have been on the cutting board, though now, with their mainstream popularity, it's probably unlikely to happen again.

I can't speak for the other companies, because I don't follow their books regularly, though when I did read Titans, JLA and Birds of Prey those women seemed to get decent treatment, though this was pre Nu-52.

#40 Posted by krspaceT (1462 posts) - - Show Bio

DC

#41 Posted by Scarlet_Rogue (151 posts) - - Show Bio

It's Image. I feel really uncomfortable that so many have picked Marvel and DC...

#42 Posted by LCazT1996 (518 posts) - - Show Bio

@dagmar_merrill said:

Doesn't really matter.. but not Dynamite.

that would be me...with all apologies I was trying to hit other (can we change are votes? or is it permenant) i have always hated marvels treatment of women...and lately DC is specifically trying to win a prize for the worst lately (with the downfall of two of its greatest heroines)

Could you elaborate on which "two greatest heroines" you're referring to? Because the Wonder Woman series is absolutely amazing right now and has literally elevated Wonder Woman to God-status. I'd say that's treating her pretty fantastic.

#43 Posted by LCazT1996 (518 posts) - - Show Bio

Marvel??? Don't make me laugh. Apart from Captain Marvel, maybe. Most marvel women are still dressed like strippers all the time (Psylocke for example).

DC still all the way. Wonder Woman is leaps and bounds ahead of every other female lead comic out there and it doesn't stop there.

Batwoman is awesome and a great character, who gets treated the same way as male characters (in story at least)

the JLD ladies are great

Abby in Swamp Thing is an awesome character, who gets treated absolutely right

Batgirl is treated right, even if don't like the stories

Hawkgirl is one of the best character in Earth 2

Harley more or less leads Suicide Squad and gets her own ongoing. They even get some distance between her and the negative relationship with Joker.

Talia was a huge villain and insanely capable in Batman inc. in a way no marvel villainess was ever

Mera is a huge badass and still retains her femininity as the queen on Arthurs side

All females in Animal Man are great written and used characters, especially Buddys daughter

Say what you want about women in fridges, but DC is good to their female characters.

This

#44 Posted by dagmar_merrill (6029 posts) - - Show Bio

@vortex13 said:

@desmond006 said:

I went to the dynamite website to refresh my memory of the female characters, they might be the worst.

Two words, Top Cow.

@dagmar_merrill said:

Doesn't really matter.. but not Dynamite.

This doesn't matter, but who would win a fight in a crossover does? I realize that's not what you were saying but I haven't seen a comment or at least remember one saying it "doesn't really matter" on one of the battle polls that come up each week. Not calling you out or trying to pick a fight at all. Just an observation of the comment, not the person who posted it.

I see your point, but pointing out who treats women better doesn't matter to me, because of 1 reason. That would be pointing out something because of something like race or sex never makes any sense in the slightest to me. I judge a character on it's character. Simple. Though I don't like Dynamite's women the most so I though I'd let my opinion be known on that.

#45 Posted by CaptainHoopla (842 posts) - - Show Bio

Image by a longshot. I attribute this to the fact it's creator owned properties and thus each creator has the freedom to handle them as they see fit.

#46 Posted by VILLAFICATION (2 posts) - - Show Bio

Marvel, because even though they don't normally do women's rights, but when they do stuff particularly aimed at women (i.e. she hulk), then they are because they get to the most people.

#47 Posted by desmond006 (595 posts) - - Show Bio

@vortex13: true, top cow is bad.

I voted for Dark horse. Image would be my second pick.

#48 Posted by Life_Without_Progress (1415 posts) - - Show Bio

I'm voting Marvel on this one, I don't know much about the other companies and remember Catwoman and Starfire after the New 52 reboot ? Bad move, DC :(

Online
#49 Posted by turel_hash_ak_gik (350 posts) - - Show Bio

@shallbecomeabattoo: right. ignored that ww is always dressed like stripper, the bondage and the woman in the fridge saying. dc is great to female characters.

#50 Posted by Hawkguy (571 posts) - - Show Bio

Its a toss up for me between DC and image. Image has great characters like forever, walking dead women, fatale, saga but DC has wonder woman, Lois lane, I remember Gotham central had some great female characters, scandal savage, batwoman, mera who, although she is in a skin tight bodysuit, is an extremely powerful and well written female.

When it comes to tights, they're superheroes lol... Sure, Catwoman has become more sexual, I agree, but characters like mera that have a legitimate reason for wearing what they wear can't be knocked for that.

The only females I've enjoyed reading in Marvel are kitty pride and what bendis has done in ultimate spiderman. Realistically, the rest are all just there... People wouldn't underestimate a character like wonder woman, her power has been shown in more ways than just physical.

Maybe if Joss Whedon wrote every marvel female character my opinion would change.