Great article and nicely supported information. In regards to my reaction, I'm honestly not surprised. Talking to Silkcuts about all things Alan Moore has more, or less, opened my eyes to how much of an influence The Man still has on DC Comics. Even though he stopped writing superhero stories.
@Wolfrazer: I'm a bit on the fence on that being an issue. While yea, it's the job of the comic companies to create different characters for us to explore, most comic book fans are very fickle, or at least we try to be. I know this cause, as a comic book fan I myself am this very way, which is part of the reason I had stopped reading comic books for a year and still avoid reading a lot of them even now. A lot of comic fans cry out for new characters, but when it all comes down to it. DC fans want to read about Batman, and they want to read about Superman. It's this very reason why when they said that Tim Drake went straight to Red Robin, there was such an outcry about it, and while it's been confirmed that they didn't change much about his past, it's the hardcore comic fans that prevent new characters from ever really getting a chance to grow. So I'll agree to an extent with you. It's half the fault of the companies to get the characters out, but it's rests in our hands to make these characters get the chance to grow by supporting their books and helping that character's fan base grow.
@COBRAMORPH: Haven't posted in awhile, but reading what you said made me feel obligated to respond. While your points about anime have some truth, I'd concede to you in anything in that regards cause I don't really watch much anime, I read manga. You're correct about characters like Nami, and Robin not fighting the same level of opponents as Luffy or Zoro, and across pretty much the "Big Three" of manga/ anime you see this to be true. It's not to say there aren't manga's where the guys don't fight the same level of opponents as the girls, the biggest examples of this being Freezing. There are also manga/ anime's where the opponents both the male and female characters fight are at the same level, Fate/ Stay Night and Elemental Gelade being the first to come to mind in this regard.
So while there may be some gender misrepresentation in differing manga's, it's doesn't feel as much of a deal as it seems you are making out of it. When you think of it from the point I made in bullet 2 of the blog, because of there being a singular author for the story, while it doesn't neccessarily mean that it's fair to the other characters, it's still consistent within the story that the author has been creating. When I read One Piece, I don't just suddenly expect Nami to just fight an admiral, in fact since the very beginning of One Piece it has been made clear that Nami isn't a fighter. She does things from the background, like trying to raise the money to save her village, or navigating her crew to the next location. This comes from the consistency found in the story belonging to one single author, instead of a multitude of writers.
My second bullet never mentioned anything about whether a story is better because it has a singular author, what it did mention though is that if you are a fan of a certain manga. You can expect for the story to follow a basic line of thought because you don't have to worry about the authors of the book changing mid plot twist. Not to say there aren't manga where the story does a complete face-heel turn, "History's Strongest Disciple Kenichi", being quite infamous for this. The majority of stories I've read of the manga variety have been very clear on what the story path will be.
As to your point about number 3, I don't recall ever saying there was anything wrong with drama. What I did say is that writing a story that is fun (note, I didn't say Funny) and doesn't make it's readers feel like they're being belittled is harder than writing an angry story about vengeance and things of that nature. When I say fun, I don't mean funny, let me just separate that line of thought. When I say fun, I mean fun for the readers. A comic that makes the act of reading the comic enjoyable. Instead of reading the next big event for Marvel, Dc, whatever and thinking, "Oh god I hope my favorite character doesn't get killed." I'd prefer if I could open a comic going, "I can't wait to see how my favorite hero confronts that oh so nefarious villain." Without having to see the whole 4 issues between where they killed off the hero's girlfriend, his dad, his mom, his best friend, his loyal dog, and the crashing of his car.
Nothing wrong with drama, but is it really necessary to just pile it on, and on, and on like they do? not saying the same doesn't happen in manga, cause it does, but falling back on point 2 manga authors are pretty forward about how a story will go. Especially since they're all given genre's where you can go look up a manga and see it falls under the "Tragedy" genre. You can't do that with most comics, especially with a comic that is close to getting the boot and needs some, unnecessary events to keep the readers reading.