Valerie D’Orazio on DC, Comics Culture and the Female Presence
Over the course of their conversation, D’Orazio discusses her former employer(s), the state of women in comics and the industry as a whole, and even shares a few thoughts about what readers should and shouldn’t expect from publishers.
Oh, and she offers up a word or two about the best targets for fans’ outrage, too:
SPURGEON: Is there any issue in the last three years that you think has been underplayed? Overplayed?
D’ORAZIO: I understand a lot of the outrage some readers have about stuff like T&A in comics. But this stuff is never going away. The primal need to look at a pair of breasts is never going away. Now, saying something like "I don’t want this cherished comic book heroine to be a slut" or "kids shouldn’t read that stuff" or "mixing images of women with sexualized violence can be dangerous" makes sense to me. But take the case of Top Cow’s Witchblade. It’s erotica. It’s like our generation’s Vampirella or Barbarella. I can laugh at this or that aspect, but the title isn’t a menace that needs to be stopped. It serves a function for men, the same function Laurell K. Hamilton’s books serve for women — the blending of horror/fantasy with erotica.
As with many of Spurgeon’s interviews (and in the interest of disclosure, I was one of ’em), the conversation is quite lengthy but worth every word for anyone interested in learning about the culture, business and behind-the-scenes environment of the comics industry.