Mindy Newell: Ho-Hum Heroics

Mindy Newell

These days Mindy Newell knows that if she could do it all over again she’d have gone to college for screenwriting and film editing. Instead she became a nurse to please her parents and pleasing your parents was what it was all about for nice Jewish girls who graduated from high school in 1971. But the creative larva was in her soul, and when the cocoon broke and the butterfly emerged, it flew to DC’s New Talent Showcase program. Under the auspices of legendary editors Karen Berger, Len Wein, Julius Schwartz, Paul Levitz, and ComicMix’s own Robert Greenberger, Mindy learned the craft and art of writing comics, including Tales Of The Legion, V, Legionnaires 3, Amethyst, Lois Lane: When It Rains God Is Crying, and numerous other comics, including a Superman story based on a dream Mindy had as a child. She also worked on Howard Chaykin’s American Flagg! and other independent comics. All this time Mindy continued to work as a nurse while being a single mom to her daughter Alixandra, until the late and dear Mark Gruenwald hired her as an assistant editor at Marvel, while writing stories of the Black Widow and Daredevil. She edited NFL Pro Action, a licensed kid’s magazine about football with the NFL until Marvel imploded in 1996. Returning to full-time nursing, she she also co-wrote a story for 2000 A.D. with her then-husband, British artist John Higgins. A few years ago Mike Gold called and asked her to join the team of columnists here at ComicMix, where her topics freely range from comics to pop culture to politics; she even wrote a piece about the great American thoroughbred Secretariat, which caused editor Mike to tell her that she had won the prize for the most off-topic column ever written ComicMix.

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4 Responses

  1. Chuck Williams says:

    To be honest, Donal Logue was the only thing that sparked enough interest in Gotham for me to try it out. The man’s a phenomenal character actor who doesn’t get nearly enough respect for his skills.

  2. Martha Thomases says:

    I have loved him since this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Irzus_CUkow

  3. SAMURAI36 says:

    Yeah, uhmmm… No.

    It always irks me, when people talk about “bad dialogue” in their critiques of TV & film. Pray-tell, what is a person from the streets supposed to sound like? Can you give us an example?

    That’s a trick question, btw; I’ve met my share of homeless people, & they sound like anything ranging from college professors, to rappers. Not-so-ironically enough, some of them actually were those things, prior to their misfortunes.

    So your stereotyping of how homeless people should sound (& act; I’ve also seen numerous homeless folks feed their animals before they feed themselves) is greatly appreciated.

    That said, DCTV is, hands down, some of the best stuff on TV right now. Gotham is intense, Arrow is an adrenaline rush, & Flash is just plain fun. Constantine has a high standard to meet, based on the others, but basing it on the others, I have no doubt that it will bring DC/WB to 4-0.

    • Mindy Newell says:

      Well, “Sam,” you do bring up some good points, and perhaps I did go a bit “overbroad” in saying that all homeless people are pimps, junkies, thiefs, etc. Of course I know, especially being a nurse in a city hospital, that in the real world all those who are cursed with homelessness and poverty are NOT bad persons…but I was talking about a television show in which the purpose of dialogue is D-R-A-M-A, and there just isn’t any drama in the way Selina is portrayed. I stand by Frank Miller’s–and my own–portrayal of Selina/Catwoman. Brought up hard, ex-prostitute, thief, world-weary with a cynical sense of humor about it all; I’m not “down” with the recent portrayal of her in DC Comics as a…what? Good-hearted thief? Cute and wholesome underneath it all? Playful and kittenish? It just doesn’t read true to me.