I’ve always loved superheroes. They had powers, secret identities, and the ability to vanquish foes and save the world. My sister and I grew up pretending to have powers, playing out silly melodramas in the park across our house (our neighbors loved us). Unfortunately, I didn’t develop any mutant powers nor did my parents tragically die, leaving me with a vast wealth and multi-billion dollar company to run (thank god on that last one). Instead, I watched Teen Titans, Justice League, Justice League Unlimited, Batman Beyond, Batman: The Brave & The Bold, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Young Justice (gone too soon) and…many more. The story lines are compelling, the characters fun, and I really loved the art and animation behind it. The art that goes into comics are really what keeps me invested in the characters. My favorite comic book heroes often directly correlate to how my favorite artist portrays them. My favorite superheroes: X-23, Magik, Kate Bishop, and Catwoman, have really amazing, beautiful art done by some of (in my opinion) best comic book artists working today: Phil Noto, Kevin Wada, and Dave Seguin.
There are so many different things we can do utilizing the superhero universe. The look and feel of a comic book has changed in the decades since it was established, from standard to more experimental. The comic book format doesn’t have to even be regulated to print, there are so many webcomics on the internet now in distinct styles and genres. On television, old cartoon and television shows from the 1950s to 1990s have given the public memorable tunes that have become pop culture cornerstones. We can critique both art style and writing in comics: its initial campiness, apparent homosexual undertones, how artists depicted women as literal sex objects, and the rise of diversity in recent times. So I’m excited and ready for whichever direction we take, whether it be none or all of the above.
Btw, here are some examples of my favorite artists. Phil Noto has this really cool drawing series on the classic Marvel characters placed in their original time periods, pulling historical context into fiction.
Squirrel Girl by Phil Noto