Robot 6

Fight the power: Get the women of DC their own logo

So, DC Comics has a new logo for its 75th anniversary, and it features Superman, Batman and … The Flash and Green Lantern. Not Wonder Woman, the traditional third member of the DC Trinity. Determined to reverse this injustice, the folks at the DC Women Kicking Ass blog are fighting back with a 21st-century weapon, the Internet petition. Sign — well, enter — your name here to ask DC to create a second logo featuring female characters.

Actually, if I were running this campaign, that’s the last thing I would want. I would ask them to redesign the original to include Wonder Woman, rather than giving the girls their own logo. But then, if I start thinking about it real hard I’ll start worrying about other causes like pay equity or health care and education for girls in developing countries, and I just get all distracted.

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16 Comments

Aw that badge looks cool. Ima get me one of those.

Seriously, how about these people start BUYING some of those DC’s women titles instead of just TALKING … and don’t tell me they haven’t been good. If the amount of people that complain about the lack of women or how women were represented actually bought the titles maybe just maybe DC wouldn’t focus on their TOP selling characters for this button.

I’ll vote with my wallet not sign a petition for a pin.

And DC does quite well with Supergirl,Wonder Woman, Power Girl and Birds of Prey..and Zatanna.. how about every that signs this petition pick up 3 out of 5 of those books on a regular basis and then we’ll see what happens(and even in the Vertigo side you have Madame Xanadu)

Oh sweet, finally a DC Button that doesn’t have that useless Wonder Woman on it. I can wear this proudly without ridicule.

Gee, could it have anything to do with the fact that those are the characters with movies already out or upcoming?

At Kmarts and Walmarts nationwide, I’ve seen firsthand that there’s a huge push for DCU merch with the Justice League… minus WW. The same four are always there (Hal sometimes front and center, as it’s prepping for the film), but Wondy is completely absent.

Oh, she’s on the girl merch, as is Batgirl and Supergirl, but there’s much less of that. Best as I can tell, they’re entirely separating WW from the rest of the League and putting the boys on most of the stuff and the girls on the rest.

To top it off, the DC Super Friends childrens books also don’t include WW, or any female superheroes. The only women who appear are woman being rescued by the male league members.

Should have 3 different logos: all boys, all girls & mixed ones be randomly added on comic book titles, like variant covers. Makes sense?

I have to agree with TTROY.

I would guess, John Hefner, that Wonder Woman product doesn’t sell the way it used to. WW was in the Super Friends comic, and she does appear in some of those childrens’ readers I see on the shelf. And, she seems to be a lightning rod for nothing but intense criticism whenever the character is mentioned in the mainstream press.

I actually do read Wonder Woman and I confess to having a small cache of Wonder Woman memorabilia. I sincerely LIKE the character. But I also know that if Mattel isn’t selling much Wonder Woman product, there’s not a reason to make it and put it on the shelf.

@TTROY I’m the one complaining but I’m also one who is buying. I buy Zatanna, Birds of Prey, Batgirl. Supergirl, Wonder Woman and until the recent change in creators, Power Girl and Gotham City Sirens. I also buy the Batman titles and others.

But there’s another issue here. Why not ask why DC doesn’t do a better job marketing to women so they’ll buy more books? They could start by not alienating the women buying their books right now by not paying equal tribute to their female characters during their anniversary. They could do a lot of other things as well. I recently created and drove the “Women Read Comics in Public” event and I can tell you there are plenty of women reading and buying DC comics despite the lack of attention and the dearth of marketing to them. Gail Simone spoke about the opportunity all comic companies have with female readers in this essay http://gailsimone.tumblr.com/post/1033520366/dear-everyone-in-comics-dammit. Good marketers target customers and prospects. By offering a logo with females they’ll hit both and potentially convert the prospects into customers. And that in any business is a win.

Finally, this is DC’s 75th anniversary. An anniversary is supposed to celebrate history and DC’s history includes times when Wonder Woman outsold the characters on that all-male logo. Heck, did you know that In the 1960s Lois Lane outsold Batman? Classic characters like Wonder Woman, Black Canary, Supergirl, and Batgirl have provided lots of revenue to DC and Warner Brothers throughout the years. They and their fans deserve equal attention during the anniversary.

If you’re going to celebrate being around for 75 years, why not use the characters there were there at the start and are still around now?

(So, if you’re going to use Flash and Green Lantern, they’d better be Jay Garrick and Alan Scott.)

TTroy, you’re argument is completely irrelevant.

I gotta agree TTRoy’s argument is irrelevant and it wouldn’t be if DC actually were making an effort. But they don’t. Go look in Previews most months and you MIGHT see a Wonder Woman t-shirt. Maybe. Wondy gets left off of all sorts of merch that I would buy except she’s not on it. My mom gave me some sleep pants for Christmas one year and it had Superman,Batman,Green Lantern, Flash and Aquaman. Why can’t guys have Wonder Woman stuff too? Stuff that isn’t all pink and frilly.

And while I’m at it, WW isn’t the only female hero. Canary,Batgirl,Mary Marvel, Oracle (wanna talk about a lack of marketing for a character…),Jade…just to name a few. What it really ties into, imo, is that WB and DC are boys’ clubs. Was it not the WB head who, after releasing that horrendous “Catwoman” movie, said they’d no longer make movies with female superhero leads? Let’s also not forget that it was DC who put the woman in the fridge.

@TTROY
You forgot Batgirl and the Gotham City Sirens. :)

The argument that DC makes nothing for women makes sense if you completely ignore all of the stuff they make for women. Or that they’re promoting female characters in team and solo books. Or that DC has ignored its female readers, if you ignore the titles that the female readers say that they’re reading.

And apparently the people who think that there’s nothing out there as far as DC’s female-centric apparel, etc… lack a connection to the internet.

They still should have put Wonder Woman on the button. That’s just weird.

Does DC make comics for women? Or do they make comics with women in them?

Does DC market comics to women? Or do they ignore women but some women buy their comics despite that?

Because there IS a difference.

Oh my god, someone is wrong on the internets…

Sure, there’s a difference. And there’s also basic economics of supply and demand that get lost every time this argument comes up.

DC doesn’t exist as a social equalizer, it exists to sell product and make money (sorry kids: its true). if we can agree to start there, then we have a discussion.

DC did try the Minx line, by the way, which was “aimed at women” and it tanked (and was criticized for trying to appeal to women, as if they were a single, colossal audience). DC also tried their hand for half-a-decade at marketing to women with CMX (and took lumps for canceling a failing line). And this marketing? What marketing does DC actually do, aside from releasing product, if we’re still talking comics? And what’s in the budget before a comic is unprofitable? Aside from talking to sites like this one and posting an ad in Previews, what does DC really do for any of its books? And isn’t the Direct Market model already kind of a deal killer for finding new audiences? (How is it useful to sell a book directed at women in a store where the intended audience doesn’t already go?)

I get itchy when the argument for “comics for girls” includes comics like Sandman or even Strangers in Paradise. That might be the first comic some women read, but its ridiculous to call it “comics aimed at women”. Heck, the Tumblr blog of women reading comics had a wide range of comics displayed, many of which I doubt anyone pondered being aimed at women.

So what is a comic marketed to women? That’s an easy question to ask, but I assure you, you will get as many responses as you get women responding, including women who would take umbrage at the thought that there’s got to be some special ghetto classification for women.

Not having much luck in selling comics DC specifically decided to market to women, DC sells other products aimed at girls and women., from clothes to lunchboxes to action figures to dolls. (And for Michael: dude, there are many, many unisex superheroine shirts. Get an internet connection and look up Stylin Online or any of 2000 other retailers.).

To say that DC is unaware of women and that they haven’t tried to appeal to women with different strategies is ridiculous (and they’ve had some epic flops – see Berganza’s appeal to women read his run on Supergirl sometime. It’s awesomely horrible.). But DC is also a business and reacts to market forces (ie: what sells).

TTROY is being accurate. Fits of righteous rage are invisible to DC, especially as you’re just as likely to find a petition to bring back Vibe being sent on the same day. What they see are sales figures.

@That Guy
“Fits of righteous rage are invisible to DC” Hey, who is that starring in one of DC’s most female friendly books. Batgirl? Oh yeah, Stephanie Brown. Who was brought back by the wonderful righteous rage of Girl-Wonder.org.

“Heck, the Tumblr blog of women reading comics had a wide range of comics displayed, many of which I doubt anyone pondered being aimed at women.”

Exactly! Can you imagine if comic publishers actually tried to sell to those women rather than seeking out those books themselves? Marketing to women doesn’t involve putting a pink cover on something. It means that you outreach to women. Make it easy for them to get books. Provide artists and creators who write good stories. Don’t pander to one group. Take the characters that they can relate to and make them visible.

I’ve said it before and I”ll say it again. A market that chooses to continually market to a single audience, an audience that is increasingly shrinking is doomed.

I don’t expect any vendor to be a “social equalizer” what I do expect is that they not do something silly to alienate an existing readership that has the potential to grow. That’s not good business.

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