Hair often plays a defining role in the presentation of female characters in superhero comics, from Jean Grey’s foreshadowing flame-red hair, to Storm’s hair-centric transformation into a street-fighting badass. In this is probably because women are expected to have more hair options; it may also owe something to how these characters are often designed to look like supermodels, with very similar facial design, so that their hair is the easiest way to tell them apart. Put Emma Frost and Dazzler in the same costume (as Chris Bachalo has done) and you may have no idea who's who.
This can be a little problematic, but it actually also gives Marvel a strange way to set its prospective next big-budget franchise apart --- because if there's one thing Jack Kirby taught us, it's that Medusa, Queen of the Inhumans, has amazing hair.
In an interview with The Telegraph's Radhika Sanghani, Marvel editor-in-chief Axel Alonso offered some insights into how he regards the superhero comic industry's treatment of female characters -- and his own intentions towards diversity.
The interview is chiefly noteworthy for confirming what already seems apparent from recent changes in Marvel's line-up, namely that Marvel understands and is responding to demographic changes in the marketplace. "We believe there's an audience of women out there who are hungry for this [product] and we want to make sure they get it," said Alonso. "This is affirmative action. This is capitalism.”
When we rounded up a list of our favorite comic book cliches, we mentioned that there are a whole lot of female versions of male characters out there in the world of comics. Whether they were started out as a means to secure a copyright (like Supergirl and She-Hulk), attempts at taking a legacy character in a new direction (Dr...
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