|June 2, 2015||Posted by Jess under Adventures in Real Life, Comics|
It’s time for my annual Wiscon report!
As always, I had a fantastic time with fantastic people. I was on three panels this year:
- Female Protagonists in Graphic Novels and Comics: The problem with this sort of panel is that there’s just so much to say! What really struck me was how different it was this year than it would have been any previous year. It’s really stunning and wonderful how much the landscape has changed for female-led books in the past year. There are so many awesome titles coming out of DC and Marvel and Image and others and they’re not slowing down. I’M SO HAPPY ABOUT COMICS THESE DAYS, YOU GUYS!
- Women in Superhero Television: I proposed this panel and I’m gonna go ahead and toot my own horn when I say that it was THE BEST. Honestly, I think it was a really good mandate for an hour and a quarter discussion – there was enough material to fill up the time without ever feeling like the discussion was overwhelmed or scattered. It helped that our mod was fantastic and guided the discussion very skillfully. Mostly I’m just glad that I got to yell about Flash’s treatment of Iris and how superior all the women on Arrow are to Oliver and HOW EXCITED I AM FOR SUPERGIRL OH MY GOD. I’m sorry I keep yelling, I just really love Wiscon and superheros and ladies!
- How Fan Culture Is Influencing Movies, TV, and Media: This was really two completely different panels in one panel description: one about modern Disney and how emphatically metatextual it’s been (Enchanted, Maleficent, Frozen), and one on how corporations engage with and sometimes appropriate fan language and culture and whether that’s problematic. We spent about 20 minutes on the first and the rest of the time on the second, but I could talk about either until the cows come home. A fun if slightly disjointed discussion!
- Fan Fiction: Where Has All the F/F Gone?: I came in at the end of this one so I missed most of the discussion, but, um, I bet it was great? These reports are always so thrilling, I know.
- Misandry, Reverse Racism, and Other Imaginary Creatures: HILARIOUS. The brilliant cryptozoologists on the panel taught us all about misandrists, reverse racists, and other fascinating and rare creatures like the Truly Objective Historian. Just delightful.
- Cultural Literacy or Cultural Appropriation?: This was interesting and important but I’ll be honest, I’d just done two panels in a row and my brain was fried. I sat on the floor and tried to passively absorb it like a sponge. Let’s hope it worked.
- Agent Carter 101: More women in superhero television! I loved Agent Carter, of course, and so did everyone on the panel, but we all agreed it could be improved, mostly via diversity. Aside from that glaring issue, most of the complaints could be addressed by having had a longer season, so: 900 episodes of Agent Carter immediately, ABC, please and thank you.
- How Do You Recommend Problematic Things?: An important discussion! Unfortunately there was no grand solution proposed but I thought there was an interesting distinction made between, like, saying to a friend, “Hey this is good but this part might bother you specifically because I know you” and publicly saying, “Please don’t think I’m unaware of this problematic aspect!”
- My Favorite Book When I Was Twelve: This is the BEST PANEL IDEA EVER (good job, BFF Becky!), and I could talk about this forever and ever. I really believe that circa 12 is a super formative age for the consumers and creatives of media we will be as adults. What taps into our lizard brains when we’re 12? How does that shape us? Will I ever stop trying to write some kind of weird Redwall/Animorphs tonal hybrid? PROBABLY NOT.
- What Happened with Wiscon Last Summer?: I won’t rehash the details because you either already know or don’t care, but there was something of an implosion behind the scenes at Wiscon over the past year, mostly having to do with harassment complaints that were not handled well. I really respected the con for running this panel and being transparent but respectful about a lot of what went down. It sort of dissolved into people getting up at the mic to pour out their feelings and I think more structure might have helped, but Wiscon is so important to so many people that I can’t really fault the panelists for letting the community have a chance to have their say.
- Worldbuilding Through Food: This was interesting although unfortunately a bit more Western fantasy-oriented than I was hoping. There were some great recommendations for food history books, though, and also some horrifying stories of people eating bugs, so, you know. Fun all around!
And I attended a whole bunch more:
Anyway, that was Wiscon 2015! Next week: Special Edition NYC. It’s exhausting being a nerd these days, you guys!