Comics may not necessarily seem like a natural fit for music fans, but in reality there are a number of great (and in some cases, even iconic) bands in comics. Best of all, many of these comics feature female musicians and are written or illustrated by women. This list collects a few of the best of these and offers a little something for everyone.
Jem and the Holograms Volume 1: Showtime by Kelly Thompson with art by Sophie Campbell – Jerrica is a skilled singer but she also has a serious case of stage fright. When the band that she and her sisters have formed has an opportunity to play as part of a video contest, she finds that she can’t even record their song due to her shyness. While struggling to live up to her sisters’ expectations, she discovers that her father has left her the technology to create a hologram to sing in her place. This is all just the background though for a story that is really about relationships of all kinds including fans, friendship, family, and romance. The story features a great and diverse cast and it will please both readers who are fans of the 1980’s Jem cartoon series and those who have never met these characters before.
Josie and the Pussycats by Marguerite Bennett and Cameron Deordio with art by Audrey Mok – Starting in the Fall of 2016, Marguerite Bennett, Cameron Deordio, and Audrey Mok reinvented the classic story of Josie and the Pussycats. Built on the same foundation as the classic comics, this new incarnation has a brand new origin and a great focus on the importance of friendship to the band’s success or failure. This is a great read for musicians, Archie fans, and those who want to read a great story about fame and friendship. The first volume won’t be out until August, but you can start catching up on individual issues now.
Zebrafish by Peter H. Reynolds and Sharon Emerson with illustrations by Renee Kurilla – This comic, which is perfect for younger fans, tells a cute story about a bunch of friends who want to launch a band. Unfortunately, only one of them can play an instrument. They’re hardly going to let that stop them though! The book incorporates a message through a discovery that the band members make about one of their new friends, but this isn’t presented in a heavy-handed manner and doesn’t limit the focus of the story. The cartoon-inspired drawing style is engaging and entertaining. Readers will really enjoy this lighthearted book, which also has a sequel entitled SPF 40. Continue reading Women in Comics: Let The Music Play
It is hard to believe that it is already the start of a new year. But, the good news is that with the new year come new comics to be excited about! This year there are plenty of books and series by female creators to get excited about. Hopefully you will find something here to add to your to-be-read list.
Zodiac Starforce: By The Power of Astra by Kevin Panetta and Paulina Ganucheau – Compared by many in style and story to Sailor Moon, this series has bright colors, great art, a focus on a team of teenage girls, and entertaining adventures. This first volume will collect the first four issues of the series, so it is a great way to introduce it to existing Sailor Moon fans or those who just love action-packed fantasy comics.
Something New: Tales from a Makeshift Bride by Lucy Knisley – When Lucy Knisley suddenly ends up engaged to her ex-boyfriend, she finds herself unexpectedly planning a wedding. As with her past books, she recorded it all in comic form. This promises to be another great peek at family life from an author who won a 2014 Alex Award and appeared on the Great Graphic Novels 2014 list.
Harley Quinn and Power Girl by Amanda Conner, Jimmy Palmiotti, Justin Gray and Stephane Roux – In addition to upcoming volumes of the Harley Quinn series, Amanda Conner and her husband Jimmy Palmiotti have a new series in which Harley Quinn and Power Girl team up in a foreign dimension. A great option for fans of this team’s Harley Quinn series, this will also appeal to Power Girl fans and those who want a combination of humor and superheros.
Starfire Volume 1 by Amanda Conner, Jimmy Palmiotti, and Emanuela Lupacchino – Another collection from the team that brought us the latest Harley Quinn series, this is the first solo series for Starfire. With its Florida setting and battles against threats from the underworld, this series is sure to attract new fans for Starfire.
Tomb Raider by Mariko Tamaki and Phillip Sevy – Mariko Tamaki, author of This One Summer, is taking over the helm of the Tomb Raider series, which is sure to bring new attention to the series. This is a great option for fans of the Tomb Raider game series, especially since it continues the storyline set up in the games.
The Nameless City by Faith Erin Hicks – Hicks is a perennial fan favorite who has written some great comics, so it is easy to get excited for her upcoming work. This book follows Kaidu, a member of the group that is occupying the Nameless City, and Rat, a native of the city. Though they initially seem like unlikely friends, eventually they must work together for the city they both love.
Mockingbird by Chelsea Cain – If you read the standalone Mockingbird issue that was released as part of the S.H.I.E.L.D. 50th Anniversary, you will be happy to know that there is more to come from this great character! As with the standalone, the new series will be written by Chelsea Cain and will focus on Bobbi Morse’s adventures. Mockingbird has popped up elsewhere as well, including on TV’s Agents of SHIELD and in the upcoming Amazing Spider-Man, so this title has promise for wide appeal.
Spiderman by Brian Michael Bendis and Sara Pichelli – With Marvel’s Secret Wars coming to an end, the All-New All-Different series are ready to begin and one of these series is a new Spiderman story. Though limited information has been released about this series, it has an all-star team of Brian Michael Bendis and Sara Pichelli, so it looks like it has great promise.
Octopus Pie by Meredith Gran – In this first Octopus Pie collection, readers meet Eve and her roommate Hanna as they live in Brooklyn and tackle complicated relationships. Filled with humor and observations of 20-something life in the city, this will have wide appeal, though it is probably best for older teens given the age group represented.
Black Canary Volume 1 by Brendan Fletch and Annie Wu – In this series, Dinah Lance hits the road with her band Black Canary and along the way they’re going to encounter more than their fair share of trouble. This combines great fight sequences with a rock and roll setting that will have broad appeal, particularly for those who are already fans of Batgirl.
Faith by Jody Houser, Francis Portela, and Marguerite Sauvage – In many ways, Faith Herbert is a standard superhero: she is an orphan with special powers (including flight) who works as a journalist. But, where this could lead to a bland rehash of previous stories, here this serves as a jumping off point for playing with the standard comic tropes. This looks like it is going to be a great series for fans of Batgirl and many more!
These are just some of the great new works from female creators that we have to look forward to in 2016. It promises to be an exciting year for comics and I can’t wait to read these and more. Let me know in the comments if I’ve missed any that you want to read in 2016!