Kapow! – with added women
The Kapow! Comic Book convention is going on this weekend, and it’s good to see that in the face of criticism over its initial all-male line-up the event has adjusted its guest list.
I was not the only one who pointed out the lack of women, and I’m not claiming this result is due to my input alone.
Honestly, this is a positive response, and I hope it means more women featured at the event (if they hold it again) when they have time to include women in the planning from the very beginning.
Millar is even talking up the female angle now, mentioned a 30% female readership in this Guardian article today (with a few comments by me at the end).
Great! Women are a significant segment of the fanbase and it’s important to ensure events create an atmosphere welcoming to everyone.
It’s still a poor representation compared to the likes of London Comic Con, MCM Expo (which has announced 15,000 ticket sales), but at least it’s a start.
There are now two women featured on the guest list: Melinda Gebbie and Stormgirl.
Plus, I see that Angel Coulby (Gwen) and Katie McGrath (Morgana) from BBC’s TV show Merlin will be on a panel. Screenwriter Jane Goldman will be hosting a quiz. And there’s a E4 Misfits/Skins panel that includes Executive Producer Petra Fried and Lauren Socha (Kelly) from Misfits, as well as Skins novelist Jess Brittain and actors Jessica Sula (Grace) and Dakota Blue Richards (Franky).
It’s great to see Skins in particular getting a boost since it has a strong input from women behind the screen (directors Amanda Boyle and Philippa Langdale have shown considerable talent).
I know lots of women comic book fans and comic book creators. When you widen it out to genre TV and film then the numbers of fans and creators rises dramatically.
It’s not unreasonable to expect a fair representation of women at high-profile events like this, because we are part of the creative community and part of the audience. It’s not about tokenism or being PC: it’s about reflecting the diversity of the industry.
The comic book business is a creatively-exciting field (just check out the Eisner short-list) and it’s important to demonstrate its modern, dynamic spirit, and to show that it’s open to everyone who is passionate about comic books.
Well how about that? An event becomes more inclusive thanks to a raising of voices. There’s life in the old activism dog yet.
Which proves that it’s always best to say something, even if you get some flack for it. 🙂 It’s a good result, and I expect the guest list will be more diverse next year.