Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Ink-Stained Amazon Presents in Seattle

Today I got to see a friend - Jennifer K. Stuller - read and talk on her book, The Ink-Stained Amazon. She's a pop-culture feminist historian - kind of a non-fiction version of what I do with poetry - whom I got to know online and then got to meet at Wondercon this year in San Francisco. Particularly memorable was an awesome video on female heroes in pop culture over the last thirty years.

A fun thing about this reading was its location, a secret Seattle Geek hangout called The Wayward Coffeehouse in Greenwood owned and operated by the terrific Bronwen with decor that I would call "Whedon-chic" and a tall stack of sci-fi books on the shelves. Now I want to do a reading there! (Plus they had gluten-free cookies.) See? I had lived in Seattle ten years but never been to this awesome little coffee house (did I mention they screen movies - currently "Joe Versus the Volcano," one of my all-time favorite movies - there too?) Seattle is a town full of neighborhood surprises that you might never find unless someone you know happens to tell you about them.

Right now I am warming up in front of a fire, I have my new Buffy comic, a couple of books of poetry, and I am feeling terrifically geeky in a town friendly to geeks.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Lost Team on a Fairy Tale themed series with a Female Lead

Are any of you feeling like me, a little disillusioned and "meh" about most of the television on right now? Well, here's the best television news I've had in a while: the Lost team is getting together to start a Fairy Tale themed series with a female lead. Are you guys looking for writers? Because I know fairy tales and I would be a fantastic female writer for your show! Call me! Seriously!
Anyway, this will perhaps fill the gap of inspiring female-centric shows...

Sunday, September 12, 2010

We Who Are About to Die, Nikita Reboot, Asteroids

This guy at We Who Are About to Die talks about female comic book superheroes and poetry. It doesn't happen all that often, so I thought I'd link to it!

The Nikita reboot on the CW a few days ago seemed okay, the kind of thing we've seen before, but worth watching for maybe another episode or two.

Did you know this last week two asteroids came close to hitting the earth? No? Well, it's all over now - the earth is safe!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

In case I haven't mentioned it here...

I loved the movie Kick-Ass. I thought it was much better than the last Terminator, the last Batman, and every other action movie I've seen in the last year put together. I laughed, I cried, it was better than Cats, etc.
One thing critics complained about was the violence and cursing from the young actress that played HitGirl. I wondered if they would have complained if it had been a ten or eleven-year-old boy instead of a girl. Frankly, as an eleven-year-old girl, it would have been nice to see an empowered girl kicking ass instead of being the constant victim (as in many other movies where it's just fine that eleven-year-old girls are terrorized, but not okay when they're the heroines.)And as a thirty-seven-year old, I'd much rather see a little girl kicking ass than various "action heroes" like Bale or Stallone or whatever.
And I'm not just saying this because they gave me a HitGirl t-shirt at WonderCon. Or because the fight scenes were like an awesome combination of moves from Buffy and the Matrix. Another thing critics complained about the huge violence, but I found it less gruesome than, say, The Watchmen, or even the latest episode of House, as the violence shown was very 'cartoony.'

Friday, July 23, 2010

Gossip From Comic-Con

I'm not there, but the gossip is seeping in from Comic-Con, so I thought I'd make a quick report of salient points:

--Joss Whedon is officially directing The Avengers movie. He says this will delay or possibly exclude the possibility of a Dr. Horrible sequel.

--Some of my favorite actors, including Angelina Jolie and Tiny Fey, made appearances.

--J.J. Abrams said he was happy with The Lost ending. Something about his new spy series, The Undercovers (which looks mildly good. As good as Alias? One can hope.)

What else? If you've been, leave a comment and fill me in! What was the awesomest thing there?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

New Futurama, Covert Affairs, New Book

Lots of news since last I posted!

--Happy news! Kitsune Books, a speculative literary publisher out of Florida, has agreed to publish my next book, "She Returns to the Floating World," a book about girls who turn into foxes, women who disappear, and heroines in anime.

--Sad news: the new Futurama episodes have been...not so great. Although I saw they had a female writer on one of the episodes. Way to let a girl in the room, Futurama! On the other hand, way too much "fan service" involving Leela and Amy. Maybe those censors were realllly important to the quality of Futurama jokes.

--In between: New spy-girl series "Covert Affairs" is a complete ripoff of Alias, right down to Piper's Sydney Bristow-esque voice inflections and facial expressions. Yet, fun to watch - thanks, USA, for providing an empowered heroine that none of the major networks can manage.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Wonder Woman's New Look

Since I've long been a Wonder Woman champion, I've gotten a lot of e-mails about Wonder Woman's new look, illustrated here:

So, I miss the boots, but otherwise, I think that pants are much more practical for criminal-chasing and such than a high-waisted swimsuit.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Feminism and Superheroes

An interesting article up at BlogHer about teaching daughters about the feminism hidden behind the bustiers of female comic book superheroes:

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Does Daria Count as a Superhero?

Well, Daria: the animated series, is finally out on DVD. This was one of my favorite shows for years, and, although the kickass soundtrack has been removed - due to problems with licensing - the good writing and high school parody is as on pitch today as it was when I used to watch it on MTV.

Daria was about a the title character, a snarky misfit who wanted to be a writer, and her best friend Jane - a more punk-esque, slightly more outgoing girl who wanted to be an artist. For a writer, some of the best episodes are "The Story of D," "Write Where it Hurts," and "Cafe Disaffecto." There are some great bits mocking art schools in one of the two movies on the "Extras" list on the DVD.

Does she count as a superhero? When I watched this show, it eased many of my anxieties - about social problems, school problems, and family problems. Its parody had spunk and heart. One of the best female teenager-based shows ever on television, along with My So-Called Life and Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Is anyone excited about the return of Futurama? I hope the writing returns to the original levels, not the somewhat mediocre writing of the one-off movies.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Creatives whose subject matter is not in their control

From Bookslut:

"When my friend was writing a blog entry for the Wall Street Journal about Joss Whedon, our conversations got on the subject of Dollhouse, which is pretty easy for us to do. His final version:

"Firefly" also introduced the odd thematic obsession around prostitution and rescue that took over and imploded in the near-future science fiction show "Dollhouse," about a brainwashing technology that gives rise to high-tech brothels, and (much more entertainingly) Armageddon. There was something confused and unprocessed there - I felt I was watching an artist working with material he wasn't yet in control of.

I think I eventually just said, "I don't think men should get to write from the perspective of female prostitutes. Unless they take a class or something." Turns out Joss Whedon maybe did take a class! According to the "Internet." It just didn't help. "

Joss Whedon's Dollhouse always felt disturbingly too titillated by its own sexual gross-out factor. I agree with the blogger and Bookslut - Joss didn't have control of that stuff, and it came out icky.

The much more empowering Furi Curi (or Fooly Cooly) was from some of the most ostensibly anti-feminist, exploitative kind of anime artists, the guys from Gainax. Somehow, when they just let themselves have fun - and spent a ton of money following their inner muses - they came up with a female alien who rides a Vespa who keeps slamming a young man with a guitar in order to connect with a large male alien power that the young man can channel - but it turns out at the end, the male power can only manifest when the young man sacrifices himself for love of the female, head-hitting alien. I don't know - is there such a thing as accidental feminism? Can a man who studied feminism in college and created one of the best-ever female superheroes also have some secret desire to see women powerless?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

When two worlds collide...

When my geeky interests and my writing life collide, I feel obligated to post about it here.

I have a couple of poems in a new anthology called The Beastly Bride, which includes work by Peter S. Beagle and Jane Yolen, among many talented writers, and I was interviewed about my work in the book here. Click here for more discussion of the book, including some cool imagery of the Fairy Melusine and The Fox-Wife.

In TV News...
Anyone else excited about the return of Futurama, despite lackluster movies? How about the pickup of Season 4 of Chuck, or the killing of Heroes?

Friday, April 2, 2010

Update from WonderWon

A short note to give you my first day rundown on WonderCon: got to see Jennifer K. Stuller's talk on "Superwomen in Modern Mythology" which was great and had a huge turnout, met her friend Trina Robbins who is giving a talk tomorrow on women in manga; talked to personal writing hero Peter S. Beagle, got a copy of the newly-inked The Last Unicorn comic book, really beautiful illustrations in that, and I told him I was excited to be sharing space with him in the new anthology, The Beastly Bride! By the way, I can be pretty blase around rock stars, politicians, etc...but around writers I admire, I am so tongue-tied!
Also, may catch a screening of Kick Ass (and thanks guys for the free t-shirts! Yay swag!) this weekend and The Last Unicorn, which they'll be playing on one of the big local theaters - I think I watched the original in the theater when I was about seven, so seeing it again would be cool.
Tomorrow is a "fun day" and Sunday is my work day, because that's when I give my presentation:
12:30-1:30 Comics Arts Conference Session #7: From Buffy to the X-Men: Female Comic Book Superheroes in Women's Poetry— Jeannine Hall Gailey (Becoming the Villainess) investigates how superheroes, from Buffy the Vampire Slayer to Lara Croft, have appeared in poetry by women, and how women poets use those icons to talk about cultural influence, body image, and the role of women as victims, villainesses, and heroines in comic books. Room 204/206, Moscone Center.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Female Comic Book Superhero Poetry

Well, I've been having a lot of fun (and a little stress) putting together my paper and presentation for WonderCon's Comic Arts Conference coming up on April 2-4 in San Francisco. I went back to some of my favorite poets from college (Denise Duhamel and Lucille Clifton) and put out a call for newer poets to send me work (Wonder Woman and Buffy figure predominantly in these poems, it seems.) I hope to find even more poems before I go up. I'll also be using some poems from my own book, Becoming the Villainess, including poems about Buffy, Lara Croft, and others. I'm presenting first thing on Sunday at noon-ish - hope to see you there!
I'm of course excited to meet The Ink-Stained Amazon's Jennifer K Stuller whose new book I just finished (really fun reading!) and the other great folks - Peter S. Beagle, author of one of my favorite childhood books, The Last Unicorn, Gail Simone, comic author heroine, and the folks at one of my fave current shows, Chuck. And of course, I'm thinking of participating in the Buffy Musical Episode singalong at the end. I mean, what could be more fun than a weekend of full-on geekiness? I'm so thankful that I've been included in such a great conference.
Wish me luck and leave me comments about your favorite superhero poems!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Futurama Back This Summer

Well, in a Family Guy-style resurrection, Futurama will be returning to television this June on Comedy Central. I hope the writers do a better job with these episodes than they did with the (mostly terrible) movies. Or that they hire more writers. Dan Vebber?

Are you excited? I think I am. I'm hoping for the best. I love the original Futurama series, and hope this new life goes well.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Dollhouse got better in the second season, and WonderCon

Guess who is presenting at WonderCon this year? Me! It's going to be all about superheroes and poetry. Excited yet? I am!

I think I've figured out why Dollhouse got so much better in the second season. Yes, I continued watching even though I had problems with the first season. The second season was more coherent, more oriented towards female-empowerment, and more intelligently written. Anyway, the girls who ran Reaper became Dollhouse showrunners. I loved Reaper, and I really admire Craft and Fain for their unique quirks, their uses of humor and pop culture and the mystical as metaphor. Anyway, I wasn't crazy about Boyd's reveal as the big bad, because there would be a lot of neccessary retconning to make that work, but I thought they did a nice job wrapping up the show with Epitaph 2, and they even got Eliza to emote!

I'm pretty excited about Lost starting up again. With Leno at 10 PM cancelled, a lot of good shows will have more episodes now, too. TV is looking up once again!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

New seasons, new shows?

So, faithful readers, any new girl-empowered sci-fi-type shows worth watching coming out? I haven't heard much buzz at all about any of the new shows, but figured it was worth asking...

I am looking forward to the return of Chuck even though I know their budgets have been cut and so we're probably going to suffer because of that - hopefully they didn't cut back on writer's salaries!

I was trying to think if I was really looking forward to any other shows returning. Maybe the flawed-but-fun Vampire Diaries and similarly, too-gory-for-me-but-fun True Blood? Lost?