When asked on twitter why there were no women invited to Kapow!, organiser Mark Millar insisted “You realise this is being put together by 5 women, don’t you? The reason the comic guests are mostly male is because the biggest names in UK comics are male. Who is the big British female pro they’re missing here?”
Oh Mark Millar! We would honestly not have expected this from him. So it’s okay for women to do all the work behind the scenes instead of getting any recognition or publicity? Yikes!
Also…no women cartoonists in Britain? Splinister demolishes that tripe. Like…Posy Simmonds and Carol Swain and Emma Vicelli. And tons more in the comments.
Kapow! is being put together by newly minted multimedia mogul Millar, along with Titan, his CLiNT Magazine backer, to bring San Diego-style junkets and TV/movie preview panels to London — which caused some alarm for the MCM Expo, which is held a few months later and has a huge manga/anime/female presence — half the comics guests are women. According to this report given Kapow!’s small venue — 3000-5000 people as opposed to MCM’s 50-60,000 — it’s more of a “meet and greet” for Millar’s friends:
According to people close to Mark Millar, the purpose of the event for Mark is to share his Hollywood success with his friends. Bring the A&R men over and show them a mini-San Diego in London, and get them to sign up creators on their own turf. It is a completely and genuinely altrusistic move and it is at the heart of Kapow, even though it’s never been mentioned in PR or interviews. It’s a honey trap for Hollywood for all the people Millar feels close to, and wants them to do as well as he has.
So we can understand why Simmonds or Swain might not want to be a guest at a show like this, but it does make the clubby feeling even more palpable.
Which makes it all the more surprising that when Millar got asked about this, he didn’t mention Jane Goldman, director Matthew Vaughn’s preferred scribe and the screenwriter for KICK-ASS 1, KICK-ASS 2, and such other comic booky movies as STARDUST and, um, X-MEN: FIRST CLASS.
We’ve heard Goldman talk a time or two and she’s fantastic. She would be a great guest at ANY convention.
So Mark Millar, shame on you! You know better!
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.