200704090405AfterEllen has a well-researched piece on lesbian comics, with extensive comments from Ariel Schrag, Alison Bechdel and manga artist June Kim. A sample of Shrag’s musings on the sudden high profile for comics:

While this certainly has its benefits, Schrag pointed out that the past also had its own set of advantages. “What is nice about comics, at least what was nice for me writing about being gay, was that I felt very uncensored,” she explained. “For a long time alternative comics — not superhero comics — were sort of this ignored, free-reign territory. Nobody expected to be published by a large company or to make a lot of money, so people just wrote whatever they wanted.”

As the industry changes, naturally, so does the audience. “At first my readership was almost all lesbians,” Bechdel recalled. Now, however, it is far more diverse. “Most of them seem to share a leftist ideological bent, but there are the odd self-identified straight white Republican males who follow the strip, too.”


  1. I remember my first lesbian comic was “Jane’s World” by Paige Braddock. I still have little printouts of the strip taped to my computer and scattered about my desk. :) It’s good to see more graphic novels coming out for lesbians, though. I wasn’t a fan of the “Dyke’s To Watch Out For” strip (perhaps because it was too much about being gay and not about living life as a gay person) but “Fun Home” was wonderful and incredibly poignant. “12 Days” left me angry . . . but for personal reasons because it struck SO close to home. It was beautiful written, drawn, and terribly sad and depressing.