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Ripples from Spider-Woman Butt-Gate continues to rock the world of comics! Every day lots of changes in shipping products are announced on Diamond’s website. And today two little sentences were sent out:

Thor #2 Manara Variant (SEP140859, $3.99) will now be done by an artist to be announced, not Milo Manara.

Avengers and X-Men: AXIS #1 Manara Variant (AUG140720, $4.99) will now be done by Siya Oum, not Milo Manara, and will be retitled Avengers and X-Men: AXIS #1 Oum Variant.


Of course, everyone has assumed this is because of the word-shattering outcry over Manara’s LAST variant cover, for Spider-Woman #1. CBR had the story first, and noted that in the past, Marvel e-i-c- Axel Alonso had promised that “[W]e’ll do more Manara variants. He is a world-renowned artist with a huge fan base, and his variants, like the Skottie Young variants, are aimed at people who appreciate his art and his style. But we are aware of the growing sensitivity to covers like this, and we will be extra-vigilant in policing their content and how we use them in our marketing.”
One of the covers, the variant for Thor #2 has been released, and to be honest…it looks great. Actually this is a cover from last week. And it looks beautiful. Not very sexualized but a nice handsome male Thor. I mean, Thor is a woman now though, right?

The mary Sue had a bit of a victory lap over this.
Siya Oum is a female artist whose work definitely features attractive ladies, although nothing along the lines of Manara’s work.

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Marvel declined to comment on the change to CBR. I guess we’ll never ever know why these covers were cancelled.

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In my opinion, I have NO PROBLEM with Manara doing covers for Mrvel in the future, provided an erotic cover is appropriate for the project. As the Thor cover shows, he can drew non sexy covers…he just can’t draw non-sexy women. It’s in his blood.

37 COMMENTS

  1. Unless Thor’s so badass he bent Mjolnir’s handle, the perspective on the hammer head relative to the handle is off anyways.

  2. I guess just having a conversation about appropriate depictions of the female form was too complicated, so they just threw the baby out in a fit of bathwater pique. Marvel did not have to react this way…they chose to rather than just *addressing the actual issue.*

  3. The people whining and complaining about the Spider-woman cover were wrong, and now Marvel makes the idiotic move to fire Manara? Really? The Thor cover is beautiful. I’m really disappointed in Marvel for cow towing to a small minority of perpetually angry, sexually repressed idiots. Where’s Marvel’s balls? Jim Shooter, Stan Lee, and Tom Defalco would never have entertained these idiot’s whims when they were running Marvel. I will never buy another Marvel Comic again if they go through with this ban on Manara’s work. I will, however, run out and get a few Manara Graphic novels.

  4. That’s too bad. Look, I’m NOT a fan of the Spider Woman cover, but I am a fan of art… in all forms. It was a variant cover. Nobody had to buy it. Let the retailer’s & readers wallets do the talking. People should buy what they want, not buy what other people say they should want. If the cover was so hated, then the ordering should reflect that. That would be the best message to send to Marvel’s take on Spider Woman.

    But I understand it from both sides… I’m open-minded, not blind. Marvel used their option to cancel the covers, I’m fine with that, too.

  5. The comics community at large would do well to fight against this kind of politically motivated content policing before it moves inside the cover. All these internet Tipper Gores can see their way out of the art form.

  6. @ Jimmie Robinson

    Totally agree with you. It’s not a great cover but then again people don’t have to buy it. But totally getting rid of all of Manara’s next covers is insane.

    The whole comic community is scary.

  7. This is BS. Don’t like it? then don’t buy it and stop forcing down your prudish narrow minded ideas into other peoples throats while disguising them under a clock of righteousness.

    hey I’m pro sex equality I have fought for that,I really have. I have fought and march against racism, I support the LGBT community fight for their rights, but some times we forgot freedom of speech dam!!

    Marvel please DO NOT over react to the pressure of some people that most likely wouldn’t buy that comic anyway, Manara is a respected artist in this medium and his depiction of Spider woman wasn’t that far from a character who’s one of her power is the use of pheromones, in other words enhanced seduction, also described as very attractive (physically), give that concept to an artist known for erotic art and you get a hart shaped ass put that cover on the first issue of said character and you have something very interesting, it wasn’t the wrong call to release it just a edgy one, but I believe is the wrong call not to stand by your artists.

    And while an it, stop changing genders and ethnicities of beloved characters just to justify a quest for equality, the past is the past lets understand it but don’t deny it, specially when you meddle with characters that are now part of pop culture. If you want diversity and I am all for it, create new and interesting characters you are the house of ideas after all, don’t you? there is Kamala a great addition to your super hero catalog, there is Roby reyes, now Silk (altho one more spider-something wasn’t necessary)

    Marvel keep working you are doing great just don’t be afraid.

  8. Pffft, this is just another marketing gimmick.
    Once they have gathered all the commentaries about how Manara should continue his variant cover work, the next headline would be “Marvel Decides to Continue Manara Covers due to Fan Clamor.”
    That’s an awesome Thor, except for the perspective on the hammer, but that is negligible.

  9. Does anybody know if Marvel cancelled the covers or if this was Manara’s decision?
    That statement from him that ran here in the wake of Spiderwoman-gate sounded like he was a little offended himself.I think Europeans tend to find USians to be bit prudish. Manara has a loving fanbase in europe and may feel he doesn’t need to deal with our issues. Perhaps HE asked Marvel to let him go.

  10. Cancelled you say? Whelp, a quick lol at Manara providing Marvel with cover work will show quite a few re solicits and delays. Hell, the Thor #2 variant was originally supposed to be for issue 1.

    Given Marvel’s genuine open stance on continuing to work with Manara, I say they are either not done yet, or Manara decided to stop working with Marvel over the controversy. Dude had some opinions about things.

  11. I’d just as soon give Marvel the benefit of the doubt on this one and assume there’s more to it than just Spider-Woman cover, as shutting Manara out seems a very sudden turn-around on a sensible reaction (acknowledging that the one cover was inappropriate but still continuing to work with the artist).

  12. Huge editorial fail for Marvel. Like Heidi says, it’s in his blood to draw sexy women! Did Marvel editorial even look at Manara’s body of work before hiring him? It’s like hiring a gangsta rapper and then surprised when they use profanity on stage.

  13. Listen, I didn’t dig the Spider-Woman cover, but I have a real problem with shaming artists for drawing what they’re moved to draw. That’s really not cool.

  14. Not Tony Stark and Steve Rogers, but I DO have a Manara comic with Cesare Borgia and Leonardo da Vinci making out. So yeah, no prudishness here.

  15. Not using Manara for future covers is not “shaming” him. It’s saying they have decided his work is not appropriate for their characters.

  16. “Not using Manara for future covers is not “shaming” him. It’s saying they have decided his work is not appropriate for their characters.”

    Unlike the anal sex thing with Luke Cage and Jessica Jones in Alias?

    Or how about the time Peter Parker was trapped in Doc Ock’s body and the story pretty clearly implied him re-living Doc’s memory of having sex with Aunt May?

    Gwen Stacy pity-boinking Norman Osborn?

    Mike

  17. Yeah, it’s totally shaming him. Pulling his work en mass regardless of content, the countless redraws/corrections of his art… again, seriously uncool & illiberal.

  18. @MBunge – um, no, those things don’t prevent women from wanting to read the books, as far as I know. But if Marvel did think it was preventing anybody from reading their books, then yes, they should not do those things any more.

  19. Questions of titilation aside, hiring Milo Manara to draw Spider-Woman is like hiring Enki Bilal and Naoki Urasawa to draw Razorback and Night Thrasher.

    Milo Manara is a major, veteran artist: give him major, veteran characters to draw, not obscure second-stringers.

  20. that’s the entire point of having Manara draw a variant for the title. She’s a ‘second-stringer’, so his cover will sell to people who wouldn’t normally pick up the title. it also boosts the orders of retailers buying it.

  21. “@MBunge – um, no, those things don’t prevent women from wanting to read the books”

    Do women have taste? Standards? A sense of what does and does not constitute offensive or just plain horrible storytelling?

    If the answer is “yes”, then I imagine at least a few women readers found those examples as bothersome as a Spider-Woman butt shot.

    Mike

  22. You all realize you are talking about a made up thing right? He wasn’t pulled from the books – its a scheduling conflict due to him trying to finish his forthcoming and absolutely stunning looking book on Caravaggio so Marvel is moving the Manara variants to later issues in order to allow him to finish on time.

    This was basically just CBR shitting the bed on their reporting and EVERYBODY taking assumptions and making them into tyranny.

    Asses aren’t we all.

  23. A lot of times they’ll say ‘to be re-solicited at a later date’, but that wasn’t spelled out here, FWIW. I don’t think it’s much of a leap for people to have made to them ‘pulling’ the variants.

  24. I think his Nightcrawler cover for Amazing X-Men #1 was quite good.
    If that had been Spider-Woman in that pose, would it have been controversial?

    (Damn… now I’ve got the Spider-Butt song stuck in my head…)

  25. Ludicrous outrage neatly demonstrates how little it takes for the mask of “seething tolerance” to slip.

    “Is this the end of the Eltingville Club?”

  26. There is a big “slash-fiction” following for stories involving Thor making love to Loki. Perhaps Marvel could hire Manera to do a cover for that market? The SW covers defenders keep saying that Marvel was just trying to hit a niche market. Well, the Loki-penetrates-Thor market is likely larger.

    But back to the Spider-Woman cover: It was likely the most masturbated-too comic image of the year. How many times do you think obese men with neck-beards have masturbated to that cover? 800,000? 2 million? 5 million? It definitely dwarfs comic sales.

  27. Well, I’m glad this is just a scheduling conflict. Manara’s work is truly one of the best in the business. Personally, I think he doesn’t belong making mainstream superheroes, but I also like that Marvel respects talent outside of the cape-and-cowl set. It’s just unfortunate that Manara’s Spider-woman was so controversial.

  28. There’s a difference (sadly forgotten) between sexy and sleazy. But this is not just a question of sex.

    Stereotyping any group is wrong. For decades stereotypes of various groups were used to sell products. It’s a practice that’s now been largely banned (and no one is yelling about artists’ rights when it comes to negatively portraying other groups).

    But women are still fair game, and that has to change. Objectification is not sexy. It’s sleazy. And not just from a sexual standpoint.

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