Comic Book Corner: Ladies conquering comics – Spotlight on newcomers and heavy hitters of indie comics

By Faith Orcino

 

Marjane Satrapi’s “Persepolis”

 

While many used comics as the medium for fictional tales, others like Marjane Satrapi turned it into a platform to introduce readers to themselves and to their cultures. Her graphic novel “Persepolis” was published originally in 2000 in French before Pantheon Books translated it and released it to the North American audience. It is her coming-of-age memoir that began with her childhood during post-Islamic Revolution Iran and living in a war zone. The graphic novel followed her from Tehran to Vienna and back, where she went through many trials and tribulations to discover the person she is meant to be and not what society constructed.

 

Satrapi co-directed the critically acclaimed film adaptation of “Persepolis” with Vincent Paronnaud. Like the graphic novel, the film was originally in French but there is also an English dubbed version available.

 

Kate Beaton’s “Hark, A Vagrant!”

 

A former member of the disbanded Pizza Island studio group, Kate Beaton found her footing with her very witty webcomic series “ Hark, A Vagrant!”.  Her first entry was a comic called “Marcel Duchamp’s Breakfast” in 2006 and from there she made over 300 more giving a comical and at times critical look at numerous iconic figures from pop culture and history among other areas. Beaton used traditional media to illustrate her stories using pencil and ink. While being a bit rough and untidy, there has been a sense of refinement with her drawings. There has been no set schedule for the new uploads so each are a surprise to followers.

 

“Hark, A Vagrant!” gained a physical book form thanks to Drawn & Quarterly, a publisher supportive of comic artists and they will release Beaton’s next books “The Princess and the Pony” in June and “Step Aside, Pops: A Hark, A Vagrant! Collection” in September.

 

Visit harkavagrant.com to read “Hark, A Vagrant!”

 

Nilah Magruder’s “M.F.K”

 

Last month, Long Beach Comic Expo granted Nilah Magruder the honor of receiving the inaugural Dwayne McDuffie Award For Diversity for the first chapter of her webcomic “M.F.K.” She launched the online series back in January 2012 though mentioned in a post in the website that she created the lead character Abbie in 2002. Since that initial concept, Magruder built a unique realm that Abbie must travel through to complete her late mother’s final wish. Complications arose soon after she met teenager resident Jaime and his grandfather Iman during a sandstorm. She failed to go her separate way and becomes trapped in the tension between the superhuman Parapsi and the normal, poor Misma.

 

“M.F.K.” currently has three chapters completed as Magruder continues to expand this world she made on Mondays. Visit mfkcomic.com to learn more and read the latest installments.