I have a confession: I haven’t actually read a lot of classic science fiction, and most of what I have read, I hated. Clarke’s too horny, Bradbury’s too racist, Dick’s too pessimistic, Orwell’s too reactionary. But one book in the “canon” actually stuck with me to this day because of its exploration of non-human intelligence: Asimov’s I, Robot.
In the last site news, I talked about how simply including people of various identities in your work isn’t enough. Creators have an increasing awareness that representation of marginalized identities in fiction is important, but lacking good examples, many don’t know what good representation actually looks like. This leads to an effect where creators fill their work with as many different identities as possible without giving those experiences the depth of treatment or culturally competent touch they deserve. Such works can feel like they were cast by checklist: “Okay, we’ve got a lesbian character, a trans woman, and a trans man, we just need a gay guy and a bisexual. Flip a coin for the bisexual’s gender.”
I was never much of a metalhead. I mean sure, in high school I listened to the same antisocial noise as every other disaffected youth in those days – NIN, Godsmack, Kittie, etc. – but I never had any goddamn taste about it, and I certainly never got into the, shall we say, scene. And given the fact that, in hindsight, that particular scene is pretty hostile to women and people of color, I was always glad I dodged that particular bullet.
You’re familiar with the internet, right? You’re here, so you must be, unless you’re some 90 year old granny at the public library who sat down at a computer looking for that new-fangled digital library card system and happened to find the browser open to yeshomo dot net. In which case, welcome to the internet! You should probably ask a librarian for help.
So the Ignatz Award nominees were announced last week, and two comics from my reading list were on it: Witchy and O Human Star, both extremely deserving works by skilled (and queer!) authors. There was another comic nominated that I was less thrilled about – so much so that I felt the need to go out of my way to write a review of it. If that makes me petty, so be it; I’ve got an axe to grind with Super Mutant Magic Academy.