The narrative that Marvel Comics is trying to sell right now is that they are trying to be more inclusive. Sam Wilson, the Falcon, will be replacing Steve Rogers as Captain America. A woman, yet to be revealed, will be replacing Thor Odinson as Thor, God of Thunder. There will be more females featured on the upcoming Avengers roster. The initiative will also see more females headlining their own books. The recently released Spider-Woman comic has caused some issues, however. You can see why shortly.
What the above image shows is Jessica Drew, Spider-Woman, presenting her rear end to the audience as she climbs to the rooftop of a building. This is the special variant cover for the first issue of Spider-Woman, a comic meant to appeal to more women. I’m not sure if this is a variant cover that is shipping 1:1 with the normal cover or shipped 1:25 or 1:50. Either way, I’m not sure if this is the best way to encourage female readers to check out the title.
Further muddying things up is the fact that Marvel hired Milo Manara to do this cover. Manara, for people unfamiliar with his work like I was, is known for his erotic art. That fact alone makes it questionable as to why Marvel hired him to draw the cover for this. They had to have known what they were getting. Did they really want this?
It makes me wonder why Marvel is even attempting this minority and women initiative. If this is what they feel is appropriate to put into it, a sexualized cover of a strong female character, it makes me think that they don’t know about women or actually care about them. I wouldn’t be surprised if Disney had ordered Marvel to make changes and Marvel was resistant. It explains this cover, and it explains how they’re literally forcing a woman into the role and name of Thor. They must expect reactions to be negative. And if these things fail despite their supposed best effort, then they can say they tried and it just didn’t take. They’ll even have the numbers to prove it.