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Women in Comics: DC vs Marvel, The Bechdel Test
spider hole
thalestral wrote in feminist_geeks
I'm a comics journalist, and normally my writing focuses on women creators in comics and the portrayal of women characters. But the Bechdel Test is so famous, and so equally derided by a lot of the general readership, that I figured it was worth a go to Bechdel Test ALL THE THINGS.

Or at least the comics I had to hand. I also did a Reverse Bechdel Test alongside the normal test, to help illustrate the divide between the portrayal of men and women in comics.

Obviously the Bechdel Test is just one aspect of looking at the issue as a whole, but I found the results surprisingly encouraging. At least for DC, where the results showed a lot of balance across my titles, and where the women led titles like Batwoman helped pick up the slack. And normally I'm focusing on all the other angles, so it was a nice change.

The full article is here: Women in Comics: DC vs Marvel, The Bechdel Test

Happily, the discussion I've seen about this piece on other forums is mostly guys saying the Reverse Bechdel Test has made them see the imbalance properly. So feel free to share :D

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They at least could've included an X-Men title...

They did. Uncanny X-Men and X-Factor. The latter did very poorly, the former mediocrely.

And for the Bechdel test, yes, even complaining about a guy causes the conversation to not pass. The point is that said conversation focuses on a guy, positive or negative. No one's saying that the Bechdel test is good yardstick for how to view a specific work, but it is a good measurement of general trends when it comes to media.

The latter was definitely what I was going for.. I think Animal Man is a pretty good example of both the merits and disadvantages of the Bechdel Test. But for building up an overall picture, it's one of many useful tools.

I'm a huge X-Men fan by the way, though I tend to prefer the older arcs in comparison to the current ones. (And I still miss Runaways!)

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