Strong Female Protagonist has been a webcoming accruing quite a following for the past couple of years as artist Molly Ostertag completed her degree at the School of Visual Arts. Graduation completed as valedictorian of her class, she turned her attention to the relatively full time job of launching a Kickstarter to her take her work with Brennan Lee Mulligan to print formally. It launched this past Monday, and within two days had achieved its financial goals and blasted through them to keep on charging ahead.
It's no surprise the project has been so popular. The comic features strong elements of realism in a superhero genre featuring a young, reluctant female hero, and purposefully subverts the shallow characterization and objectification common in the handling of female heroes in the mainstream. Then there's Ostertag's highly winning art style which has accents of clear-line drawing with more emotive textures that make her work fairly recognizable already, though she's barely out of art school. If you'd like to see some of the other projects and poster-work she's been up to, check out this spotlight I did with her at the Senior Portfolio Review day for SVA a couple of weeks ago on the eve of her graduation.
The tagline for Strong Female Protagonist, the webcomic, is "the adventures of a young middle-class American with super-strength, invincibility, and a crippling sense of social injustice". See what the creative team did there? They don't even use the phrase "female hero" in that description about Alison Green, aka Mega Girl, and that speaks to their goals. Their protagonist is simply a person, not defined by gender as much as by her ideals.
The print version of the comic on Kickstarter will bring the first four chapters of the series to readers, with bonus content, in a black and white paperback edition. In just three days, at the time of writing, the project has already passed its first stretch goal, is poised to reach its second, and has tripled its initial goal. So get on board with the tide of readers who find this project so worthy and rewarding. You might just change the way female heroes are perceived in comics.
Here's the trailer for the collection: