Talking Runaways And The Man Bun Debate At The Women Of Marvel Panel At New York Comic Con

Ale Bodden wrote for Bleeding Cool from New York Comic Con:

All fans gathered once again for a panel that has become an annual tradition — Women of Marvel. Judy Stephens (Women of Marvel Podcast) was joined on stage by Sana Amanat (Director, Content and Character Development at Marvel), Lorraine Cink (THWIP! The Big Marvel Show, and The Marvel Minute), Christina Harrington (Editor), Rainbow Rowell (Runaways), Mackenzie Cadenhead (Marvel Super Hero Adventures: Deck The Malls!), Kathreen Khavari (voice of Ms. Marvel/Kamala Khan), Sarit Klein (Lead Makeup Head for all Defenders: Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, The Defenders).

The panel kicked off with a brief discussion of Runaways with Rowell. She said this is her dream job at the moment, given how big of a fan she was when Runaways fist came out. It offered a story that she had never been before — a story about real teenagers making mistakes, falling in love, and dealing with the betrayal of their parents.

Rowell described it felt like bringing a relative back from death and reuniting a group of friends. She said that it was very important for her and artist Kris Anka for this to not feel cheap; for it to be a high-quality product. She stated this arc will be about getting the band together — about giving them a chance to choose. It will center on bringing them back, looking at where each character is, and whether or not they want to be together.

They announced a new novel coming out soon by Christopher Golden, as well as the upcoming Captain Marvel 125 by Margaret Stohl and Michele Bandini (coming out October 25th). Then we jumped to Ms. Marvel – they talked about the new storyline, which involves Red Dagger returning… with a man bun. Amanat said there was only one big disagreement between her and G. Willow Wilson, and it was about man buns.

This arc is leading into Legacy, which is about how the world responds to Ms. Marvel and how Kamala deals with the fact that people connecting with the symbol of who she is and what she represents — but at the same time, she doesn't know if she does anymore.

Talking Runaways And The Man Bun Debate At The Women Of Marvel Panel At New York Comic Con

Harrington then discussed the Phoenix coming back — she said she could not talk much about it, but teased us by saying she teared up while reading it. There will be five issues coming out starting December.

Stephens then showed us a clip of one of the origin shorts for Marvel's Avengers Secret Wars animation. We get to see Kamala/Ms. Marvel interacting with Captain America — and he is helping her come into her own. She then asked Khavari what is like being Ms. Marvel — she stated Kamala is a very fun character to portray. She said it was important for her to have such a positive female Muslim character to look up to, especially lately.

Klein then talked about her experience in bringing characters to life for the different shows (Daredevil, Jessica Jones) and how much work and fun it was to bring all the different characters together. She also talked about the little details most people will not even think about, like wound makeup and how one character might heal up faster than others.

Before opening up the floor for questions from the audience, Stephens asked Cadenhead about how she came up with chapter books for early readers. She said her son once approached her telling her she writes books for everyone, but nothing he can actually read — and this led to little chapter books to introduce kids to the fantastic world of geekdom. She says this project has become so much bigger than originally intended, and it is like a dream to her.

My favorite part of the panel was getting to watch a clip of Marvel Becoming, a cosplay series to highlight cosplayers. Everyone probably knows about this by now, but I did not — I found it to be a wonderful idea to showcase fans creativity.

As always, it is quite inspiring to see other women up there talking about the things I like and want to do. I cannot even begin to imagine how it must feel to all the little girls — it is very important for them to know that, as each panelist made sure to emphasize to everyone in the office: if it is your dream, make sure to work hard toward it because you can make it. Having grown up when liking things like this was not common for girls, it is so very nice to see girls of every age lining up to ask for advice or thank the panelists for making this possible.

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About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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