As part of Gender Through Comic Books, a massive open online course to examine “how comic books can be used to explore questions of gender identity, stereotypes, and roles”, the students’ final assignment was to “create a comic based on a story regarding gender you or a close friend/family member has experienced”, with at least four panels containing dialogue or thought balloons or narration, and at least two without.
Also, the last week of class, the wonderful team behind this class and I will choose what we think are the 10 best gender comics. With permission, we will post these and the class will vote for what they think is the best one. The winner will be published (with your permission) on Thrillbent.com, Mark Waid’s digital comics website. The winner will not be chosen on the art, but on the story.
My submission, titled “Meta”, was prompted by something of a stereotypical educational experience: unable to think of what to do for the assignment, I made the assignment about exactly that, but spun through the lens of the course. It wasn’t selected to be amongst the best comics produced by the class, but — freshly copied from Strip Generator — here it is in all its glory and/or infamy for you to admire and/or criticize. It’s minimalist, but it’s not as simple as it might seem at first read. I don’t want to explain what I mean by that; I’m curious to see if anyone figures it out.
As for the finalists in the class (there isn’t a publicly-viewable list, as far as I know), the ones that told stories rather than simply illustrated personal doctrine worked better for me, and “Girls Don’t Like Dinosaurs” (pdf) received my vote.