We Are All On Bitch Planet by Sarah Vale
Bitch Planet by Kelly Sue DeConnick and Valentine De Landro violently flips the script on prison exploitation films and the male gaze. It tackles the patriarchy and intersectional feminism in a way that is entertaining without being gimmicky. The main characters are almost all women of color, the evil Big Brother type government called The Council where the all-white old men are referred to as “Father”, reflects our real world a little too well. In the real world, women may not be shipped off to prison planets for any little social sin from being overweight and loud to adultery but do deal with social hostility. Sometimes being a woman in public can feel like you’re in a prison because you are always on display. Everything from how you dress to the expression on your face is something people feel comfortable commenting on in our world.
The comic isn’t subtle and it’s not for the faint of heart. Nakedness abounds but there’s a difference between nudity that exploits and nudity used to point out problems in our society. Bitch Planet doesn’t just point out problems it skyrockets them. The women of Bitch Planet are labeled and tattooed Non-Compliant. The symbol has increasingly been showing up on people since the comics publication. Dan Curtis Johnson writer of Chase said: “You don’t get that tattoo to celebrate something in the book, you get that tattoo because the book celebrates something in you.”
The comic may be speaking most directly to women but it’s message of loving yourself so hard the world can’t hurt you speaks to everyone universally. The Diversity in bitch planet is one of a kind and sets these stories apart from other comics. The trade comes with a discussion guide in the back which I supremely hope readers take advantage of it. One of the best things about comics like this is that it can act as an opening for friends to discuss serious issues in a less threatening manner.
Editors Note-Recently Image Comics announced that more Bitch Planet is coming which is welcome and awesome. Check out the story below http://www.thegeekedgods.com/bitch-planet-is-back-with-a-new-story-arc/.