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Spider-Woman isn't good for women when she looks like this

Alex Abad-Santos is a senior correspondent who explains what society obsesses over, from Marvel and movies to fitness and skin care. He came to Vox in 2014. Prior to that, he worked at the Atlantic.

Earlier this summer, Marvel could do no wrong. In the span of a week, the company announced that it was turning Thor, one of its iconic heroes, into a woman and that it would be turning Captain America into a black man. These moves were signals that the company wanted to reflect the non-white and female readers who read its books and give non-white and female characters the spotlight usually enjoyed by straight white men.

This week, the company appears to have made a misstep. In an exclusive to Comic Book Resources, Marvel revealed one of the covers to Spider-Woman #1 — a solo series featuring one of the strongest, most loved women in the Avengers universe.  And, well, this is not what readers were expecting from a company that has made the effort to show that it's being thoughtful about its female readership and female characters:


Spider-Woman #1 (Marvel)

To be clear, that is not how Spider-Man poses or is drawn when he climbs buildings:

The cover was drawn by Milo Manara, a comic book artist who is known for his erotic takes. Manara's Spider-Woman cover is a variant — a special cover commissioned for the series — and resembles his work in a comic called Click! Another cover (the one which most people will see in stores when the comic drops in November), by regular series artist Greg Land, was also issued:


Spider-Woman #1 by Greg Land (Marvel)