« Home | Some online comic strips are turning up based on M... » | Geoff Johns wrote his last insult to DC fans on hi... » | Non-fiction comics in France » | Conventions allowing actors accused of serious off... » | Richie Rich comics turning up on the speculator ma... » | Today's collectors market may not be as workable a... » | Artists taking stands against use of AI » | Fishy report about what a university's doing with ... » | Sin City's movie adaptation may be the one comics ... » | New "adult" cartoon called Hazbin Hotel contains g... » 

Thursday, February 01, 2024 

A crime-thriller starring teen girls that unfortunately builds on PC elements

Girl Talk HQ, a feminist site, interviewed Olivia Cuartero Briggs, the author of a GN titled Jill and the Killers, which appears to be some kind of feminist-laced tale starring teen girls. They begin:
In a 2022 poll looking at the popularity of true crime podcasts, television, and streaming series, a whopping half of American audiences declare they love the genre, with 13% saying it is their favorite genre. Interestingly, the majority of true crime consumers are women, as 58% of women report they enjoy the genre. There are experts who claim that there is a correlation with these statistics, given that women are more likely to be the victim of those crimes.

When it comes to scripted storylines, perhaps there is a sense of taking back agency and power when we see female characters leading the charge to solve crimes. With the release of a new comic series from Oni Press, the multiple Eisner and Harvey Award-winning publisher of graphic fiction for all ages, readers get to witness not just females, but teen girls at the center of a true crime thriller, written and illustrated by an all-female team. A taking back the narrative, if you will, where we can envision a world seeing women as the victors, not just victims.

In ‘Jill And The Killers’, a double debut from writer Olivia Cuartero-Briggs (‘Mary Shelly Monster Hunter’) and artist Roberta Ingranata (‘Witchblade, Doctor Who’) teenager Jill Estrada finds herself caught in a true-crime subscription mystery box that’s anything but a fantasy.

Returning to school after the unsolved disappearance of her mother, teenager Jill Estrada can’t wait for things to return to normal . . . even as her friends become compulsively obsessed with Box Killers, a true-crime subscription game where each month’s “unsolved case” is custom-tailored to the life of its player. There’s only one catch: Jill’s game seems to be all too real . . . and when her clues begin to connect to a series of disappearances in her town, Jill and her friends must uncover the truth behind these mysterious crimes before one of their own becomes the next victim.

Editor Megan Brown says fans of true crime and murder mysteries will love this exciting new series, especially given the way it subverts what you typically think of when it comes to true crime.
I'm sorry, but murder mysteries have become a most insufferable theme for me due to how overabundant they've become, and this is turning out to be yet another grisly story marketed to teens/girls instead of something more optimistic. It's tiresome already how the themes in focus here are considered a big deal, and one must wonder how it got to the point where women are desensitized to a grisly genre, even if the polls are exaggerated. Now, here's some parts of the interview:
Where did the idea for ‘Jill and the Killers’ come from, and when did you begin working on it?

Jill and the Killers was born out of two things: my life-long fascination with horror and true crime, and my love of subscription boxes. I know, goofy, but you asked! About four years ago now, I found out about Hunt a Killer and other murder mystery subscription services, and I thought it was such a brilliant idea. And then, of course, I couldn’t help but wonder what would happen if you thought you were playing a game, but found out the clues you had been sent belonged to an actual homicide. That was the nexus of the idea, and what I pitched to Oni Press back in the best year ever – 2020! – and they bit!
So somebody here adds herself to the list of countless authors obsessed to no end with the horror genre. I'm not impressed, and don't think it's such a "brilliant" idea at all, so much as it is a way overused theme and genre in this modern era.
Can you tell us more about the themes of the importance of friendship and the effects of trauma that are present in the story?

Grief is a huge theme in Jill and the Killers, and how we process it, along with denial. And this really comes directly from me. Call it generational, societal, whatever, but I am really bad at just feeling my feels. Since I can remember, when an uncomfortable sensation comes up, I bury it in positivity. Everything’s fine! Really! Who cares? That’s life! In some ways this can be a really powerful tool, because I think it can deflect a lot of potential trauma.

But in other ways, it can be detrimental – like when the trauma has already occurred, and I’m denying myself the experience and reality of working through it in a healthy way. Now, I’m not nearly egotistical enough to think I’m the only person that does this, and what’s more, I know loads. I do, however, think that denial of emotion and powering through is something we more commonly look for in men, so it sometimes goes unrecognized in women, which was part of why it was important for me to give this attribute to Jill.

And as far as the friendship element goes, I had a shitty group of girlfriends growing up. Not to say that they were shitty as people – they weren’t at all – but our dynamic was really awful. There was a pecking order, we were mean to each other, and as a result, we’re not in touch anymore. For me, Jill and her friends are who I wish I had in high school, and who I wish I had today. I have fantastic girlfriends now, but I missed out on having that group of girls around me who I grew up with and would stand by me no matter what. So, these kids are my fantasy.
Even so, it's disappointing she went the easy route, and put the cast in the middle of such a cliche, one that's likely not even related to the science-fantasy genre. What's so hard about thinking up an adventure setting, rather than something this easy?
The genres of horror, sci-fi and even crime have traditionally been fairly male-dominated. But that is slowly starting to change, with work like yours breaking down the barriers. Why is it important for writing to be more gender expansive when it comes to stories and characters?

It’s important because every type of representation is important. Media is powerful, and one of the reasons why is that it has the ability to make people familiar with people, places, concepts, they might not get to experience in the small circumference of their everyday lives. When things seem strange they can be scary, and fear breeds hate. Media – and the vast consumption of it we see now- has the ability to expose, and by exposing, normalize. You might not see a lot of Hispanic-American girls in your day-to-day life, but maybe Jill and the Killers will normalize that experience for you.

Maybe you don’t know a lot of gay people, Black people, disabled people, etc., and maybe because you don’t know them, you have certain ideas about them, or they might seem scary. But with enough time, and enough dynamic, real, relatable exposure to and representations of them, you might say, “Hey, they seem a lot like me.” And that is what we, as members of the entertainment community at large – should be striving for. It’s all about understanding, and once we have that, we can have true compassion.
And maybe a certain somebody doesn't know any Estonians, Bulgarians, Cameroonians, Uruguayans or Thai. Look at that, she's parroting the narrative constantly employed by the left, only caring about skin color and LGBT ideology, and not enough about entertainment value. If this is what's she's emphasizing, how can we be certain there'll be much story merit, no matter what the editors want everybody to buy? How to we know this won't end up being...woke? Consider that "every type of representation" doesn't seem to distinguish between race/nationality and ideology. And whether there's good and bad ideologies, and if the story should be pointing that out.

That's why this kind of stuff is bound to fall flat, and besides, it doesn't sound like this'll put any emphasis on comedy as a theme, which has got to be another serious mistake in modern marketing - nobody wants to inspire today's teens by giving them something happy to laugh about. Nor is there any serious spotlight on romance, if at all. And that's a terrible shame. Interesting that the artist once worked on Witchblade though. I seem to recall that 2 years after the original series from Top Cow/Image was cancelled in 2015, there came along another, most likely feminist reboot with a new protagonist, and it last little more than a year and a half before being cancelled. I'm sure it was nothing to write home about. And for all we know, this all-too-easy premise of a GN from Oni won't be either.

Labels: , , , , , ,

The appeal of violent crime fiction among women is pretty counterintuitive in some regards, given some of the subjects the stories cover should offend them but others think it's feminist or something.

Post a Comment

About me

  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
  • I was born in Pennsylvania in 1974, and moved to Israel in 1983. I also enjoyed reading a lot of comics when I was young, the first being Fantastic Four. I maintain a strong belief in the public's right to knowledge and accuracy in facts. I like to think of myself as a conservative-style version of Clark Kent. I don't expect to be perfect at the job, but I do my best.
My profile



  • avigreen2002@yahoo.com
  • Fansites I Created

  • Hawkfan
  • The Greatest Thing on Earth!
  • The Outer Observatory
  • Earth's Mightiest Heroines
  • The Co-Stars Primer
  • Realtime Website Traffic

    Comic book websites (open menu)

    Comic book weblogs (open menu)

    Writers and Artists (open menu)

    Video commentators (open menu)

    Miscellanous links (open menu)

  • W3 Counter stats
  • Bio Link page
  • blog directory Bloggeries Blog Directory View My Stats Blog Directory & Search engine eXTReMe Tracker Locations of visitors to this page  
    Flag Counter

    This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

    make money online blogger templates

Older Posts Newer Posts

The Four Color Media Monitor is powered by Blogspot and Gecko & Fly.
No part of the content or the blog may be reproduced without prior written permission.
Join the Google Adsense program and learn how to make money online.