Musings in the Dark: Review: Bitch Planet


Review: Bitch Planet

I got hipped to this comic book via Jamie @Black Girl Nerds.  The last comic books I read were Daughters of the Dragon and The Many Adventures of Miranda Mercury, which was a couple of years ago.  I am more inclined to books, but the life I live now requires the reduction of weight.  Comics are light and easy to carry.  Anyway, I’ve begun a quest of sorts to find and read comic books featuring sistahs who aren’t superheroes.

Written by Kelly Sue DeConnick and Valentine De Leandro, Bitch Planet is a sci-fi comic that pays homage to the women’s prison exploitation films of the 70s (which I love).  In short, women who are non-compliant (and there are countless definitions of the word) in a futuristic society get sent to a prison planet where they are watched constantly and lorded over by men via an idealistic female hologram.  BP isn't a nice place, in case the title didn't make it clear.  

The very idea of men determining what makes women "non-compliant" and punishing them accordingly is horrifying simply because it is something that's happening right now; it's just not a sanctioned practice as it is in the comic.  Sandra Bland, anyone? (may she RIP)  But I digress.

I love the way each issue opens:

Side note: I already know that were I in this society, I’d be labeled “non-compliant” and shipped off to Bitch Planet faster than you can spit.

Kam Kogo, aka Bad Motherfucker
Bitch Planet stars Kamau “Kam” Kogo, a bad-ass fighting sistah who is tasked with putting together a team for Duemila aka Megaton, which is some kind of violent sport.  Kam doesn’t want to do it at first, but eventually agrees to form a team.  Penny Rolle, a sistah whose only conceivable crime is that she was “born BIG” (and everything else stems from that), is a plus-size brawler who gives absolutely no damns, no shits, and nary a single fuck who agrees to become a member of Kam’s squad.

Penny Rolle, aka Bad Motherfucker
There’s some insidious shit going on, but I’m not going to ruin the story for you.  What you really need to know is that it’s a great story so far, and to my knowledge, only four issues have been published.  My understanding of the creators’ vision is that every third issue will focus on a specific character.  In that regard, issue #3 gives us Penny’s backstory.  #6 will focus on Meiko, another Bitch Planet soror who will also be on Kam's squad.

I eagerly anticipate issues #5 and #6, due out in August of this year. As the story continues, I will highlight sistahs of significance and reference other WoC who play a part.

Bitch Planet is highly enjoyable and a recommended read for those of you looking for something different.  Check it out if you get an opportunity.

Some useful links:

Image Comics: Bitch Planet
Bitch Planet Tumblr

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