Over the last year there have been a number of positive steps forward in the push for more diversity on the shelves of comic book stores, perhaps most notably the extremely well-received introduction of the new Ms. Marvel.
Unfortunately, fans have witnessed the loss of two great female-led titles as well. Now it looks like a third might be following the same path to the chopping block, and fans aren’t about to let that happen without a fight.
Fans were upset to learn in October that the ongoing She-Hulk series would end with issue 12, and then a month later the rumored end of Elektra was also confirmed. Comics is a business, and the financial side plays heavily into the lifespan of a title, so a look at sales for October has fans worrying that the new solo title focused on well-known X-Men character Storm might be the next to go. After a call to arms in a Tumblr post and Comic Book Resources highlighting how the Storm series’ numbers fall between the two cancelled titles, readers are rallying to support the book with a growing social media campaign using the hashtag #SaveStorm.
The ongoing Storm series debuted in July, and issue 5 just released on Nov. 19. It seems unbelievable that it’s taken this long for the hero to get her own series considering Storm is perhaps the best-known and most-popular female hero in the X-Men franchise. The solo title was certainly a victory for fans wanting more of Storm, which is why her falling sales numbers are disappointing.
Fans are using the #SaveStrom hashtag to share what they love about the character, and why her comic is so important.
#SaveStorm because we need more bad-a__ female superheroes and she leads the pack!— Beyond the Queue (@BeyondQueue) November 26, 2014
I refuse to let another female-led book I love be cancelled, especially a BLACK female-led book. Not going to happen. NOPE. #SaveStorm— Destiny Edwards (@mochaloca85) November 26, 2014
Please #SaveStorm I've wait for a long time for her to have her own story arc.— Ladybuglizzie (@sagevalentine) November 26, 2014
Storm is important not just because she's an awesome leading lady but because she's an awesome black leading lady. #SaveStorm— kat ☠️☠️☠️ (@_kateylee) November 26, 2014
In an interview with VixenVarsity this week Storm writer Greg Pak was asked about the campaign and series sales numbers. Pak said they have a story planned out through issue 12 and no cancellation is looming. However he did admit that “every mid-range book in comics faces potential cancellation sooner or later” and that he was moved by the support of the campaign.
“It means a lot to know how much the character and book mean to so many different people. We’re doing our best to tell the best stories we can every month—I’m thrilled it’s reaching people and very grateful that people feel strongly enough to spread the word about the book to their friends and followers,” he said.
Pak also had some advice for anyone interested in helping the book stick around, such as pre-ordering copies from comic book stores, buying the trade paperback in February, and purchasing copies digitally. He said sales of digital copies and trade sales absolutely count and can make a difference.
Anyone interested in helping #SaveStorm who hasn’t read the comic yet can take advantage of some deals promoting the book. Readers can download issue 1 for free on ComiXology and directly from the Marvel Store over the holiday weekend using the code STORMCHASERS. Pak’s fellow comic book professionals are also stepping forward to #SaveStorm and spread the word.
Okay, this is a great book about a great character by a great team. Make it stay! #SaveStorm— GAIL SIMONE (@GailSimone) November 24, 2014
The offer lasts until Dec. 1. Of course if you enjoy the free issue, purchasing the rest will make the biggest difference for the series. Issue 6 of Storm will be released Dec. 17.
Art by Victor Ibanez