After what can only be described as a veritable sh*tstorm that erupted over Frank Cho’s Spider-Gwen cover — which he stated on his ComicArtFans.com page as, “my nod and a wink to the much-maligned Manara’s Spider-Woman cover” — we now ask ourselves; what ever happened to Frank Cho’s Spider-Gwen cover and was it really such a big deal?
So, what did happen to this infamous illustration and where did it end up? Well, like most things that are surrounded with controversy and the potential to make a quick buck, it found its way to the one place where you will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy… eBay.
(CLICK HERE for the eBay listing)
But, that’s not really so surprising is it? No, what is more surprising is the price tag — $6000.
The listing has since been ended by the seller from eBay because, “the item is no longer available”. Does this mean it sold elsewhere? Or did the owner (this listing was a consignment listing) decide not to part with it; even for that kind of cash?
More importantly, was Frank Cho’s Spider-Gwen cover really controversial enough to justify that amount of money? Well, according to Cho, he actually raised the price of his sketch cover commissions to $800+ because of several on eBay that he had found going for much more than he originally charged. Factor in the recent controversy that this image had — although let’s be real, this argument is so 2014 — also account for the popularity of Spider-Gwen, and to a potential collector even crazier than myself… well, maybe.
You see, in terms of original artwork, $6000 can get you quite a lovely and published piece. The problem with Cho’s Spider-Gwen cover is that it is only a blank variant (a practice which has become popular for collectors). Despite what some might have you believe, this is not a special published variant cover — in which case I could see the justifications behind the outrage, such as the Manara cover, which was intended for publication. It was something Cho did as a tongue-in-cheek homage to sell at his table at MegaCon and Big Wow Comic Fest. That’s it. However, because there was such an uproar by a handful of individuals on the Internet that eventually grew into an angry mob with torches and pitchforks, including Spider-Gwen co-creator Robbi Rodriguez, the infamy and value equally grew around this cover and…
That’s all well and good, but did Frank Cho’s Spider-Gwen cover really warrant the hatred and outrage it deserved and is Cho the sexist pig he has been made out to be? The short answer — no.
Whether you found the illustration to be in poor taste or not, the end result of all this venom being spit at Frank Cho and his work has led us to a drawing of an over-hyped character becoming controversial enough for someone to justify a $6000 price tag. While people are busy arguing about this illustration, Frank Cho and the owner of this book are laughing all the way to the bank.
Does the comic book industry need to stop with its over-sexualization of women and rethink the way they are portrayed? Yes, absolutely. Does Frank Cho need to apologize for his drawing — which, mind you, is a homage and not even his own original design — because it is offensive? No. Should I be upset that I just spent $6000 for this thing? A resounding YES!
Just kidding, I didn’t buy it (I wish).
You can read more about what Bill Sienkiewicz had to say about this controversy HERE.
Do you agree or disagree? Leave a comment and let us know what you think! Tweet Jacob @semperfilm