Bondage manga has never been an area of the graphic novel world that feminists have embraced. Comic book art hasn’t ever really been lauded as feminist, especially in a somewhat misguided attempt at criticism that was published a month ago of A-Force in an op-ed for the New York Times. As a reader of manga before I came into the world of comics, I am very aware of a certain brand of creations in which women are bound and have boobs that jut out of their chest like bullets, but Adam Warren has created something very different in his long time on-going comic EMPOWERED.

Warren’s graphic novel, which he writes and draws, stars a woman named Emp. She gets her powers from an overly revealing superhero suit, which is not the best thing for a young woman that is extremely self-conscious of her own body. However, the suit does not come without a few flaws. One of the largest flaws is that she is always getting captured. No trope is left unturned and trust me, it’s an extremely smart comic for people who love comics. When talking to Warren about this comic is was clear that he was extremely passionate about it, and also that he really loved the character of Emp. In addition to his insights about Empowered, Warren also provided us with insights into the industry as a whole.

Warren came right out of Art School with a steady job doing exactly what he loved, drawing, but he has noticed that today while it might be easier to get your work published, it is more difficult than ever to get paid. On the other hand it is also easier than ever to learn how to master your craft. Traditional art schooling is no longer necessary to learn the art of comic, but I have to say looking at Warren’s art it seems like it did not hinder it.

Learn more about ComicsVerse interviewer — Jamie Rice!

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