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What's with the name?

Allow us to explain.

old gods do new jobs

Image’s Ody-C Gives Us Lots of Lovely Genderswapped Greek Myth

Ody-C is an upcoming series from Matt Fraction that retells the story of The Odyssey, in space, with many (if not all) of the genders reversed. Artist Christian Ward posted these character designs from the series on his Tumblr. Here we have our crafty Odysseus, mistress of tricks, with her laser gun and space sword and I hope I have caught your attention by now.

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  • Jon E. Christianson

    Matt Fraction posted yesterday an ask where someone asked if the genderswap was going to erase people who don’t belong to the gender binary.

    It hadn’t occurred to him and now, thanks to that Tumblr ask, he’s said he’ll make sure to include nonbinary individuals in the story. It can be found here:

    So excited for this title!

  • Philip Lopez

    There is literally NOTHING about this comic that I am not excited about.

  • Anonymous

    As the cool kids put it… Take My Money!

  • ClassyPancakes

    One Eye……Many Boobs……Cannot…..Look…..Away…..

  • Laura Truxillo

    Whups, Cyclops is a wee bit NSFW. (I discover to my chagrin.)

  • Laura Truxillo

    Gadang, one more reason to love that man.

  • Margaret

    Any word on a release date?

  • Anonymous

    I linked to that post in this post!

  • Jon E. Christianson

    DERP. My whoops!

  • Anonymous

    I swear this is Fraction’s way of getting back at BKV for the giant scrotum thing in Saga.

  • electrasteph

    I’ll actually have something to cosplay next year. Sweet!

  • Anonymous

    The only explicitly non-binary character I remember from The Odyssey is Tiresias. Am I forgetting anyone else?

  • It’s Ben Siegel

    If the focus here is on switching the genders of characters, why are they maintaining their gendered Greek names?

  • Anonymous

    When Circe transforms her crew will they be regular sows or sci-fi sows? PIGS IN SPACE!

  • Angela Korra’ti (Highland)

    Oh wow. I feel more digital comic buying coming on!

  • Nuuni Nuunani

    Why does Odysseus have a ray gun and why is Posiden a modern art sculpture? O.o *checks link*

    Oh right, the sci-fi adaption…Well, wait and see I suppose…Though after reading Wayward sons, ive sadly become quite wary about sci-fi interpretations of greek myth >_>

  • Tiger Park

    ODY-C is shooting for late summer/fall 2014. Most of the Image comics announced at the Expo don’t have solid release dates yet, but most are around that timeframe.

  • Tiger Park

    Probably because it’s a Fantasy and the true-to-life linguistic nitpicking about naming conventions is not as important as showing women/possible genderqueer individuals in positions of lauded power that is culturally familiar? People have a visceral response to the name “Odysseus” unlike “Odyssea”. And when you subvert that male name by having a woman own it, well, that’s why so many of us are so damn excited.

  • Anonymous

    It’d be more progressive if they did adjust the names accordingly with the genders so that they’d feel more like unique characters in their own rights rather than just a gimmick (superficially speaking so far, as Fraction hasn’t written anything yet).Women’s authority should be respected without the need to cloak them in male names & titles.

  • Tiger Park

    I’m in two minds about this – I do agree mostly (especially to reiterate your point that Fraction hasn’t really solidly written it out yet), but I also think it’s good to have women/genderqueer people take over these male names BECAUSE they’re so entrenched in our social psyche and narrative.

    It’s kinda like … when Miles Morales took over as Ultimate Spider-Man. He’s still Spider-Man, but there were lots of people arguing he should have been called something else if he should have arrived at all. Which is, plain to see, a part of Othering a new character because they’re black and shouldn’t be allowed to take a name that belongs to a white man, and a storied, legendary name that *everyone knows*. It makes an impact.

    So I sort of see it the same way here – assuming this is going to be a quality book (with Fraction’s run on creator-owned stuff and how thoughtful he is, I feel it will be), it’s won’t be a cloaking because that kind of implies the women under the names aren’t worthy of it or will be pale shades of the original Greek characters.

    I think it’ll be fascinating, and I, as a woman, get a certain thrill knowing women who claim male titles and subvert them to their own personal ends. It’s like a raised middle finger to male-dominated assumptions and viewpoints of what is a legendary hero, and forcing into a male-dominated sphere and blowing up its edges a little.

  • Anonymous

    Ideally I’d prefer that he just made up names that don’t have any gendered context in our society (for instance, if the lead was named something like Tmoxilpong) so that the sci-fi/futuristic worldbuilding would be richer & the story could stand by itself. We should be able to tell the that the sorcerror transmogifying her crewmates is a Circe analogue by context without needing him to be named Circe. (I don’t know if they’re definitely recycling the names or if they’re just used for planning convenience on the sketches.)

  • Tiger Park

    In that case I think that’s more of a genre personal preference? I find heavily sci-fi names like that rather alienating (ha!), and that sort of heavy experimentation much better suited to heavy sci-fi fans who are looking for that kind of thing, as opposed to another variant of sci-fi that is easier to relate to immediately and viscerally. Tmoxilpong is not Odysseus to a diverse lay reader who you want to encourage to read and be invited to the comics, and I don’t see the fundamental ‘badness’ of a lady war hero claiming the Odysseus name.

    For published comics to survive they need as many readers as possible (sci-fi heads or not), so I feel the ODY-C route and using the male names is to the creator’s benefit (and a wider diversity benefit if the tool is used wisely). it was discussed on twitter that the Image system basically allows creators to be their own corporations, and the creators have to front a portion of $$ to set up the books (which was a contributing factor why their creator roster was so established white straight male). The gimmick sells as it’s easy to get into, but it’s the content that will keep the numbers going. So i’m hopeful.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t think he needs to use the same names to draw readers in or orient them since the title & elevator pitch are clear. If he is using the same names I’ll expect a very faithful adaptation more in the vein of Romeo + Juliet than a loose adaptation like West Side Story.

  • Anonymous