For me so far:

Amazing Spider-Man: No.  There's some interesting ideas in here, but not enough to spare some of my limited budgets of comics money/reading time.

Guardians of the Galaxy:  Yes. Just interesting enough to give them a chance.    
The New Avengers: Yes. So far, they seem to be treating Squirrel Girl well.        
Spider-Gwen: Yes. So far, they've maintained the quality from the previous book.      
The Uncanny Avengers:  Maybe. It's mildly interesting, but I really don't like Deadpool.      
How about you?

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Captain Comics said:

Thanks, 'Tec.

As I've said before, I have no problem with an all-female Avengers, and I hope to God it attracts some female readers. Lay on, MacDuff, as they say. My only question was whether there was an in-story reason that made it plausible, and not obvious and painful!

Detective 445 said:

The "in story" reason is that they were folded into the new Marvel U from a Paradise Island type portion of Battleworld. The big picture reason is that the book is just part of Marvel's agenda to put out more female-friendly comics.

Sure thing Cap. I figured you were aware. Just trying to be complete.

As to other postings about Marvel being "female unfriendly" in the past, I'm not sure I buy it. I think it was just that they were unaware that female readers might not be interested in what they were doing for the most part. Most all Marvel teams were basically all male even when they included one or two token female characters. Those characters almost always got short shrift when it came to characterization or importance to the story. (Invisible Girl might be the most ironic handle ever.) They were generally one dimensional or defined by stereotypes. Was this an intentional strategy to be unfriendly to female readers? No, I think it was more just a function the ignorance of the writers.

I'm really encouraged by what I'm seeing in the current crop of Marvel books where female heroes are depicted as being powerhouses, leaders, central to the story, and generally on equal footing with the males. It's a really positive development in my eyes.

I don't think they were unaware female readers might not be interested so much as assuming their audience was all or mostly male and making the comics for them. Wanda throws her hex then falls down suggests ignorance. Starfire in a thong sleeping around suggests they didn't expect women to buy that title in the first place.

I think in the case of Sue Storm, Stan and Jack were unconsciously following the way female characters were used in the pulps, serials and comics of their younger days. Back then female characters were helpless or almost helpless and were protected/saved by the male hero(es). Although in my first Marvel hero comic, FF #5, Sue is disregarded by Dr Doom and winds up saving the day by blowing up his machine.

When the younger writers and artists came along some tried to empower the female characters and some used them as eye-candy and sex-objects. I think things have been improving a lot since all of my examples.

Unfortunately, the non-returnable* nature of most comics makes experimenting with new titles a recipe to lose money. Most comic stores can't afford to order titles that simply won't sell, so they go with what they know will sell. If comics aimed at women and little kids are in the stores it will only help if women and little kids go to the stores in significant numbers.

* There I go again

That means there needs to be stores near them, and they need to know they're there. It doesn't help when stores do things like put My Little Pony next to Grimm Fairy Tales.

Ron M. said:

That means there needs to be stores near them, and they need to know they're there. It doesn't help when stores do things like put My Little Pony next to Grimm Fairy Tales.

I find that odd.  Why would any shop do that?

My wife and I visited Halifax, Nova Scotia over the weekend.  There are five comic shops there and I dropped by all of them.  Halifax is two hours away from where I live but I've been to all of these shops many times.  Four have a dedicated section for all ages comics, and lots of other cool stuff, targeting younger readers.  The one that doesn't alphabetizes their books.  Even in that one, My Little Pony wouldn't end up next to Grimm Fairy Tales.

I've seen female employees in all of these shops.  I couldn't tell you specifically what they do to attract female customers and younger customers, but they all appear friendly and welcoming to everyone from what I have seen.  I've seen all ages in these shops - pre-teens and teens, 20, 30, 40, 50 and even 60 somethings in them.  Two shops in particular have lots of female customers, and one of them, Strange Adventures, has been doing an annual Ladies' Night for years.  They open the store to females only, have an all female staff that night to answer questions and make suggestions, they've brought in female creators for signings, and they really put a huge effort into promoting it.

Maybe these shops are the exception but I think successful shops anywhere are going to be doing some of those things.  Not doing so is just a recipe for disaster in my opinion.

I think it's just random that it's right by the kids comics and they don't pay any attention. The handful of comics for kids section is a small bookcase right next to the display of regular comics. It's one of a couple survivors from the pre-speculation days that somehow managed to stay in business when the others closed up all around them. Two years ago it kept me and my sister (who doesn't read comics) in line for over two hours before it finally let us pick our free comics. My sister was furious and didn't go back last year. The tables of free comics were in the back of the store, they didn't allow more than two people to look at them at a time, and people crowded the side of the store opposite the line making it very difficult to squeeze our way back out of the store. Plus a guy walked around with a megaphone saying almost time for the next drawing of some action figure right in my ear. Last year it was less crazy but if they lost my sister they probably lost more people.

That shop sounds terrible, and I have been in terrible shops myself.  How they survive is a mystery.  But I believe they have to be the exception, not the rule.

Unfortunately the better stores around here were the ones that closed down. The best one was run by a guy that made the mistake of opening four stores during the boom time and the speculation crash ruined him.  

Silver Surfer: Yes*

*Although it’s more #16 of the previous series than a new #1 AFAIAC.

(I also bought the 3rd issue of Hercules this week.)

Picked up Old Man Logan 1 today and really enjoyed it. IMO, this iteration is much  better than the Bendis Secret Wars mini that preceded it and much better than Mark Millar's original. This new series is written by Jeff Lemire, who I know from his excellent Bloodshot work. Art is by Andrea Sorrentino, who just seems perfect for this character as he had already shown with the Secret Wars mini.  Apparently this creative team has already worked together on Green Arrow but I haven't read that yet so I can't say how it stacks up.

Picked up Spider-Man #1. It was OK, but not so earth-shattering that I feel a need to go on following it.

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