Much like comics themselves, erotic art is often dismissed in the mainstream as low-brow and trashy. Well, it's time to throw your taboos out the windows, because like any genre, the art of making things sexy has some pretty sublime and beautiful moments -- just check out the gorgeous and highly pornographic "Lost Girls" by "Watchmen" creator Alan Moore if you don't believe me. And he's not alone -- some of the biggest and most-respected artists and creators in comics have tried their hand at pin-ups or straight-up pornography over the years. Chris Sims of the Invincible Super-Blog even made a list. And occasionally Perry White, which is just weird. SMALL FAVORS: Colleen Coover is currently enjoying well-deserved success as one of the most popular artists for Marvel's kid-friendly titles, which -- considering that her breakout hit "Small Favors" was a "girly porno comic" about a nymphomaniac and the size-changing embodiment of her own conscience that was equal parts dirty jokes, sweet romance and hardcore girl-on-girl action -- is a pretty neat trick.
Reader discretion is advised. While obviously there have been comic books about sex in the United States since the beginning of the 20th Century, these comics were almost always simply Tijuana Bibles, childish attempts at drawing popular celebrities and comic characters in sexual situations to appeal to the lowest common denominator. When it comes to actual good comic books involving sex, the American comic book market has lagged well behind Europe and Japan, where comic books about sex are quite common. However, as the years have gone by, there have been a number of good pieces of comic book erotica released from American comic book companies and that number has been growing steadily in recent years as the taboo element of these types of stories has begun to fade although, again, not to the point where any of these comics would be safe to read at work.
I want to tell you about something dear to my heart: smut. Because the world of comics has been historically male-centric, even the most mainstream female characters are often sexualized through the lens of the male gaze. We all know the typical comic audience reads stories about chicks saving the world primarily to stare at their big cartoon tits. This article, however, is going to be about how cartoon tits — when drawn in for the right reasons — are important to a medium of feminist comics that value women as so much more than just eye candy on the side. Is your interest piqued?
There are a lot of comics with sex in them, out there. There are plenty of bad ones. And there are a lot of really well-drawn, clear-eyed comics about bad sex, too.