Writing: Richard Ashford
Pencils: Ken Lashley
Inks: Randy Elliott and Cam Smith
Colours: Pat Garrahy and Chris Matthys
Letters: Pat Brousseau
Editors: Suzanne Gaffney
Original publication date: December 1993
Your regular Upstarts are joined this week by Dr. Hailey “Stone Cold” Austin to talk about good and bad buts/butts in the totally radical Excalibur #72, “Oohhh… Siena!” In which the team moves to Muir Island and nothing will ever be the same again, including our eyeballs and eardrums after this barrage of bodacious badonkadonks and phoney phonetic accents. The one good infection is infectious laughter and this ep’s got plenty of that!
On totally 90s villains:
“I feel like The Upstarts could have been an interesting concept: the idea of a group of villains who symbolize class privilege and the callousness it creates. That could be really cool! But going up the team that lives in the mansion and has all the fanciest tech makes that a little difficult.” -Andrew
“My first impression is: butts. There were a lot of them. And some of them were pretty good!” -Hailey
On 90s excess:
“A hallmark of excessive 90s art is that bodies can change dramatically from one page or panel to the next. The generous reading of this is, we’re modifying the bodies for expressive reasons. Jack Kirby exaggerated bodies, why can’t we? But the effectiveness really depends.” -Anna
“This comic is a great example of how you can’t just exaggerate things for the sake of exaggeration, because it doesn’t work. It works for action scenes, but when women are just standing there… it looks wrong and cringey.” -Hailey
On erotic contexts:
“The ways the 90s venerated creator individuality is reminiscent of Underground Comix, where you were supposed to unleash your ID and spill yourself all over the page (and yes the sexual connotations are intentional).” -Anna
On the sales pitch:
“It’s a book that doesn’t know what it wants to be. It just wants people to buy it.” -Mav
On Dr. MacTaggert:
“Moira is archetype of what was referred to within the Marvel bullpen as the ‘Claremontian woman,’ which basically means—any woman who won’t hesitate to machine gun you to death at the drop of a hat.” -Andrew
Want more Hailey Austin?
Find her on Twitter (@DrHaileyJAustin), where she links to ongoing professional work and comics pubs!
And! Check out her book chapter “If She Be Worthy: Performance of Female Masculinity and Toxic Geek Masculinity in Jason Aaron’s Thor: The Goddess of Thunder,” in the book Superheroes and Masculinity: Unmasking the Gender Performance of Heroism!