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I love webcomics! One of the things I love about them is how much easier it is to get content from a wide diversity of artists than with corporate-created comic books (or even newspaper strips). And sure, there are a fair amount of webcomics by cis male artists that I enjoy, but I’m also able to find awesome, funny, adorable content by women and trans* artists as well.

Get your RSS feeds ready (and bookmark this page, because I know you’re not gonna have time to read all of these at once). And be ready to share your best recommendations in the comments! Here are some of my favorites:

Better-known:

1. Girls With Slingshots

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Danielle Corsetto is responsible for this alternately charming, goofy, and rowdy ensemble-cast comic that centers on Hazel and Jamie, best friends since high school:

Hazel and Jamie

Hazel and Jamie

BEST FRIEND SUSHI TIME.

BEST FRIEND SUSHI TIME.

Jamie and Hazel are living the post-college life in their hometown, with lots of friends, underemployment, drinking, sex, relationships, bonding…and suspiciously frequent excuses to wear adorable costumes.

See also: Romance Detective

See also: Romance Detective

Also featuring: kinky people! roller derby! a Deaf character! a drag queen! an interracial relationship! ethical non-monogamy! and such sexual orientations as: straight, gay, lesbian, ace, and hard-to-define. Also, there’s a talking cactus and a ghost cat.

She got more aware of feminism and related things over time, so stick with it. GWS updates every weekday. Read it here.

2. Hark! A Vagrant

Dracula!Dracula!

Kate Beaton creates this literary, historical, and generally awesome comic. It doesn’t update much anymore, but the archives are gloriously full of nerdy and feminist humor, including the straw feminists and the Strong Female Characters. 

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..and did I mention the literary humor? Be still my heart. Read it here. 

3. Hyperbole and a Half

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Okay, if you are a person on the internet (which you are! Congrats!), you’ve definitely heard of this one, or at least heard it quoted. Allie Brosh tells us stories from her life with frequent Microsoft Paint-esque illustrations.

This one. You know this one.

This one. You know this one.

Mostly they’re just funny stories, but she did a two-parter on depression that was extremely moving. It updates irregularly but is consistently great. Read it here.

Should be better known:

4. Nimona

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You guys. Nimona is seriously the best thing on the internet*. Noelle Stevenson has won tons of awards for this sweet yet badass little gem. Our main character, Nimona, is a morally-challenged destruction-happy shape shifter who builds a caring relationship as “sidekick” to Ballister Blackheart, an honorable villian.

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Together the two fight the Institution and its hero, Ambrosius Goldenloin, who shares a delightfully ship-happy nemesis relationship with Ballister.

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The art is gorgeous, the story is compelling, the half-medieval, half-high tech world is a fun juxtaposition, the characters are full of heart, and the comments section is a blast.

He loves science, she loves destroying things.

He loves science, she loves destroying things.

Oh, and keep an eye out for little cameos and storylines playing out in the crowd scenes.  Nimona updates on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and will be wrapping up in the next half year. Read it here.

5. Strong Female Protagonist

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Ah, a good old-fashioned superhero comic! If by good you mean great, and by old-fashioned you mean the superhero realizes that beating up “supervillians” will never really save the world, and goes to college to learn about social justice instead. Molly Ostertag does the art for the comic, while Brennan Lee Mulligan writes it.

"What are you going to do, Mega Girl? Throw poverty into the sea? Smash all of us into a better tomorrow?"

“What are you going to do, Mega Girl? Throw poverty into the sea? Smash all of us into a better tomorrow?”

I guess that’s not really a question Superman gets asked very often, huh?

Although we do see the titular “strong female protagonist” Alison Green at her studies, volunteering at the fire station, and spending time with friends, we get a lot of action in the comic as well, both in flashbacks to her time as Mega Girl, and in the present day.

Oh, shit. She is not happy.

Oh, shit. She is not happy.

SFP is a highly entertaining webcomic with a lot of rich, interesting questions to explore. It updates twice a week. Read it here.

6. Note the Note

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The artist behind Note the Note, Wiley Reading, has written a couple excellent pieces here on DDP. Note the Note is new this year, with daily sketches detailing the life of a “trans, depressed, curmudgeonly, secretly sensitive bunny enthusiast.”

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Even if I didn’t know how awesome Wiley is from personal experience, I would STILL recommend this webcomic to you on the strength of its first three weeks. It’s gonna be a great year. Read it here!

7. Darwin Carmichael is Going to Hell

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Darwin Carmichael is going to hell takes place in a world with mystical creatures and karmic readouts. Unfortunately, Darwin has a huge karmic debt. He lives with a manticore tween (read: 2000 years old) named Skittles, an artist with a Greek muse girlfriend, and three stoner angels who hang out on his couch. It was created by Sophie Goldstein and Jenn Jordan, and wrapped up fairly recently, so you can read the complete story without ever waiting for updates.

Angels don't know shit about art.

Angels don’t know shit about art.

Unfortunately, they do use “the R word” to refer to mental disabilities.

Read it here.

8. Ignition Zero

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Robbie Finch has just moved to Glory, MD to attend art school and meet his long-time internet friend, Orson, in person for the first time–only to find that Orson’s fantastical stories are based on real magical creatures with whom he interacts. Noel Arthur Heimpel creates this beautifully watercolored webcomic as a part of a larger universe of interwoven stories–though, so far, you don’t have to have read anything else in order to understand it.

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The story features ace and genderqueer characters, though the plot is much more focused on their magical adventures than their sexual orientations and gender identities. You can hear Noel talk about how awesome the comic is himself in the first couple minutes of this video:

.

9. Johnny Wander

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Johnny Wander is an autobio comic by Yuko Ota and Ananth Panagariya. Until about a year ago it was basically about their cats, their housemates, and any funny experiences or interactions they had recently, occasionally interspersed with fictional miniseries.

For the past year or so, however, it’s been a cute little story called Lucky Penny. You can read that starting here.

(not from Lucky Penny)

(not from Lucky Penny)

I don’t really understand their posting schedule, but it seems like they post 5-9 times per month. Read it here.

10. Wasted Talent

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Angela Melick is the artist behind this goofy autobio comic featuring engineering, swordfighting, mountainbiking, and ridiculous conversations with her significant other. Beware: it’s Canadian.

Screen shot 2014-01-24 at 6.45.08 AMWasted Talent updates on Tuesdays. Read it here.

11. My So-Called Secret Identity

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This webcomic follows the life of a young woman named Cat who gets frustrated with the terrorism and superhero pageantry in her home city, and decides to take action. It’s created by Suze Shore, Sarah Zaidan, and Will Brooker.

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Cat’s main asset in her involvement in the mysteries, puzzles, and adventures into which she throws herself is her intelligence and ability to connect facts and events to achieve a greater understanding than the other characters.

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Read it here.

Honorable Mentions:

These are webcomics I don’t personally read, but that I’ve heard of.

12. Bikeyface

13. Kate or Die!

14. Everyday Pants (Year One)

15. Junior Scientist Power Hour

16. Prince of Cats

17. Cat and Girl

18. Liz Prince Power!

19. Aurora

20. Ley Lines

21. Cat vs. Human

Now it’s your turn: which webcomics with female or transgender creators are your favorites? Why?

________________________

*DDP is obviously a close second.