It's A Bird! It's A Plane! It's...Glamazonia: The Uncanny Super-Tranny

By: Jase Peeples
4.1.2011

Move over Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman—Glamazonia is here!

The new graphic novel from Northwest Press, Glamazonia: The Uncanny Super-Tranny, is an unstoppable force of hilarity. But don’t let this super sister fool you, she’s not out for giggles and laughs—she’s kicking ass, taking names and being flat out fabulous!

In fact, she’s so fabulous that the graphic novel has been announced as a finalist for the 2010 Lambda Literary Award for Transgender Fiction.

Whether she’s busting bad guys, giving costume advice, or sharing tips on cruising, Glamazonia does it all with style, class and sass.

This collection of trans-tastic tales spotlights the humorous aspects of queer culture, superheroes, and the many places they overlap.

Glamazonia-Back-Cover Gay.com recently dished with Glamazonia creator/writer Justin Hall and got some dirty details on the transgender superheroine.

What inspired you to create Glamazonia?
I created the character… as a way to poke fun at both queer culture and the superhero genre.

I was very inspired by the underground, queer art and performance culture in San Francisco... There was a lot of gender-bending stuff going on by folks like Justin Bond, Jerome Caja, Peaches Christ (who did the Glamazonia introduction), and Heklina and the Trannyshack crew, and a lot of this tradition remains strong to this day.

There were also a few transgender characters in comics cropping up in Doom Patrol, Sandman, The Invisibles, and Promethea, but none of them were humorous or particularly interested in commenting on queer culture, so Glams had a slant from the beginning that hewed closer to the camp sensibilities of the San Francisco queer art scene.

Why create a transgender superhero?
As soon as I started doing longer stories with Glams, I realized that I couldn’t imagine her with a male alter-ego, and so she was a trans woman and not a drag queen or some other kind of gender queer. And the core of the superhero archetype, which involves transformation and empowerment, fits well with that part of the character’s identity.

The vantage point of a transgender superhero is also the perfect place to parody both superheroes and queers. Trans folk are often marginalized within LGBT communities, and women and queers are also often sidelined in superhero stories, so a trans superheroine demands attention in an unusual way.

Some in the trans community feel that the word “tranny” has become a negative word. What is your opinion on creating a comic that embraces the word?
The trans identity is the broadest and most diverse of any of the queer identities, as it encompasses women and men, as well as gays, straights, and bisexuals. It’s also a community that’s coming into its own politically and figuring out its preferred terminology even now. I have trans friends who dislike the word “tranny” and others that embrace it. I can only hope that people understand my intentions, which are ultimately about humor and celebration, and which are far more important than any specific word.

What is your hope for Glamazonia in the future?
Fame. Fortune. World domination. You know, the usual.

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