“If our ‘base’ won’t reliably support female-led books (and that is a whole other conversation that I do not have time for) then we need new readers. Strictly from a sustainability standpoint, we need new readers — our readership is aging and dwindling and the goodwill we should be getting from the comic book commercials commonly called ‘tentpole movies’ we are, in large part, squandering. As an industry we put up high thresholds against new readers — whether it’s something as culturally repugnant as this whole ‘authentic fangirl’ crap or just our mind-boggling practices of shelving by publisher and numbering books into the 600s.
Think about the manga boom for a minute. The American notion had always been that women would not buy comics in significant numbers. There was even a commonly bandied about notion that ‘women are not visual.’ Who bought manga in the U.S.? Largely women and girls. At ten bucks a pop, no less. Women spent literally millions of dollars on what? On comics. Now, some people will argue that that had as much to do with the diversity of genre in manga as anything else — and that is a fair point. But I would argue that there is nothing inherently masculine about the science fiction aesthetic, nothing inherently masculine about power fantasies or aspirations to heroism.”
— Captain Marvel writer Kelly Sue DeConnick, from her much longer response on Reddit to the question, “Why do you think it’s been so difficult for Marvel to establish a female hero who isn’t 1.) based of a male counterpart, 2.) made to give gender balance to a team or 3.) made to be the love interest of a more popular male hero?”