Lonely Hearts Ep. 12: Secret Loves of Geek Girls

The Secret Loves of Geek Girls is a new collection of comics and essays about the lives and loves of women in geekly fields and fandoms, out from Bedside Press (hopenicholson.com). Siskoid interviews its editor Hope Nicholson, and then the boys pick their favorite comics from book to discuss. Plus, Romance Comics Theater and "The Captain's Mate"!

Listen to Episode 12 below (the usual filthy filthy language warnings apply), or subscribe to The Lonely Hearts Romance Comics Podcast on iTunes!

Relevant images and further credits at: Lonely Hearts Ep.12 Supplemental

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24 responses to “Lonely Hearts Ep. 12: Secret Loves of Geek Girls

  1. Insightful episode fellas. I had never considered the soap opera aspects of romance comics made their way into super hero titles, but I can see that. I’d say that had a lot to do with Stan Lee, who was writing (or loosely plotting at the least) Millie the Model, Patsy Walker and Amazing Spider-Man at the same time.

    This sounds like an interesting book. Brought about some nice conversation among the group…and then there were those Beast Wars references. I could never get into that show…they turned my Optimus Prime into a damn monkey! But I’m an old-school G1 guy.

    The Sutherlands did a nice job on the Romance Theater segment, but I think this story may be the most chavaunistic one yet. The bride didn’t know her husband’s occupation before marrying him? He never apologizes for being too rough on her, and she just rolls over and takes it, saying she’ll follow orders from now on? Definitely written by a man…one who probably drug his wife around by her hair.


    1. Wow Chris! I sincerely appreciate the positive comment about our “attempt” at acting in Romance Theatre! Thanks for not analyzing our performance too much! 🙂

      We had tons of fun with it and I have to applaud Ruth’s commitment since she had 80% of the dialogue. All I had to do was to be mean to her periodically … something that she usually doesn’t allow, so I tried to make the most of it while I could 😉


  2. QUESTION: do you guys follow any of the ‘romance’ webcomics out there? Like there are a ton that are barely disguised excuses for pornography but that have relationships and ongoing soap-operaish storylines. Case in point, pretty much everything from these guys: http://www.pixietrixcomix.com/

    Where there are barely any of this kind of story in print, it seems like there are hundreds of web comics that might cross the line into fully fledged romantic tales. Some of the examples you cite from Secret Loves are themselves from ongoing web comics, but I wasn’t sure if you guys all had webcomics you followed of a romantic bent.

    Thanks again for making this podcast, it is still one of the best things I put in my earholes!

  3. Okay okay, I admit I went off the rails in my Gwen rant. To be reminded about the Norman Osborne tryst made me internally weep. Sorry for the insanity.

    This was a very good episode which made me interested in seeking out the book to read so kudos.

    I can’t believe Edgar Allen Poe just got bashed!

    But the main thing I want to talk about is ‘shipping’, a term I have come to learn over the last year as my kids discuss who they ship and don’t ship in television shows. It is fun to hear them talk about who they think should be romantically involved and why. I’ll often chime in.

    My youngest and I watch DC Legends of Tomorrow and from the beginning she has shipped White Canary and Captain Cold, which I thought was a doomed ship. Well, in the last episode, he asks her if there is a chance they could be together once this time-adventure is over and she spurns him. My daughter was crestfallen. Then, (spoilers ahead), at the end, Cold sacrifices himself, staying behind to set of a bomb. As he is holding the kill switch, Canary runs up to him and plants a big kiss on him.

    Of course, the bomb goes off and he dies. So maybe that ship was doomed.

    It was amazing for me to see the gamut of emotions on my daughter’s face as she watched her ship get mentioned, get rejected, potentially happen – sealed with a kiss, and then end in a tragic death. The cranky, jaded old man got reminded of the power of romantic comics (on screen) and head canon.

  4. Hi All,

    Thanks for the invitation to Romance Theatre! It was tons of fun. I knew it would be embarrassing to hear, but both of us physically cringed when listening to it on the podcast! I’m glad we both have the ability to laugh at ourselves without hesitation!

    And thanks Siskoid for throwing in the occasional sound effect to cover our laughable attempts at “kissing” noises 🙂

    We really enjoyed the variety to the episode and the book you covered sounded very interesting. We’ll look into it.

    It ranks up there with our favorite episode which was the one about Gothic Romance Comics! Nice job!


    1. Well thanks for playing! I must admit this is one of my favorite episodes too. For a variety of reasons. None of them Transformers-based.

      Ok, maybe somewhat Transformers-based.

  5. Siskoid referring to writing comics as a “geek endeavor” was terrific.

    I get Hope’s point that non-fiction based love stories have differences from a traditional romance comics, but there is absolutely tons of overlap.

    I think Mike was hinting (correct me if I’m wrong) that autobiographical love stories which have more appeal today, could be an evolved version of yesterday’s romance comics. I think there is a strong case for that argument.

    I’ve reconsidered addressing the conversation about Squirtle.

    I look forward to “Besties and Beasties”

  6. This was a really interesting topic. You guys touched on comics related to LGBT romance, and it’s something I hope you’ll look at more in depth in the future. I think this is the sub genre where you’re most likely to find something analogous to the classic romance comics, since LGBTQ is a niche market where simply altering the gender dynamics can make what had become tired story clichés fresh again. Or at the very least more tolerable, because let’s be honest a cliché is still a cliché even if you drape it in a rainbow flag.

    That said, Hope is correct that most LGBTQIA are autobiographical in nature. And whenever you’re dealing with somebody’s real life story it’s generally not going to conform to the structure in the same way that many of the “classics” you tackle do. Still, if you ever go there I think you’ll find that LGBTQIAPK is a growing community with some fantastic creative output, romantic and otherwise.

  7. There was not enough Beast Wars in this episode. I feel cheated.

    Honestly, Beast Wars actually COULD be covered by this show, at least in part. There was the on-again/off-again romance between Silverbolt and Black Arachnia. But anybody whose favorite character was the ant and not Waspinator needs to have their head examined.

      1. Originally, yes. However, there have been several comics derived from said show. http://tfwiki.net/wiki/Beast_Wars_(comic)

        If you are willing to explore comics that are spinoffs from something that premiered as a television series, there is hope for my argument. However, as that is most likely not the case, I shall have to wait for the possibly-never-to-exist Beasties Podcast from Siskoid, et al.

  8. Great episode, the book sounds fascinating, and what a lovely voice Hope has.

    Mind, it doesn’t compare to that of the Sutherlands; methinks you’ve discovered a binary star – such mellifluous, educated tones, such easy sexiness. I bet this pair could act out Plop! and make it seem the most romantic thing ever!

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