27 Sep 2016
Even though The Phantom is a somewhat forgotten American comic hero with a wide range in popularity worldwide he’s actually created a huge fan base here in Sweden and is, next to Donald Duck, the longest running comic book. If it is his cool milk drinking ways that have beaten his way in to our Swedish hearts and souls, I don’t know, but it isn’t his sense of gender equality, that’s for sure.
Last year the first female artist ever (!?) was asked to create a cover for the Swedish edition of the comic book “The Phantom”. The cover went on to win the competition “greatest cover of a The Phantom comic book”, as voted by the Swedish readers.
This landmark cover (and I do mean landmark in the worst possible way) was illustrated by Elin Jonsson, from Burträsk, not far from our office here in the northern part of Sweden. Elin not only created a kick ass cover, she also seems to have brought the editors of The Phantom into the 21st century.
Since 1536, there has always been a male heir to the Phantom throne. Yes, he actually has a throne, the Skull Throne, located in the Skull Cave, which was carved out of a rock formation by the 1st Phantom.
The closest the world has come to a female Phantom was Julie Walker, the twin sister of the 17th Phantom, who while her brother was injured put on the Phantom costume for a while and defeated a band of pirates.
Now there are rumors that the 22nd Phantom will be the first female to take her place on the Phantom throne. The current Phantom has two children, Kit and Heloise, and many believe that Heloise will be the one who ultimately ends up being the heir. In the Swedish version of the comic, a story has already been published about the future struggle between Kit and Heloise of who will be the one to succeed the 21st Phantom.
The Phantom legend started back in 1536. It took 480 years to even consider a female heir to the throne. Way to go Elin for giving them a nudge in the right direction.
The only obstacle left to overcome for the editors of The Phantom is explaining why “The man who can’t die” have suddenly grown breasts. But I guess that will be an easy sell compared to convincing the people of the real world how The Phantom could have managed to only get sons for 480 years straight.