The amount of world-building Carla Speed McNeil has done around her stories is way beyond stunning. I don't know who else to compare her to besides Tolkien. Which isn't fair! Because I like her WAY BETTER than Tolkien. There's a really progressive, transgressive, feminist thing happening in McNeil's work but it's also extremely fun & funny & engaging. It would be one thing if she has just created this world with all these insane ideas in it. But then on top of that she tells thrilling, hilarious, and deeply touching stories. Every little detail in her stories totally matters to the world in which it exists. If there's a tiny sign in the background of one of the panels, it means something. It may not be important to this story, and it may never even be revealed, but somewhere in the huge history of this world she's imagined, that sign is there for a reason. It's absolutely mind-blowing. Thank God she includes footnotes for just about every page, otherwise you'd have no idea that there are three other stories happening beneath the story on the page in front of you. She is the absolute best. It is fucking criminal that she doesn't have the recognition and respect that her male graphic novelist counterparts get. She fucking demolishes them with every line she draws.