As I mentioned previously, for one of my classes I am constructing a network of superheroes with an eye towards gender diversity in this medium.
Using data from the Grand Comics Database, I filtered down their 1.5 million unique stories to look specifically at English language comic books tagged as being in the “superhero” genre.
Each comic book record includes a list of the characters appearing in that comic book, but, unfortunately, the database doesn’t include information on characters’ identified gender. So I went through and added this information to the data set.
More generally, I also wanted to identify the unique identity of each person under a given mantel – a non-trivial task.
In the end, I ended up with the below super-hero social network. Female characters are indicated by green and make up 28% of the network. Yellow nodes indicate male characters.
Nodes are sized by degree (number of connection to other characters), and you can see from the above that male characters have, on average, a higher degree than female characters.
Since the above visualization is not very helpful, I’ve included a visualization of the top 50 nodes (by degree), below. The top 5 men and top 5 women are labeled – I had to split it up because Wonder Woman was the only woman in the top 10. If you’re wondering, the yellow node off to the top left is one Commissioner James Gordon.
Stay tuned for future analysis!