Parul Sehgal at the NYT:
Early in her career, Alison Bechdel, then a cult cartoonist — “at the pinnacle of my bitterness,” she would later say — was invited to contribute to a special gay pride issue of Seattle’s alternative newspaper The Stranger. She fired off a comic strip titled “Oppressed Minority Cartoonist.” She drew herself at her desk, flanked by a bottle of Scotch, mid-tirade. Why had her work been pigeonholed? And why had she complied so willingly, chronicling only lesbians, her “oppressed minority group”? In the last panel, her rant is interrupted by a phone call inviting her to contribute to that very gay pride issue. “I’d be honored,” she capitulates.
In the 20 years since, Bechdel has been rewarded with lavish, mainstream acclaim. But after two celebrated graphic memoirs, “Fun Home” (2006) and “Are You My Mother?” (2012); a hit Broadway musical adaptation of “Fun Home”; and one MacArthur “genius” grant, among a slew of other prizes, another crisis beckoned.