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Creator / Molly Ostertag

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Molly Knox Ostertag (born October 28, 1991) is an American comic book artist, children's book author, and cartoon writer. Among the comics and TV series she's worked on include Strong Female Protagonist, Star vs. the Forces of Evil, and The Owl House.

Molly's own works include the graphic novel trilogy The Witch Boy and The Girl from the Sea. She also has an Archive of Our Own account here.

Molly is married to ND Stevenson, the author of NIMONA and showrunner of She-Ra and the Princesses of Power.

Works include:




Tropes present in her works:

  • Author Appeal:
    • Cat Folk, such as Feral in Strong Female Protagonist and Celia in Alleycat. Of note is that Molly owns two cats, Fig and Toast, and shares her birthday with Catra.
    • Her settings tend to have Grey-and-Gray Morality or White-and-Grey Morality, with mostly sympathetic characters with understandable reasons for clashing, at worst being Tragic Monsters or Knight Templars.
    • Being gay herself, most of Mollyís works contain queer characters and relationships, and some are constructed as metaphors for coming out as gay, such as in The Witch Boy or How The Best Hunter In The Village Met Her Death.
    • A recurring device in her comics is the use of bold color panels to convey emotion, filling the entire panel behind a character to portray their feelings. This can be seen in SFP's pages like here.
    • Molly is an enormous fan of hobbits and any chance there is to ship gay hobbits, to the point that her fanworks about them have gotten her appearances in multiple Tolkien podcasts and web series simply to talk all about gay hobbits.
    • Magical shapeshifters appear in The Witch Boy, The Girl From The Sea, and How The Best Hunter, and Molly has described it as the power she would choose if she could pick a magical talent.
    • Will They or Won't They? is frequently averted in her works, with couples getting romantically involved early in the plot and staying together for most of the story. Molly has spoken about how love stories have lots of interesting potential in portraying couples in fulfilling relationships, in defiance of the usual cliche that getting together makes the characters boring.
    • Monstrous creatures are often used in her works to represent aspects of oneself that one fears or seeks to repress. These creatures are typically sympathetic but regardless often still dangerous.
  • Art Evolution: The progression of her art can be seen most clearly in Strong Female Protagonist. In the earlier chapters, the art is grayscale, the lines are thinner, and the characters are drawn with more angles and hard corners. As the series moves on, color enters the setting, especially when conveying emotion, the lines get thicker, closeups of faces become more common, and characters become rounder and softer in design.
  • Comic-Book Fantasy Casting: Without her glasses Molly resembles Catra with short hair. She's joked about this on occasion, though she's said that personality-wise she's closer to Adora.
  • Creator Couple: With ND Stevenson. They've sometimes given each other creative input, such as Molly coming up with She-Ra's big twist of the planet Etheria being a weapon.
    Molly: "Itís truly amazing to be with someone so brilliant and creative. I feel like Iím always scrambling to keep up with [Nate]ís giant brain (in a good way; I hope the feeling is mutual) and we bounce ideas off each other constantly. Thereís some of me in She-Ra, and some of [ND] in the Witch Boy series, but being in constant conversation means that our voices have been able to diverge and grow and be strengthened by one another. [Nate] is incredible with characters and humor; Iím good at world building and story structure; and weíve both learned a lot from each other in the last five years. I feel lucky every day."