Mid-century French illustrator Jean-Claude Forest is now best remembered for his 1962 sci-fi creation, Barbarella. She’s a liberated woman – confident, independent and sexually generous – who wanders the stars, occasionally doing good.
Though Babs first appeared in V-Magazine, it was when the original serial was collected two years later that it became an international hit. Further Barbarella stories would follow over the next couple of decades, but it was the hit 1968 movie version – the film that made a star of Jane Fonda – that cemented Barbarella in the public consciousness. Today, even people who’ve never read the comics – or even seen the movie – know exactly who Barbarella is, and what she stands for.