Okay, this lady makes me look absolutely lazy next to her. Same principle as my Dressed to Kill post, only with an entire guide for how to draw superheroes. Nearly 20 pages of sociological role-reversal.
“I considered switching the guys into stereotypically masculine poses instead of stereotypically feminine ones, but decided that the point was that those poses are no more natural to us than they are to you, guys. We have to be carefully taught. And they’re just as ridiculous on us.”
Yes! I saw this like a year ago and I couldn’t find it again. So good.
I just got a call from a number I didn’t recognize, from an area code I didn’t recognize. When I picked up, I heard a computer automated (not pre-recorded) voice say, “Hello. Because you are a preferred Air Transat customer, you will receive a special gift. Please press 1.”
So I hung up.
My weirdest phone call(s) ever happened on my college apartment’s land line, which I was required to have so the school could call me, but I couldn’t call anyone off campus without big ol’ fees. I never received any sketchy/non-campus calls on it except this one. It was pre-recorded, I received it at least a half-dozen times, and it always went like this:
ME: OH GOD
PHONE: Hello, this is your Captain speaking! YOU’VE WON A FREE TRIP TO-
Whenever I complain about how females are portrayed in mainstream superhero comics, inevitably half a dozen people pop up to tell me this:
“Men are idealized in comics, too.”
Yes. Yes they are. I am aware of this. While I think the idealism is harmful, that isn’t actually what I have a problem with. (Well, not the main thing.) Because while the men are impossibly muscular and the women are impossibly skinny/boobular, the men aren’t being sexualized out the wazoo.
It’s not the characters’ bodies themselves that are the biggest problem, but how they are dressed and posed. Tits out, ass out, lips pouty, legs spread, hips cocked, eyelids at half mast. Outfits that make Wonder Woman’s star spangled panties look fit for a Mormon picnic. Short skirts, cutouts, stilettos, fishnets, thigh-highs. I’m not describing Playboy here.
You don’t see male heroes wearing these costumes or posing like this. Outside of statistical outliers like Namor, their costumes tend to have full coverage, and when they pose, it’s to inspire fear, not boners.
To prove my point, I spent yesterday morning creating this:
Looks pretty ridiculous. You would never see this as a serious illustration. Comic fans would be in an uproar. Way too much man-ass. And you know he’s not going to be graceful on those heels. And why is he looking back with a come-hither look?
You might be thinking that I drew him extra sexy, just to prove my point. Well, perhaps you’d like to see the source image:
Yeah, I literally drew Man Canary right on top of her. (*snicker*) I drew Black Canary’s skeletal position, then added the idealized male superhero physique over top. See, it really isn’t his muscles that are freaking you out. It’s the fishnets doing their best to contain those man cheeks.
I feel uncomfortable looking at this. And also, perplexed. How is that costume staying on? I know most comic artists don’t have much experience with real-world fashion, but let me tell you, double sided tape does not work all that well in combat situations.
I get that some of these characters are “using their sexuality to blind men so they can attack them,” and I bet that could be an effective attack. But there are so many chicks doing this that even the dumbest, most weak-willed superhero/villain is going to catch on eventually.
And lest you think DC is all alone in this, I present you with this little gem:
I actually had a lot of fun with this one. Most of the characters are actually pretty covered up. But between Black Cat’s absurd front zipper and her pose, yeah, it’s ridiculous.
There were so many more images I could have parodied, but I got tired of spending so much time rendering man ass.
Dudes, I want you to imagine a world where most of the portrayals of your gender in comics look like the above. Are you going to think “Well, I really like the stories so I’ll just suck it up and read this anyway”? Or are you going to be alienated from reading most comics? Be honest. Are you willing to stare at that much thrusting crotch just to find out if Spiderman is gonna win?
Lots of people in the comics business look at their demographic breakdown and think women don’t like superheroes. The creator of DC Women Kicking Ass made a very apt point when she said, “Let me put it this way, if you keep keeping putting food on a kid’s plate and they don’t eat you do you assume they don’t like to eat or they don’t like the food? Right.”
Women like comics. And not just flowery manga and autobio stuff. We like superheroes.
I don’t have a problem with cheesecake, and I don’t have a problem with lady-flesh. (I make a fair amount of money drawing lesbian porn.) But there’s a time and a place for it. Unless you are specifically going out of your way to create porn comics, stop putting porn in comics. Stop using Playboy for anatomy references! (I wish I was kidding about that.)
Now, there will still be many of you who are unconvinced, who think us ladies are making a big deal out of nothing, that this is trivial. Many of you will bring up examples of female superheroes who are covered up, non-sexualized, and non-idealized. I’m not denying that those characters exist, and that there are several. But there are still far too many female characters more concerned with showing- off ass, rather than kicking it.
Can we stop claiming every awesome politician/artist/cartoon character as though we went on a vision quest in the wilderness and they appeared and showed us the essence of our being?
Really? Really? You people are aware that wearing war bonnets and bindis are appropriation, so how did this term slip under the racedar?
Yes, thank you. It has always bothered me when people use that phrase.
I’ve used this meme/tag a few times and now I feel like an inconsiderate asshole. I really should have realized, but it blew right over my head. Adding that to the list of things not to do. I will now refer to pictures of animals doing stupid shit as “this is what my soul looks like” or something equally ridiculous.
I’ve seen people using “this is my patronus” or “this is what my daemon looks like” instead.
And EGADS along with “never read the comments”, must I add “never read the reblogs”? It’s like reading off a bingo card: don’t you have more important things to do this is pc I am an equal opportunity offensive asshole pc pc.
• Name: teukie or leeteuk (or other things, if you're my parents)
• Pronouns: they/them/theirs (or other things, if you're my parents)
• Age: 25
• Where you’re from (country, planet, building, your general sense of your place in reality metaphysically, whatever): newly minted seattlite by way of oberlin by way of new jersey…born in korea
• Something or someone you think is sexy: Lee Donghae! seriously. i'm totally over the moon right now about Super Junior's Donghae. it's kinda ridic how much i lurve him.
• Favorite webcomic: riot nrrd! also, i enjoy the uber dorkiness of hark a vagrant
• Favourite fictional character: eek! i have no idea. i'm really into CHEW right now...
• Song you’d like to listen to on repeat at the moment (youtube links plz): again…triiiiiicky. i certainly could listen to this song on repeat (& actually, i probably do) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SnMoDDbEccE (super junior "no other") also i'm gonna link to this one cuz the video is sodamnsexay. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=roughtzsCDI (shinee "ring ding dong")
• Favorite smell: tiger balm! (& salonpas, & other herbal muscle rubs/patches)
• Why you follow me/how you heard about me: a friend of mine told me about Riot Nrrd because I had been working on a comic about queer/trans, disabled & poc superheroes that's a lot of like the one in Riot Nrrd. so…yeah.
• Your favorite GIF (or funny/meme picture, if you don’t have any GIFs): i don't have any that are my own. & hotlinking is mean. i'll have to work on that.
• Is it ok if I publish this?: absotively posolutely.
I just started reading CHEW! I like it a lot so far.
Name: Rachel, for now.
Pronouns: Currently questioning this. She/her is okay, but They/them/theirs would be awesome.
Where you're from: Washington state. Born in Texas, but I feel like I'm a WA kid.
Something or someone you think is sexy: James Franco is on my mind lately, as I'm rewatching Freaks & Geeks. Babelyyy.
Favorite Webcomic: I love Riot Nrrd! :) Hark, A vagrant!, Khaos Komix, recently I am liking Curvy.
Favorite fictional character: Remus Lupin, Rupert Giles, Howard Moon. Bubbles from the Powerpuff Girls. Hard question! I have too many answers.
Song you’d like to listen to on repeat at the moment: You Take My Breath Away- The Knife http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W56_ek1Px6g
Favorite smell: fresh laundry, old books, pacific northwest forests.
Why you follow me/how you heard about me: A friend of mine recommended Riot Nrrd to me, and I loved it! And you just seem super rad in general.
Your favorite GIF (or funny/meme picture, if you don’t have any GIFs): http://i52.tinypic.com/fmooqa.gif
Is it ok if I publish this?: sure!
I luuurve Curvy. Also, I get happy every time I see your hair color on my dash? Yes.
Pronouns: she makes me happy, but I'll settle for him.
Where you’re from (country, planet, building, your general sense of your place in reality metaphysically, whatever): Bay Area
Something or someone you think is sexy: bony, angular men and full ripe women
Favorite webcomic: hard to choose, maybe dante carmichael is going to hell, or templar AZ, or xkcd for lulz
Favourite fictional character: also hard to choose, say ellie arroway from contact.
Song you’d like to listen to on repeat at the moment (youtube links plz): carolina chocolate drops - cornbread and butter beans http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xOxHyTP91c
Favorite smell: smell of the ocean
Why you follow me/how you heard about me: link from...the collective unconscious?
Your favorite GIF (or funny/meme picture, if you don’t have any GIFs): PDD all the way http://fyeahprivilegedenyingdude.tumblr.com/post/1726614815
I heard the creators of Darwin Carmichael speak at NEWW, and since then I’ve been like I FULLY INTEND TO SIT DOWN AND READ THIS COMIC but then every time I remember that it exists I’m all OOPS.
“… So Snow White slept and waited for her prince to come, but he never did…because a woman shouldn’t have to depend on a man. Snow White was brought back to life…by a lady doctor.”— Lisa Simpson (via kasiemba)
Where you're from: GA, CO, WA, AZ, WA (again) and I'm about to move on down the coast to Northern CA.
Something or someone you think is sexy: Tim Roth
Favorite Webcomic: Riot Nrrd. I think yours may actually be the only one I follow.
Favorite fictional character: Anya from Buffy ... or The Doctor ... or someone else depending on my mood.
Song you’d like to listen to on repeat at the moment:
Warbalers version of Teenage Dream: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7P848iX_ys and Janelle Monae - Tightrope: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pwnefUaKCbc and Sara Bareilles and Ingrid Michaelson - Wintersong: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UkOKCWDJ4iA
Favorite smell: The smell of my dogs' ears and the smell of my love's neck
Why you follow me/how you heard about me: I don't remember where I heard about you (someone's blog), but I follow you because I really like Riot Nrrd and your tumblr.
Your favorite GIF (or funny/meme picture, if you don’t have any GIFs): http://davidmeiersmith.com/db5/00436/davidmeiersmith.com/_uimages/MONTAGE20BUFFY.gif
Is it ok if I publish this?: sure :)
Name: diana (spanish pronunciation, not die-anna)
Where you’re from (country, planet, building, your general sense of your place in reality metaphysically, whatever): boston
Something or someone you think is sexy: everyone, all the time. but also, timothy olyphant. and snoop from the wire. and shakira. and john cho.
Favorite webcomic: chainsawsuit
Favourite fictional character: oh gosh. dan rydell from sports night? maybe? or ponyboy curtis, i have an outsiders tattoo.
Song you’d like to listen to on repeat at the moment (youtube links plz): you and i undercover - steel train http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxVdtDyR2tY
Favorite smell: besides all the normal stuff that smells great (stuff baking, etc.) i love freshly opened cans of tennis balls.
Why you follow me/how you heard about me: i can't remember! someone shared your comic with me, i started reading/loving it, and then i started following you on tumblr (and twitter as of about 15 seconds ago)
Your favorite GIF (or funny/meme picture, if you don’t have any GIFs): http://i56.tinypic.com/k4cmts.gif
Those are really good questions!
Pronouns: female ones
Where I'm from: the middle of nowhere, Canada, surrounded in awesome people.
Someone/something I think is sexy: well, I'm asexual... but kindness, humour, and Tegan Quin are quite sexy, I'd say.
Favourite webcomic: Hark! a vagrant
Favourite fictional character: Tough one... Willow Rosenberg, Jane Lane (from the show Daria), Amelie (from the movie Amelie), Lisa Simpson... I can't choose! haha
Song: Let Go, by Frou Frou (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x52w8txtiQs&fmt=34)
Favourite Smell: Wood smoke, like from a bon fire. And Muskol bug spray; LOVE that smell.
Why I follow you/how I heard about you: Well, I have no idea how I found your comic, I guess someone linked to it, I can't remember. And why do I follow you? Well, because you post interesting stuff and I value your opinions on those posts because you're awesome.
Gif: Sorry, I don't think I can put that in a question... and I have no link ;(
Yeah, I realized the “favorite gif” question wasn’t the best for the ask box after I posted it. I love your fav character list!
i don't normally fill these out but i like you!
• name: satah!
• pronouns: i've been thinking a lot about this lately? i seem to be comfortable with "she", usuallyish, but i've also wondered about switching to "they". but female pronouns are okay for now!
• age: nineteen, but my birthday is in just over three months~
• where you’re from (country, planet, building, your general sense of your place in reality metaphysically, whatever): i've lived in the same room in the same house in a decreasingly shifty neighbourhood by a lake in ontario.
• something or someone you think is sexy: beat-boxing. and rapping/really intense spoken word/slam poetry stuff. is that weird? beat-boxing. BEAT-BOXING IS SO HOT.
• favourite webcomic: ohgawduhm. currently subnormality, i think
• favourite fictional character: topher brink. i'm re-watching dollhouse right now. oh man.
• song you’d like to listen to on repeat at the moment (youtube links plz): HAVE THREE http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5pQl7kye_d8 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eo9pU1q8sy8 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0m4QE-KvuNU
• favourite smell:
• why you follow me/how you heard about me: haha, i came across your comic when your joss whedon puppy page was first making the tumblr rounds... & then you turned out to be just really cool and your comic is great so all was awesome!
• your favourite GIF (or funny/meme picture, if you don’t have any GIFs): oh gosh uhm. OKAY. my favourite RIGHT NOW is http://media.tumblr.com/tumblr_lcu263buUH1qzj2hl.gif
You skipped fav smell, but I think I asked you that one before.
Name: Eric (@Babseth on Twitter)
Where you’re from (country, planet, building, your general sense of your place in reality metaphysically, whatever): A small, blue-green planet in the unfashionable western spiral arm of the galaxy. Or slightly more specifically (or for those who aren't rabid Douglas Adams fans,) Canada.
Something or someone you think is sexy: A confident attitude, an interesting quirk of identity or personality, preferably corporeal, but I'm not too picky.
Favorite webcomic: That may have to be narrowed down by genre... it's like asking me my favourite book, I can't really do it.
Favourite fictional character: Do my own characters count? No? Let's go with Richard from Looking For Group, one of my favourite webcomics of which I can't chose just one :P
Song you’d like to listen to on repeat at the moment (youtube links plz): Possibly Billy Idol's Body Snatcher, since it's thematic to my work right now.... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-t90NCdh0ts
Favorite smell: hmmm... fresh baked bread. Of which I need to bake some soon.
Why you follow me/how you heard about me: probably found you on Twitter, because I seem to collect LGBT-type tweeps
Your favorite GIF (or funny/meme picture, if you don’t have any GIFs): I've been digging the Privilege Denying Dude meme lately. Usually I don't go in for memes all that much.
I also accept lists, if y’all think any of the “favorite” questions are too broad.
Follower survey! Woo!
Pronouns: He/him/his is fine
Age: 20 as of next Saturday, so...20.
Where you’re from (country, planet, building, your general sense of your place in reality metaphysically, whatever): Canadiaaaa
Something or someone you think is sexy: Hmm. Good-natured political discussions (the kind where even if you disagree, you still enjoy the argument)
Favorite webcomic: Would it come off as pandering if I said yours? Well, yours, Gunnerkrigg Court, and Awkward Zombie & Order of the Stick (despite the occasional -ism fail with the latter two)
Favourite fictional character: As of right now, Barbara Gordon/Oracle from DC comics. But this is one of those things that changes really, really often.
Song you’d like to listen to on repeat at the moment (youtube links plz): Dee Hoty in Follies. Always and forever. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqGqAi8NTYw
Favorite smell: What an interesting question! Fresh laundry, possibly.
Why you follow me/how you heard about me: I think someone mentioned Riot Nrrd on Twitter not long after you started it, and I liked it, so I kept reading.
Your favorite GIF (or funny/meme picture, if you don’t have any GIFs): http://i53.tinypic.com/2mwa5co.jpg
I am a sucker for pictures of owls. Thanks for pandering/answering!