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It's Beauty/Ugly Day!

THE INTERNET WANTS TO TAKE YOUR BOOBS AWAY!

Is that where we're all headed? Artists censoring themselves because of a few vocal whiners? Comics have always featured characters with impossible or near-impossible figures. Men in comics all have washboard stomachs and square jaws. I don't have a have washboard stomach and square jaw -- should I feel justified in calling for more heroes with spare tires, double chins and thinning hair? Should all women in comics be plain or homely because some real women find attractive comic book characters threatening or offensive?

The world's angriest review of Infinite Crisis!

Younger readers might not be aware of it, but the aftermath of Infinite Crisis was NOT modeled on the original Crisis series. Much of it, particularly the whole “One Year Later” bit, was blatantly stolen from an old Marvel limited series called Secret Wars. In fact, it’s SUCH a totally blatant rip-off I’m amazed no one has commented before on how fucked up it was of DC was to steal it. You don’t believe me? Then you’re an ass wipe. Read on, ass wipe.

BOX FIVE, a Philly classical/pop singer. Snow Hymn is particularly recommended.

Happy Beauty/Ugly Day!

Comments

( 104 comments — Leave a comment )
eleusis_walks
May. 5th, 2006 03:33 pm (UTC)
I don't think the first guy seems to grasp that there is a difference between the playful, cheesecake nature of the old Phantom Lady comics - she had big boobs, sure - and DOUBLE HH CUPS ON DISPLAY BABY. It's a matter of scale, a matter of tone, and a matter of decent artistry. Grar.
heykidzcomix
May. 5th, 2006 03:44 pm (UTC)
I've never read any of the old Phantom Lady stuff, but if James Robinson didn't make up her history and personality wholesale in Starman, I'd say she had a bit more than the rack 'n' bathing suit steering her. But what do I know?
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littledarkvoice
May. 5th, 2006 03:48 pm (UTC)
You know, as a girl who finds her own sex attractive, I'm not saying comics should get rid of pretty women altogether. It's not that I don't appreciate an impossible figure once in a while, but the SAME impossible figure, over and over? That's just boring. Women can, in fact, be gorgeous in different ways, and I'd love to see the whole spectrum represented, from boyish cuteness to classic beauty.

Also, until every single male character looks like a model, it's probably okay to have a few plain and homely superheroines running around. Sure, Wolverine has impossible muscles, but he's pretty gross looking.

Sorry. It's a bit of a pet peeve when fanboys say I'm not allowed to judge this sort of thing because I can't appreciate female beauty. I mean, hello dumbasses, lesbian.
crocolyle
May. 5th, 2006 04:17 pm (UTC)
Also, until every single male character looks like a model, it's probably okay to have a few plain and homely superheroines running around. Sure, Wolverine has impossible muscles, but he's pretty gross looking.

Exactly. The washboard stomachs seen on male superheroes are rarely the sleek linkes and solid curves you'll see in underwear ads and mens workout magazines. The exaggeraged, idealized physiques you usually see on male superheroes look like overpumped bodybuilders with popping veins and bumpy, rippled muscles.

There are artists who draw men with sexually idealized physiques as often as they do for women. The ones I can think of off the top of my head, tho are gay (Phil Jiminez, Steve Sadowski) except for Rick Mays (check out his Arsenal mini-series), which says a lot to me about the culture of "mainstream" comics.
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magnumt
May. 5th, 2006 04:29 pm (UTC)
That guy reviewing Infinite Crisis sure sounds hella angry... although he does a few valid points. For instance, the violence sure is horrific - and I'd rather complain about that any day over, say, the fact that ladies (Phantom Lady and Powergirl, even) in (superhero) comics have big boobs! Frankly I'm all for comics going back to being good, clean harmless fun with extra cheap titillation thrown in for good measure, after all don't forget all the guys in comics are also pretty much cheesecake.

And there's nothing wrong with that!
heykidzcomix
May. 5th, 2006 04:51 pm (UTC)
The guys in comics might be cheesecake (I'd disagree with you about that somewhat--a lot of the art is too bulgy to be attractive to me), but the cheesecake isn't all they've got going for them. They aren't just spandex hardbodies designed to sell books; they're characters, they've got personalities (kinda), and their appearance is incidental to everything else. Compare that to what Larsen says about Phantom Lady and Peej: if you take away their breasts, they have no reason to exist. They have no personalities or other points of interest outside their mammary glands.

We're not complaining about there being pretty people in comics; he's set up a hell of a straw man there, but we're not. What we're complaining about (or I am, anyway) is that many women in comics AREN'T women--they're excuses to jerk off that indicate exactly who these comics are intended for.

That being said, the levels of gore in IC were alarming. That scene with the Psycho Pirate confused and disgusted me. Yay!
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covenhouse_cat
May. 5th, 2006 08:47 pm (UTC)
Well, I was thinking of Death, Delirium, and Desire (not really a female character, but a gorgeously drawn androgyne/ hermaphodite)...

Death is really a beautiful character, and she doesn't have huge knockers. She's very thin, too, so she falls outside the regular DC cookie-cutter shape. Delirium is still a kid, so I guess falls into the kid shape, but the way some people draw her, she's kind of lanky.

I always liked the way Ice and Fire were drawn by Maguire and/or Hughes. Ice (sorry, dead, but still one of my favorites) was short and not really busty, and always dressed exceedingly modestly. Fire was taller and kind of hippy. Both of them were still beautiful, sure, but they were slightly outside the cookie-cutter shape.

As mentioned before, Amanda Waller and Ma Hunkle are the DC Universe's token heavyset and aged female characters. I'm sorry to hear they're putting Waller on a diet. I loved that she was big.

What I'd like to see is Lady Blackhawke and Dinah being drawn older. At least in their forties.

Big Barda, taller and heavier than her little hubby, Mr. Miracle, when properly drawn, looks like a women's heavyweight champion. It's fitting that She-Hulk, Peege, Barda, and Element Girl (oh, wait, she's dead too) have all been drawn like that, too, and it bugs me when they are drawn too girlishly.

Overall though, I would love to see more variety in the female characters of the DCU. How about a geeky, slightly overweight braniac inventor who's female? How about someone who's just kinda homely?

heykidzcomix
May. 5th, 2006 09:17 pm (UTC)
I was really sad that Morrison didn't insert a version of Barda in his Mr. Miracle series--I always liked her for her sensible outfit and desire to crush things. At last, aliens whose idea of what constitutes armor is not unlike our own!
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tarpit05
May. 6th, 2006 04:48 am (UTC)
?????

Is Eric Larsen really calling for racial stereotypes? The fuck?

The problem with calling for artists to draw ethnic characters with ethnic features is that many artists don't have enough skill to pull it off, and you end up with stuff like the Yellow Peril cover of All-New, All-Asian Atom #1. To quote a phrase, eyes don't work like that. Personally, I'd rather have the weird-colored white people. Let's face it, most comics artists can only draw one or two kinds of faces anyway--and they ain't ethnic.

It's the same with women. Unfortunately, there are too many artists who have enough trouble grasping idealized heroic anatomy. Having them draw women in all of their real-life variety is just a recipe for disaster.

Ironically, one of the things that drove me crazy about Y: The Last Man was that Pia Guerra drew all of her female characters alike. And if there was ever a book that didn't call for that, it's that one.
heykidzcomix
May. 6th, 2006 04:59 am (UTC)
I think he might be. Although it's hard to tell, what with the insane "YE KEN TAKE OUR LIVES, BUT YE KEN NEVAIR TAKE OUR TITTYPIX!" argument he starts out with. I don't know how you reconcile "All I want is a little more artistic diversity!" with "WHY U HAT PRITTYS?" either. And somehow Mulan?

I have no idea.
eleusis_walks
May. 6th, 2006 05:18 am (UTC)
Eh, I dunno. I wouldn't hate it if black women started actually looking black. Monica Rambeau in NextWave is a fine example of how women of African descent ought to be drawn. Lately they're sort of almost getting Storm right, except when they make her look like RuPaul.
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gwalla
May. 8th, 2006 12:39 am (UTC)
I'm not hearing much classical in Box Five. Maybe a little in parts of Snow Hymn.

I tend to think of classical/rock as being stuff like Present, Henry Cow, or Thinking Plague.
heykidzcomix
May. 8th, 2006 05:30 am (UTC)
That's what she calls herself, so if she wants to be classipop let her :D.
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annlarimer
May. 8th, 2006 08:01 pm (UTC)
Remember, if you don't care for how a woman is depicted in comics, it's because you find her THREATENING or OFFENSIVE. Silly ole girls can't judge art objectively. They're too emotional, and take everything personally.

Also, we can't watch Mulan anymore because Eric Larsen says it's racist.
heykidzcomix
May. 9th, 2006 04:19 am (UTC)
And we're not speaking from experience when we say that most of these women would have crippling back problems before they turned 25. OH NO.
( 104 comments — Leave a comment )

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