Sunday, July 4, 2010

In honor of American Independence Day...

Let us celebrate The Right of Free Speech. Specifically, The Right To Speak Your Mind And Say Any Damn Thing You Want To, No Matter How Uniformed Your Opinion.

SOURCE: Wonder Woman Reboot: Strident Feminism Is the Problem, Not the Costume

I don't have time to pick this whole thing apart today and I imagine that quite a few of the ladies on When Fangirls Attack are going to let this schmuck have both barrels over the sexism. So I'm going to limit myself to discussing one choice sentence and how you can tell this guy knows jack and squat about comics.

The problem with Wonder Woman isn’t her look. It’s her personality. She has never been a warm, appealing character. She comes from an island populated only by immortal Amazons who hate men. And men aren’t allowed to set foot on the island. This island of super-women send her to “the man’s world” where she brings the baggage of this sexist worldview.

See, here is problem #1. Most comics readers are male. So you start off telling them their gender sucks. Great sales pitch.

Anybody who knows a damn thing about comics history can tell you that at the time Wonder Woman was created, comic readership was fairly universal among boys AND girls. True, the superhero genre was dominated by male characters but there WERE female superheroes. Heck, Wonder Woman wasn't even the first one to have her own book (that would be Sheena, The Jungle Queen, as draw by Will Eisner!) Wonder Woman was created partly in an attempt to snag all the female readers who were still reading comics - they just weren't reading THOSE comics.

And get this - immediately after World War II leading into the early 1950s before the creation of the Comics Code Authority, Romance Comics were a bigger business than superheroes. In fact Jack Kirby and Joe Simon - yes THAT Jack Kirby and THAT Joe Simon - wound up going into making Romances because Captain America was no longer profitable. So odds are that for a time, there may have been a greater percentage of girls and young women reading comics than boys and young men.

Incidentally, this link was provided to me by Gail Simone, who noted this was the worst thing yet she'd seen about the Wonder Woman costume controversy. Presumably because she hadn't heard the Fox News report which confirmed that not only is the new costume a misguided effort to appeal to women in a male-dominated marketplace - it's an effort to make Wonder Woman a more popular figure globally!

SOURCE: New Wonder Woman Loses Patriotic Costume in Favor of 'Globalized' Duds

Am I the only one who thinks it is ironic that they're complaining about the costume being less patriotic when Wonder Woman's new background makes her more of an American girl than ever before?

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