Monday, September 18, 2006

Men, women and comics


Surfing around Manly Men and Buxom Babes: Body Types in Comics by kalinara on Pretty, Fizzy Paradise.

"I'm actually not against sexualization in comics. To the extent that it's not a detriment to character or story at any rate," she wrote, "I think there is, without a doubt, a lot more variance to the way men are portrayed in comics than there is for women... I'd say most women in comics have a very similar body type."

I can't say I disagree. In fact, I'll say comics aren't even unique in this. TV and movies show very little variance in body and beauty types, too, although the standard there is different.

I'm not sure where it puts me on the feminist scale, but, seriously, I can't be the only person who wants to check out hot chicks that look different and uniquely hot, can I? Not even to get into the fact that there are plenty of people whose personal and unique type is much different than the media standard.

In fact, I think the type we're given isn't even a particularly common (of natural, for that matter) type for guys to have.

In the comments to that article, David Horenstein wrote, "It isn't straight men that control the fashion industry. And, more straight men prefer women with curves. Yet, why so many lollipop women in fashion and Hollywood? Before they lost too much weight, you used to hear men talk about Jennifer Aniston, Jennifer Connelly, Jennifer Garner, and even Jennifer Lopez. There weren't a whole lot of men that thought they needed to lose a few pounds. Yet they all did (and it is any coincidence that male interest in them dropped the moment they dropped weight?). So, why are women losing all that weight?"

I inferred that he was putting the blame on gay men, but I think the more likely culprit is women.

Comics, of course, use a more straight male beauty standard, although a rather boring one to me. So much of how all Superheroes are drawn these days, although I agree it's worse among female characters, is without any real character to how their drawn.

And that is also what is in common with other media. Movie stars are becoming less interesting. Have we all really forgotten what it is to be compelled and attracted to a person rather than a type that can be reproduced over and over or have our various media all just become that lazy? I suspect the latter is the cause, but I also sense that its laziness is making more and more people forget.

1 comment:

kalinara said...

Neat post! I'm glad I'm an egotist fond of googling myself!

It's a bit tangential, but I'm reminded of the comparisons between Christian Dior and Coco Chanel as pioneers in the fashion world. Dior, a gay man, really emphasizes/d? the bust and hips, the hourglass curve of the women he designed for, where Chanel, a woman, kept designing for the flat, stick thin boyish model.

So I agree, and don't think gay men really should bear the brunt of the blame. It's kind of a mixed factor phenomenon.

-Kalinara

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