Daily Archives: 03/03/2012

When Superhero costumes go…strange.

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Fernacular examines what would happen if male Superhero costumes objectified the male form in the same way that funnybooks have done for Superheroines since the genre began.

I watched an episode of the Canadian IFC series, “Ink – Alter Egos Exposed”, which dealt with this issue and it really set me to thinking about why so many of the shows, movies and genre entertainments that I enjoy insist on depicting heroines in costumes which are so utterly impractical for the kinds of action that they’re engaged in.

There’s a fine line between celebrating female strength and a visit to the cheesecake factory and it’s one that comics seem to struggle with more than any other part of the Geek-o-Sphere.  Why is it that mainstream comics want to view heroines almost exclusively through the male gaze – we have female artists, writers and editors at the big two, but we still end up with stuff like the recent Starfire controversy which ends up turning off a large section of a niche audience, with legitimate objections to this redrawing of a popular character being dismissed with a kind of patronising pat on the head 

I think the awesome webcomic ‘Shortpacked!’ summed up DC’s dunder-headed, retrogressive gender politics brilliantly.

 

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Austerity? What austerity?

Behold - the device that will save us all...

It’s good to know that the global downturn and the attendant cuts in public services are not affecting everybody – if you’re a local councillor, in fact, it appears that things are more splendid than ever.

After the councillors in my old home town voted to give themselves vital iPads for use in council business , wouldn’t you know it –  my council in Sheffield think that they’re absolutely essential, too.

Both councils are facing serious budget cuts, with refuse collections, park services and library services under threat – but that’s hardly something to worry about now.  Let’s make sure that the council get to play about with Apple tablets whilst they’re sending lots of former council employees to the dole queue – a better use of everybody’s taxes, surely?

Kind of puts council leader Julie Dore’s recent leaflet drop into sharp relief, doesn’t it?  Perhaps they could have spent the £21,000 they spent on those leaflets – most of which will have been thrown away without being read – on iPads, docking stations, covers and other such absolutely key sundries which they can use whilst deciding which streets won’t have their bins collected (not that you would notice missing refuse collections being a new thing in my neighbourhood…).

Local councils?  The phrase ‘wretched hive of scum and villainy’ comes to mind…

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