Thursday, March 1, 2012
Equal Poses for Equal Genders!
In looking around for sexism in comics, I came across this fake cover, where an artist took a cover of a comic that originally had scantily clad, seductively posed women, and drew it with men instead. This has been done with costumes before, taking men and dressing them up in the skintight outfits that superheroines always wear, but this drawing takes it to the next level. It makes me uncomfortable to look at, which says something about the original drawing. It was completely inappropriate in the first place, and when men are substituted in the place of the women, it is still disturbing but also blatantly ridiculous. The man kneeling is wearing almost no clothing at all. On top of that, the pose he is in, while it is supposedly one of attack as he is holding a sword, seems like a completely submissive kneeling, like his hands are tied above his head when in fact they are not at all. But who is the pose supposed to be submisive to? The (male) reader, who wants to see women like that. In addition, the other man does not seem very convinced about attacking with his sword, but more concerned with flashing his bare butt at the reader.
Here is the original, which honestly (and unfortunately) does not seem as ridiculous to me. While, yes, it is extremely sexual and they are also wearing very little clothing, I don't scoff at it the way I do when it is men. It's almost as if it is more acceptable because it's women. Now I'm not saying that I think this portrayal is ok in any way, just that it is so common that it barely seems to have an effect on me. The constant conditioning of this sexualized view of women in our society dulls its shock value. However, when it is men portrayed like this, it definitely still contains the shock value for me.
Do you guys agree with me that the male version is more unexpected, and therefore more effective in showing the absolute ridiculousness of the poses? Or does the female version shout that at you just as much? Which version offends you more?