Comments on the Industry: Selling sex in comics

Or maybe the title should be  The “oversexualization” of characters in comics.

Holy molley! Starfire brings up sex on the Red Hood and the Outlaws #1 (52), and everyone is in uproar.

Never mind that the majority of the titles in the 52 lineup are pieces of a TPB (Trade Paper Back, a larger book), and as such, the first issues and sometimes even the second (in the majority of the line-up) read like pieces of incongruous crap, that are either utterly boring, or fail to capture interest, or are just too confusing.

The talking-heads see a boob and start screaming “think of the children!”

Not because we are reading broken stories! Because they are being marketed with sex appeal in mind!!

 

 

SEXISM!!! 

BOOOBS FOR BOOBS SAKE!

What message are you giving little girls???

I mean, never mind that these books are usually rated T, as in TEEN. And when you buy from other publishers, some are rated M, AS IN FOR MATURE.

Heck, I even read this article of a writer giving the book to read to a 7 year old, and everyone is focusing on the kids comments, but no one touches the fact THAT THE MATERIAL IS NOT PROPER FOR HER AGE!!!

http://io9.com/5844355/ ( A 7-year-old girl responds to DC Comics’ sexed-up reboot of Starfire)

Why don’t you give the kid The Tropic of Cancer to read, while you are at it?

Shheesss, is Dr. Werthma’s legacy coming back to life?

The article above brings up the point that a 7 year old kid has been watching cartoons and likes this Character

 

Bless her hear, the poor kid.

Its a shame her parents never stopped to think that this character the kid loves came from a previous iteration.

Also, no one bother pointing out that this cartoony starfire could be considered an “Aberration” an adulteration of the original character the creator designed.

That doesn’t seem to bother the parent that is just concerned with the kid not reading T&A on a book NOT FOR HER AGE!

 

 

 

Of course, no comment is given to this little fact.

 

Nor the fact that I mentioned in the first place:
WTF is a 7 year old doing reading a rated T title????

 

The Bullshit doesn’t stop there.

Go to

http://www.autostraddle.com/super-t-and-a-whats-wrong-with-dc-comicss-controversial-superheroine-starfire-117766/

OH LORD!! Another controversy!!

I shake my head and wonder whether these articles are catering to the lowest common denominator of web readers, or are just ploys to get hits on their site using keywords….

 

We all know superheroes are not real, right? Mhhh… sometimes you make me wonder.

We all know superheroes are NOT role-models, right? Oh no? You didn’t know that? WELL… DUH!

They are Intellectual Properties of their creators and can be used for good, evil, sex or ascetic preaching.

I’ve seen them used to sell candies, promote milk, peddle sneakers, and push cereals to kids.

But those are marketing decisions, not moral decisions.

All these critics sound like they desperately need icons to project their inadequacies…. They are all waiting for superman to teach them to do good, or for Godot to come on Thursday and take them to the movies!

Feminist: There is no massive worldwide conspiracy to keep women down. When it comes to comics (and dare I say “other entertainment outlets”?) there is only the sad fact that most heterosexual men like tits and ass.

It is a good thing to change misogynistic attitudes, and sexist points of view. IT IS! But these comics are commercial ventures, not the apex of our representation as a culture!

As soon as a comic doesn’t sell, they don’t receive an infusion of cash from the government to continue being a bastion of culture! They don’t get funded by a non-profit foundation! They cancel the title, before the publisher goes under!

Are we so moronic as a society that we support lack of regulation in comics (freedom of speech and liberty within the arts), and then we start crying foul and complaining when they hit our moral outrage button?

These comics are commercial products.

Why? Because a company is printing commercial art, and commercial stories, with the purposes of making a profit.

Sex makes those stories sell.

Heck! Sex makes everything sell better!

I repeat: There is no massive worldwide conspiracy to keep women down. AGAIN, there is only the sad fact that most heterosexual men like tits and ass.

If we didn’t, we wouldn’t get married (Hitched) and the population would cease, and there would be no argument.

And to the public who decries they are Sexist: What are you complaining about? Was this book sold to you as a moralistic pure tale suitable for all ages and palates? You opened the pages lured by the fluffy unicorns and they thrusted Tits and Ass onto your virginal eyeballs?    NO! Well, get the heck out of my book!

Sex exists. Ergo sex is used to sells jeans, tight Jeans, skirts, little black dresses.

Sex is also fun, (when done right), by the way.

I am a strong advocate of each thing in its place, and finding a place for each thing.

I refuse to ASSUME that comics (in general) are for kids, and should be safe for children. Any more than a Dali painting should be safe, or a Mapplethorpe photography should be safe for kids.

Maybe all these complainers are whining about is the lack of a market for “Safe” and kid friendly books.

That is a whole other matter, and I actually agree with the fact that there is no such a market.

But let me remind you: There have been such publications, and invariably they can’t compete with the more mature and adult themed publications, the ones who are not scared of pushing boundaries.

Why? Cause most kids don’t have too much disposable income. Usually adults do (and in this economy, not even). So kids my buy a Donald Duck book once, but an adult likely will subscribe for a year to an adult publication. And don’t come telling me that when you were a kid you spent all your money in comics. AWESOME for you! My point is that speaking in absolute numbers, there is different type of profits to be made printing kids books, and printing adult books.

Now let’s cover another issue: If you publish a title, let’s say Teen Titans, and the story starts to suck, the readership will leave the title (stop buying it) because it sucks.

But if the same title (AGAIN, Just an example) Teen Titans, the story starts to suck, but you have tits and ass, some readership will stay for the T&A and that will bring money. Is it a good title? No, but it still has some sells. Why? Cause sex sells. Why does sex sell? That’s a whole other article, but let’s summarize it in two Reasons:

  1. Not enough availability of it in the US (we are too prude and make a big fuss about it), and thus it becomes a scarce commodity. That’s why THE ILLUSION of sex, such as strip-bars are so profitable and move so much money.

and second

2.  because sex rules our lives, at least at the subconscious level, at the genetic level.

But I don’t want comics FOR KIDS to contain sex, anymore than I want them to contain drugs, nor moralistic tales, because it may not be my mores and my standard of morale.

I don’t want kids reading titles that are not appropriate for them, and to that effect I can say that  I wouldn’t mind having their parents fined, or some other punitive measure, when this happens.  I’m not kidding about this.

In the article above, the question was never answered of Why are you giving your kid age inappropriate material to read?

Comics, in the present market and free society of the US, are not didactic tools, nor are babysitter-replacements, nor are vehicles for learning.

They are market-driven commodities.

THEY COULD BE all those things mentioned above, but the majority of the publishers don’t design them that way. The market doesn’t demand them.

So, please, stop giving pearls to the swine.

Find a book ABOUT WOMEN VALUES and tell me about it. Let me know how well they sell. I’ll write a review.

Find a book about coming of age lessons and tell me about it. Also let me know how well they sell. I’ll also write a review.

 

But don’t bitch because there is a pair of tits in your mass-consumption media, and above all DON”T BRING THE KIDS INTO THIS, when all you are doing is showing me what a neglectful parent you are!

Male heroes and female heroes both wear tights.

I constantly hear about the oversexualization of women as superheroes, without even touching the point that males have been oversexualized since the inception of superman, wearing a tight, and his underwear outside his pants! That was way before WonderWoman started getting into bondage!

Lets get these two heroes archetypes below in books, and see how well they sell.

And mind you, there is nothing wrong with the way these two samples look.

 

I’m not sure I would buy a book with them in it, and I am not so sure how much your kid would like to read about them… but that is your job.

To educate, monitor and teach YOUR KIDS.

Not mine, not comics that don’t purport to teach, but to entertain.

The only saving grace will be if they have amazing stories/scritps behind them.

And an amazing story can save any book, even the ones with lots of T&A, and even those without ANY T&A.

But how often do we find amazing stories in comics?

 

 

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