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Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Kicking butt, spraining ankles

Despite my slow-but-sure assimilation into the world of comic books (zomg Immortal Iron Fist!), I still have one problem with the whole shebang.

The women. No, I'm not going to go off on some feminist rant about how no comic artist has ever drawn a less than modelesque superheroine/villainess--you have to be a feminist to write things like that, for one thing. My problem does lie partly in their appearances, but I don't really care that they're all apparently 42-39-56. I care more that they seem to save/destroy the world while wearing thigh-high stiletto boots, white lingerie (I mean...come on. White? Clearly written by a man), and generally scanty outerwear which would, in a realistic situation, provide not-very-much protection. And they overwhelmingly have long, flowing hair.

The innate sexism in comics aside, this is just stupid. If I were fighting an opponent, particularly a male opponent who is theoretically larger and stronger than me, I would much rather be wearing, say, very lightweight Kevlar. NOT Spandex, NOT leather, and certainly nothing as exposing as the White Queen's typical gear (hello? That bare midriff is just begging to be stabbed). I can sort of understand why everything is so skintight; excess fabric gets in the way, I suppose (although I also suppose it might soak up some impact)--plus, a gal's gotta be able to move. But this is the Marvel universe, where S.H.I.E.L.D. can create fabric that never rips, shows bloodstains, or even bags at the knees! Surely they can come up with some sort of flexible body armor. Also, may I point out how impossible it is to run while wearing heels? No woman of any sense would choose heeled shoes as part of her alter ego's costume.

Then there's the matter of the hair. Back to this hypothetical fight--the dude I'm fighting, he wants to win. And we all know that no one (except maybe Captain America) fights clean. Seriously guys, it's not just a chick-fight thing. If my hair's waist-length, a man's going to do the same thing a woman would do: Yank all that hair flapping around in his face. It hurts to have your hair pulled, people know this, and in a fight, they're going to do whatever it takes to win. Who would give their opponent an extra weapon against them? Not to mention that hair also gets in the way of whosever head it's on...in the middle of a nasty fight, I want my peripheral vision to be free and clear.

So, my point is--I know that comics aren't real, that their unreality is at least half the coolness and fun, that the appeal of Emma Frost and Natasha Romanoff is that no real woman actually resembles them--but for goodness sake! At least give our heroines and villainesses a pair of sneakers!
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