Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Et tu, Scooby Doo? AKA Women Worry about Being Fat, Men Worry about Their Cars

On this, National Women’s Equality Day, I wanted to look at how equal everyone is.  Except, you know, when it comes to women. 

I think there are two perfect illustrations (literally) of this issue currently in the news.

First, there’s the new Scooby-Doo movie.  I know, it’s not technically released yet, but there have already been spoilers and reviews. 

I think the most important thing about it is the response from Warner Bros to Huffington Post:
“The plot of the movie involves the Scooby gang becoming cursed and losing what means the most to each of them.  Fred loses the Mystery Machine, Shaggy and Scooby lose their appetites, etc.  Daphne loses her good looks (mainly her figure and her hair.

While Daphne is at first upset by the sudden change, there is a touching moment where Fred points out that he didn’t even notice a change and that she always looks great to him.”

Oh, Warner Bros, where do I start with you?

Well, let’s go with the size.  They move her from a size 2 to a size 8.  Yet the animation (as seen at the Huffington Post article), seems to show her at a much larger size.  For comparison, I’ve included a photo of me – and I’m a 10/12.   

I think she might be a wee bit bigger than that.  And, just for comparison, the average woman is a 12 or 14, so a size 8 might not be quite as horrifying as the Scooby gang animators thought.

Then let’s look at the awesomest part of the statement – that “there is a touching moment where Fred points out that…she always looks great to him.”

Wow.  Really?  So as long as a guy likes the way you look, then you’re cool?  It’s okay to be “fat” and have bad hair if a guy is cool with it.  I guess that’s touching?  That a guy would accept her when she’s so unacceptable to the animators?

Second, there’s the “artistic” rendering of Spider-Woman.  Sigh.  Let me repeat – sigh.

Women in comics (and science fiction and fantasy and just about everywhere else) are often portrayed as sex pots and little else.  I can deal with that, even if I’m not happy about it.  We can work to change it, but it won’t be overnight, and we have to get that it’s going to be work.

My problem with the Spider-Woman issue is that…it’s just bad artwork, and no one cared because it’s “sexy.”  People who enjoy the look of Spider-Woman are looking at a true piece of abstract art.  In some, she’s missing body parts (a leg here, organs there), and, as a blogger was kind enough to point out, the position she’s in is one that wouldn’t even work!  She’s ready to land flat on her face!

If we’re going to insist on our women being held to an unrealistic standard, at least let’s try to stick with one that doesn’t involve removing limbs or organs, and definitely let’s avoid anything that makes us fall flat on our faces.

Friday, August 1, 2014

War on Women – Yeah, It’s Real

Okay, so I’m not normally quite this rabid, but this is one of those times when I have to get all frothing and foamy.  (In a bad way.)

Opposing Views, which I follow on FB and read sometimes, had an article that I pulled up about a girl in India who got revenge on her rapist.  It was her uncle, and he was a religious doctor (called a tantrik) who claimed he could heal her but instead raped her.  He wanted her to come back for more “treatment.”  She came prepared – she brought a cell phone and a knife.  She recorded their conversation using the cell phone, and then she castrated him with the knife.  Nice and simple, right?

There’s even a nice picture of people standing around holding a sign that says “Stop Crimes on Women.”

But the rest of the page seems to give a totally different message.  There are five different images across the top that are meant to drag the viewer on.  Of these, four of them are of women: one of an attractive woman crying, mascara smeared; one of two women kissing, labeled “Celebrities That Swing Both Ways!”; one of a woman in very tight, very small clothing with a police officer looking on; the last one of a woman in lingerie and heels in a provocative pose, labeled “The 10 Best Butts in Hollywood!”

Seriously, Opposing Views?  Seriously?  This is the shit that you chose to pair with a story about rape?  Four different stories with images (and probably “stories” – if you can call a list of “best butts” a story) that clearly treat women as objects.  The photo of the woman in small, tight clothing doesn’t even show her face – clearly, that’s not an important part of a woman – and the headline is “New Rule in Seabrook, TX,” although I bet that, whatever was the closest town to the viewer would be reflected there.  It’s click bait.  Meaningless crap that shows women off as, well, meaningless crap.

So I’m no longer following them on FB.  And I’m posting up this blog.  Maybe if they lose enough click-thrus and followers, they might learn that women don’t appreciate being treated this way.  Maybe they’re learn that women should be treated with respect and…oh, who am I kidding?  They’ll never learn.  But at least we can stop giving them their clicks.