Sunday, October 15, 2006

Lost Girls

Someone posted a few NSFW pages, and the most brutal comics community on livejournal's giving it the once-over. I found this comment pretty much summed up my feelings:
Yeah. I found these scans about as unerotic as it's possible for porn to be. It feels like such a male fantasy of how women think and act (right down to the fact that Dorothy apparently has orgasms just from intercourse).

Or perhaps it's just the wrong kind of fantasy for me. If Alan Moore had written Lost Boys, all about the sexual awakenings of Peter Pan and Huck Finn and Christopher Robin, I'd probably shell out $80 or whatever it cost. So long as there was some Captain Hook/Peter Pan action, anyway.
That might be why I found it so uninteresting when the clerk showed me this in the store. He'd wanted to see me angry. It was pretty dull, for Alan Moore and for porn. I didn't find it nearly as rage-worthy as a change to Captain Comet's name.

Melinda Gebbie does have a beautiful storybook art style. Hopefully she'll get more work from the press.

(I saw the Tinman scene, though. It wasn't worth $80.)

16 comments:

  1. It's not my idea of erotic, either. But then I recently encountered someone who considered Sailor Moon's transformation scene disturbingly peadophiliac, and that's a bunch of ribbons being wrapped around a silhouette.

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  2. I haven't read anything but your post here, but some women do have orgasms just from intercourse. Heck, some women have orgasms just from nipple play. The idea that all women need to be "warmed up" like an old car on a cold day is a popular bit of sexist tripe that's been perpetuated by both genders for years. The truth is that everyone gets off differently; suggesting that there's one thing that'll drive all men/women wild, or one thing that will bore them all to death, is on par with suggesting that one top ten list of comics will appeal to all women.

    Sorry, that's just my immediate thoughts looking at the post.

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  3. Well, that took and interesting turn. To be honest, I didn't even think twice about the parenthesis part. I was thinking of the second part, and how dry the actual erotic scenes were.

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  4. Mmm. As I've said, it seems to me Lost Girls was less about getting the motor running and more about getting you thinking about how you drive, and if you end up taking a ride, so be it.

    (Not quite an over extended metaphor to make Penn and Teller proud, but getting there...)

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  5. I'm sorry, but I find the writing to be just awful. I agree with the commenter you quoted that it's completely unerotic.

    Tom: Uhm, I started writing out a reply but then realized that Ragnell might not want a long-winded discussion about sexuality on her blog. Even if it is somewhat relevant to the topic. haha.

    The short version is that there's a common misconception that women orgasm primarily through intercourse and, in terms of the actual experiences of women, it just doesn't seem to be true. Doesn't mean that no woman can, but rather that the real experiences of women versus the typical portrayal of orgasm aren't the same.

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  6. Oh, oh, oh! And I forgot to mention. And, assuming this isn't addressed later on, it's not exactly the most sexually responsible book when it feeds into the whole "pulling out as birth control" myth.

    Is it realistic? Sure, but without some sort of explanation it's damned irresponsible to give to a sexually active population that is already sexually ignorant.

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  7. Well, my thoughts about this piece was, maybe it isn't totally erotic (but then again, what do I know about sex, since I'm still a virgin), but it was sweet in a strange way. Some of the scenes were a little clinical, but why should Dorothy be eroticized? It's her story, her awakening, so she should be powerful, yes? And I did sense that power.

    I also thought that Melinda Gebbie has a beautiful style. Alan Moore's accent for Dorothy, on the other hand, was overblown, no pun intended.

    Would I pay 80 bucks for it? No. Would I read it if someone gave it to me? Possibly.

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  8. Tekanji - I suspect that's a function of the time period the story is set in. Remember, these women are all meeting and telling their stories in something like the 1930s or 1940s, right? Pulling out is crappy birth control, but this is set before birth control was around.

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  9. I didn't find it nearly as rage-worthy as a change to Captain Comet's name.

    And here I thought I was the only one pissed off about that.

    "Just Comet" my ass. It says Captain Comet on the cover.

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  10. "h, oh, oh! And I forgot to mention. And, assuming this isn't addressed later on, it's not exactly the most sexually responsible book when it feeds into the whole "pulling out as birth control" myth."

    Maybe that's what they mean when they refer to "the man behind the curtain".

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  11. Just from the scans I'd be more confused/annoyed by the book simply by the fact that you can barely tell that Dorthy is having an orgasm. I mean, that's hard to illustrate and she is saying that she wants it more and more. But her descriptions of the acts... they don't sound like she is so much enjoying it as just kind of participating in it.

    I don't know. Is it just me? Does anyone else get that impression from the scans?

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  12. I think that it's a bit of a misconception that this book is purely Alan Moore's baby. Reading this interview with Melinda Gebbie suggests that it's much more of a collaboration, and contains as much of her views on sexuality as his:

    I had to make sure that everything I put into the book was the best that I could manage and that takes an awful lot of sublimation with going through my own personal life and trying to concentrate on the most memorable and exquisite moments of everything. It was exhausting. I had to make sure that I was in a happy mood and doing the absolute best I could. For the first two years I was very self-conscious, because I thought, “Oh my God, everybody who reads this is going to know exactly what my sex drive is like and whether it’s crap or not.”

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  13. toby S.: Like I said, it may be realistic, but that doesn't stop it from being sexually irresponsible. Even marketed to adults as it is, young adults will likely read it (and even if it's all legal -- 18 and up, this still applies). The state of sexual education in this country is appauling and myths like the one that seems to be perpetuated in this book are still fairly common thought.

    People look to their popular culture to form ideas about many things, and if something seems real, they may think that the author (especially since the collaboration here is two sexually mature adults) knows what they're talking about. Ergo being less likely to question the safety and efficacy of "pulling out".

    Which is why I think that the book is sexually irresponsible and should be criticized for that, assuming that such an issue isn't clearly addressed later on.

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  14. Tek -- Most of the criticism I've heard has been over character age, ruining children's stories, and just the generic OMG IT'S PORN freak-out.

    I just think $80 for what amounts to illustrated femmeslash is a bit steep, myself.

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  15. Ragnell: Yeah, I'd like to do a real critique of it, but frankly my $80 would be better spent elsewhere.

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  16. Would I pay 80 bucks for it? No. Would I read it if someone gave it to me? Possibly.

    I just think $80 for what amounts to illustrated femmeslash is a bit steep, myself.

    Yeah, I'd like to do a real critique of it, but frankly my $80 would be better spent elsewhere.

    Personally, I find it Hi-larious how this little obvious truth didn't occur to anyone whining about feminist critiques of Lost Girls vs. How to Make Money Like a Porn Star.

    While I always hate to give the tired "but where were you feminists when...." pseudo-arguments any attention what-so-ever, it seems to me that one has to be especially tunnel-visioned not to see the obvious difference in each books accessibility to said feminists.

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