Saturday, August 05, 2006

Lost in WizardWorld, No Cyberspace in Sight

Well, I made it to WizardWorld Chicago, without my power cord for my laptop. This is why I haven't posted since Monday. I'm borrowing Kalinara's laptop (the keyboard sticks) right no. Yesterdy, we were too busy at the con to check. We got Geoff Johns' autograph. I have to go back with a copy of Green Lantern, but we got a picture of all four (myself, Kalinara, my sister, an Kali's roommate) of us with him. We know Ron Marz is scheduled to be there and I fully intend to find him and get his autograph and picture.

Yesterday, we were wandering the con in blue polo shirts with "When Fangirls Attack" and the url on our chests (Those weren't ringers, as someone asked my sister). Last night, I did laundry so we'll be wearing them again. We sat in the front of the DC Nation panel and annoyed the staff (Dan Didio called on me and my older sister at once), and we have the same plans for today.

Looked for the folks, didn't see anyone. Kim saw a few of their flyers left at Peter David's booth, much to the writer's apparent confusion.

My sleeping schedule is all messed up, I'm awake while the sun is out.

And last night I saw a note attached to my windshield. It was from a guy I met while waiting on AAA to change my flat tire. He left me his phone number and had postscript telling me he thought I was cute. He saw me for five minutes on Wednesday, before any other conventioneers came in!

In other news, my sister turned twenty-nine today so I must find her a present.

See you all when I get back!

Monday, July 31, 2006

Monday Misandry

Well, I'd have been satisfied letting the conversation fizzle out on this earlier post, but one last commenter showed up with some rather unusual ideas. He seems much more interested in talking about Harlequin romance being unfriendly to men right now, which would be fine except this is my blog and I don't know a damned thing about Harlequin romance books. I really don't care about Harlequin romance books, I want to read comic books. He also has some interesting views on what an "independent publisher" is, along with a rather questionable resume. I'd be inclined to just ignore him entirely, except his argument had an underlying idea that needs to be addressed.

His first comment:
The Big Two have no reason to publish shoujo-esque manga unless they wish to lose their core, primarily male fan base.
After we set him straight that we didn't want DC to market Manga, he continues:
Ragnell, the same arguments you made can be applied to any number of industries. Yet no one is suggesting that Harlequin market towards males. Why? What is the fear about marketing to men?
So I replied that I knew very little about Harlequin, and wouldn't argue against a male romance reader who suggested that they could be better marketed for men. I never once said that the way Harlequin practices business or writes books is okay in the least. I simply said, I knew nothing about the subject. He comes back:
Various companies appeal to certain markets regardless of whether people outside those markets also enjoy the stories. You seem in favor of it when the market is largely female. That’s quite hypocritical, and honestly you lose the support of male fans by doing that.

The commenter in question is from a blog I found by way of his linking to I'm going to assume that he's aware of their complaints -- Stephanie Brown's treatment in particular -- as well as the ones I've brought up on this blog. In the comment thread he posted on, I had suggesting marketing a few superhero comics where women could find them, and having covers which were friendly to female readers.

Yet, and I believe this because he keeps bringing it up, he seems to feel that if something was done to make the superhero comics industry friendlier to female readers, that somehow male readers would be driven away.

As though male readers feed on the degradation and humiliation of female characters. As though, female characters must be disposable and never once in the spotlight for male readers to feel comfortable. As though bad art portraying practically pornagraphic images are what is necessary to sell to a male reader.

See, I simply must disagree. I very much doubt my father or my brother would be bothered by the suggested improvements in their entertainment. I've watched TV and discussed books and movies with the men I work with, and while they enjoy raunchy pictures found online and in their magazines, I've yet to see one of them flee from a story with a respectful portrayal of a woman. In the comic book store, when I point out that a female character got shafted in a storyline and describe a better way to handle her, most of the men in the store either agree that they would read a story about her, or come up with a better idea. I'm willing to bet a lot of Birds of Prey readers are male, as well as readerrs of Rucka's Wonder Woman and other stories that have "gotten it right" and would probably have been widely enjoyed by a female audience were they marketed to them. I've yet to see a man give up buying manga or name because he's seen it in a bookstore with female customers perusing the shelf. On the whole, I'd have that I have a high opinion of the male comic-book reading public, and I believe that good stories would be read by readers of both genders.

So, I have a question to ask that commenter, and anyone who agrees with him -- Why do you have such a poor opinion of men?

Blogging Survey

Heidi conducted a survey about blogging (Why, how, when people chose to do it) over at Comics Fairplay, and the results are up right now, in case anyone is interested.

Part One
Part Two