Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Now that its quiet enough that people can read more closely

(People meaning me, of course)

Takeshi Miyazawa's description of the cultural snafu, which I've just now (that the whole thing's died down a bit) had a chance to read thoroughly, tells me much more than I want to know about Marvel's art policy (Emphasis mine):
I drew the previous cover to Heroes for Hire and was asked to choose at least two girls out of the cast and draw them as sexy as possible so, naturally, I did.
If there is one thing that everyone should take away from this, its that using "sexy" as the defining trait for a character (and seriously, if that's all that is matter that a character be drawn as in the cover, that's a "defining trait") is a stupid idea.

Edited to clarify: This interview is from an artist who drew a previous cover, relayed the instructions he got, and described what probably happened with issue #13. I quoted him because I felt the art instructions he repeated were extremely important and the whole point of Miyazawa's post was that by Japanese standards, that cover was attractive so I didn't want to get into the cultural differences of what's sexy and what's creepy, but instead wanted to point out what Marvel was telling their cover artists to do.

If the phrases "strong, aggressive, brave, or heroic" were used instead of just "sexy" there may have been a very different cover, but we can only conclude from the end result that none of those words were important enough to be used when communicating with the artist from another culture who had never seen the characters before.

So who lost sight of the idea that these were 3 kickass women, Joe?

7 comments:

  1. If Miyazawa's idea of sexy as possible is that cover, I feel we can still blame her.

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  2. Miyazawa (who is a guy... Takeshi is a man's name) did not draw that cover. He was just commenting on it. He did draw an *earlier* Heroes for Hire cover (which I haven't seen).

    And Ragnell, regarding who lost sight of that idea? I'm guessing the line *starts* with Joe...

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  3. Well, if that was his mission, boy did he fail. I don't think I've ever seen Misty look so ridiculous. It's less offensive than the other one ... but it ain't very good.

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  4. I think every time artists draw women, esp on covers, the editorial mandate is "sexy first, everything else second" but with men it's "cool first, everything else second". :\

    Which is what ppl who say "O BUT MEN ARE OBJECTIFIED TOOOOO" dun get >.>;; Cuz while "cool", "heroic", "brave", and "sexy" are prolly all things that go into every hero, they go in different amounts and have different priorities depending on the gender.

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  5. I find it really funny that they even bother to say that the women have to be sexy. It seems so prevalent that I thought it was pretty much a given.

    Which makes me wonder what kind of covers we would get if they did say "cool first, everything else second" when it comes to women.

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  6. Which is what ppl who say "O BUT MEN ARE OBJECTIFIED TOOOOO" dun get >.>;; Cuz while "cool", "heroic", "brave", and "sexy" are prolly all things that go into every hero, they go in different amounts and have different priorities depending on the gender.

    Women on comics covers are dehumanized more than sexy, which makes them fair game for any and all horrors imaginable. Does this bleed into the real world? Dunno, I'm not a sociologist.

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