Thursday, March 15, 2012

I wish I could say this was unheard of.

I'm not into the Walking Dead comics (sorry, me and zombies were never a good match), but Cheryl Lynn who is pointed this out on twitter:

"Playboy" Reveals Origins of The Walking Dead's Michonne in April Issue.

That's Playboy magazine, not a 'Playboy' as in a real-life Bruce Wayne, having an exclusive on revealing the origins of the "iconic and sexy" Michonne from the Walking Dead comic.

The zombie survival horror comic.

This is of interest to the soft-core porn mag.

Robert Kirkman seems super-excited talking about it, too:
"It's an honor to be a part of a historic publication like Playboy," said Kirkman, "I'm thrilled to share The Walking Dead with the magazine’s readers, especially such an important story like the origin of Michonne."

I don't know when exactly comics and porn started becoming the same thing, but this needs to stop. I know I know, Wally Wood and Joe Shuster and Harry Peters all did dirty comics but... those were dirty comics, with even some winky nods to the regular properties. They weren't like, the same thing. They sure as fuck weren't the same thing as zombie survival books.

What we're seeing lately is the baffling "Well, it's the same audience" mentality. This causes the storytelling art of mainstream comics to get bogged down by ridiculous artists like Ed Benes, who sacrifice dramatic strength for ass shots. And this causes promotional efforts where books like The Walking Dead offer exclusive interviews that drop story information in media that shuts out half the audience.

It would be one thing, if alongside the men's mags we saw some efforts in mainstream magazines and women's magazines to balance it out, and it wasn't exclusive. But this stuff is exclusive, because "Hey, women aren't reading anyway" and "Well, if they are, they must like this stuff because all our art looks like the inside of Playboy anyway."

Do you want to know why female comics fans are angry so often? Why even when we make neutral fannish blogs we inevitably end up turning our articles to issues of sexism? Why often our blogs and columns turn into gender-analysis niche projects?

Because of this. Because of this mindset that it's basically the same thing, that Playboy and all comics (not even just superheroes, this is a horror comic) have this same audience. Because female characters are categorized entirely as male fan service, and we have things like this in Playboy and Wonder Woman's New 52 preview showing up in Maxim.

Because it's infuriating as fuck.

"Well, why don't you drop comics, then?" Because 1) there's still stuff I love. The problem is the stuff I love is overwhelmed with the industry being stupid and sexist. 2) This shit is everywhere anyway, so if I didn't rant about comics here I would be ranting about television, books, my coworkers, or politics here or elsewhere.

And 3) I'm right. And you know it, whether you're nodding your head in conscious agreement or you're getting infuriated and typing up a trollish comment.

This mentality that comics do, can, and only ever will appeal to men so it's okay to take as many measures possible to shut women out and blur the lines between pornography and regular superheroes because the audience loves both, wants both, and will buy more if both are the same (which is just stupid, I can find far wilder and more believable porn than I would ever find in comics on DeviantArt, for fuck's sake, why would you even bother watering down your story with these distractions? You can't compete) and there is no chance of reaching out to other demographics is just plain wrong.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

How to Read Womanthology for a Fraction of the Price.

"It's $50! I can't afford it."

"I want it, but it's SO expensive!"

Every time I see that I wish there was a way to knock down the price on Womanthology, and then I slap myself for that. Because it's a charity book, and that money is going towards a good cause.

But what about the people who want to read but can't spare the full price?

Well, I have a solution. Unfortunately, it means that you need 1-4 friends. If you are so fortunate as to have 1-4 friends, you can split the price between the group of you and only pay $10-$25.

There is, of course, only one problem there.

But this is one easily solved in the spirit of the Womanthology project! Each investor can read and enjoy it in an order determined by use of a random number generator, and then when the last person is finished you can donate it to a nearby library for other people to enjoy.

But, I hear you say, then the five of us will have spent our $10 on nothing! No, you donated $10 to Global Giving and your local library, supported your local comic book store and got a good read out of it.

But I don't have the spare ten dollars. I understand. Can you find five friends who do and then check it out of the library once they've donated it?

I don't have five friends who live near me. You can either work out some sort of mail order thing, or convince other people on the internet to do this, and then check out the book by Inter-Library Loan.

I have $20-40 dollars and 2-9 friends. Should we do this with more than one copy? Yes. And let the two people above know which libraries.