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I Be Jealuz of Comics Gurlz

bad day kitten
There I was, boppin through my beloved When Fangirls Attack, when I stumbled onto this post on In One Ear: Heroes for Hire … the Backlash …. Swear to the gods, I sprained at least an eyeball.

So, I was introduced to these words said by Misty Lee (magician and wife of Paul Dini) from a Podcast they hosted:
And you know, also, someone raised the point in, I don’t know if it was in a forum I was reading but it’s something I’ve heard a million times before - but usually, the strongest and loudest protest over sexy things come from ugly fat girls. And now I don’t necessarily agree with that and I’m probably going to get some awesome flame mail as a result of this, but as somebody who’s relatively secure in her sexuality - I don’t think I’m the hottest broad out walking around - I definitely don’t think I compare to some of these comic book chicks - but that doesn’t mean that I don’t like to look at ‘em. I find the feminine form very appealing and I’m not at all offended by that…


Let. Me. Get. This. Straight.

Would Ms. Lee care to explain what person of intelligence, whatever their appearance, in proper possession of her or his mental health, is jealous of comic book characters? Are we talking the same hyper-sexualized, anatomically incorrect, over-inflated, fatally `roidally ripped, negative-ribbed, under-genitalized, nipple-less, balloon-breasted, spinally deformed, ball-jointed-backed, out-of-plumb, spider-ankled, football butted, collagen-pumped-lipped, shallow-socketed eyed, permanently-affixed made-up, uterus-, bladder- and colon-less, kelp-haired wild hair fantasy as ever came out of a creator/creatrix's sleep deprived imagination?

Would Ms. Lee care to explain her reality testing process? Because from where I sit, it looks as straight as SpiderWoman's or Star Sapphire's spine. (Yeah, I'm fixed on spines of late. If you had my doctors, you'd be thinking about spines, too.)

I can't even jump up two steps, let alone a tall building. I'm going to be JEALOUS of someone who does it not only in spike heels, but a painted on garment I wouldn't be caught dead in, and beats the shit out of the bad guy on top of the building? I haven't unbuttoned the second button of a blouse ever. Why would I be jealous of a creation--not even a real person--who apparently never heard of a button, like Emma Frost? I think sexy when I look at those outfits. I also think, "Impossible." Why? Because they aren't real. I know the difference--and I write fantasy novels.

Jealous of their skinniness? They've been drawn. I could look like that, too, IF and ONLY IF I was done by the same guy who did Jessica Rabbit.

Just out of curiosity, what polls or surveys do you quote to substantiate your claim that usually the strongest protests come from "ugly, fat girls"? Do you have pictures? Do you have numbers? Or are you just being nasty without anything to back up your claim?

One last thing:
Ms. Lee says,
I find the feminine form very appealing and I’m not at all offended by that…

Oh, good. You'd be seriously messed up if you were offended by what you yourself find appealing.

Of course, maybe you believe comics women have genuine feminine forms. I don't know what art or biology classes you took to convince you of that, but if you took them, they weren't very good.

Comments

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morchades
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:00 am (UTC)
See, that's the point of using that particular personal attack. Not only does it completely misrepresent the original complaint, but it replaces it with an alternative that is so absurd that any onlookers can not help but be dismissive of it. Who would take a woman who is jealous of a comic book character seriously?

Personally, whenever I see that assumption I take it for the bold-faced lie it actually is rather than entertain the lack of logic.
tammy212
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:14 am (UTC)
>>Who would take a woman who is jealous of a comic book character seriously?<<

But what kind of rocket science major would actually believe that anyone would be jealous of a comic book character? I mean, are the guys jealous of GL, or Spidey, or Cap?

Oh, wait. Don't tell me.

>>Personally, whenever I see that assumption I take it for the bold-faced lie it actually is rather than entertain the lack of logic.<<

And here I was thinking she was either smoking some serious junk or seriously unwell, because I couldn't entertain that anyone would put that forward as a real proposition. As a lie it's just--tissue.
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morgan_dhu
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:11 am (UTC)
There are so many levels of wrongness here, and I think you've nailed most if not all of them to the wall.

By the way, if you haven't read it, I found a wonderful mind-scrubbing antidote for that cover the other day. It's a short story by Eleanor Arnason called "Big Black Mama and Tentacle Man," published in New Wyrd: A Wyrdsmiths Anthology (ordering info here), and it's a true delight.
skalja
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:14 am (UTC)
Oh my goodness, just reading that title makes me feel better.
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skalja
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:13 am (UTC)
Lordy, if you think it was bad reading it, you should have tried replaying that snippet over and over again to do the transcription for the girl-wonder thread.

... On second thought - don't try it.
tammy212
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:15 am (UTC)
>>... On second thought - don't try it.<<

I do believe I'll pass. I recommend cold compresses for you--that and a good, stiff drink. Maybe twelve.
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mstakenidentity
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:23 am (UTC)
hyper-sexualized, anatomically incorrect, over-inflated, fatally `roidally ripped, negative-ribbed, under-genitalized, nipple-less, balloon-breasted, spinally deformed, ball-jointed-backed, out-of-plumb, spider-ankled, football butted, collagen-pumped-lipped, shallow-socketed eyed, permanently-affixed made-up, uterus-, bladder- and colon-less, kelp-haired wild hair fantasy as ever came out of a creator/creatrix's sleep deprived imagination?

*applause*

Just out of curiosity, what polls or surveys do you quote to substantiate your claim that usually the strongest protests come from "ugly, fat girls"? Do you have pictures? Do you have numbers? Or are you just being nasty without anything to back up your claim?

I remember seeing a claim like this a few years ago on the door of a toilet cubicle at my univerity ("feminists are all fat, ugly women who are either dikes or, if they're straight, are too fat and ugly to get a man" etc.) I responded to it with "Hi, I'm a slim 5'3 woman in my early twenties with long blonde hair, a curvy figure and nicely toned muscles. I happen to have a boyfriend. I think I've a resonably attractive and fun personaility. Guess what? I'm a femenist. There are many of us around, all looking different. All unique." I was trying to illustrate a point, using myself as an example.

The next time I went into that cubicle somone had drawn an arrow from my "I'm a femenist" and written "And incredibly conceited, slut." *sigh*

We can't win.

tammy212
Jun. 9th, 2007 05:15 am (UTC)
>>We can't win.<<

But you did. You didn't have to resort to sexual slander to score a point. Virtue may not be satisfying, but it beats a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.

That's what I tell myself, anyway.
alexsirkman
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:28 am (UTC)
Hmmm... well, Misty Lee may be approaching some sort of point, asymptotically. To be fair to her, I haven't heard this podcast, or anything she's said before, but from the looks of it she's made her statement here in a way that she seems to know will make her seem...at least unthinking, and yet does it anyway.

The best spin I can see in her statement is some idea that people comfortable in their sexuality don't need to be uncomfortable with sexiness in comics...but she has to go and make that statement in juxtaposition with her charming mention of "ugly fat girls"; how can that not be seen as saying in some way "if you were attractive, you wouldn't be upset by looking at attractive people in comics"

Not to take up too much of the internet with my semi-exhausted ramblings, but thats just rude and insensitive, even if she didn't "mean" to say that- it's what she ended up saying. And as to jealousy...well, maybe some poor people out there do have the difficulty distinguishing between reality and fantasy that allows for that jealousy. But much more likely is that utter sense of reality, of this "female form" that Lee seems to like so much.

Maybe what bothers people so much about the women in many mainstream american comics is the lack of representation of real female forms. Where people draw women with waists so small they leave no room for internal organs, I remember those girls I pass on the street who look happy to be starving themselves into oblivion... the prevalence of unreal female body images in comics is like that in movies and tv and the rest of american pop culture. Being upset about those representations isn't about being uncomfortable with sexiness, or the female form, or being jealous of women drawn 'just right'. Its about being angry that the understanding of female body image has been so warped, controlled, and restricted... Its about being angry that you can rarely open up a mainstream comic and find women who look like women. Hell, if I was being drawn I would want to look good too. But Misty Lee, don't forget that looking good doesn't always mean looking like supergirl.
skalja
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:44 am (UTC)
Even your best spin of Misty Lee's statement conflates "sexiness in comics" with the particular, dominant mode of female sexiness as it is presented in comics today - i.e. not just male-oriented female sexiness but an oh-so-fractionally narrow window of it. And, in this mindset apparently one cannot complain and still be secure in oneself. Adam Hughes' comments a couple of minutes later were particularly charming in this regard, lest we put all the blame on Misty:

That's the thing, though. If somebody says, "I'm bothered by the way Victoria's Secret models look, selling their bras and their angel wings on television during Will and Grace," or whatever. Okay, do you take their words at face value, or do you ask them, "Hey look, are you really offended by that, or are you just bothered by the fact that these women are taller than you or thinner than you?"
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star_wizard
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:30 am (UTC)
>>the strongest and loudest protest over sexy things come from ugly fat girls

You know, this is one of my personal pet peeves. I was flipping channels on TV this evening and heard a similar remark - something along the lines of how ugly girls are the only ones who truly believe the most important beauty is on the inside.

I admit, I am willing to be jealous of comic book characters - but not for their appearances. I would love to fly, or jump really high or run really fast... but I do not, ever, want to look like any of those women (even if it WERE anatomically possible).

But I really, really, really hate the suggestion that only ugly, fat women care (and the suggestion that being fat makes one ugly).
mstakenidentity
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:44 am (UTC)
Right on.

Also, the idea that if I (or you, or anyone) cares I am therefore insecure in my own body image or sexuality. That one really riles me up.
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draconifers
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:31 am (UTC)
It appears she's referring to the skinny, huge-boobed-tiny-waisted when she says "I find the feminine form very appealing and I’m not at all offended by that…"

tammy212
Jun. 9th, 2007 05:32 am (UTC)
>>It appears she's referring to the skinny, huge-boobed-tiny-waisted when she says "I find the feminine form very appealing and I’m not at all offended by that…"<<

Then shouldn't she love the fat feminine form, too?
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chichiri_no_da
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:33 am (UTC)
Are we talking the same hyper-sexualized, anatomically incorrect, over-inflated, fatally `roidally ripped, negative-ribbed, under-genitalized, nipple-less, balloon-breasted, spinally deformed, ball-jointed-backed, out-of-plumb, spider-ankled, football butted, collagen-pumped-lipped, shallow-socketed eyed, permanently-affixed made-up, uterus-, bladder- and colon-less, kelp-haired wild hair fantasy as ever came out of a creator/creatrix's sleep deprived imagination?

I love you more and more with each passing day.
tammy212
Jun. 9th, 2007 05:33 am (UTC)
::blush::
kadymae
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:41 am (UTC)
Well, I'd love to have the White Tiger Amulet or a Green Lantern Ring and look as good as Angela Del Toro and Dr. Soranik Natu do in their unitards, but since they aren't real, and since NO BODY can do what they do, yeah, how can I be jealous?

In the mean time I'd like to submit the following picture of me dressed as my take on Poison Ivy for my membership in the 'ugly fat girl' club.

(I mean, I'm no size 6, but I think my 61bpm resting heart rate and 90/60 blood pressure are more accurate assessments of how 'fat' I am.)
kadymae
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:47 am (UTC)
(And I hope the above doesn't make me come off as horribly vain, but I consider myself neither ugly, nor fat, and even if I -- or another woman were -- it doesn't have anything to do with the validity an arguement.)
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furikku
Jun. 9th, 2007 04:49 am (UTC)
I definitely don’t think I compare to some of these comic book chicks - but that doesn’t mean that I don’t like to look at ‘em. I find the feminine form very appealing and I’m not at all offended by that…

Okay! Congrats! That doesn't mean they're not shoddily drawn. Honestly, magicians trying to be art critics...
superfinemind
Jun. 9th, 2007 05:10 am (UTC)
I think that's the most correct hyphens I've ever seen in a single paragraph. ^_^

I'm not entirely sure how to put this one. Speaking as a tall, skinny girl-- not slender, but skinny, my girlfriend is constantly on me to eat more and gain weight-- I'm occasionally confused and a little offended by the cries of "But that's impossible!" when it's a pose I've seen in my very own mirror with less exaggerated breasts (the best example is probably the Frank Miller Wonder Woman cover from last year, where the only problem I see with the anatomy is that corsets don't work that way with breasts)--

Well.

What I mean, I guess is that I do look like that, except for the breasts, and I'll grant the drooling fanboys that much to hold their attention from page to page. But it still doesn't make sense to me. I'm aware of what portion of the population looks like that, even a less-exaggerated version-- and, well, it's not ninety percent of women, as it is in comics. And you never hear anybody saying, "Supergirl, honey, have you eaten enough today? You look spacey." Nobody ever hears Power Girl say "Check out this great new top-- I never thought I'd find one that fit me so well!" These girls never have any of those problems. They don't have to put on a coat after meals, or wear an extra sweater in winter, because they've got no insulation.

That is what keeps them from being real women, for me.

Also:

I find the feminine form very appealing
This sounds to me like she's saying, "Look, I am bi/gay, that means I'm liberated, so I'm a feminist too!"
...and I’m not at all offended by that…
"...So if you wanna be a cool kid like me, stop complaining and I'll see you at the casting call for Comic Fangirls Gone Wild!"
opheliastorn
Jun. 10th, 2007 09:19 am (UTC)
I have two friends who're the same - one actually got pulled up by the counsellor at school because some of the faculty thought he was anorexic, when he'd been trying for a year or so to gain weight. But really, I don't understand how skinny comic girls can fly around like they do and not turn into popsicles in what they wear. If I were them, I'd be the Amazing Flying Duvet Girl.
mariness
Jun. 9th, 2007 05:31 am (UTC)
Well, in some fairness to the argument, I would like the ability to fly. Or teleport. Teleporting would be awesome. And gain the ability to control cats so that they stop leaving dead lizards in my bed. Although I suspect the last one is just me.

Jealous of the breasts, though, no. It's difficult enough finding a bra as it is. Can you imagine the hell of finding a 26 EE cup?
tammy212
Jun. 9th, 2007 05:37 am (UTC)
>>And gain the ability to control cats so that they stop leaving dead lizards in my bed. Although I suspect the last one is just me.<<

No, but forget that one. There is not comic book writer in the world who could believably write that one. The cat would just walk off the page. I have six, and I know.

>>Can you imagine the hell of finding a 26 EE cup?<<
Yikers. That sucks.
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lost_angelwings
Jun. 9th, 2007 06:50 am (UTC)
Her logic would then dictate that:

a) men who freaked out about the bulge in Citizen Steel's pants are "small" down there

b) African-Americans who are offended by racist portrayals of African-Americans are just jealous that they aren't gang-banging, criminal savages >.>

c) Misty Lee's annoyance at "ugly fat girls" just shows her jealousy of "ugly fat girls" and her desire to be one XD

>.>;;

And on and on :D
cocoskeeper
Jun. 9th, 2007 12:51 pm (UTC)
Yeah! I think Misty Lee just wants to pack on the pounds and the uglies! ;-D I'm in total agreement with your rational, Lost Angelwings! :-D
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iqeret
Jun. 9th, 2007 07:44 am (UTC)
So… was there an actual valid argument or POV in that quote that I blinked and missed? Because I'd like to know why she was bothering to blather on like this in this first place.

But what I find intriguing is her choice of vocabulary. What does it really say about her own concept of self that she uses the word 'broad' to describe herself?
tammy212
Jun. 9th, 2007 12:24 pm (UTC)
>>But what I find intriguing is her choice of vocabulary. What does it really say about her own concept of self that she uses the word 'broad' to describe herself?<<

"Broad" . . . minded! Yeah! That's the ticket! Broad minded! Uh-huh!
mechanicaljewel
Jun. 9th, 2007 08:34 am (UTC)
In order to provide a balanced counterpoint to Ms. Lee's statement--

I am a bisexual female. I love tits. Seriously, I'm a tit woman. Big ones, too. I also adore a well-shaped ass and toned thighs. My response/message to the "manstream" comics industry:

Stop exploiting the women I love!!! Stop turning the form I find beautiful into something ridiculous and ugly for a quick buck.

And the next time I read the fucking "well there's still a market for it" argument, I will punch whatever unfortunate individual is nearest to me. There's a market for goddamn everything. The Internet has proven that. NAMBLA fucking proves that. That there is a market for it is not reason enough to cater to it.

Pornography has its place in society. But when porn comics publishers look at an image from a mainstream comic and say "Holy shit, I would never publish that," then there is a problem.

And to Mr. Joe "I have a daughter" Quesada: Did you ever once think about your daughter when reviewing the cover solicits? Did you think of how she would feel about HfH #13? About how your approval of that cover reflects on you as her father?

Shit, I'm pissed. And for the record, I've been stopped by legit modeling scouts a few times, so there one strike against "all ugly fat chicks" hypothesis.
gypsyliz
Jun. 9th, 2007 12:07 pm (UTC)
Wordy McWord. Especially about the "there's a market for it" argument - very well phrased.
stephendann
Jun. 9th, 2007 09:48 am (UTC)
the strongest and loudest protest over sexy things come from ugly fat girls

I find myself confused to realise that I've been living a lie. I thought I was a pasty white thin white boy. Now apparently I've been outed as having lived a lie.

Man, I am so confused right now.
tammy212
Jun. 9th, 2007 12:26 pm (UTC)
>>Man, I am so confused right now.<<

There, there. ::patting stephendann on the back in a supportive way:: There are organizations that can help you.
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gypsyliz
Jun. 9th, 2007 12:05 pm (UTC)
Every time I hear arguments like this I want to hit the offending person over the head with a copy of Naomi Wolf's "The Beauty Myth". While screaming repeatedly - those. aren't. depictions. of. REAL. women! Those aren't *real* feminine forms. And STOP thinking it's ok to draw us like that and call it real! I'm also going to hurt the next person I hear say the phrase "ugly fat girls". Me and MechanicalJewel can form a club.

You, once again, Tammy, rock my socks.
tammy212
Jun. 14th, 2007 10:22 pm (UTC)
>>Every time I hear arguments like this I want to hit the offending person over the head with a copy of Naomi Wolf's "The Beauty Myth". While screaming repeatedly - those. aren't. depictions. of. REAL. women! Those aren't *real* feminine forms. And STOP thinking it's ok to draw us like that and call it real!<<

I don't think they're listening. I think, like Odysseus, they've stuffed their ears with wax so they won't hear the Sirens of Reason and Intellect.

>> I'm also going to hurt the next person I hear say the phrase "ugly fat girls". Me and MechanicalJewel can form a club. <<

I actually recommend a Louisville Slugger over a club. Better performance record.
cocoskeeper
Jun. 9th, 2007 12:46 pm (UTC)
It's the same with Barbie dolls. Some women don't like children--especially little girls--getting the idea that Barbie dolls and female comic superheros are what a woman's body is *supposed to* look like. Adults know better. A lot of little girls don't.

Personally, I played with Barbies and read X-Men, dreaming I could look like Storm. I knew better.

Some folks just need something to complain about--even if they, themselves, are *attractive* and *thin*. (I'm somewhat attractive and fat, so I'm not talking about moi. And even though I'm fat, I'm still not complaining--must be the somewhat attractive in me... ;-D )
tammy212
Jun. 14th, 2007 10:24 pm (UTC)
>>A lot of little girls don't.
<<

I think I figured it out when I couldn't make my feet stay like that. ;-)
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mrsfrankenstien
Jun. 9th, 2007 01:16 pm (UTC)
Quite apart from the ridiculous "ugly fat girls" argument, I honestly just find it odd that Misty Lee thinks she doesn't look like a comic book heroine. Because she really is like the real-life Zatanna.
misatokatsuragi
Jun. 9th, 2007 03:01 pm (UTC)
Do a web-search for 'Madame Mirage.' She's a new character that Top Cow is doing a series for. Paul Dini admits that his wife, Misty Lee, is a strong inspiration for finally writing the Madame Mirage book. Then do a search for Misty Lee herself. Compare the pictures... Suspicious!
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paradisacorbasi
Jun. 9th, 2007 01:24 pm (UTC)
Not like "fat" or "ugly" are objective.

I mean there are women and men who will consider a woman fat at 105 lbs.

There are women and men who consider Paris Hilton beautiful. I think she's freakish looking with her long neck and thin lips.

There are people who think Grace Jones is ugly, but I think she's exotic and lovely.

So it's not only mean and nasty, but profoundly arrogant to say the people who disagree with her are fat and ugly like it's an incontrovertible fact. Because Ms. Lee [and wouldn't she just be pissed off if we all started calling her Mrs. Dini] is not the arbiter of what defines fat or ugly, and it's just hubris to think so.

But I gues we can't expect much better from a woman who dresses like Zatanna.

timeliebe
Jun. 11th, 2007 02:52 pm (UTC)
Hey, I LIKE Zantanna! At least you don't catch her making snide remarks in a public forum about how people look.

Pity her taste in men (Terence Thirteen, anyone?) is excerable,

Best,
Tim
I'm with her

lisaatneptune
Jun. 9th, 2007 05:27 pm (UTC)
Join our grass roots movement to fix the current comic book industry by getting more women and minorities involved in owning stores and publishing houses, creating comics, editing comics and reading comics. We call it POWER in Comics.
lisaatneptune
Jun. 10th, 2007 04:09 am (UTC)
POWER in Comics Community
OK. Trying the link ONE MORE TIME
POWER in comics: http://powerincomics.ning.com
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gngrmyrsn
Jun. 9th, 2007 10:23 pm (UTC)
Thanks for taking Mrs. Dini's deeply weird statements apart. I don't know what makes a woman say such crazy things, but maybe someday there'll be a cure. Oh, and it's not about our looks; it's about our thinking.
tammy212
Jun. 12th, 2007 05:27 pm (UTC)
>>Oh, and it's not about our looks; it's about our thinking.<<

EXACTLY!
ponygirl118
Jun. 10th, 2007 03:28 am (UTC)
Ye know, the "female form" I saw on that cover doesn't actually look like any of the female forms that I've seen (and lusted over) were (and are) NOTHING like those. Howsabout we see a female form who looks like someone I (or any other person) see on any day.
tammy212
Jun. 10th, 2007 01:08 pm (UTC)
>>Howsabout we see a female form who looks like someone I (or any other person) see on any day.<<

Ponygirl, my friend, many of us have asked this selfsame question, and gotten back only noise from the Big Two. We persevere.
sixth_illusion
Jun. 10th, 2007 03:47 am (UTC)
I couldn't help but notice that she says protests about "sexy things" come from "ugly fat girls". Perhaps she doesn't realise that "sexy" is in itself objective... (This also goes for the 'feminine form') Everyone has a different definition of that... I like plump girls better than thin girls. It's all a matter of opinion.

tammy212
Jun. 10th, 2007 01:07 pm (UTC)
>>Perhaps she doesn't realise that "sexy" is in itself objective... (This also goes for the 'feminine form') <<

I think there are whole archipelaoes of things this woman doesn't realize, but this is definitely one of them!
allaboutm_e
Jun. 10th, 2007 03:09 pm (UTC)
Okay, I've started three or four responses, and am unable to articulate my feelings of outrage accurately, but ICK!

:: steaming ::
tammy212
Jun. 12th, 2007 05:26 pm (UTC)
>>but ICK! <<

ICK! works . . .
(no subject) - filkferengi - Jun. 13th, 2007 06:03 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - tammy212 - Jun. 13th, 2007 06:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - filkferengi - Jun. 13th, 2007 07:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - tammy212 - Jun. 15th, 2007 12:29 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - filkferengi - Jun. 15th, 2007 01:43 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - tammy212 - Jun. 15th, 2007 10:41 pm (UTC) - Expand
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