Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

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In Mother Jones: Supergirls Gone Wild: Gender Bias In Comics Shortchanges Superwomen.

In the late ’90s, Simone started keeping track of plot twists in which supervillains would rape or brutalize female characters on her website, Women in Refrigerators. (The name refers to one particularly gruesome incident; see “When Bad Things Happen to Superpeople,” above.) Now an entire universe of feisty feminist fan sites has appeared, including When Fangirls Attack and online columns such as “Girls Read Comics (And They’re Pissed).” They’ve identified trends such as “porn face,” one male artist’s habit of drawing every female character with the same faking-an-orgasm expression. And they’ve added an estrogen-fueled spin to their passion for minutiae: Is the female leader of the Mighty Avengers really in charge, or is she just a figurehead? Why doesn’t Wonder Woman know how to pump gas? Did Spider-Man’s radioactive sperm really kill his wife?

Lately, they’ve been focusing their powers of deconstruction on Supergirl, Superman’s underage cousin. After spending decades as the Man of Steel’s blond, bland counterpart, she was recently recast as jailbait, trading her long-sleeved top and cheerleader skirt for a midriff-baring micro-costume (supposedly designed by Superman’s Midwestern stepmom). Bloggers diligently dissected every up-skirt image of the new Supergirl gone wild, who seemed to spend more time flaunting ass than kicking it. In response to the bad buzz, in January Supergirl editor Eddie Berganza issued an open letter to his female readers. “Women,” he began, “Who needs them? Well, actually…I do.” He begged the “ladies” to “give Supergirl a shot,” explaining that he’d gotten a “woman’s point of view” on the character from a female assistant editor. He also promised that Supergirl would gain some weight and would date a “mimbo” who was as much of a mindless pinup as she was.

Your embarrassingly cheesecake illustration of the embarrassingly cheesecake modern Supergirl is included free of charge.

Written by gerrycanavan

August 9, 2007 at 6:30 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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