We need to talk

Well we don’t really, these concerns are covered in the FAQ but since we’re still getting the outrage for our noble work – let’s have some fun!

Bring out contestant number one! Sorry, I already forgot your name!

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Firstly I (the straight cis man known as wincenworks) love the assumption that it’s only women who are enjoying our Sexy Male Armor Fridays because a fairly hefty proportion of them are made by and for gay or otherwise queer men.  It actually takes quite a bit of work to find them even on video game mod sites and art sites.

Meanwhile all I have to do to see women being objectified is open up Steam or visit my local comic book shop.  It’s everywhere. In everything. It’s the predominant image of heroines and strong female characters.

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So to answer your question, when we ever start to reach a reality where male characters aren’t considered worthwhile unless they conform to a very narrow beauty standard then we can start worrying about objectification of men.  If that ever happens and isn’t immediately backpedaled over.

And now for our second concerned citizen! Sorry I forgot who you are too.

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I can only assume this refers to one or more of the many “empowered” jokes that we make both on sexy male armor posts and others.  This because the fallacy that it is somehow a power fantasy for women to conform to ridiculously demanding and implausible beauty standards.

High heels, thongs, push-up bras the flaunt cleavage, bared belly buttons and bedroom eyes often aren’t even used to to signal heightened sexuality in a female character – they’re just there as some sort of a “be sexy so boys will like you, remember you’re empowered” uniform. The top priority is still making straight men feel the character is made for them in particular.

Various media love spins of trying to excuse hypersexualizing women such as weaponized femininity,  "she’s so powerful“ and a whole bunch of other things.  But very rarely does it have anything to do female characters actually having power, doing what they want and not conforming to society’s demanding expectations.

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James Bond gets to be powerful, sexy and use his sexual appeal to get what he wants too.  But he also gets to do it while wearing awesome suits,having a charming personality and doing lots of things just because he wants to (as well as his super cool job).  Not many female characters get this kind of opportunity.

So really it’s not that there’s not a relationship between sex and power, it’s just there’s a very limited relationship between hypersexualized female armor and power.

– wincenworks

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