However, whenever something that comes out to challenge this… its always the same cishet men who make this claim who also cry about a male character not meeting their expectations.
That’s because, unsurprisingly given that they’re usually designed by men, those supposedly exploitative images are generally made by men, for men to fulfil not just their fantasy of power but also of being some weird form of hyper masculinity.
Appealing to women is not a priority they actually care about, only the fantasy that their ideal would definitely get them laid. Many don’t allow themselves to consider if its appealing to men-loving-men… and well, they certainly don’t think about nonbinary people or anyone on the asexual spectrum.
Of course, if you read this blog, you almost certainly already knew these guys only thing about themselves – but I thought you’d enjoy the hilarity of them telling on themselves so spectacularly.
So I’ve been listening to a new podcast, it’s a pair of women talking about topics dear to their hearts: Dungeons & Dragons and Feminism.
Obviously as its a podcast they have less visual element (though they do an excellent job in describing key points) but I felt this one was particularly relevant since it included them talking about some academic studies done on the gender related trends in the art of Dungeons & Dragons.
I highly recommend checking out the podcast and giving them a follow on their twitter. Among other things, they also post their sources so you can review for yourself.
They upload at the start of the month, and are currently polishing up their latest recording so now is a great time to drop in and give them some encouragement.
As it approaches Cult Classic status, its worth thinking about how Jennifer’s Body is both a brilliant deconstruction of gender in horror but (sadly to its box office detriment) a great example of the old notion of sex sells doesn’t just fail to generate sales, it actively harms many productions.
The movie was horribly misrepresented in marketing, largely because the studio was convinced the only reason anyone would want to see a Megan Fox movie was to ogle her body. That is: They assume all decisions about whether a movie is worth watching are made by developmentally stunted cishet men (the only demographic who wouldn’t work out there were plenty of places you could already ogle Megan… largely due to movie studios).
Despite what overpaid executives in suits who paid someone to do their exams for them will tell you, nobody actually benefits from the proliferation of this sort of marketing.
People interested in feminist themes don’t get works containing them identified as such to them
People wanting to watch stuff not about conventionally attractive women have to search to find out what things are actually about
Mandalorians are trained in many forms of combat, such as the battle bikini rubber spine style.
(Cover of Escape From Monster Island #1, Zenescope Entertainment)
Okay, now we’ve all recovered from the psychic damage caused by this… not-anatomy, I’d like to make matters worse. This is the “cosplay variant” cover which I guess means its “inspired” by a cosplayer… possibly in the same creepy manner J Scott Campbell was with some of his personal artworks.
In order to find out who they did this to, I had to do a worrying amount of searching: It’s Leeana Vamp (who I have met in person and can confirm, she is very lovely) cosplay of Boba Fett, lingerie version specifically:
Now that may not be all of it – because early in the searches my first thought was that based on the face and hair, it was inspired this is the cosplay by Lauren Browne and was very confused why they’d altered her outfit so much and removed her tattoos.
That’s because in a lot of Vamp’s cosplay pics, she’s wearing pants (conventions are usually family friend events) and the helmet… because Boba Fett; and Lauren just happens to look a little more like Generic J Scott Campbell Paul Green Babe.
It’s almost impossible to match a “likeness” with in individual using this “style” typical of companies like Zenescope, which take objectifying women to new levels. Neither Zenescope, nor the artist himself gives any vague credit to any cosplayer.
And he has a whole calendar of this shit that Zenescope is selling (note, this artwork was from 2016 ):ites, he doesn’t follow groups run by cosplayers – he looks at those creepy as fuck “sexy cosplay girls” sites/groups that don’t credit the models and are avoided by cosplayers because of the comments sections.
And he has a whole calendar of this shit that Zenescope is selling (note, this artwork was from 2016 and the current year is 2021):
The key consideration on this work is why is the armor and why the specific placement and design of the armor? Why this design? Particularly if its a more complicated design than regular armor.
Anzogh has a ridiculous cow skull on his belt, and a strap across his chest, bone bracelets to emphasise how little he has – it conveys that his is powerful and needs none of the convenience of civilization (like armor). Sometimes these characters have massive pauldrons to give them a more menacing silhouette
Saoirse has armor on her arms, and bits of her legs, the gaps in her armor are not to show power or independence, but to showcase her body from tits to hips. It’s to assure you that despite these weapons, her age and being on the battlefield… she’s got it going on. Generally when characters like this get shoulder, hip or thigh armor it’s to accentuate their hips and frame their torso pleasingly.
Fuck Activision-Blizzard and anyone who looks like ‘em
Fuck ’em with a cactus
If you follow news regarding video games, or anything vaguely relating to feminism you’ll be aware that in the last few months there’s been numerous outings of video game developers running their offices as some sort of hellscape where white men are encouraged to act on worst impulses.
Content warnings for racism, sexual harassment mention of suicide
Charges include a massive amount general harassment and truly horrifying behaviour including, but not limited to:
One employee feeling so harassed she committed suicide on a work trip where she had to accompany her main harasser – who also brought sex toys on that work trip.
Having a “Bill Cosby” suite at conventions which was a hotel room that existed primarily for managers (including a HR manager) to offer a lot of booze to attractive female con goers in the hopes of then coercing them into sex.
Harassing a Black woman employee to the extent she was required to write a one page essay explaining what she would do with the leave she was entitled to, before they would consider approving it.
“But I’m not under oath, so can I lie?” – Quantic Dream co-CEO Guillaume de Fondaumière
David Cage also reported threw a tantrum in the court because he felt it was impinging on his honour. Try imagining working at a place where the man in charge, who famously doesn’t keep promises (cw: Elliot Page deadnamed due to old article here), does that sort of thing when called out. Yeah.
So if you’ve ever wondered why we’re sceptical of claims that “x is actually a great place to work” or “well it wasn’t proven so those reports of employee abuse can’t be trusted” statements – now you know.
The worst part is these are just the biggest companies, which have had the most public outings of their abuse – thousands of reports of abuse by others have been surfacing in the wake of these stories.
Most heart-breaking of all are the women who talk about having experienced these companies, or just the wider industry, first hand they couldn’t bring themselves to be surprised or shocked.
This isn’t just video games. This isn’t just the entertainment industry. This is every industry where people are told they’re “lucky” to work there and become beholden to the whims of parasitic corporate shitlords who are used to getting away with everything.
There are, of course, also a staggering number of other abuses such as crunch, labour exploitation, and tax avoidance… such is the world we live in.
– wincenworks &~Ozzie
Okay Google… show me what happens when Nier: Automata imagery gets to outright fetish levels….
This is why we don’t trust explanations for why female protagonists have to have convoluted sexy costumes…. because if nothing else it means that they’ve decided they’re comfortable with making that a cornerstone of their brand.
And… I don’t even know what to do with this except cringe.