But, but I was assured that outfit was a symbol of empowerment!
Clearly the problem is that even a galaxy far, far away is not ready for this much awesome.
My most popular post has received a lot of arguments lately, so I figured I’d respond to the most common points people bring up.
to get a general gist of Queen Jamillia’s and Oola’s screen time, here are the scripts for Attack of the Clones (Jamillia is in 359 word scene) and Return of the Jedi (Oola is in scenes that add up to 275 words)
With The Force Awakens premiere approaching, let’s remember that sexualized image of (very scarce) female characters in Star Wars movies so far was never really justified with anything more than the creator’s decision.
Slave Leia outfit is not what empowered the character (or the actress), it was her in-story motivations and personality. And let’s be completely honest: what made that costume a “slave” outfit (and, incidentally, what assisted princess in killing Jabba) was the chain attached to her collar, not the arbitrary metal bikini.
So this rumor has been circulating wildly and creating a lot of discussion, and we weren’t really jumping on it simply for the fact that the gold bikini of Leia the Huttslayer is not even vaguely armor.
However, this happened:
Yes, J Scott Campbell is deeply concerned that he will no longer get paid to draw sexy Leia. Why?
Because despite being an artist in the comics industry for nearly as long as Daisy Ridley (who’ll be playing the female lead in the upcoming movie) has been alive, he still can’t draw any woman any way that’s not hypersexualized. That’s it, his whole bag of tricks he’s acquired from twenty-two years of working as a professional artist in comics and merchandise.
So I’m not going to shed any tears for yet another tacky statue of Leia in a deliberately degrading costumes that she was forced into against her will (yet so often depicted as posing like a pinup model).
I’m going to first cry for all the great comic projects that might have been but were cast aside in favor of yet another J Scott Campbell pin-up. That and all the comics that were never read because the editor hired J Scott Campbell to present them as softcore porn (especially in cover art).
If the rumor is true and Disney is stopping this kind of production, it’s worth celebrating simply because it signals a decades overdue change: Companies considering that maybe tacky hypersexualized imagery doesn’t sell everything.
Maybe compelling plots, great storytelling and interesting characters do.
As a side note, even if Disney officially announces “ban” on licensing Slave Leia merch, it won’t all be gone overnight. Let’s not act as if we didn’t have a surplus of official Star Wars bikini products for over 30 years.
Maybe, just maybe, realize for once that it’s time that demand for different depictions of Leia was met. Because many of her fans can testify how hard to get that sort of merch always was compared to slave-themed ones.
Disney’s push to restore Leia’s image as something else than sexual object should be welcomed.
And if you ever need new post-ban slave-kini products, fanart and bootlegs will always be around. Or, you know, you can stop complaining and make one yourself 😉