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PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion

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76 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:51 am

Joshua

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Remember the midgets in The Killing Joke? Midgets are funny.

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77 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:54 am

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WTF is WiR?


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78 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:58 am

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Silent K wrote:WTF is WiR?
We do have a main site. tongue


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79 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 12:10 pm

Joshua

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See? Hilarious. (Probably NSFW)

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80 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 3:47 pm

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I remember buying The Killing Joke on the day it came out. At that time I knew I was about to read something differnt, something unlike most of the comics I am used to reading. 1988 was a time when the term "Graphic Novel" was exactly that. A "Graphic Novel" in 1988 was a special story that was either too big or on a more mature level or both and could not be contained in the regular series. The store I bought The Killing Joke from would not even sell the book to minors.

When I got to the part where Barbara got shot, it was a shock to my system. The thing that was going through my mind was, "Well, if Barbara isn't safe, then how safe is Gordon going to be?" I became more concered for the characters, that bullet in Barbara made it plain and clear that this was defnitly a game changing book, the rules I had known about reading comics had been broken now. I became more intrested in reading this new rule breaking story.

The week after when I returned to the comic shop, we had a discussion about TKJ and how it changed the world of comics for us. This was a discussion between 5 teenage boys. Not a single one of us saw what happend to Barbara as a crime against women, as a matter of fact, it was never even brought up. We saw it as a bold move by DC to let Alan Moore do that to a long standing character. We became more intrested in finding out what was going to happen to her after this, we added the Batman titles to our pull list to continue the story of "what happens next."

Meg, it is fine that you see TKJ as an example of misogyny, but to be honest, what about the treatment of Gordon in the book, to not only see your daughter get shot, but to also become humilated by being forced naked as well as being subjected to viewing pictures of your daughter naked lying on the floor with a bullet wound and not knowing she is alive is a mental distress no parent should go through.

You are entitled to your opionin Meg, but I am entitled to say that you are very offbase on this.

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81 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 3:49 pm

Ok I listened to the Princess cast and here's some more thoughts.

Jason Todd was hit from behind, beaten with a crowbar, with the Joker questioning his sexuality and psychologically breaking him down. There was nothing heroic about his death.

Again, Barbara looks the most heroic to me out of any character in the Killing Joke for the reasons I stated earlier.

The treatment of minorities and women IS a problem in comics as well as all entertainment medium. My problem with most of the people that focus on the issue is their narrow focus on DC. It just seems like front running on an issue.

Kerouac had a huge point that I think has gone uncommented on, and that the point of ancillary characters is to move the story of main characters on. Female or minority characters for the most part can't carry their own books, so they are relegated to this role. Violence against them is going to happen, because in proportion females and minorities are more supporting characters than headliners. This doesn't excuse the behavior, but explains the reason why it does happen. For every example of something horrible happening to a female or minority supporting cast member, there is a correlating one of a white male protestant one. It's unfortunately all about numbers.

Also the issue of costume ripping was brought up. You definitely have a point there. Again it goes to the fascination with the female form. There it's a problem with society as a larger picture. Comics need to sell. If a female character is in battle and her costume is ripped, the more compelling and marketable image is one of a rip near her breasts or genitalia. If a guy's costume is ripped, it's really hard to get one near the penis that would be titillating without getting censors all aggro about it.


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82 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 4:52 pm

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Man, I would kill for the crotch in Superman's costume to tear open and we get to see some Kryptonian dong flopping about. Penises=comedy. It's science.

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83 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 5:47 pm

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Wow. This is a pretty heated topic. I'm not sure I totally disagree with Meg on this. As much as I think TKJ is a very good Joker story, I wonder if Alan Moore could have gotten to the same place without going as far as he did with Barbara Gordon. Yes, it wouldn't have been as shocking but the question is could he have done it? On the other hand, I wonder if Meg would have had as much trouble with the story if instead of Barbara opening the door, it had been Jim Gordon who got shot and paralyzed and stripped and had photos taken of him. Would that had made the story better for you?

Another thing I am curious about is are you angry at the specifics of what happened to Barbara Gordon or just the fact that it happened at all? I ask because when you look at other examples of violence against women in comics, there are much worse examples than this. Look at the "The Boys" for example. The first issue alone has one of the main character's girlfriend getting killed by having her arms accidently ripped off by a speedster. In another issue, a new female superhero who is trying to join a super group has to blow each of the male heroes to be allowed membership. Where's the hate for this title?

I guess I'm curious as to what you hope to see in the comics you read.

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84 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 9:36 pm

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Gentlemen..you won't and can never get it. Meg speaks from a POV that we can never understand. Whether you see misogyny or not isn't the point. She does. That’s it. Just as from my perspective (being Latino) I see racism where other folks won't. A little news flash there is quite a bit of it in comics (see JMS' Superman).

So the best we can do is listen and respect her viewpoint and understand that there is now way we can feel how she feels about it.


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85 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 10:07 pm

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Mnemosis wrote:I REALLY hate to poke the sleeping bear, but:

Then by all means, lets. Wink

Mnemosis wrote:
Because they were supporting characters/loved ones to the male leads, and there needed to be a dramatic punch to the gut of the male lead, and so the supporting cast member/loved one was killed off. It's simple statistics and logic. Does it suck? Sure, I guess. But it's not misogyny. It's story telling, working with what exists.

A death that moves a character along on his path can be fine, but there is a qualitative difference in the violence that's done against a character. In most cases, the violence is done to a woman and she's depicted as being helpless & hopeless without the presence of the heroic character. Often times, like with TKJ, the violence takes on sexual and degrading undertones. That's what the issue is. It's not "No woman shall ever be harmed" or "No character's death should effect/provoke the main character's actions," but it's a matter of how that woman is depicted reacting or adapting to that violence. The majority of portrayals show them crying, weak and ineffectual. Male supporting characters are usually depicted as "going down fighting" or some other kind of face-saving activity.

Mnemosis wrote:
I'm not even listing Barbara, because her being shot as a loved one of a leading character was the same as Jason Todd being killed as the loved one of a leading character. Neither saved the day. Both were unceremoniously put down by the Joker as a means for a writer to effect change within the life of the leading character - Batman. Whether you like TKJ or not is totally a matter of personal opinion. I've never read it, personally. Didn't care to. But the point is, this is why supporting characters exist - to create drama within the lives of the leads. The lion's share of supporting characters are women, because the lion's share of established leads are men.

So yes, you're absolutely right when you say something like "This sort of thing happens to female characters more often than male characters" but you're not considering why.

It's statistics. Not misogyny.

Yes, statistically there are more female support characters than males, and we all know why. Just because something is statistically true doesn't make it fair, just or "right." Just because 46% of all prison inmates are black isn't doesn't mean that there's not a deep inequity going on here that should be addressed. I'd like to think that the lack of strong female and minority leads in comics is something that's seen as a problem that should be addressed. If it is, the shrugging shoulders and going "Stats!" doesn't help anything, and makes it sound like this is an irreparable problem. This is fiction, and fiction is created by writers and readers (by their effect on the marketplace). The first step to correcting a problem is saying "Hey, this is a problem." That's what this whole discussion is about and it seems like a majority of the responses just boil down to "This is not a problem." Hiding behind stats and the difference between main and support characters isn't particularly fair. It's being deliberately obtuse because it seems like on some level something we like is being threatened. It's not. If it's no big deal if it happens to a male character, then why *not* have it happen to a male character? If there were more strong female characters and less things happened to paint the ones we do have as dumb, clumsy, ineffectual without a man, prone to sexual violence or just used as "the love interest," then I think people would be happier. As it stands, that's not the case, and the imbalance in statistics is significant and not something that should just be dismissed as the cost of doing business.

Mnemosis wrote:
Remember, before the Green Goblin ever snapped Gwen Stacy's neck, Uncle Ben ate a bullet just so Peter could learn a lesson about responsibility. He wasn't being a hero. He was just serving his purpose as stage dressing. To imply that female supporting characters should be above that, simply because there's been more of them over the years, is asking for special treatment in the name of equality, which has always confounded me to no end.

Uncle Ben was a half-formed allegory character used to teach Peter a lesson. Yes, his death puts Peter on the path to heroism, but that is entirely his job. He is stage dressing, you're right.

Gwen was an established character that had been around for years. Out of nowhere, she's plucked up off panel, killed why laying there defenseless. She does nothing for herself and her years of development and interaction just ends with a "Yeah, she's dead," and it exists and happens to only make Peter miserable and create problems for him. It's an established character being balled up and thrown in the trash without so much of a "by your leave." It's a situation that happens a lot of the time to female characters when they are killed off. There's a qualitative story-telling difference there, especially given how long a supporting character exists. If a villain walked into Wayne Manor and put a bullet in Alfred's head, no matter how great a story you'd tell about that drama and conflict that happened after the fact it'd still be considered a giant waste of a character. If there was a big event that Alfred played a major part in and he died defusing a bomb that could've leveled Gotham, while it would still be a loss of a great character, he would've died heroically and with dignity. In almost all cases, female supporting characters are not given the second option. Male supporting characters are often not dealt with in the first option. Recognizing that and saying "Hey, that's something that we should correct" isn't asking for "special treatment:" it's asking to correct a gross inequality, and if that means not killing off a character in a callous, excessively violent or degrading way that shouldn't be seen as such a chore.

If the gross majority of black characters were depicted as criminals or gays as prancing queens or latinos as illegal immigrants or asians as glasses-wearing math nerds with glasses in the same way that female characters are treated as violence prone props to propel a superior male character along on his journey, wouldn't you want steps taken to change that? Is asking for that change such a challenge that should be argued so vehemently?

Mnemosis wrote:
Next month, we can introduce Tony Stark's long lost brother, whom he can bond with, so that the next time we need to hurt Iron Man, we can attack a male instead of a female.

Male or female, it's bad storytelling and makes for a crappy character. The character your describing in this situation is more often than not labeled "girlfriend." And yeah, that's part of the problem.

Mnemosis wrote:
And I honestly believe that, if the tables were turned and the majority of long established leads in comic books were females, their male supporting cast members would be the ones in constant peril.

And that would still be wrong, especially if you switch around the amount of historical unchecked abuse and subjugation that women have been victim to over the course of human history. Another big part of the problem is that the continued use of these roles (and mainly *only* these roles) for women in fiction only reinforces & and echoes that kind of historical oppression, and sets it up as an acceptable status quo. That's what a big part of the issue is: identifying that this is something that goes on and that it's wrong. This whole thread is full of "This isn't a problem that's happening" or "This is happening but it's not a problem." That's a pretty sad state of affairs, IMO.

Big Poppa Nick wrote:I understand some fans outrage against what happened to Barbara, but lets be honest, It's not the worst violence in even a Bat-book.

I'd be interested to see what you have that's more than being gun-shot out of nowhere, stripped naked and photographed, especially to a character that'd been around for more than 40 years.

Big Poppa Nick wrote:
Jason Todd was a teenager. DC put up a public vote on whether to kill off a teenage boy, and then did so in the most violent and mocking way possible. Jason Todd had no redemption, and still hasn't to this day. He's been shown to have been broken by the experience, where as Barbara has grown, adapted, and dare I say been a stronger character since her tragedy. I'm not excusing the initial violence, so much as saying that the handling of her since then has been superior than what Jason Todd has gotten.

Barbara Gordon has the most heroic moment in The Killing Joke IMHO, as she is in the hospital, just having been crippled by the Joker, and her concern is for her father and not herself. She doesn't come close to breaking, as her father does, and she doesn't sit there yucking it up with someone who has caused so much violence and death in his life like Bruce does.

There's hardly any heroism in a women showing concern for another character, especially when it implys that the other character is more important and reinforces a "maternal/support" role that's generally considered a "good trait" in a female character.

Big Poppa Nick wrote:
DC doesn't even have the worst treatment of female characters in comics, where I'll say that Marvel does. Two of the worst cases of violence against women come from someone who I've liked for a long time: Kevin Smith. What he does to Karen Page and more recently the Black Cat, IMHO is inexcusable. I also didn't see female fans doing crazy over Angel's origin in New X-Men. I really have a problem with people calling out DC on their treatment of women in comics when they don't really discuss either of these two instances. Marvel's female characters are treated far worse than DC's, and to me it's sad that the DC stuff gets more attention because those characters are more popular.

Yeah, those are a lot of instances of female characters getting degraded and basically being used for target practice. It's not a Marvel vs DC contest, it's about comics on the whole. Witrh all of the examples out there, why is it that we're still arguing over whether there's a problem or not (which, let's face it, most of these arguments are). We're talking about DC because the topic was TKJ.

Big Poppa Nick wrote:Ok I listened to the Princess cast and here's some more thoughts.

Jason Todd was hit from behind, beaten with a crowbar, with the Joker questioning his sexuality and psychologically breaking him down. There was nothing heroic about his death.

He was in costume, actively going out there to find and rescue his mother. If I'm not mistaken, he even manages to get a hit on the Joker and his henchmen before he gets beaten nearly to death. Then, after the Joker leaves, he unties his mother and carries her most of the way to safety (despite the fact the door was locked). That's almost about as heroic as you can get, and would be considered by some to be the epitome of pro-masculine tough-guy-ism. He's nearly critically injured and he overcomes it to try to carry a loved one to safety, disregarding his own health and well-being.

Barbara opened a door and got shot, in civilian clothes, with no way to defend herself. She didn't lift a finger in her own defense and is entirely degraded and powerless with no way to fight back. That she asks about her father's well-being doesn't do anything to mitigate that. There's a substantive qualitative difference in the levels of violence there and the characters reactions to it. That's kind of undenyable.

Big Poppa Nick wrote:
The treatment of minorities and women IS a problem in comics as well as all entertainment medium. My problem with most of the people that focus on the issue is their narrow focus on DC. It just seems like front running on an issue.

I don't even really know what that means, but if you do think that it is a problem, then why seemingly argue that what happened to Barbara Gordon was no big deal or something that shouldn't be looked at as "wow, that's wrong?" People focus on DC because unlike Marvel, DC has a crap-ton more female characters that readers actually care about and have long established histories. The Marvel side of things is littered with dead and abused girlfriends and wives and that's about it. One of the reasons why DC has so many female fans is the presence of stronger female characters, so when those characters get crippled, killed, depowered, degraded or what-have-you then more women are going to notice and be upset because that small little corner they have where there can be good rolemodels gets a little smaller. The same thing with minority characters.

Big Poppa Nick wrote:
Kerouac had a huge point that I think has gone uncommented on, and that the point of ancillary characters is to move the story of main characters on. Female or minority characters for the most part can't carry their own books, so they are relegated to this role. Violence against them is going to happen, because in proportion females and minorities are more supporting characters than headliners. This doesn't excuse the behavior, but explains the reason why it does happen. For every example of something horrible happening to a female or minority supporting cast member, there is a correlating one of a white male protestant one. It's unfortunately all about numbers.

Statistics does not make the situation right. If you can acknowledge that there's a problem, why just throw hands up at statistics and go "there's nothing that can be done about it." Furthermore, why have everybody jump up and down when someone points to ONE large instance of misogynist violence? If it's "just statistics" then this shouldn't be a surprised at all, and if you think it's a problem in general then why all the arguing about if *this instance* is misogyny?

Big Poppa Nick wrote:
Also the issue of costume ripping was brought up. You definitely have a point there. Again it goes to the fascination with the female form. There it's a problem with society as a larger picture. Comics need to sell. If a female character is in battle and her costume is ripped, the more compelling and marketable image is one of a rip near her breasts or genitalia. If a guy's costume is ripped, it's really hard to get one near the penis that would be titillating without getting censors all aggro about it.

I'm going to be really blunt here: This is fucking insane.

So, since the female form is marketable and can help a comic sell, why not just have them be naked all the time? Or at the very least filled with a 10000% more fan service? So all female characters that fight should end in various states of undress because it's marketable? If it's "compelling" to have a women have her costume get ripped "near her...genitalia," but in a way to not "get the censors all aggro about it" how would it be hard to have that happen to a guys costume? Last I checked, the genitals were in the same place for both sexes. Plus, what censors? Neither company has them. They have editors that have a mandate from their bosses to not show or put characters in certain situations or nudity. They have the threat of law compelling them to label explicit adult material. They have the comics code authority which holds no actual sway over any comic company and don't even enforce half of the standards they were initially created to enforce. I know I've sure seen a lot of "violence against authority" and concealed weapons in my comics in code-approved books.

It seems like you're saying that since the female form is marketable, then hen women fight in comics clothes getting ripped and torn suggestively is just an unfortunate side-effect because that's what readers want to see, and that cannot out should not be changed because it could jeopardize the financial stability of a publisher. If that's the case, then that shows a startling lack of value of female characters as anything other than sex-objects, which in turn shows a gross lack of respect for women. Female characters are still worth having if they get into a fight and not one uniform is shredded, torn or burned off ever again. Lessening the amount that a woman loses her clothes in a fight is not some insurmountable task that is too risky from a marketing perspective. In fact, doing so would be better for the industry since it would show women (statistically the largest group of active readers of fiction) that female characters are valued for more than just cat-fights and that the majority of people currently reading comics aren't just guys looking to get a glimpse at well-drawn female flesh.


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86 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 10:11 pm

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87 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 10:22 pm

Mnemosis

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Big Poppa Nick wrote:
Also the issue of costume ripping was brought up. You definitely have a point there. Again it goes to the fascination with the female form. There it's a problem with society as a larger picture. Comics need to sell. If a female character is in battle and her costume is ripped, the more compelling and marketable image is one of a rip near her breasts or genitalia. If a guy's costume is ripped, it's really hard to get one near the penis that would be titillating without getting censors all aggro about it.

I think this is an especially valid point, as the members of the PrincessCast themselves often drool over boobies, and are not 13 year old boys.

Any hint of female nudity sells. Period.

Rath99 wrote:Gentlemen..you won't and can never get it. Meg speaks from a POV that we can never understand. Whether you see misogyny or not isn't the point. She does. That’s it. Just as from my perspective (being Latino) I see racism where other folks won't. A little news flash there is quite a bit of it in comics (see JMS' Superman).

So the best we can do is listen and respect her viewpoint and understand that there is now way we can feel how she feels about it.

I disagree with this, almost entirely. There's a "cry wolf" factor in any conversation such as this. What it boils down to is this: if people who take an issue (misogyny, racism, etc) personally make mountains out of molehills, they discredit their overall cause.

I'm not saying that's what Meg's doing. That's what this discussion is about - figuring that out. If there's good reason to interpret TKJ (or comics as a whole) as misogynistic, then there's every reason for outcry against it, and Bob's your uncle. If, on the other hand, the purportedly misogynistic writing can be explained away logically, then the louder she yells, the more she drowns out the legitimate concerns on the subject.

I'm saying, for her benefit and the benefit of anyone crusading for better treatment of women in comics, she should reconsider her argument somewhat. I would focus more on the nature of the abuse of women than the frequency thereof, considering the latter can be explained away by statistics as I did above.

Now, Nick brings up the Black Cat. To me, that is a MUCH better example of misogyny in comics. 1) It moved no one's story forward. 2) It was a retcon. 3) It was completely out of the blue. There is no logical aspect of good writing that dictates Felicia Hardy be a rape victim.

Meg brought up, however, Mariko. Where was the misogyny here? The Devil broke her spirit and so she attacked Wolverine. This isn't about her being broken easily because she's a woman. There's no double standard - the Devil also turned Sabertooth into his lapdog. We don't see her being raped by demons or any such thing. Her spirit is broken, and for her own survival, she attacks Wolverine. Or are we referring to her original death all those years ago, which was an honorable death that - as a supporting character - was used to progress Wolverine's story? If so, see previous posts.

My point is simple: Is there misogyny in comics? Absolutely. But don't go accusing every writer who hurts a woman of misogyny. That only cheapens your argument.


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88 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 10:38 pm

Mnemosis

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Demonweasel wrote:
Words.

Don't be dense just for the sake of your girlfriend, cause honestly, that's how you're coming across.

The statistics argument is a valid one.

Is it "wrong" that most strong lead characters are male? Sure. But until comic book publishers can figure out how to sell strong lead female characters, that will be a FACT. As long as that is a FACT, the majority of loved ones will be female. That is a FACT. Therefore, the majority of loved ones who are put in peril to further the story of the strong lead characters WILL BE FEMALE. It's not targeting women in particular, it's working with the reality of the comic book landscape. Publishers try to make female leads happen. Black Widow. Manhunter. These books do not perform well enough to continue to be published. Until that changes, the ratios are going to remain the same, and the statistics are going to make sense.

Similarly, sex sells. Saying that it shouldn't doesn't change that fact, and expecting publishers to not take advantage of that fact is ludicrous. In a time when the comic industry is in such need of new readers and stronger sales, I think it's absolutely asinine to expect anyone to take the moral stance of "We're not going to use scantily clad women to sell out books." It's like telling cigarette companies they have to make cigarettes not be addictive. Yes, it's a nice idea, but no one in power is going to go for it, and that's because they're in business.

Or did you forget that you write for a website that has a sponsorship deal with a sex toy site?


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89 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 10:41 pm

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Mnemosis wrote:
Any hint of female nudity sells. Period.
As I said before, that line of reasoning is pretty fucking repugnant. Yeah, it does sell. Does that make it okay? No. Is it damaging to our industry as a whole? Yes.

Just because something sells, does that does not make it right, or that there should be more of it. especially if the fact that it is degrading and demeaning to any group.

Mnemosis wrote:

I disagree with this, almost entirely. There's a "cry wolf" factor in any conversation such as this. What it boils down to is this: if people who take an issue (misogyny, racism, etc) personally make mountains out of molehills, they discredit their overall cause.

I'm not saying that's what Meg's doing. That's what this discussion is about - figuring that out. If there's good reason to interpret TKJ (or comics as a whole) as misogynistic, then there's every reason for outcry against it, and Bob's your uncle. If, on the other hand, the purportedly misogynistic writing can be explained away logically, then the louder she yells, the more she drowns out the legitimate concerns on the subject.

So there has to be some sort of established test that can be passed by someone who hasn't seen or experienced that kind of oppression to prove that oppression exists? You can't possibly stop for a second and go "Hey, could this look from the other side?" or think that there may be something that's going on that's hard for you to identify because it's outside of your own experiences? Is it that it's difficult or that you just don't want to do it? Plus, asking an oppressed group to explain their oppression to the satisfaction of a member of the group that is seen as the "oppressors" (no matter whether or not that person has done any oppressing) is exercising mad amounts of privilege and w

Be human enough to know that there are things that happen outside your own experiences and that you may not understand everything that comes across your path. No one person knows everything, and willfully disengaging from that idea but continuing to argue that things only exist and can be interpreted through your own veiwpoint is narrowminded and ignorant.

I was going to write more, but then I saw your other response, soooo....


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90 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 10:57 pm

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Sure there can be points made on other things here, but my whole issue with this is Meg saying that TKJ is mysonogistic, in which my view that is extremly off base. She opened a door and was shot. Then she was disrobed and photographed. The point of the shooting was that he is the Joker. It's not misogynistic it's the Joker doing what the Joker does. It's characterization. The taking of the pictures of her was for the Joker to torture Jim with.

Sexism in comics? yes there is lots of it, let's face facts, but let's be honest about it first. If anything, men should be more offended by the way we are portrayed in comics. Every male hero has these bodies that women drool over and this is way before the days of women with big breats and little waists. Let's look at some examples, Steve Rogers before taking super serum was a skinny weak twerp, he gets muscles and bam, he is no every girls dream. Peter Parker for years while wearing glasses and "unhip" clothes was considered a geek and picked on. Remove the glasses, get him a better wardrobe and once he enters college he is fighting off the girls. Superman put on the guise of Clark Kent, a bit of a dweeb and for years was shunned by Lois Lane, but remove the glasses and bam, she goes crazy la la in love for Superman.


The sexism in comics go both ways. As far as the violence, well, hell, let's count up everytime Batman took a punch in the head, or Ben Grimm took one. Does it make it differnt because they are men? These are comic books with super-heroes, fights are going to happen and in some cases like books like TKJ it is going to be amped up higher.

I went a bit off my main idea here, but seriously, I really do not see how TKJ is misogynistic. I feel that any case made for it to show me that it is has failed, I am extremly openminded but nothing that anyone has typed here as not shown me thatTKJ is misogynistic in anyway or form.

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91 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:01 pm

Demonweasel

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Mnemosis wrote:
Demonweasel wrote:
Words.

Don't be dense just for the sake of your girlfriend, cause honestly, that's how you're coming across.

Super-double fuck you for that. I put time into my response, and if you want to be snide and condescending to me because you think this is "for the sake of my girlfriend" then clearly you have zero fucking respect for me. Why I'm even continuing to type this astounds even me. You clearly are willing to just be a giant asshole and not put forward the basic courtesy or respect to another person to even *try* to see another side beyond your self-admitted sheltered background.

Mnemosis wrote:
The statistics argument is a valid one.

No, it isn't.

Mnemosis wrote:
Is it "wrong" that most strong lead characters are male? Sure. But until comic book publishers can figure out how to sell strong lead female characters, that will be a FACT. As long as that is a FACT, the majority of loved ones will be female. That is a FACT. Therefore, the majority of loved ones who are put in peril to further the story of the strong lead characters WILL BE FEMALE. It's not targeting women in particular, it's working with the reality of the comic book landscape. Publishers try to make female leads happen. Black Widow. Manhunter. These books do not perform well enough to continue to be published. Until that changes, the ratios are going to remain the same, and the statistics are going to make sense.

Again, since your so willingly fucking dense on the issue, statistics =/= just. Yours is an argument for lowest common denominator in all things and a complete abdication to a persons responsibility to try to correct a wrong when it's brought before them. It's not something that can be changed with a sweep of a hand or in a blink of an eye. There a ways that supporting characters can be used in conjunction with a main character that aren't exploitative to a gender or race. Your argument here is to not even bother trying because that's the way it is and change may be hard or may not sell as well. Fuck social justice, fuck equality, fuck TRYING.

That's cowardly, and you should be ashamed of yourself.

Mnemosis wrote:
Similarly, sex sells. Saying that it shouldn't doesn't change that fact, and expecting publishers to not take advantage of that fact is ludicrous. In a time when the comic industry is in such need of new readers and stronger sales, I think it's absolutely asinine to expect anyone to take the moral stance of "We're not going to use scantily clad women to sell out books." It's like telling cigarette companies they have to make cigarettes not be addictive. Yes, it's a nice idea, but no one in power is going to go for it, and that's because they're in business.

Or did you forget that you write for a website that has a sponsorship deal with a sex toy site?

Yes, sex sells and our site has adds for sex toys. There's a difference between selling dildos/pornography and advocating for the continued exploitation of a group because it's profitable. Is that too hard for you to grasp? And the cigarette argument? Are you serious?

Let me make sure you don't miss my point at the top here: Fuck you. I'm shocked that you'd think so little of me as a person to be that dismissive of my point of view. If you took a quarter of the energy you put into arguing into actually trying to see the other side of something...well, I guess you wouldn't be such a giant, screaming asshole then wouldn't you?


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92 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:05 pm

Demonweasel

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Denim wrote:Sure there can be points made on other things here, but my whole issue with this is Meg saying that TKJ is mysonogistic, in which my view that is extremly off base. She opened a door and was shot. Then she was disrobed and photographed. The point of the shooting was that he is the Joker. It's not misogynistic it's the Joker doing what the Joker does. It's characterization. The taking of the pictures of her was for the Joker to torture Jim with.

Sexism in comics? yes there is lots of it, let's face facts, but let's be honest about it first. If anything, men should be more offended by the way we are portrayed in comics. Every male hero has these bodies that women drool over and this is way before the days of women with big breats and little waists. Let's look at some examples, Steve Rogers before taking super serum was a skinny weak twerp, he gets muscles and bam, he is no every girls dream. Peter Parker for years while wearing glasses and "unhip" clothes was considered a geek and picked on. Remove the glasses, get him a better wardrobe and once he enters college he is fighting off the girls. Superman put on the guise of Clark Kent, a bit of a dweeb and for years was shunned by Lois Lane, but remove the glasses and bam, she goes crazy la la in love for Superman.


The sexism in comics go both ways. As far as the violence, well, hell, let's count up everytime Batman took a punch in the head, or Ben Grimm took one. Does it make it differnt because they are men? These are comic books with super-heroes, fights are going to happen and in some cases like books like TKJ it is going to be amped up higher.

I went a bit off my main idea here, but seriously, I really do not see how TKJ is misogynistic. I feel that any case made for it to show me that it is has failed, I am extremly openminded but nothing that anyone has typed here as not shown me thatTKJ is misogynistic in anyway or form.

I think the reasons why what happens in TKJ is misogynistic have been pretty well laid-out. If you want to not see it, fine, but I sincerely doubt your extreme open-mindedness. There's a difference between getting punched in the head and getting sexually degraded. That's pretty fucking clear-cut.


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93 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:06 pm

Mnemosis

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Dude... recent comments on the PoP!Cast to the contrary, I tend to be one of the most empathic people out there. I DETEST any and all kinds of discrimination, and am extremely vocal in my defense of "minorities" and "underdogs" alike. Still, there are times when someone plays the race card when racism is NOT a factor at all. That can go for ANY representative of ANY group making accusations of oppressive behavior.

What I'm saying, regarding purportedly misogynistic writing trends in comics, is that if you made me the head writer on the Superman books, I'd probably put Lois Lane through some sort of extreme peril as a means of knocking Superman down a peg. It would have NOTHING TO DO with Lois, herself. I'd be using her as a prop. I have NO disrespectful feelings towards women in general, as any that I know can attest. But that's how I'd write the story.

Now, were I going to be the head writer on the Batman books, I'd likely target Alfred, Dick, Tim, or Damian, because they're the closest characters to Bruce. I wouldn't target Stephanie or Cassandra Cain or introduce a new girlfriend just to victimize her, because the punch would be significantly less than hitting the closer, established character.

As a writer on a decades old serial, you've got to - to an extent - work with what you're given. Denying that fact because you don't like the end result is like plugging your fingers in your ears and humming loudly because you don't want to hear your parents tell you it's bedtime.

I just have a lot more respect for you than the argument you're currently making, and so I wonder - perhaps unfairly - if it's really your argument or you fighting for someone else's honor.

I'm not saying that the trend of using supporting women as punching bags is "right." Nor am I saying that using female characters' sexuality to sell copy is "right." I'm just saying that just because it's wrong doesn't necessarily make it misogynistic.

If I'm driving in a predominantly African American part of town and I cut off an African American driver, that wasn't me being racist. That was me driving poorly and statistics dictating that the driver I cut off was African American. If I'm driving in an area that is 95% rich white folk, and I cut off the only African American driver on the road... NOW the act becomes more suspect.

Accept that writers may not be acting from such a malevolent place as you're insinuating.


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94 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:08 pm

Demonweasel

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Mnemosis wrote:Words

Whatever. I skimmed it, and you still sound like an asshole.


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95 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:10 pm

Denim

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Demonweasel wrote:
Denim wrote:Sure there can be points made on other things here, but my whole issue with this is Meg saying that TKJ is mysonogistic, in which my view that is extremly off base. She opened a door and was shot. Then she was disrobed and photographed. The point of the shooting was that he is the Joker. It's not misogynistic it's the Joker doing what the Joker does. It's characterization. The taking of the pictures of her was for the Joker to torture Jim with.

Sexism in comics? yes there is lots of it, let's face facts, but let's be honest about it first. If anything, men should be more offended by the way we are portrayed in comics. Every male hero has these bodies that women drool over and this is way before the days of women with big breats and little waists. Let's look at some examples, Steve Rogers before taking super serum was a skinny weak twerp, he gets muscles and bam, he is no every girls dream. Peter Parker for years while wearing glasses and "unhip" clothes was considered a geek and picked on. Remove the glasses, get him a better wardrobe and once he enters college he is fighting off the girls. Superman put on the guise of Clark Kent, a bit of a dweeb and for years was shunned by Lois Lane, but remove the glasses and bam, she goes crazy la la in love for Superman.


The sexism in comics go both ways. As far as the violence, well, hell, let's count up everytime Batman took a punch in the head, or Ben Grimm took one. Does it make it differnt because they are men? These are comic books with super-heroes, fights are going to happen and in some cases like books like TKJ it is going to be amped up higher.

I went a bit off my main idea here, but seriously, I really do not see how TKJ is misogynistic. I feel that any case made for it to show me that it is has failed, I am extremly openminded but nothing that anyone has typed here as not shown me thatTKJ is misogynistic in anyway or form.

I think the reasons why what happens in TKJ is misogynistic have been pretty well laid-out. If you want to not see it, fine, but I sincerely doubt your extreme open-mindedness. There's a difference between getting punched in the head and getting sexually degraded. That's pretty fucking clear-cut.


The reason she was sexually degraded in TKJ was to add more torture to Jim. If you want to break the spirit of a man, there are many things you can do, if you want to practically destroy that man, you do something like that to his daughter. TKJ showed how dangerous the Joker really is and set up the future of that character and how badly he needs to be stopped.

And for the record, I am not being a Alan Moore fanboy, yes I like his writing, but I am not a fan of his personality.

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96 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:17 pm

Joshua

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Denim wrote:She opened a door and was shot. Then she was disrobed and photographed. The point of the shooting was that he is the Joker. It's not misogynistic it's the Joker doing what the Joker does. It's characterization. The taking of the pictures of her was for the Joker to torture Jim with.
Here's the deal, if comics didn't have decades of precedence of treating women like second-class citizens, I think you'd make a fine point. The Joker is a psychopath and Barbara just happened to be one of many victims; it wasn't done because she was a woman. On the surface, I can get down with that.

However, the fact is that comics (and world culture) have treated women like second-class citizens for decades (and eternity) and so when you have an instant like the one at hand it's not completely off-base to cite it as one of many times female characters are marginalized. It may be a bit of an overstatement to call TKJ misogynistic, but violence against women in comics is going to be under more scrutiny because they have been mishandled for so long.

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97 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:21 pm

Rath99

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Mnemosis wrote:

Rath99 wrote:Gentlemen..you won't and can never get it. Meg speaks from a POV that we can never understand. Whether you see misogyny or not isn't the point. She does. That’s it. Just as from my perspective (being Latino) I see racism where other folks won't. A little news flash there is quite a bit of it in comics (see JMS' Superman).

So the best we can do is listen and respect her viewpoint and understand that there is now way we can feel how she feels about it.

I disagree with this, almost entirely. There's a "cry wolf" factor in any conversation such as this. What it boils down to is this: if people who take an issue (misogyny, racism, etc) personally make mountains out of molehills, they discredit their overall cause.

I'm not saying that's what Meg's doing. That's what this discussion is about - figuring that out. If there's good reason to interpret TKJ (or comics as a whole) as misogynistic, then there's every reason for outcry against it, and Bob's your uncle. If, on the other hand, the purportedly misogynistic writing can be explained away logically, then the louder she yells, the more she drowns out the legitimate concerns on the subject.

I'm saying, for her benefit and the benefit of anyone crusading for better treatment of women in comics, she should reconsider her argument somewhat. I would focus more on the nature of the abuse of women than the frequency thereof, considering the latter can be explained away by statistics as I did above.

Now, Nick brings up the Black Cat. To me, that is a MUCH better example of misogyny in comics. 1) It moved no one's story forward. 2) It was a retcon. 3) It was completely out of the blue. There is no logical aspect of good writing that dictates Felicia Hardy be a rape victim.

Meg brought up, however, Mariko. Where was the misogyny here? The Devil broke her spirit and so she attacked Wolverine. This isn't about her being broken easily because she's a woman. There's no double standard - the Devil also turned Sabertooth into his lapdog. We don't see her being raped by demons or any such thing. Her spirit is broken, and for her own survival, she attacks Wolverine. Or are we referring to her original death all those years ago, which was an honorable death that - as a supporting character - was used to progress Wolverine's story? If so, see previous posts.

My point is simple: Is there misogyny in comics? Absolutely. But don't go accusing every writer who hurts a woman of misogyny. That only cheapens your argument.

You disagreeing doesn't surprise me.

No one said that every writer who hurts a woman is misogynistic. It is very possible to do something misogynistic or racist and not be a misogynist or a racist. From a male POV what we may see as not being misogynistic a woman can. It's not for you to say how she can or cannot feel.

These subjects are very emotionally charged and stats can't argue life experience away.


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98 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:23 pm

Rath99

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Demonweasel wrote:

Mnemosis wrote:

I disagree with this, almost entirely. There's a "cry wolf" factor in any conversation such as this. What it boils down to is this: if people who take an issue (misogyny, racism, etc) personally make mountains out of molehills, they discredit their overall cause.

I'm not saying that's what Meg's doing. That's what this discussion is about - figuring that out. If there's good reason to interpret TKJ (or comics as a whole) as misogynistic, then there's every reason for outcry against it, and Bob's your uncle. If, on the other hand, the purportedly misogynistic writing can be explained away logically, then the louder she yells, the more she drowns out the legitimate concerns on the subject.

So there has to be some sort of established test that can be passed by someone who hasn't seen or experienced that kind of oppression to prove that oppression exists? You can't possibly stop for a second and go "Hey, could this look from the other side?" or think that there may be something that's going on that's hard for you to identify because it's outside of your own experiences? Is it that it's difficult or that you just don't want to do it? Plus, asking an oppressed group to explain their oppression to the satisfaction of a member of the group that is seen as the "oppressors" (no matter whether or not that person has done any oppressing) is exercising mad amounts of privilege and w

Be human enough to know that there are things that happen outside your own experiences and that you may not understand everything that comes across your path. No one person knows everything, and willfully disengaging from that idea but continuing to argue that things only exist and can be interpreted through your own veiwpoint is narrowminded and ignorant.



Thank you!!!!


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99 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:27 pm

Mnemosis

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The Robert Frost of Poop
Demonweasel wrote:
Statistics =/= just.

I'm not saying they do. But I'm also not the one saying that "writing a story where a woman is a victim" = misogyny. Sometimes, a woman is a victim in a story because SOMEONE had to be, because that was the story. This is where statistics come in. I'm not saying statistics justify misogyny. I'm saying statistics explain why this ISN'T misogyny. It's not about specifically targeting women, but rather specifically targeting supporting cast members. THEY just HAPPEN to be mostly women. THAT is my argument.

Demonweasel wrote:
Your argument here is to not even bother trying because that's the way it is and change may be hard or may not sell as well. Fuck social justice, fuck equality, fuck TRYING.

That's cowardly, and you should be ashamed of yourself.

I'm a pragmatist. I hope people will work to make things better, but at the same time, I accept the fact that these same people are doing a job to put food on their tables and a strong moral compass can't always pay the bills. As above, if I'm hired on to write a major comic book, I'm ABSOLUTELY going to write a story that I believe can sell. I'll make it the best story I can, but I will NOT throw away a potentially long and lucrative career just to make a stand. If you would, that's great. The world needs more people who are willing to do that. I'd rather fight small battles and stay fed, however.

Demonweasel wrote:
There's a difference between selling dildos/pornography and advocating for the continued exploitation of a group because it's profitable. Is that too hard for you to grasp? And the cigarette argument? Are you serious?

I'm not "advocating" the "continued exploitation of a group because it's profitable." I'm accepting the fact that it's going to happen, because these businesses are out there to make a profit, and I would accept the same tactic were it turned on its ear, if THAT would be profitable.


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100 Re: PrincessCast: The Killing Joke Discussion on Sun Oct 17, 2010 11:33 pm

Demonweasel

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Rath99 wrote:
Demonweasel wrote:

Mnemosis wrote:

I disagree with this, almost entirely. There's a "cry wolf" factor in any conversation such as this. What it boils down to is this: if people who take an issue (misogyny, racism, etc) personally make mountains out of molehills, they discredit their overall cause.

I'm not saying that's what Meg's doing. That's what this discussion is about - figuring that out. If there's good reason to interpret TKJ (or comics as a whole) as misogynistic, then there's every reason for outcry against it, and Bob's your uncle. If, on the other hand, the purportedly misogynistic writing can be explained away logically, then the louder she yells, the more she drowns out the legitimate concerns on the subject.

So there has to be some sort of established test that can be passed by someone who hasn't seen or experienced that kind of oppression to prove that oppression exists? You can't possibly stop for a second and go "Hey, could this look from the other side?" or think that there may be something that's going on that's hard for you to identify because it's outside of your own experiences? Is it that it's difficult or that you just don't want to do it? Plus, asking an oppressed group to explain their oppression to the satisfaction of a member of the group that is seen as the "oppressors" (no matter whether or not that person has done any oppressing) is exercising mad amounts of privilege and w

Be human enough to know that there are things that happen outside your own experiences and that you may not understand everything that comes across your path. No one person knows everything, and willfully disengaging from that idea but continuing to argue that things only exist and can be interpreted through your own veiwpoint is narrowminded and ignorant.



Thank you!!!!

No thank you. Well, maybe I should thank Jenn, since the only way a man would argue this is because his girlfriend told him to, right?


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