Since pointing out my issues with Starfire yesterday, I have received numerous e-mails -- from men -- accusing me of slut-shaming ... I would like to say first and in the strongest possible terms that I absolutely support the right of women to embrace and act upon their sexual desires in whatever way seems right to them, within consensual boundaries.
Or worse, they read like the straight girls who make out with each other clubs, not because they enjoy making out with women but because they desperately want guys to pay attention to them.
Also, that is circular logic. Why do comic book producers include this stuff? Because their main demographic is men aged 13 to 22. Why is "men aged 13 to 22" the main demographic of comic books? Because comic producers include this stuff.
Someone (I really forget who) made the point that DC wasn't trying to get new readers with this relaunch. They were trying to get the readers from the '90s back.
And as someone who kind of stopped reading comics in the late '90s because of stuff like this, well ...
Depictions of women does seem to be a theme that attracts you.
I became more aware of that because I'm a lady in the comics industry, and whether you like it or not, your name will pop-up in a lot of articles about women in comics. You kind of get this education constantly anyway, about depictions of women and women writers. You become more aware of characters who suffered badly.
Lois Lane is one of them. She's a lot like Nancy in a way. The early Lois was very elbows-out, knocking people out of the way to get the story. Then editors came in, and said, "Make Lois prettier. Lois isn't hot enough. Make sure she's the type of lady that Superman would really want to save, you know what I mean?" So, after that Lois starts to suck. She starts to be boring and whiny, saying, "Superman, why don't you marry me?" And he says [deep, exasperated voice], "I'm busy, Lois!"
But I don't have an agenda with any of the comics I do, really. I just go for being funny. When I did one about strong female characters, it was because we're all so used to these tropes of women: "She's so tough!" But she's in her underwear while shooting guns. And people say [huffily], "Well, what's wrong with being sexy?" Well, what's wrong with wearing clothes? Or proper protective gear? All these attitudes are fun to make fun of because everybody really knows better. Even the people who are defending it are secretly saying "... yeah."
Ok, see, this isn't an excuse. 13-year-old boys don't benefit from hypersexual, 2-D female characters either, at least not in the long term.
Customers buy an average of nearly 50 comic books a month.
DC’s single-issue audience was more than 5.2 million. (I believe this incorporated a significant pass-along multiplier of at least three people assumed to read each comic.)
92% of DC readers were male.
80% of them were ages 18-39, with a median age of almost 29.
Just over 70% attended college.
Just over 60% were single (never married).
37% spent $100 or more on comics in a month.
The average time spent reading one typical comic was 45 minutes. That’s the one that gets me — I knew I was a fast reader, but four times as fast?
There was also a comparison to the previous studies, which shows that male readers were always over 90% of the audience, that the audience was getting older, and as they aged, they were less likely to live with their parents and more likely to live with a spouse or partner.
Just accept that the audience is changing. It's not the same gender mix as twenty years ago. It's impossible to go to cons and not see that. At Calgary con, every creator in the aisle I was in had females in line, and I had MOSTLY females. And a guy told my hubby, right in the middle of all these women, "Women don't read comics." I mean, wtf?
Except that, if DC's decisions were actually based on consulting a marketing expert, then as seriousfic already pointed out, the front-and-center versions of Green Lantern and the Atom would be John Stewart and Ryan Choi, since that's who most 18-34 males know from the Justice League and Brave and the Bold cartoons, which means that the whole "18-34 males" thing is (just as it is in advertising and movies and TV shows) nothing more than a cop-out which allows the middle-aged males running the show to continue making media that appeals to their own tastes exclusively. Most 18-34 males actually have much broader tastes than the old white guys making this shit, and in cases where they don't support female-centric media, it's often because that female-centric media is such condescending bullshit that even many women consider it unforgivably misogynistic (Twilight, Sex in the City, etc.). By contrast, My Little Pony (of all things) has cultivated such a crossover fandom that even the virulent homophobes of 4chan have become "bronies." Quite seriously, if you can't manage to make superheroes cater equally to both genders, without alienating one or the other, when fucking MY LITTLE PONY can do it, you're too goddamned dumb to deserve to even a fraction of the big bucks that the people in charge of these franchises are earning to premise over their ever-shrinking audiences.
Her name is Casse Sandsmark. She's seventeen years old. Brilliant. Gorgeous. A free spirit. And no, that's not her car. It would be polite to say the girl has boundary issues.
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