Welcome to the 3rd Edition of the Carnival of Feminist Science Fiction and Fantasy Fans. Putting together this issue has been a pleasure; I’m learning so much about comics from you lot.
If you’d like to host a future issue of the carnival, please E-mail ragnellthefoul AT hotmail DOT com .
Film and Television
Starting us off, Jen of reappropriate writes on Lois Lane in her Margot Kidder incarnation as a feminist icon:
And despite being married to the most powerful man in the world, the flawed Lois is a reminder that what is truly breathtaking is not what Superman can do with his powers, but what humanity, particularly femininity, can do without them.
In the category of race, LiveJournal user rachelmanija writes a two part post that analyzes the pros and cons of colorblind race casting, honing in on Star Trek.
In another LiveJournal post, bitterfig shares her Thoughts on Lady in the Water, the latest M. Night Shyamalan film.
Pam Noles–in “Persistence Overcomes Resistance”: Thoughts On The Black Panel at Comic Con International, 2006–recounts and analyzes the lone Black Panel at this years Comic Con:
It’s one thing to choose to not acknowledge the myriad Other around you when you set out to do your fiction. I might even argue that this is your right, in a Woody Allen sense, if you choose to unleash your skills exploring a unique cultural subset with as much verisimilitude as you can muster to which this type of issue is not entirely applicable. But it’s something else ENTIRELY to recognize those differences, yet be too afraid to even make the attempt to engage with them on any level in the fictional worlds that you create from your soul. What’s wrong with your creator soul that the thought of realigning yourself beyond your default boundaries is so very frightful that you won’t even make the attempt? If you are too afraid to do that, perhaps it’s time to take another look at the job description.
On the Whileaway LiveJournal Community, Ide Cyan writes on desirability of male nerds in Spider-Man: Unmasked and how it influences her purchases.
100LittleDolls discusses Batwoman in Access to Power:
As far as DC making the current incarnation of Batwoman a lesbian: it’s to sell books. DC in no way believes that straight women can’t be powerful, that a straight woman superhero isn’t the answer to the typical male (straight) superhero. Most of the superhero’s that we read about are straight: Wonder Woman is straight, She-Hulk is straight, Phoenix is soo straight, I could go on and on. I can only count on one hand the number of lesbian superhero’s I’m aware of.
In Monday Misandry, Ragnell wonders if any man would actually avoid entertainment with respectul female characters.
Katherine of Whereof one can speak writes about female characters positioned as the Other and how difficult it was for her to identify with these characters when she was a girl. From her post Costume design and reader identification; or For God’s sake, woman, put some underwear on!:
Well, Sheeva was a very cool character in many ways. She was self-assured, confident, strong; she could make things explode with her mind. Even the above image of her is not the worst cheesecake I’ve ever seen, by a country mile: there’s no cleavage, she’s reasonably proportioned, her stance and expression are not porny and (gasp!) her shoes have flat heels.
But she’s not wearing any underwear!
And BANG! my eight-year-old self lost interest, just like that.
Panties still seem to be out these days for superheroines. Karen Healey breaks down the of an upcoming issue of Supergirl in Whose Goddamn Title Is It Anyways:
What the fuck is that miniscule ruffle that barely covers the top of her thighs? Could it possibly be made any clearer that this sixteen-year-old flying superheroine is not wearing underwear?
If you weren’t familiar with either of these characters, based entirely on the depiction of their costumes and positions, which one would you say is capable of beating the crap out of the other without breaking a sweat?
Who is powerful?
Who is vulnerable?
Yeah. And people wonder why I’m angry.
In An Open Letter to Edgy Writers Who Write About Really Real Real Life, Dan Jacobson writes about rape as a plot device:
You may think that this means that I think there’s something inherently wrong with dealing with sexual assault and rape in comic stories. This is not precisely true. Dealing with it is fine. But simply introducing it into the text is not the same thing as dealing with it. Simply presenting it as bad, or taking a textual stance against it, is not the same thing as dealing with it. We all know it’s bad. You won’t be blowing any minds with that stunning revelation. And yes, the same could probably be said for all violent crimes. What sets rape apart, however, is that it is a crime that, the overwhelming majority of the time, happens to women, and happens to them precisely because they are women.
Guilded Lily has conducted a wonderful two part interview with game developer Tara Teich on getting more women into the game industry.
My own entry for the carnival is Passing, in which I discuss my reasons for hiding that I’m a gamer and a geek.
100LittleDolls–after experiencing a form of malicious alternative masculinity–declares in her post Masculinity, Nerds, and Me:
I’m not interested in games, comics, anime, what have you, in order to prove anything. My interest is that I simply like them. I think the guys I came in contact with initially started out the same way, but found that as they grew older and had their masculinity questioned, they had to use their hobbies as a way to prove themselves. I, as a geek girl, stand in direct opposition to that, which is why I failed, after the first couple of hours, to find a common ground with them.
That’s it for this issue! Thank you all for submitting. Keep an eye on the official carnival home for announcements involving the next issue. Until then, keep reading, writing, gaming, and opining.