Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Are Comic Book Movies and TV Shows the Next Wave of Empowerment for Women?

Today, let’s discuss superheroes and comic books and the movies they make out of those comic books. It’s a topic I’m totally into right now, though you’d never know that reading this blog.

Believe it or not, I am interested in subject matter outside of politics, and I do more with my life than rant about how societal ills. For example, if you check out my other blog,, you’ll read all about my novel-writing adventures.

Then there’s the Sharp Angles podcast. Don’t ask me what the url is. I don’t know it since I don’t listen to it since I hate the sound of my recorded voice. But if you manage to find it, you’ll discover I’m kinda obsessed about what my friend Rich calls the “Marvel Cinematic Universe.”

After watching all three Iron Mans, both Thors and Captain Americas, the first Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy, not to mention Agent Carter and half the first season of Agents of Shield – so far – this year (toldja I was obsessed), I’ve noticed a bit of a theme when it comes to how female powerhouses are portrayed. And how they’re portrayed is pretty much the same way how females are portrayed in general by Hollywood these days: physically perfect.

And I do mean perfect.

Take Black Widow – who’s so vital to The Avengers team that she also plays big roles in both an Iron Man and Captain America, yet never gets a movie of her own – who is sensual from her un-mussed hair to her latex bodysuit to her high heels… all the time… including when she successfully takes on four bad guys at once without ever breaking a nail.

Okay then.

And then there’s Agent Carter, the drop-dead gorgeous love of Captain America’s life back in the 40s. She’s got her own TV show now, where she’s – you guessed it – physically perfect.

So I had to laugh when I saw the Yahoo headline this morning “The rise of the female superhero,” with the caption, “Female protagonists are finally getting their due thanks to a new generation of women writers and artists.”

Why is that so funny?

Oh, I guess because of the picture above it, featuring Agent Carter undercover as a stunning blond in a V-neck golden gown showing off significant amounts of her upper assets.

Not her looking official at her desk or facing down her misogynistic coworkers or shouldering a really big gun. Nope. It’s her in a slinky number looking more like a trophy than a human being.

Yeah. ‘Cause that’s going to convince little girls everywhere to study calculus instead of Vogue.

Great job, Hollywood. You killed it again.

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