Sunday, April 22, 2007
I loved comic books when I was a kid. My mom was very understanding about my strange pastime and would often buy comics for me to read. At least I was reading something right?
Truthfully, I was probably more interested in the animation than the actual story. Yet, that's kind of the point isn't it? If we wanted just the story, we'd buy a novel and call it a day.
But the animation has sure changed over the years hasn't it?
I'm certainly not the first one to notice the trend or comment on it. But I am often struck by just how much things have changed. I suppose one could say it's a natural effect of time and changing technology, taste and culture. Well, I guess that is it in a nutshell.
Still, when I look at the way things have changed I have to ask why everything has become sooo exaggerated?
It's not shocking that women have always been, shall we say, idealized. Take this classic image of Batgirl: super tight costume- check: provocative pose (for the time)-check: unrealistically proportioned body-check.
But that is nothing compared to how women are depicted today.
Look as this updated picture of Batgirl; Can you say painted on? Is there a reason she's actually wearing a costume? And this is a fairly tame comic book woman. Take a look at this picture from the comic book Mantra, mentioned over at Dave's Long Box: I can honestly say I never went to school with anyone who dressed like that.
But we all know it isn't just the women: Check out Batman and Superman in this picture.
When did they start making steroids for superheroes?
Animation in general has improved but I do wonder why it has become so over-exaggerated and hypersexualized? It seems almost too easy to say that it's because the target audience is hormonal, teenage boys. I've trolled the net enough to find lots of different people who like comics, including women; and not everyone is really into the current trends in animation.
So what do you think of where comic book animation is going? Do the images ever bother you or do you think it's just a natural progression? Do you think characters like Batman and Superman will continue to look massively over-muscled or do you think the artists will scale back?
I would ask if you thought the images of women would become less voyeuristic, but they've pretty much always been that way, and I don't see that changing.
But really, what do you think of comic book animation in general?