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Should gaming be a “safe space” for nerdy dudes who hate women? The Men’s Rights perspective


I’m back from a brief vacation in Migraineland, and thinking about the ways in which Men’s Rights Activists love to appropriate the language of feminism and other progressive movements, usually in ways that are face-palmingly ass-backwards.

Take this recent discussion on the Men’s Rights subreddit of the dire threat of “fake gamer girls” invading the “male space” of gaming. The generically named guywithaccount sets up the discussion with this post:

I want to talk about "fake geek girls" (self.MensRights)  submitted 9 days ago by guywithaccount  For those of you who don't know about this, there's a bit of a controversy in what I'll call the geek community. Apparently, when women attend geek conventions (that is, those celebrating e.g. video games, comic books, sci-fi and fantasy), some men accuse them of being "fake geeks" or demanding that they prove their "geek cred" by correctly answering trivia questions made up on the spot.  Here's one article (of many) that talks about it: [1] http://bookviewcafe.com/blog/2013/08/08/the-fake-geek-girl-nonsense/  My concern for this issue is that, like anything else that involves gender, feminists and feminist sympathizers are attempting to dominate the discussion and frame the whole thing from a feminist and gynocentric perspective. The prevailing analysis might be summed up as "geek culture is deeply misogynistic, and the people complaining about fake geeks are just sad little losers who hate women."  IMO, the geek subculture has provided a somewhat-safe space for many men who have been snubbed by the rest of society, where they are not expected to prove their value to each other by carving notches in a bedpost or exemplifying traditional masculine traits. The increase in mainstream appeal and female participation over the past decade or so threatens the safety and exclusivity of this space, and the backlash from male geeks is a somewhat-predictable response to the invasion of their space.  Of course, there are few spaces just for men, and when someone tries to create or preserve one, they're accused of misogyny.  I suspect that some of you don't give a crap about any of this and see the whole thing as petty, but realize that it's not happening in a vacuum. I believe it's merely a symptom of the fact that men have almost no voice in gender discussions and their needs are routinely denied or ignored.
Now, there is a teensy bit of gold in this pile of bullshit: the notion of a “safe space,” where oppressed people can come forward and discuss their issues without fear of being talked over or shut down by those outside their group — who have more power in the world and who may not have their best interests at heart (or who may just be Blabby McBlabbypants types).

But there are a couple of giant problems with this notion when it comes to gamer dudes declaring gaming a “safe space” for men. The first is that, despite lingering resentments over being “snubbed” in high school or wherever — evident in the OP and in comments throughout the discussion — these guys are not actually an oppressed people by any measure that really matters.

Indeed, many of them — as tech dudes in a male-dominated tech world — are in fact in fairly privileged positions. For them to claim they need a “safe space” to protect themselves from the evils of “fake gamer girls” is a bit like Klan members claiming they need a “safe space” to protect themselves from blacks, Jews and Catholics. (Which is more or less what Klan members have argued over the years, albeit in less PC language.) No, I’m not claiming that all MRAs are the equivalent of hood-wearing Klan members. Only some of them are.

The second problem with the “game world as safe space for men” aregument is that YOU CAN’T JUST DECLARE BIG CHUNKS OF THE WORLD TO BELONG TO MEN. Yes, men dominate the gaming world in sheer numbers, both as game-makers and game-players. (While women make up nearly half of all game players — 47% — men tend to dominate the “serious” games that many geek dudes claim are the only ones that really count.) But gaming doesn’t “belong” to men any more than, say, novel-reading “belongs” to women — even though surveys suggest that women make up a staggering 80% of the fiction market in much of the English-speaking world.

Yep, that’s right: Women dominate “noveling” much more dramatically than men dominate gaming. Yet you don’t find women denouncing “fake noveler boys” or declaring that the male brain isn’t wired to understand the subtleties of written fiction.

No, in fact men are actively welcomed into book clubs.  And my best friend, a woman, has spent much of the 18 or so years or our friendship trying to get me to read this novel or that novel, though over the years she’s only succeeded in getting me to read maybe one or two of her suggestions, which were pretty good, I have to admit. (I do plan to read some of the others, really.)

If you’re a socially awkward guy and want a safe space to discuss that, find a therapist, find a support group. Don’t pick on women gamers and pretend this is somehow your right because you’re oppressed as a socially awkward guy.

Anyway, here are some other dumb comments from the Reddit thread. YetAnotherCommenter warns feminists that they may lose some powerful allies if they continue acting so feministy.

YetAnotherCommenter 18 points 9 days ago* (22|4)      Woman are assigned status for being nerds where men are not.  Men lose status for their nerdiness. Women gain it.  Some geek girls have admitted how being a female nerd grants you so much attention from men (Rebecca Watson did precisely this in an issue of a skeptic newsletter). They admit the fact that female-geekery conveys a certain level of privilege.  This is actually compounded by feminism because by being a geek (or faking it) a woman is seen as standing up to the "boys club" and thus gets a chorus of "You Go Girl!" cheerleading combined with the ability to acquire victim cred from "teh sexist menz are picking on me!"      Also, the way some pop-feminists go on about fake nerd girl shaming, it's like it's a second holocaust or something.  And then they shame all male nerds as misogynists who are bitter because they can't get laid. "Neckbeard" and "fedora" jokes and "you're just socially awkward and live in your mother's basement" are all derivatives of nerd shaming.  I know several geek girls (real geek girls, not fake ones). I support females who enjoy video games and comics etc. enjoying these hobbies. I also think it makes business sense for some comics and games to cater to this demographic (to varying degrees).  What I protest is how ideological feminists are basically attempting to "reformat" geek culture towards their own preferences, and I protest how they see geek culture (which is a product of the socially emasculated rejects of the gender system) as a bastion of "male privilege." I protest how they interpret the fact that things aren't always about them all the time as bigotry or hatred. You can fairly describe geek culture as androcentric (after all, it is predominantly male and formed from the basis of men's experiences), but this isn't the same as misogyny.  The fact is that if feminists truly wanted to undo the gender system, male nerds would be a fantastic reservoir of allies. Yet by casting us as oppressors and borderline-rapists and engaging in repeated attention-whoring behavior and exploiting female-nerd privilege and inflicting repeated guilt-trips upon us, they have destroyed any hope of this.
Speaking of nerds who can’t get laid — which we weren’t but which these guys keep bringing up (and identifying themselves as) again and again — guia7ri seems to harbor some lingering resentments from high school, and who better to take that out on than attractive geeky women?

guia7ri 4 points 9 days ago (7|3)  I think that the reason why it seems like mostly women (or why it's fake geek girls not just fake geeks) is because girls have all of the power in high school. The popular/attractive girls control who is "cool" and who isn't. But it never just ends there. The ones that get rejected by this group will be rejected by everyone else because they're trying to be accepted as "cool". The rejects end up being forced loners at best (unless they hang out with other misfits, but that can almost make things worse). So when the girls who were (or look like they would have been) responsible for the geeks being social outcasts and losers for being geeks, are now are getting into geek culture it ends up causing a controversy over the legitimacy of a girl's interests.  Even so I think the reason why it may actually be fake geek girls is because women (especially attractive and confident women) are seen as interesting or cool when they identify as a geek. If a man says he likes video games/comics/sci-fi books/movies it's typically seen as either normal or unmanly/childish. I don't think anyone would ever falsely something about themselves that would have negative connotations.

Hey MRAs, if you wonder why feminists sometimes describe MRAs as bitter men who hate women because they can’t get laid, it’s because MRAs like gui7ri so often EXPLICITLY DECLARE THEMSELVES BITTER MEN WHO HATE WOMEN BECAUSE THEY CAN’T GET LAID.

Meanwhile Byuku blames it all on evil feminists pretending to be geeks in order to make trouble. Because that’s what feminists do.

byuku 3 points 9 days ago (8|5)  My belief is that most of the complaining actually does come from fake geek girls. Think about it - have you ever met extremely hostile and unfriendly geeks? Especially around attractive women? Most geeks I've ever known have been treated like shit by society and thus have a really passive behaviour (they're quiet).  My hunch would be that a bunch of crazy feminist nutjobs walk into a convention, and some geek asks "Hey I notice XYZ on your shirt, who's your favourite character?"  Traditional geek girl responds politely. Fake geek girls say "WHAT? JUST BECAUSE I'M HERE DOESN'T MEAN YOU GET TO TEST ME!!!" and bitches about it to all hell all over the enerets.  And now we're here talking about it. That's how feminism dominates mainstream cultural discussion as it does.
That’s how they get you!

EDIT: Added a sentence to temper and clarify my assertion that men “dominate” gaming.

Posted on August 20, 2013, in a woman is always to blame, all about the menz, antifeminism, are these guys 12 years old?, bullying, creep-shaming, dozens of upvotes, entitled babies, evil women, facepalm, female beep boop, geek girls, imaginary oppression, men who should not ever be with women ever, misogyny, MRA, no girls allowed, oppressed men, reddit, straw feminists, video games and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1,189 Comments.

  1. So THAT’s why silver is Ag on the periodic table!

  2. Yuppers. Also gold = aurum, lead = plumbum, iron = ferrum, etc.

  3. So what’s the deal with sodium?

  4. More Latin-based names: Felix is lucky. Dulcie from the word for sweet. Leo (the lion). Clemens/Clement for kind. Dignus for worthy. Peregrine from the word for traveller. Amadeus from the Latin word for love. Dante for enduring. If one is particularly chatty, Facundo (talkative). Fante (from infans) for baby. Renato (reborn). Umbra for shadow (gray-ish).

    You could confuse them by naming one of them Catellus (puppy), Ursino (bear), or Tasso (badger).

  5. Natrium. Had to look that one up.

    By the way, I drew the dragon with knees sticking up past its back and now I can’t figure out how to put a skirt on it.

  6. RE: katz

    Panty-flashing dragon?

  7. Or a skort of some kind?

    I keep checking this thread to see if you’ve posted any kitten pictures, because … well does a person really need to justify wanting to see kitten pictures?

  8. I must say I deeply approve of this whole dragon conversation.

  9. The reason fake geek girls get so upset about being asked questions about their supposed fandom is because they’re FGGs and can’t answer them, thus outing themselves as FGGs.

    You can ask me a question about anything I really like and if I can’t answer it, I’ll genuinely admit I don’t know, although odds are I can answer. For some reason FGGs can’t take that crushing pressure?

  10. Ah, but if you can’t answer, you out yourself as a Fake Victor H. You’re just pretending to be Victor, you’re actually a Michael or a Steve or a Pod Person From Dimension Deltha-Minor.

    A real Victor H. would know everything, and admitting you don’t know proves you aren’t real, so you don’t deserve neither curtesy nor space nor consideration, so suck my non-existent hypothetical, metaphorical penis, you fake Victor you.

    Besides, you’re only pretending to be a Victor because it’s a cool name, aren’t you, Steve?

    It’s not a matter of knowledge and the lack thereof, it’s a matter of gatekeeping and allowed identities.

    But you’d know that, if you were an actual person, Steve, and not just some pretending-to-be-Vic.


  11. So, nobody is allowed to be a geek if they don’t pass the Victor Test of All Things Geeky. Because even if he isn’t talking out of his sexist arse (unlikely), having different areas of interest or levels of knowledge or experience just isn’t A Thing in the geek world. ‘Cos No True Geek was ever new to any area ever.

    Or … is it just women who have to pass that test?

  12. Hey Victor, so what’s the damage stat on the male ghouls in Grout mansion? They keep killing me and it’s getting old.

    Simpler one, what happens if you open the box?

    P&P one — *cackles* Salubri clan weakness?

    Ok, that one was hard, how about the tzimisce? Still too hard? Malkavian?

  13. Simpler one, what happens if you open the box?

    Depends. Is the cat Greebo and are you an elf?

  14. I’m not Victor, but I take the P&P questions:
    Salubri: first it’s a bloodline not clan (because I think the Tremere clan founder committed diablerie against their founder)… depends. In general they may only feed on willing prey, but if I remember correctly antitribu ones only on unwilling.
    Tzimisce need to rest in (or at least with) the soil of their home. (Drakula was a tzimisce)
    Malkavians are mad (as they begin game with already having some kind of mental illness).

    I might be wrong I didn’t play oWoD since 2000. ^^; (and our GM sometimes used less than trustworthy sources)

  15. Quick, Victor H, name three high-ranking achievements of Christopher Pell!

    What? You can’t? Boo! Fake Manboobz commenter! You’re only here to bathe in the attention of all the hairy, fat and ugly feminist lesbians who can’t get a man! And then you cruelly friendzone them! J’accuse!

    On topic, yeah, nothing to add. This ”fake geek girl” assholery is annoying as fuck. Why don’t these reactionary whiners realize that the ”notches to bedposts” mentality and virgin-shaming are what men torment each other with, not something women encourage by the sheer power of their presence?

    Because they’re dipshits, that’s why. They probably feel that women start wars, too, since men feel a pressure to impress ”the females” with their super manly conquest skills. Guys wouldn’t even play Call of Duty if it wasn’t for their internalized misandry of needing to show women how awesome they are at killing things. Because a man killing things is what turns women on. Thats why women are flocking to CoD tournaments: to find the best genetic material.

    I knew there was a reason I only hang out with guys with healthy egos. They lack the macho mode, and are subsequently much more fun to be around.

  16. Malitia — damn, that was perfect! Idk on Salubri antitribu but that sounds logical considering. And yeah, Tremere diablerized Saulot.

    Kitteh — yes, and he’s bloody furious (well, not really, but the resulting death and destruction part is the same)

  17. I played a lot of tabletop RPGs* in the 90s. Before growing up, college, the trading card craze and me getting fed up with assholes** got in the way. So sadly I’m mostly just on the theoretical side of the hobby nowadays. :)

    * Mostly the most successful local one (M.A.G.U.S.) and oWoD (Vampire and Changeling)
    ** My only opportunity to play was the local library’s RPG club and there were some people, who would “arrange” my character’s early demise (occasionally worse)… who knew inns were that dangerous (and city guards so ineffective, professional soldiers so undisciplined etc. I’m trying to say that most GMs encouraged this with the total lack of consequences or sometimes worse). Yeah. It was a miracle I lasted that long (6 years or so).

    … Sorry for the rant. ^^; But at least on topic as it shows that sexism in the geek culture isn’t new. :/

  18. Argh seriously? We had one girl, a tremere, who summoned(?) a damned skidoo in a sewer. Despite leaving one of the guys in torpor and another half there, all she got was endlessly mocked (seriously, who does that?)

    Damn though, it has been nearly that long since I played, college and no time and such. Too bad, I enjoyed running a Malk, it, uh, comes naturally :) (well, the guys used to say I should try Toreador cuz art, but I refuse to deal with celerity)

    Vampire and a touch of Amenti, mostly just to hand the guy playing Lucita his ass though, he’d let her power go to his head.

  19. In Vampire I got to play the Toreador because the storyteller wanted one (we could never figure out why and never finished that campaign) but nobody wanted to play that clan (at least one guy called it gay, I just didn’t like the clan disciplines)… and when the ultimatum came (Somebody plays it or I won’t be the game master anymore) I was the one who said yes. (OK. I said. “only if next time I can bring my independent Kiasyd* character.” … but that somehow got forgotten later.)

    That character survived so long (whatever the GM’s reason was it was important enough to keep her “alive” so he retaliated against would be character murderers and didn’t make us face any impossible challenges** either) I got to in-character joke about “Well, this might be a novel and me the protagonist so I can’t die till the end!”

    * I like rare bloodlines. and also Obtenebration but Lasombra are way too Sabbat affiliated… and also I have no problem with vampires sparkling. :]
    ** He was a killer GM so we all suspected some deep dark secret.

  20. I’m a Cthulu girl, personally. And I LOVE my gaming group, mostly because of the awesome feminist bent. There is one regular male player, one occasional male player, and the rest of us are ladies, including our fabulous GM. Because of the makeup of the group, there’s a lot of fluidity about gender norms, such as many of the women playing male characters, or my female character serving as the team berserker/ heavy while the male characters are usually more thoughtful science-y types (personal campaign highlights include bum rushing vampires, blowing up churches, and shooting the windows out of haunted houses).

  21. On TRPGs, what is the judgment on free-form RPGs (without rulebooks and characters are described verbally, no stats). Geeky or not?

  22. @talacaris:

    That’s pretty much how I played my first ever D&D campaign in high school… I liked the freedom of movement during combat. Now that I’ve played with paper and boards though, I think having rule books makes things more consistant and lets me know what I can do.

    Anyway, geeky or not? How could it possibly not be geeky? :P

  23. ” How could it possibly not be geeky” I’ve heard some mutter that it’s not the real thing if it does not involve heavy rulebooks and long stat tables. Without these, it’s some kind of faux-geekery for drama people.

  24. Isn’t it sorta like Poe’s law? If you’re sitting around a table about to embark on a make-believe adventure with wizards and warriors and various fantasy monsters, and the game isn’t just a pre-baked story, what’s the difference?

  25. @talacaris- Since I’m a geek for storytelling, I actually think your way sounds WAAAAAY geekier. But then again, I also play with a group where the GM is totally willing to fudge the rules to let us have our Crowning Moments of Badass.

  26. I heard that muttering too but I think those are just the “geekier-than-thou”s who also talk against LARP; in video gaming circles against casual gaming; in anime/manga circles against not boobz-blood-or-angst… umm… non mature works; in comicbook circles against manga; etc.. Or in short against anybody who they think isn’t hardcore enough. (They are the banes of every geek community ever. :/)

  27. LARP not being geeky?!?!? I don’t understand the world anymore. =_=

    Granted, I don’t have a clear idea of what the definition of “geeky” should be, but I really REALLY don’t care. I’m here to enjoy things with others, not keep people away from them. If I’m playing D&D with someone and they seem a little clueless about the rules, I’m going to try to help. If they don’t want to learn, I’m not going to rant about how “faux-geeks are invading mah space,” I’m just going to not play with them in that game.

  28. @Victor H

    D’aww, it’s a troll. And he thinks he has a new argument! How cute!


    It’s not a matter of knowledge and the lack thereof, it’s a matter of gatekeeping and allowed identities.

    yup. It’s also hostile to people just trying to get into fandoms/ geek stuff, on top of other shit. Nobody starts out knowing everything.

    @radical parrot

    Quick, Victor H, name three high-ranking achievements of Christopher Pell!

    This is by far my favorite “fake X” test question XD

    And as a fake tabletop rpb girl* I’m going to admit this conversation is flying straight over my head. Because I, like Victor, am honest! I bravely admit my lack of knowledge, unlike those dang fake geek girls!!!!!!!!!eleven!!!!!!specialsnowflake.

    *whoops I actually just don’t know…well, anything about them that you guys haven’t said, since you’re all my only exposure to them, but I’m hanging around you all so obviously I’m trying to convince victor I’m an awesome rpg playing geek, or something.

    Forgive me if this makes no sense, I just woke up (like an hour ago) and my brain’s still sleepy.

  29. wait… LARPing is the geekiest of the geeky things!!!! These people are fools! And probably operating under the assumption that if a thing isn’t directly relevant to their interests, it isn’t geeky!

  30. Kiasyd…Salubri…yeah I have standing to complain (to be fair, she was going to be my deus ex you guy are idiots machina as ST)

    Talacaris — shameless plug — I know one of the folks behind Averice, so yeah, I can dig relatively free form RPGs.

    Oh and Yale prof, elite gamer and Mayflower family, if that doesn’t count then…psych ward doctor, or was it psych once and doctor once?

  31. This is only making me aware of how long it’s been since I did any RP whatsoever. (I did some D&D, but of all the times I played, the only time I had a good time was when I played a lawful-neutral half-orc bureaucrat in a group made up entirely of anarchists. GOOD TIMES! My character was incredibly unlucky, incredibly stuffy, survived the campaign by the skin of her teeth, and became the favorite character of everyone around me.)

  32. I’ve done tabletopped, and free form RPGs. There is something to be said for both. The crucial thing in the latter is the ability of the players and the GM to keep track of where all the elements in the room are.

    If that happens, then it’s all good. If not, then it gets messy fast.

    But it’s geeky as hell, either way.

  33. I’m reminded of a lovely “You know you’re a knitting geek when” thread on Ravelry. It wasn’t about knowledge or any crap like that; it was things like “You see a sign saying Yam Festival and get excited ‘cos you misread it as Yarn Festival,” or “You take a new project with you in case you finish the one you’re working on en route … and you’re only going to the post office.”

    Now that sort of geekery I can grok! ;)

  34. The reason fake geek girls get so upset about being asked questions about their supposed fandom is because they’re FGGs and can’t answer them, thus outing themselves as FGGs.

    But female geeks aren’t upset because of “being asked questions.” They’re upset because they’re being actively excluded from the geek subculture for no good reason.

  35. I notice we still haven’t had an answer about whether male geeks get grilled like this on their True Geekery Quotient. I’m betting not.

  36. Yeah, that’s TOTALLY why Shaenon would be angry about getting grilled. It’s not like some of the most important questions don’t consist of asking about the things she’s created…

    Oh, wait, you mean like a ‘dabbling’ geek who maybe has just the one fandom they’re super into.


    Oh, wait, I never get grilled! Because I have a penis!

    Even though I totally don’t give a crap about the Enterprise.

    Tell me some more why fake geek girls get upset.

  37. Yeah, horseshit, seeing as on this very thread, my sister got posthumously grilled on her geekiness by Asher. My geekiness, of course, has never been grilled.

  38. Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III

    I can say I’ve been watching Dr Who since I was four but I’ve never seen an episode of Star Trek: Enterprise and nobody cares and I’m still a geek.

    I can say I’ve played every edition of Dungeons and Dragons, but I couldn’t name five Pokemon. Still a geek.

    I can probably name a couple of dozen members of the Green Lantern Corps just from memory, but I haven’t seen Iron Man 3. Still a geek..

    My knowledge of geek culture is necessarily incomplete. Everyone’s is. There are things I know and things I don’t know.

    As a man, people say: knows his Dr Who, D&D and Green Lantern: Geek.

    If I were a woman it would be: doesn’t know her Star Trek, Pokemon or Iron Man. FGG.

    It’s just that stupid and unfair.

  39. Guy Gardner, WOOOOOO!

  40. Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III

    I always kind of liked Kilowog.

  41. Oh Green Lanterns, after the whole Parallax thing and the thing with Kyle Rayner’s girlfriend I stopped caring. Then much later I read Sinestro Corps War because everyone was recommending it, but that only confirmed my decision to stay away.

  42. Kilowog is also awesome.

    …yeah, there’s a reason I don’t read the Big Two much anymore. Superheroes are my cheesy pleasure, but GODDAMN.

  43. Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III

    Yeah, I stopped reading regularly when Kyle Rayner came in. Later, I had a look when they brought Hal back. I had a look at some of the other comics on the shelf, and the first one I picked up killed off my favourite character, the Blue Beetle. Gave up on superhero comics then and there.

  44. My comic collection tended to feature Wonder Woman in her mid-70s Diana Prince phase …

  45. Ah, you’re a Ted Kord fan too? Yeah, his death sucked. And then he got ERASED FROM CANON. Thanks, DC.

  46. And if you answered, say, three geeky questions in a row, the geeky guys would totally be like “welp, fair’s fair, she passed the test” and accept you as one of their own, right? That would totally happen.

  47. Geek Girl(GG): Ask me your questions, geek keeper, I am not afraid!

    Geek Keeper(GK):What is your name?

    GG: Janeway!

    GK: What is your fandom?

    GG: Star Trek!

    GK: What was the maximum speed of the Enterprise in Star Trek, the Original Series?

    GG: The NCC-1701, the NCC-1701-A, or the NCC-1701-B?

    GK: I don’t know that!! AAAAAAaaaaaahhhhhh…… *gets flung off the convention*

  48. Well, you’ve got to know these thing when you’re a geek.

  49. Myoo, allow me to present you with one (1) titanium plated, warp-drive internetz.

  50. Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III

    LBT: They what? Erased from canon? Seriously? Oh, man!

  51. Myoo, nicely done.

  52. What was the maximum speed of the Enterprise in Star Trek, the Original Series?

    Fast enough to get there in the nick of time.

  53. @Falconer
    Correct! I would also have accepted “She’s going as fast as she can, captain, I cannae push her any harder!”

  54. RE: Sir Bodsworth

    Yeah, DC rebooted its canon a few years ago. Last I checked, Amanda Waller was a hot babe and Ted Kord no longer existed.

    This is why I stopped reading DC. Losing Kord, I could’ve survived, but AMANDA WALLER???? *cries*

  55. Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III

    Gaaah! Just googled ‘sexy Amanda Waller’. Seriously DC?

  56. I KNOOOOOW. Amanda Waller was my favorite female character in the DC Universe, because she had no powers, was tough as nails, and stood down Batman when he tried to spook her in the shower. Seriously, most people, on finding Batman in their bathroom after a shower, would rightly shit themselves with fear and sob in a corner, while Amanda Waller sticks to her guns and tells him to get the fuck out of her bathroom.

    And now the woman, one of the few in comics who wasn’t a sex object or a mom, has become exactly what she wasn’t. I AM SO SAD.

  57. Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III

    I look forward to seeing Harvey Bullock lose weight and start working out. Maybe get his hair styled, you know?

  58. God, I hope not. I LIKE Bullock. He makes me feel better about not having anywhere to go on Christmas. (In Batman: the Animated Series, he works through it.)

  59. Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III

    Gah! Now I’ve seen the revamped Harley Quinn, and I can’t unsee her!

    Seriously, who looks at a woman in a completely skintight outfit and says “that’s just not revealing enough”?


    Seriously, one of the reason I’ve mostly stopped reading the Big Two is I’m kind of sick of the constant pandering to a very select demographic. If I want pandering, I’ll read Empowered which at least delivers awesome and depth to its pandering 85% of the time.

  61. Oh, god, it’s worse than that…

    So, they decided that what they really needed was to try to pander to another demographic, to try to rope women in, right?

    So… um… http://www.themarysue.com/daniel-superman-wonder-woman/

    And maybe a book that has a little bit of romance in it, a little big of sex appeal, you know, something that would, for lack of a better example, that hits on the Twilight audience.

    Superman and Wonder Woman — a romance series.

    This is my frowny face.

  62. I’ve only ever liked superheroes who were loners and spent most of their time skulking in the dark. Basically, Batman and Daredevil. I’ve given up on them because Marvel and DC (their mainstream titles) are way too driven by marketing considerations. It’s as if every week on every TV show was ratings sweeps and every episode involved some world-shattering event. Endless reboots, “deaths” and so on. Anyway, I don’t get the whole “fake geek girl” thing. Every male geek dreams of meeting an attractive girl who happens to be into the things he’s into. I’m sure every ten-year-old boy thinks girls are weird because they like playing with Barbies instead of blowing stuff up in video games, because (objectively) blowing things up and killing monsters is more exciting than dressing up and going to parties. So any normal boy or man should welcome female geekery as a positive development. The whole controversy started when some comic book artist posted a rant about attractive women who supposedly went to conventions because, for some reason, they like attention from socially awkward, unattractive male geeks. Never mind that this is a completely insane idea, I’ve been to low key literary SF conventions and seen plenty of young women who do not fit the “geek” stereotype and were definitely not there to show off for anyone (although one pretty young girl sitting next to me at a performance of a play by Roger Zelazny did try to impress me with her knowledge of Gene Wolfe’s “Book of the New Sun”. I was duly impressed and it never once occurred to me that she had familiarized herself with Gene Wolfe purely in order to get attention from a paunchy, middle-aged, scruffy-looking guy at a science fiction convention).

  63. Endless reboots, “deaths” and so on.

    I read “Endless robots,” which was kind of surreal and cool at the same time.

  64. RE: Howard Bannister

    Just as well I quit reading DC, looks like! If I want superheroes, I’ll go for creator-owned. I prefer my superheroes tongue-in-cheek and with real thought behind the social ramifications of costumed vigilantes who consider themselves above the law.

    RE: Falconer

    I read “Endless robots,” which was kind of surreal and cool at the same time.

    Sounds like the inside of my brain!

  65. I prefer my superheroes tongue-in-cheek and with real thought behind the social ramifications of costumed vigilantes who consider themselves above the law.

    A little of that goes a long way, for me. Before too long it starts reading as mockery and judgment, possibly because the first place I ever read that kind of criticism was in MAD Magazine.

    ‘Course, my favorite super is hardly any kind of Randian moral pole, no matter how hard Steve Ditko tried to make him one.

  66. “They interpret the fact that things aren’t always about them all the time as bigotry or hatred.” Oh, irony. He just described MRAs and misogynists in general.

    Oh, and, if you don’t want to be “cast as borderline rapists”, how about not letting so many of your number get away with sexually assaulting women at gaming conventions. That might be cool.

  67. FloralBoquet

    I just solved the problem by dating the chess team in high school the way most cheerleaders date the football team. You can thank me later for helping to prevent a few MRA’s.

    It’s all in the name of feminism, I swear.

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