This kept me up last night. I have very mixed feelings about "sexy" art in comics and graphic novels. Generally, when I voice any concern or read things others have written, the response is that a) these aren't meant to be realistic, b) these books are for adults who know better, and c) the characters are superhuman and should look the part. One friend told me she likes a little T. and A. in her graphic novels. I get that. I read a couple racy comics myself, I am ostensibly and adult and know that these aren't realistic stories or depictions of realistic humans. They are highly stylized and fanciful.
I get that. I'm down with it for the most part. I do think a little basic attention should be paid to realistic anatomy and enjoy the catalog of artistic sins at Escher Girls.
But when I got to work yesterday, I found a Transformers easy paperback book ready for processing, a book geared towards 4-6 year olds. Here's the front of the book.
|Grrrrr, we are tough.|
It's nothing much, but it helps the kids who are crazy for Transformers find something to take home. Then I flipped the book over to scan the barcode and saw this:
Not sure what you're seeing? You're seeing a robot in a classic "boobs and butt" pose. Like this and this.
Why? Why the gendered robots? Why the sexualized pose? Why why why is it in a book for elementary school kids?
We get tons of requests for super hero books every day. Kids as young as three want Spiderman and Superman and Avengers books, and I say, generally, yay. If it gets kids reading, then I'm generally all for it. We got a fun book of DC characters in the picture book section, and while Wonder Woman is aptly drawn like an Amazon, at least she doesn't look like an extra in a skin flick.
|Tickets for the Gun Show? Yes please!|
I've already been branded a joyless feminist before, and I'm down with that. But can we please leave off B&B poses in kids books? Can we not let teenagers find these books when they're teenagers?