At a Comic Con San Diego panel last month entitled "Women of Marvel," the news of an upcoming series, Spider Woman, was announced. Yet when a cover of the first comic in the series was revealed, drawn by Milo Manara, an artist known for his erotic drawings, controversy erupted. There was Spider Woman, in a red, skin-tight outfit, posed on all fours. Some bloggers and organizations that write about comics were extremely critical.
Is it the fact that female superheroes (and females in general) in comics are sexualized that makes some people angry, or is it that male superheroes and other male characters are not objectified with the same frequency? This i09 article features ten times that male superheroes have been sexualized, both in movies and comic books. Did they have to throw in movies because there were too few examples in comics? Perhaps. But let's take a look at one.
Pictured below is Dick Grayson, also known as Nightwing. His suit comes fully equipped: mini computer, knockout gas, anti-toxins, "re-breather," listening devices, stun gun and more. But it appears Nightwing has one more secret weapon: his posterior. At least, that's the asset artists who drew the following images took the liberty to highlight, including Secret Six artist Nicola Scott, whose artwork is in the photo immediately below.
I suppose the only true test of public opinion would be a massive increase in male comic book characters being sexually objectified. I daresay if, however unlikely, that did happen all of a sudden, the only quantifiable result would be a reduction in comic book sales.
Images Credit: DC Comics