Thursday, 16 January 2014

When Fan Art Crosses Boundaries

I've been working on trying to make a decent post on my love for female super heroes, but life and depression and other stuff has gotten in the way.
But anger, pure unfiltered rage, has led me to write this post.

[trigger warning for rape, sexual violence and incest]

This is one of the tamer pics I could find. Everything else was triggery.
So, just a few minutes ago, I was browsing through the Wonder Woman tag on tumblr, hoping to come across some fan-made art to inspire me in my Wondy fanfic. What I stumbled across was, for the most part, an amalgamation of highly sexualised pics of Wonder Woman, and other female superheroes, that were fairly disturbing. Now, I'm not a prude, but I kinda draw the line at seeing pictures of Wonder Woman being helplessly tied up by her golden lasso of truth while Superman and Batman's giant erections are looming above her. Many of the pictures suggest a violent, rapey side to the fan art.
And the ones that don't feature Wonder Woman in violent sexual positions feature her being topless or jerking off.

And it makes me wonder (apologies for the pun), what is with some fan artists?
Going on a tag that has anything to do with any of the Batfamily (especially the Robins) brings up way too many images of them in varying acts of sex. What troubles me about that sort of thing isn't that they're mostly m/m pairings, but that the batboys are FAMILY, even if they're not related by blood. They are adopted brothers who treat each other like brothers, and see each other as a family.
Not only that, but then it gets creepier when the youngest Robin, Damian Wayne, gets included in these fan arts. Damian is anywhere from 10-11 years old, depending on where you stand in canon. And for some reason, people love pairing him up with his biological father, Bruce Wayne, or his older adopted brother, the 20-something year old Dick Grayson.

Cosplayers of Damian and Dick. Captioned as "Pedo Cop" by the creators.

This sort of thing perplexes me, and really worries me. That people actively engage in creating content that is sexually violent or abhorrent, in order to jerk off to it, makes me scared. And I know that it's not just confined to the comic fandom, but that's the only fandom that I really participate in any more.
Though, I know it still happens in the Supernatural fandom, with Sam/Dean pairings. And I'm not even going to touch on the pairing and then fetishizing of two canonically straight men. I don't really want a mob to come after me.

But yeah, I'm wondering, what the reasoning behind all this is. Why is it that people are drawn to sexualising their favourite characters in such a way? Why are pictures of a buxom Wonder Woman with her tits out more prominent than Wonder Woman being.... well, wonderful?

I'd really like to hear some thoughts on this. What, do you think, is the appeal to this sexual fantasy that can have potentially dangerous consequences?

1 comment:

  1. I like to remember a story, when people ask about the potential consequences of books/videos/photos. A writer made an investigation and he wrote about what he found with some fantasy in it, then some tragedies occurred after the book was published, the book was found in all those shooters. He stopped the publication of his book. But, was he de culprit? No, children going to schools with guns and shooting their companions is an ongoing story with or without "Rage" by Stephen King in circulation. When Goethe published "The Sorrows of Young Werther" a lot of people committed suicide, as the principal character in the book. It was Goethe's fault? Must likely no. And a lot of books or songs or movies can be linked with tragedies.

    Any sort of expression can have power over the people, like what happened to Madame Bovary or Don Quixote. Bur reading a lot of books is not always going to make you lose your mind. In a way is difficult to know the outcome. Yes pictures like the ones above about Wonder Woman can preserve the idea of the woman as a sexual object, true, but it isn’t the only way of doing it. We educate to not express instead of educate to just respect the woman even if she doesn’t wear clothes. But if you ask me, no, I don’t like pictures of Wonder Woman like those, to me they are vulgar, I’m not against sexual pictures when they are artistic.

    Sexuality is something really complex, i don't dare to judge anything as long as that don't hurt anybody. People are free to explore what they want and that shouldn't be seen as wrong. Actually a lot of people don't dare to come for help because they are afraid of what other people or the doctor could say about it. For example: is an organization that help pedophiles that dare to go with a doctor, and seek help in order to not hurt minors. It's a fact, they like minors and they can change it, as a heterosexual person can't like someone of her same sex. (There is still a long way to know if they like children because there is something in the brain or if it's a social/psychological thing).

    I understand that some ideas can be dangerous, and even if i like some of the "abhorrent sexual content" as you say, it irks me when the people do comments about how nice, romantic or desirable, they are and they truly believe their words. Because incest or minor-adult relationships in the reality are not nice or romantic or desirable. Those situations are devastating. But i do worry the same when people keep repeating ideas such as is a woman duty marry and have children or that boy's shouldn't cry or that been popular is better than study, or that you should have an iphone. Some of those can drove a person to commit suicide. And those ideas are not that obvious as the ones you show, but they are still there and still hurt the people. You can argue if been with a pedophile is much, much, worse, than a person been under so much social pressure that leads him to death.

    But fantasy can't be punish, as long as the artist and the reader/viewer understand that in the fantasy works but not and never in reality I don't see the problem. You don't like incest, fine, i don't like Twilight. As long as an artist you do want you must, like put the correct rating to protect that content, or say that this is fiction but you don’t support children abuse, then you did your work. I know minors are going to see it, but it’s under their responsibility or parents responsibility to educated them about those topics or keep checking so they don’t see those kinds of things.

    It’s respectable if you say all of that is awful and shouldn’t be seen, but I think that as long as we keep it in the dark, we can’t understand neither help. This is more or less what i think, it's very difficult to express all about it, because really all those topics are really debatable, and it differ if you talk about an adult or a child or a teenager… uff.