Axel-In-Charge: Unmasking the "Totally Awesome Hulk"
A particular scene from James Robinson’s Cry for Justice #2 has sparked a lot of interesting discussion.
Jason Fliegel at Howling Curmudgeons thinks it’s boneheaded:
First, I understand that in real life, sometimes people have threesomes. So I’m not going to automatically cry “sexism!” just because some writer decides to have one of his male characters get in bed with two women. There probably is some amount of … sexism is the wrong word, so let’s go with pandering … there probably is some amount of pandering to the typical readers’ fantasies in describing a M-F-F threesome instead of a F-M-M threesome. And while one incident does not sexism make, I’d be willing to bet that if we got 100 threesomes in mainstream superhero comics, damn near all 100 of them would involve two women. So while each of the individual writers describing these threesomes wouldn’t necessarily be sexist, it does (I would think) create an environment that probably makes women less likely to read mainstream superhero comics.
Second, this just seems inappropriate for a comic like this one. This isn’t even a “mature readers only” comic. Even if it were, I’m all in favor of mature comics, but a mature comic doesn’t just throw out sexual references for titilation purposes. If you want to do a “mature readers” Justice League comic that explores human sexuality — well, I think it’s probably a bad idea, but a good writer could make it work. But this is just a one-off crude joke.
Third, it is completely out of character for Green Lantern, it is completely out of character for the Huntress, and I don’t know a damned thing about the current version of Lady Blackhawk, but from what I hear, it’s completely out of character for her, too. So now we’re ignoring the nature of the characters in order to shoe-horn in an inappropriate joke that panders to our readers and helps create a climate of sexism.
Bloggers Hades and 20 Smalls at Memetic Hazard weigh in with their takes:
The image over there -> is from DC Comics Justice League Cry For Justice 2. Now, I got issue 1, and then stopped, because it sucked. But this panel has caused an uproar. Apparently, good cop Hal had a drunken threesome with two members of the Birds of Prey, maybe. And that upsets a lot of people. How dare DC has such a cavalier attitude towards sex? How could they have a hero use alcohol to obtain sex? It goes against the characterization of both Hal Jordan and Huntress.
20 Small thinks you could look at this multiple ways, since sex is not directly implicated. She also doesn’t think it’s a big deal even if they did, because they were all consenting and single adults.
I think “Way to go Hal.”
While looking2dastars gives finds certain aspects of the scene unbelievable:
1. A Kiss and Tell guy like Hal Jordan is going to keep quiet about pulling off a feat like that and not tell everyone himself?
2. Ollie isn’t going to be the first one he brags to?
(Read the Secret Six #12 preview before reading this next line. It will be funnier that way.)
3. Dinah hears about Hal apparently getting two of her closest friends drunk and taking advantage and her reaction isn’t to give Ragdoll and Deadshot company in the Soprano choir that Wonder Woman is forming?
It’s bad characterization for Hal (who had a girlfriend, last I checked) and Ollie, even ignoring the sexism and cheapening of two of the DCU’s cooler heroines.
So what do you think?