Thursday, August 30, 2007

Sane Comments on the Mary Jane Statue

I stayed far, far, farrrrrrrrrrr away from the whole Mary Jane statue when it hit, and even farther away when the ensuing firestorm hit the blog world. So imagine my surprise when I follow a Journalista link over to Phillopos live journal, and find actual discussion with nary a flaming post in sight about that same Mary Jane.

In the blog-eat-blog world of internet time, there clearly have been enough days to allow for the cooling of passions about the statue, and for there to be a good, general agreement about the whole debacle.

rachel edidin puts it succinctly:
Y'know what? I actually dug Adam Hughes's original sketch for the comiquette statue. MJ *did* look feisty, and while she was hella sexy, she also had a lot of spirit. I could buy that MJ discovering and being amused by Spidey's costume in the laundry. It was a cute pin-up, and it worked as a pin-up. The problem with the statue was that it had little or none of the charm of Hughes's version, and he was stupidly defending it as a direct translation of that art--and the intention behind it.
And with that, you pretty much have, word for word, my feelings on it. Men like the Hughes, they're sexy babes without looking like idiots, prostitutes or whores, and women like the Hughes, for many of the same reasons: sexy without being sexist. (Personal favorite: the Wanda in the Sentinel hand. Wow.) And none of that made it to the statue.

I never quite got the superheroes as sexy thing, to be honest, even when I was younger, until we get to the John Byrne Jean Grey, who had this "real" body. Yes, she was curvy and sexy, but John was a good enough artist to make her move, to make have have breasts that would actually flatten down if she was lying down, to have hips that would turn properly when she was surprised by Magneto. The John Buscema Sif didn't have that, the Herb Trimpe Betty Ross didn't, neither did the Sal Buscema Valkyrie. And I thought that Jean was pretty wow. All the art books that I had said to try to actully observe people, how they move, and John's moved a lot more like women than anyone else back then. Michael Golden's did as well when he came along.

And somehow, from there, we progressed to Michael Turner. sigh.

But I digress. Mary Jane, we know that you're a hottie, and if Marvel does break you and Peter up, it'll be a shame, but know that we loved you. Not for your thong, but for your spirit.


Jesse said...

I wholly agree.

Scott (The Mad Thinker) Anderson said...

It does look a little different, but I can't figure out what is actually different. The face is a wee bit different. The breasts look a dash smaller. We can't see the tear in her pants over her butt. But a lot of what people complained about is still there, the laundry, barefoot, the necklace, the thong.

I wonder if most people who thought the statue was bad wouldn't be bothered by the drawing? I wonder if there is something about the angle you can look at the statue, i.e. from behind.

inkdestroyedmybrush said...

I think that very few people were bothered by the hughes sketch. It has a sexy mary jane, yes, but none of the female boggers have objected to that, because she's sexy with a spirit and playfulness that isn't degrading or only for exhibitionist tendancies. You have a great point that you can choose to view the statue solely from the rear, which is something that you can't do with the drawing. I still that the statue was just poorly done, the torso too long and too thin, in that a properly posed woman with a woman's body as opposed to a guy's vision of a supermodel bent over would have been viewed at least a little differently. The statue rubbed so many people wrong on so many different levels.

Anonymous said...

In the picture, it looks like she's leaning her butt on the wall, so the angle of her legs and body makes sense and won't overbalance her - unlike the statue.
- Grey

inkdestroyedmybrush said...

Is this the infamous Mr Butler leaving me comments? If so, drop me an email! Love to catch up.

philippos42 said...

Hurm. Looking at the picture now, I see AH doing to MJ what he does to Wonder Woman. Broad shoulders, full breasts, tiny hips.

It's kind of annoying. He can draw other body types, but I guess that's his ideal somehow?