Yohannon (yohannon) wrote,

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So, MIchele sent me this link to a new book containing some of the secret art of one of the creator's of Superman's creators, "Secret Identity".

If you've ever seen some of the "fetish art" of the comics variety from the 40's and 50's, you know it's pretty freaking tame for the most part. Some of the responses have been the usual. illiterate "How dare you!" mouthings of the anti-sexuals. You know, the one's that aren't happy just not having sex themselves, but must do all in their power to prevent anyone from having any erotic fun whatsoever, whether in your head or on it. Take this lovely example:

This book is the worst kind of filth. Superman represents an ideal to young and old alike and to drag out this material is a horrible insult to Siegel and Shuster, the creators of Superman, and degrades their work for which they should ever be known. I bet the author wouldn’t like his name tarnished like he is doing to Joe Shuster. ...I will not buy this book either and all true fans of Superman should boycott it!

Folks, this is the "filth" he refers to:
Whoa Nellie! Are two whips better than one??
As was rightly pointed our by other comments, there was worse imagery than this in the actual COMIC books of the day. My own response goes a bit further, of course:

Wow, interesting knee-jerk reaction from some people. I wonder why? Let's put this into perspective people -- these are "DRAWINGS". Drawing is easily one the oldest art forms, dating back well over 30 thousand years. For about 29,990 of these years people have been drawing naughty bits, and I have no doubt there was someone complaining about it and trying to cover the bits up ever since. Look at the word being used: "Filth". Right. And in the decades since these images were created the so-called "Comics Code" protected all of us from anything even as remotely "filthy" as the images we see here. Oh wait, that isn't what happened. What DID happen was that, by the mid to late sixties, the backlash to the code had begun in the form of the underground comics. These went so far in the other direction that the images in this book are TAME in comparison. No, really. Compare even the most vanilla Robert Crumb, S. Clay Wilson, Robert Williams... By the seventies the Code was already a joke, and by the eighties the independent comics scene was laughing at it openly. The Watchmen was the lamestream's attempt to join in on the joke, and they accidentally succeeded in large part due to Alan Moore, as cranky as he is. The web revolution that has pushed drawing online also removed the last set of "automatic" censorship -- that tendency for artists to pull back for fear of offending advertisers, publishers, or even the freaking PRINTER (it matters not that you have a legal right to publish what you want printed, if the guy who owns the press has a special-ed fish on his shingle he's not likely to fire-up the offset press to produce halftone nudes). But now, ANYONE can be published. I could draw a half-assed (heh) picture of George W. Bush in bed with Octomom and all sixteen of her children doing indecent things with chickens and the stuffed, preserved body of Nixon's long dead dog, Checkers, as the prophet Mohammed rims him making snorting noises, and have the same access to everyone online that DC, Marvel, or King Features does right now. [Why yes, I split some infinitives here. Enjoy all of the permutations of imagery that engenders!] The great masters of the Renaissance often were commissioned for erotic pieces, some of which are now on open display. We can choose to, as George D and NumOneSuprmanFan (is the fact the he's numb at the root of his resentment of all things erotic?) does, to close our eyes and cover our ears, chanting "LALALALA! I don't see or hear EEEE-vil!", or we can stop being ashamed about what is really quite silly sexual expression. BTW, I don't include Marsha Mellow to the list because she's obviously encouraging people to buy multiple copies of the comic. I know I would rather have the dwindling mass of right-wing extremists spend their money to use this book as heating fuel then to spend it on the advertisers of Rush Limbaugh and Bill O'Reilly. ;-)

Marsha Mellow wanted everyone she knew to buy "6 or 7" copies of the book for a "good, old fashioned book burning". I giving her the benefit of a sense of irony.
Tags: art rant
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