Re: Guest Post - Genre Fiction and Gender

1

The "Wife" post reminds me of something that crops up from time to time - the idea that my, your, her, his, etc. can only denote possession.

I and the woman I first lived with and loved never called each other my anything. Not even my lover. Using the possessive for another human being seemed wholly wrong.

I can see why people have this thought, but it falls apart quickly when examined. She notes this further down with the example of "my mother", but there's also "my cousin", "my boss", "my country", "my surroundings"... what's being denoted is clearly a relationship, but we still call them "possessive pronouns" for some reason.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:32 AM
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"The partner in the marriage containing me"? "The partner in this house that isn't me or the other people"? "The person I'm sharing the meal on this table with"?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:36 AM
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Context, Nick, context. Tell the readers we're talking about how Thor is now She-Thor.

Maybe.

I agreed, last time, that I could have done a much better job framing the Brad DeLong post. But, in this case, I think the discussion of Thor isn't the point. It's the hook for her post, but not the focus, and I was more interested in both the interesting links and to a queer SF author commenting that the field is beginning to deal with sex and gender issues more positively.

Perhaps it isn't notable -- I know that there's a long-running conversation within SF Fandom on the subject which I haven't been following, and the optimistic viewpoint may be a consensus position, but that wouldn't have been my guess.

But clearly I could have written more introductory remarks . . .


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:37 AM
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Under Halfordismo, there will be a two year total moratorium on mentioning, discussing, writing about, or otherwise bringing to popular attention comic books. You can still read them in silence if you just STFU about doing so.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:37 AM
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1: I was thinking about this this morning, unrelatedly. It's unfortunate that we don't use the word "genitive" instead.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:39 AM
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Thor is now She-Thor.

Fuck that lazy nonsense. God forbid people getting paid to write stories actually create a character or two. Oooh, you threw some tits on Thor, how transgressive.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:39 AM
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I and the woman I first lived with and loved never called each other my anything. Not even my lover. Using the possessive for another human being seemed wholly wrong.

I can see why people have this thought, but it falls apart quickly when examined

By my reading, she also felt like it was wrong -- that it would be appropriate to have a word to use to refer to one's partner, and that she was emotionally reluctant to do so. In other words she hesitated because of an anger about historical association, rather than a position on grammar.

I read my first feminist theory when I was 19. It made me so angry that I couldn't leave my flat for three days because I thought I might hurt the first man I saw. In the countries I call home (the UK and US) until relatively recently husbands could rape their wives with impunity. Wives could do nothing about that. A wife belonged to her husband. A wife submitted to him and depended upon him; a wife wasn't allowed to make decisions for herself, to borrow money...

Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:43 AM
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4 is right.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:43 AM
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3: settle down, sugar-tits. Just funnin' ya.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:45 AM
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I endorse 4, which made me think of this.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:47 AM
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I assume the link in the OP is broken out tradition.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:48 AM
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whoops. let me fix that.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:48 AM
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Someone I know had an aunt who introduced her bf as "and this is the boy I kiss"


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:50 AM
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1: Consider for instance the difference between saying "sugar-tits" and "my sugar-tits".


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:51 AM
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I read 13 as "Someone I know had an aunt who introduced her beef ass"


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:54 AM
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The sugar-tits which are resting on me.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:55 AM
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Admonishing footnote to the OP: She-Thor

Not been around too much, has black Captain America been discussed here?

I don't even see comic books.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:57 AM
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The comic book shop I was at on Wednesday for Reasons had packets of 20 random comics for $10 on sale. On a whim and to see if things had improved in the general comic world I purchased a pack and read a few. Nope. Still written for bright but emotionally stunted 10 year olds.


Posted by: Chopper | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 10:57 AM
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US-centric, and frankly woefully ignorant.

The anime and manga worlds are huge, global and very complicated. There are 100 volumes of manga published for every volume of America comics. Maybe it was every month compared to a year.

There is plenty to criticize or worry about in the anime world, and I doubt that it will meet top standards of the American feminist or LGBT communities. But the "woman warrior" is fucking ubiquitous, with every variation imaginable.

Just finished Birdy the Mighty Decode galactic cop, who can fell skyscrapers with a punch. Yeah male gaze, but Birdy is completely feminine, and gets a romance. She also shares a body with a male HS student

Currently watching Tokyo Ghoul, bloody and violent as hell, basically good vampires battling bad vampires (ghouls).

Kirishima Touka is apparently the toughest mutha among the good ghouls. Yeah, she's a trope (several, also tsundere). Tropes and cliches and stereotypes are where you have to start.

Here's Balsa from Seira no moribito, for a third different type. You know I can go on forever with this variety, don't you?

Bored to death by Americans


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 11:01 AM
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There are 100 volumes of manga published for every volume of America comics.

That's because the Japanese alphabet is so complicated, they like pictures more.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 11:02 AM
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21

Once I was swimming cross Turtle Creek
many snappers all around my feet
Swimmin' cross that thing sure gave me fits
with both hands holdin' my sugar-tits

My sugar-tits, my sugar-tits
I want to play with my sugar-tits
My sugar-tits, my sugar-tits
I want to play with my sugar-tits


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 11:03 AM
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Bored to death by Americans

"Drill, baby, drill!"


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 11:19 AM
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23

22 made me laugh. Which comes across as a slam on 21, but really I just don't know the song.

I'm sure I've mentioned one of my favorite Onion headlines, when the Bush twins turned 18: "Jenna Bush's Wetlands Now Open For Drilling".


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 11:22 AM
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I endorse 4, because of all these fake fan-boys running around who were always way too cool to be seen with a comic book in the old days, but now that you can be a hipster comic fan, suddenly they've all jumped on the bandwagon. Hmph. Just leave us real nerds in peace.

Also, I concur with 6. Plenty of interesting goddesses in the Norse pantheon who could have gotten their own comic books.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 11:31 AM
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e.g. Hela.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 11:34 AM
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4, 6: There probably are new female superheroes being created all the time. But if you want to get attention from the MSM you have to mess with a character that's already famous.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:13 PM
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HeLa? The avenging African-American ovarian cancer victim?

In related news, I want to pose a quiz to everybody. Stereotypically, what's the least likely shirt for an African-American to ever be seen in? Because that's what the black guy who's rotating in one of our labs is wearing today.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:14 PM
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28

I just feel like this whole conversation needs more Beta Ray Bill.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:16 PM
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27.2: A confederate flag with "It's a white thing - you wouldn't understand" is probably the best I've ever seen, but I'm entirely sure it was ironic. If we're looking for plausible deniability, I need to scale back.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:19 PM
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Stereotypically, what's the least likely shirt for an African-American to ever be seen in?

"Stormfront White Power Festival 2012"?

"University of New Hampshire Sailing Team"?


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:22 PM
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"McCain-Palin 2008"?


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:23 PM
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"McCain-Palin 2016"


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:25 PM
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"Zimmerman 2016"

http://www.cafepress.com/mf/79981410/george-zimmerman-2016_tshirt?utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=888332500&utm_source=google&utm_campaign=sem-cpc-product-ads&utm_content=search-pla&productId=888332500


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:28 PM
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the black guy who's rotating in one of our labs

Lab safety guidelines require you to verify that nobody is in the giant centrifuge before powering it up.


Posted by: MAE | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:29 PM
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25: Ugh

What is so annoying about American-style is that there is apparently only one, and I am less amazed by the size of tits as I am by the biceps.

oscar fran├žois de jarjayes is Commander of the Royal Guards for her leadership and sense of duty and is unbeatable with a sword or pistol.

But the other night a large man got on top, and with her fencer's lithe body, she didn't have the weight or upper body-strength to keep from being strangled. She usually does the rescuin', but this time Andre, her valet had to save her.

Course, tons of shoujo-ai in RoV.

At a quick glance, AFAICT, 3/15 new series this season have BL as a prominent theme. Cross-dressing and gender-play so common as to not be noteworthy


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:29 PM
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30.2, on the right track


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:32 PM
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"Nantucket Yacht Club"?

"Bob Jones University"?


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:36 PM
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"Duke Lacrosse"


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:42 PM
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OT: Pics or it didn't happen, bro:

How many teen pregnancies were averted because one of the potential partners was too busy looking for treasure in a crypt? (Make all the jokes you want, but some of my fellow-players were jocks who had girlfriends; sometimes the girlfriends played, too.)

Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:43 PM
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6 is the laughable naivete of someone who's never read a superhero comic. Superhero comics are 98% gimmicks. Having one character replace another is gimmick #1. There's been like 4 Flashes, 5 Robins, and 6 Batgirls. Spiderman's secret identity got taken over by Docter Octopus.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:44 PM
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The comic book shop I was at on Wednesday for Reasons had packets of 20 random comics for $10 on sale. On a whim and to see if things had improved in the general comic world I purchased a pack and read a few. Nope. Still written for bright but emotionally stunted 10 year olds.

I'm not necessarily going to disagree for the mainstream stuff, but even so, what do you expect for a bunch of random stuff bundled together for cheap? They don't put the good stuff in the bargain bin.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:51 PM
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6: The writers and artists don't create new characters, villains, etc., for corporate comics because the history of creators not getting acknowledged, much less compensated, for such creations is too extensive and egregious. Old wine in new bottles is the best you will get; even a nutty genius like Grant Morrison will only dig a little deeper in the archives looking for past inventions to plunder.

17: The Falcon was, and should be, important as the Falcon, typed the fellow who read the Cap & Falcon comics as a stupid an innocent child; changing his name and outfit implies that the Falcon wasn't important enough.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:52 PM
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41: Sure, following Sturgeon's Law, but I keep hearing about a renaissance in comics and was wondering if it had seeped down to Marvel. I understand I wasn't going to get the critically-acclaimed stuff. I shouldn't have done it anyway--I have a bit of a problem around being a completist--if I'd found something I liked I could have been down the rabbit hole for a few hundred bucks.


Posted by: Chopper | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:57 PM
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6 is the laughable naivete of someone who's never read a superhero comic.

A badge that can be worn with pride.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:58 PM
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45

43: Don't read the comic version of "Alice in Wonderland." There's a novel.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 12:59 PM
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46

"Johns Hopkins Lacrosse"! And it was a sweatshirt.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 1:01 PM
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47

That doesn't really seem all that weird.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 1:01 PM
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44: And yet you're outraged by what they've done to Thor? Are you a practicing Norse pagan?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 1:05 PM
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Are you a practicing Norse pagan?

It's called "Asatru," thank you very much, by Wotan!


Posted by: OPINIONATED REN FAIRE GUY WITH A BEARD | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 1:09 PM
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43: Don't read the comic version of "Alice in Wonderland." There's a novel.

On the other hand, do read Alice in Sunderland/


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 1:11 PM
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51

Jim Brown is in the Lacrosse hall of fame.


Posted by: lemmy caution | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 1:19 PM
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Alice in Sudetenland gets a bit dark when they come to 1938.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 1:24 PM
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At least this is what I used to think until reading Saladin Ahmed's Buried Badasses: The Forgotten Heroines of Pre-Code Comics.

Assuming this is the same Saladin Ahmed who wrote The Throne of the Crescent Moon, that was a fun book! Not perfect, by any means, but it's entertaining to read fantasy set in a mythological world that is *not* elves and dwarves, etc.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 1:24 PM
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48: I don't think gswift is outraged. Just not impressed.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 1:24 PM
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27.1: Cervical, possibly related to STDs from her husband.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 1:50 PM
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5 Robins

Five Robins, if you limit yourself to continuity.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 2:09 PM
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23: Substitute "ding-a-ling," a Chuck Berry not-classic which had a revival in the '70s with an even more annoying live version.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 2:34 PM
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51: And they changed the rules on stick-handling because he was too tough. A short clip of him playing.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 2:43 PM
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On the black Cap tip, I think this piece by the Batman-obsessive Chris Sims was really good. The basic idea is that comics are written by and largely marketed to dudes in their 30s and 40s because kids today have better things to drop $3 on than 14 pages of content. The editorial staffs at DC and Marvel are insanely reluctant to change from the status quo because dudes in their 30s and 40s who read comic books fear and resent change change. Finally, there hasn't been a major new character* who a hater like Gswift would recognize since Wolverine, literally 40 years ago**. So comics-land keeps flipping back to the iconic representation of characters created with vastly less diverse default assumptions; the reset button on Blue Beetle -- who was then a Hispanic kid from Texas with an alien battlesuit and, notably, more recognizable as same to any kids watching the Cartoon Network -- in favor of Ted Kord, a (straight, white, male) character created in 1966 was a tell there.

* I wonder about the extent to which the immense success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is changing this, both via people e.g. having the mental representation of Nick Fury being Samuel L. Jackson and through Marvel and Disney seeing a bigger pot of money in generating roles for female actors and actors of color than what they'll give up in crumpled bills from sweaty basement-dwellers.

** Maybe Storm, who came a year later. If anyone says Steel based on the Shaq movie, I will high-five him or her.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 2:45 PM
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60

There's a good long tradition of taking a superhero and making a female-equivalent superhero with a slightly altered name (Spiderwoman; Ms Marvel; She Hulk; etc.), but after this there really was nowhere to go with that but down. So I guess this is the new method?


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 2:47 PM
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I did in fact grow up reading some of the mainstream comics here and there and quite like the well made movies based on those characters (big middle finger to the Spider Man movies). But the tradition mentioned in 60 is stupid and annoying and should be killed with fire.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 3:23 PM
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46 -- it's like you've never seen the Wire.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 3:37 PM
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There's a good long tradition of taking a superhero and making a female-equivalent superhero with a slightly altered name (Spiderwoman; Ms Marvel; She Hulk; etc.),

This must explain the movie "Wonder Man" starring Danny Kaye.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 3:38 PM
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My college had a pretty good comic library, mostly the big houses and Crumb-style comix. Now I read free-online-first stories about female scientists and engineers; I would try to widen this up a bit (I hear Saga is good) but there are *so many* of the former that I don't have time. Although now that Digger is done I guess I have a replacement spot.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 4:20 PM
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Dicebox isn't half done, but good so far. And pretty.

I've been looking for what *I* think of as hard science fiction recently, meaning not fantasy and also not space opera and also not egregiously stupid free-energy-but-not-admitting-it science. There isn't much, and most of what there is is biological.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 4:36 PM
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57 -- But didn't you think it a perfect background song at some elite party as the Pinochet coup is going down in that Jack Lemmon movie?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 4:43 PM
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Oh, my kids are pissed about Blue Beetle. They loved the Latino kid (whose ultimate fantasy was apparently to be a dentist.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 5:05 PM
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Wonder Man was also a comic book superhero, but in a whole other continuity from Wonder Woman: a Marvel superhero who lived, IIRC, in Hollywood.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 5:13 PM
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66: Did not remember that. Missing.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 7:21 PM
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Ther


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 7:32 PM
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Zhor


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-18-14 7:40 PM
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She-Thor, Marjorie Daw,
Jackie shall have a new master.
He shall have but a penny a day,
Because he can't work any faster.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07-19-14 3:38 AM
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They ought to do a comic about Freya, who sold her virtue to a disgusting dwarf for a gold ring and thereby became the patron goddess of Forza Italia.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 07-20-14 7:57 AM
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sold her virtue to a disgusting dwarf for a gold ring
Like the Dutchess of Cambridge.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 07-20-14 8:30 AM
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