In Defense Of Geek Cultureon June 22, 2012 at 10:25 pm
So there’s this:
And this has apparently outraged some non-geeks. Alexander Abad-Santos over at the Atlantic Wire had this to say:
Two major aspects of geek culture are supporting outsiders and rooting for underdog. So can someone please explain how it turned itself into its biggest villain: A giant, self-congratulating fratboy?
There’s the fact that the women on the top row (assuming we’re talking about the twitchy Stewart and not Bella Swan) are all real women and that the women on the bottom of the graphic are all the stuff of (science) fiction.
And another blogger quoted by Alexander had this to say:
Wouldn’t a more compelling, interesting, and challenging comparison for celebrating an alternative to mainstream role models for girls have been real-life women who are involved in geek culture? How about Lauren Faust, creator of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic? Or Lindsay Ellis, the Nostalgia Chick? Rebecca Watson, from Skepchick? Jane Goodall, the world-famous Primatologist? Dr. Alice Roberts, from Digging for Britain? Lisa Randall, the Harvard Physicist? Kate Beaton, the brilliant comic artist? Or Mayim Bialik, the actress turned neuroscientist turned actress?
Well, no, it wouldn’t actually. Why? Because the top row of “real” women are not real at all. Three of them are reality TV stars. What the public knows about them is so scripted and unreal as to be meaningless. No one really knows Kristen Stewart as Kristen Stewart, they know her as Bella. This may change over time if her acting career continues but, right now, that picture refers to Bella, not a real person. Lady Gaga is also a character. Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta does not go to sleep in full make up and a meat dress. However, I don’t think Lady Gaga belongs in this particular grouping so I’ll concede that point.
The stinging truth of the above picture led some enterprising soul to make this one in response:
Yup, you got us, we male geeks like the female body as much as the next guy. But let’s take another look, shall we?
Let’s start with the top row:
Snooki – reality TV star famous for being a drunken idiot.
Bella – “Vapid, personality free, man dependent, in an abusive relationship.” Haven’t read the books or watched the movies so I’ll have to take someone else’s word for it.
Kim Kardashian – Famous for “leaking” a sex tape with Ray J (who?).
Kat von D – I actually don’t know a thing about her but they don’t give reality shows to stable, regular people. Presumably there is much “drama” and “outrageous” behavior.
Lady Gaga – Still doesn’t belong with this bunch.
Now let’s look at the second row:
Aeryn Sun – Took on two intergalactic empires. And won. Also an unstoppable killing machine.
Zoë Alleyne Washburne – Rabidly loyal soldier and tough as nails. Slightly stoppable killing machine.
Susan Ivanova – Futuristic Russian badass. Not to be trifled with.
Jadiza Dax – Smartest person in the series and that includes the genetically enhanced Dr. Bashir. Fights Klingons and Jem’hadar hand to hand. And wins. Unstoppable killing machine
Samantha “Sam” Carter – One of the smartest people on the planet Earth and several other planets, too. Fought Gods, monsters and alien armadas. And won. Blew up a star once. Unstoppable killing machine.
And now the “rebuttal” row that’s supposed to explain how geeks are just sexist losers:
Princess Leia – Watched her planet blow up, shrugged it off and helped defeat the Galactic Empire. Choked out Jabba the Hutt with a chain and her bare hands. Daughter of Darth Vader, an unstoppable killing machine. A Jedi herself (in the books), Leia is also an unstoppable killing machine.
Lelou “Mulitpass” Dallas – The Supreme Being. So far advanced beyond man that she is literally a weapon to destroy Evil made manifest. Unstoppable killing machine.
Power Woman – Possibly a Kryptonian, possibly not. Power Woman is one the most powerful women in all of the DC Universe. Would be an unstoppable killing machine if she wasn’t a hero.
Juliet Starling – Cheerleader zombie hunter. She uses a chainsaw to rack up a body count in the thousands. Unstoppable killing machine.
Orion “slave girl” – Orion women use their pheromones and other, more obvious, “assets” to ensnare men to do their bidding. As the Orion culture is one based on piracy and violence, Orion women can be stunningly lethal when the need arises.
So, it looks like even when geeks are being “sexist” they still prefer their women to be absolute badasses and not drunken attention junkies. Sorry, pop culture, you still lose.