Monday, June 30, 2008

Sh*t D*mn M*therb**tet

Apparently PLATINUM STUDIOS is prodding, poking, asking questions, seeking to negotiate to acquire one WOWIO.COM.

I am not pleased.

Wowio is currently down as they prepare to go global. At least that's what the splash page says as explanation as to why I can't catch up on my downloads at the moment. The thought of Wowio being acquired by another company fills me with distrust.

Wowio is just starting out. It's just beginning to see the possibilities for what it's offering. There are so many ways it can go and it's on the front lines carving out the frontier. Becoming a subsidiary just leaves me thinking of no more essays or critical works or magazines or comics from competitors or web comics or indies or non comic / non graphic novel works.

I feel Wowio should remain Wowio and if Platinum Studios wants to get into the digital trade it should bloody well create it's own. Wowio helped me smile about comics again after a year where my only solution, in order to maintain sanity was to walk away from the big Two and take several steps back from Image too.

It seems as if something can't have even a droplet of success online before a bigger company shows up to eat it. Yes they call it buying out, but it feels more like eating/absorption and shitting out of waste. Has Yahoo done ANYTHING with Delicious? Anything at all? No.

Google's been sitting on Jaiku for a while now. And yes, it is Google and Google tends to make things work. But still, Jaiku's been sitting and people have been left waiting.

I had 350 plus items on my Wowio Queue before I moved. There were a lot of comics but there were also a fair amount of novels and documentary style texts; thoughts on serial killers for example or an examination into myths. I hadn't yet touched the essays and magazines/articles.


It likely doesn't help that there's very little about Platinum Comics I enjoy. There's maybe one Platinum title on my Queue and I keep bumping it down anyway.

ETA: Ok this shit right here about how Platinum Studios have messed up paying an artist is NOT giving me good thoughts about the future of Wowio and the creators who were previously getting $.50 a download. Nor am I feeling good about what consumers/readers will be getting if they have to deal with someone whose reputation is besmirched like that. Cause WTF???


This review of WANTED(the movie) got me curious enough to actually read the comic. I only knew the basics and even with just the basics I could see the difference between the Fox and Angelina fricking skinny ass Jolie.

I'm beginning to think, however, that I'd have enjoyed the comic more before my therapist and former roommate spent the last four years teaching me and nurturing in me an empathy for my fellow man.

I'm also struck by a couple of other things. For one, apparently Millar doesn't have the balls to say the N-word even though that's what he wants to imply all over the first two issues with 'African American Boss'.

I'm also having issues with the term lesbian being used as a swear word and negative and the phrase 'faggoty fear'. I feel like saying:

Dear Mark Millar,

Gay men have to face the possibility of beatdowns for most of their lives, from their parents to random jackoffs on the street. They're the last men in the world allowing a fear of being punched in the face to rule their lives. If you know they're gay? They're some of the bravest men you'll ever meet, you lazy, racist, homophobic, pasty fear filled white boy.

But maybe I should finish reading the whole thing first and see if there's some layered meaning that's, woosh, flying over my head. I mean a white guy in the comic industry back in 2003/2004 could have been doing a commentary on psychosis and how the corporate lock-step life involves a level of de-individualizing of self that can lead to a break from reality and wanton violence.

His work on The Authority could also have been a challenging dialogue on rape, masculinity, an imbalance of power, how it leads to conquest/domination and the definition of evil. What do I know?

If I don't follow up with another post, however, then know that Mark Millar has joined Bendis in the pile of 'Crock of Shit' I reserve to those seriously lacking imagination and substituting it with generic, fear filled, masturbation material.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Like Ink On The Funny Pages...

Like a comic book or soap opera, this past weekend I had an event occur in my life that leans towards momentous. And some of what happened is relevant enough for me to post here.

My parents are divorced and I've always known that was a good thing. My parents were doing a 'War of the Roses' way before the movie and with far more friction. So with that kind of animosity, there have been looooooong stretches in my life where I didn't have contact with my other parent.

I spent the whole of Monday with my Dad. It's likely what I'd have dreamed up if some Superman interstellar villain threw that black tentacly plant on my chest.

When we got to talking about comics, I discovered that according to my Dad, I hunted out Batman comics on my own. He read to me from Marvel - he liked them best. And it turns out the reason I've always known so much about the X-men is because he read me those.

Dear Marvel, please stop fucking up. You have so much potential to bring generations together if only you didn't treat continuity like a solo sex soaked skcuzy sock that gets tossed into the bottom of the laundry hamper.

Anyway, I turned my Dad onto Wowio.Com and the indies there. I can't wait until Wowio finishes their website clean-up (they're going global) and re-opens mid-July. There are definitely some things I'd like to share with my Da.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Willow Thinks Thinky Thoughts

Ami of Ami's SuperCute Rants Of Dooooom, has been having a back and forth with a bit of an arsewipe re: trans issues. That's not something I'm going into since the arsewipe in question identifies as a radical feminist which, along with the current lack of listening, tells me everything I need to know about them and their ability to absorb complex issues.

Moving away from the middle class white woman with drama, I want to talk about the first two sentences that begin her (the radfem's) main thoughts.

"I don't believe in gender as a true concept, I believe it is a social construct. I do not believe that there are any qualities which are innately 'male' or 'female', but that human beings are conditioned from birth to behave in a certain way based solely on their genitalia."

I read those sentences and I couldn't read any further. Now, given replies and posts about the spew coming from that direction, my mind was already going in one direction. But the reason I couldn't read any further is because I felt, reading those two lines, that I knew EVERYTHING this individual was basing their thoughts on.

You see I was struck with how very cisprivileged that statement is. If I'm wrong (about this or other things) and you're trans or trans allied, please do correct me. Ami in particular (who graciously looked over this post's drafts for me). I'd hate to be going down the wrong path. But that statement just smears with privilege to me. How can it not be a privilege to be able to believe that gender is purely a social construct if you yourself have no personal trials in the area?

If how you see yourself and how you feel matches up to your genitalia then how the hell can you be in any position to judge whether or not something is a social construct? How can it not be a fricking GIFT to be able to think of the whole thing as a academic excersize? As theory?

How the hell would you have any perspective at all in how social conditioning can go AGAINST something innate?

Now, I might not be able to accurately judge socialization in terms of being trans, but I know I butted up against socialization in terms of being queer. Who I was, how I walked, how I dressed, how I talked, how I sat, how I laughed it ALL was judged. And a lot of the times I was told I was being too boyish. The fear of course was that I'd turn out to be a 'mannish woman' which was another word, culturally, for DREADED LESBIAN.

Bully for my family, it happened anyway.

But I do have the personal experience of who I was, what came naturally to me, being classified as wrong and inappropriate. And no, that doesn't confirm the concept of gender as a social construct only. Because I have the experience of feeling bristled and being chastized for my innate actions and expressions of self as being wrong.

Innate actions.

Expressions of self.

And in my case they all revolved around a fear of masculinity.

There was something within me that was naturally a certain way. And I say was, because truthfully it's all screwed up now and I don't really know if who I am is who I am, or who I decided was the least conflicting way to be. Now, people can debate all they want about how the traits I expressed as a child, which my family feared, came to be labeled masculine. Go ahead, knock yourself out. The point is, those traits came from within me.

So yes, I can absolutely understand that the innate expression of self can be contrary to how society would like to label. And I can absolutely understand and believe that at some point when a child stops thinking of themselves as just THEMSELVES and starts personally, mentally, applying pronouns that the one they reach for naturally, the one that feels right, could bloodly well be the opposite to their outside parts.

Are they absorbing socialization? Who the fuck cares. Until we live in a society that actively uses only gender neutral pronouns and the qualities of physical sex are only relevant as to whether or not you'll be the one to carry a child if you so decide to have children - then human beings have two genders; male and female. At some point in their life someone realizes that THIS is them, be it male or female. This is what resonates, this is who and how they are.

And there are some incredibly courageous people who thenchoose, imagine that, they CHOOSE TO DEAL WITH THE BULLSHIT that currently comes because their inner innie doesn't match their outie, or their inner outie doesn't match their innie; bullshit that's formed by cisgendered pre-conceptions and obsessions about what gender and gender expression is - OUR BULLSHIT. There are women who choose to make sure to present themselves as women, even though they could just shut up and on the surface pass as men. They present who they are inside, even though it means publicly acknowledging the added feelings of vulnerability in a society where women are often treated as commodities. And there are men who deal with bullshit like male emotional repression and the anxieties and fears of women concerning men and issues of manhood and masculinity and the violence that comes with challenging those concepts- but they do it because can't deny who they are.

They CHOOSE to deal with us (society) and the baggage we've hung around gender identity. They decide it/figure it out, like everyone else, but then they have to CHOOSE to deal with the pressure to conform in a way most people never feel. They consciously choose every day to be true to themselves; they wake up and live their lives and present themselves physically as who they feel inside and damn to people who wish otherwise.

Please Note: I'm NOT SAYING that transpeople CHOOSE TO BE A GENDER. THEY DON'T. There is no real choice in choosing to be who you are. YOU JUST ARE. I'm saying that they have a unique opportunity to lie to themselves, to hide themselves, that's what society wants and it's incredibly easy for them to be invisible. I wouldn't even call it a closet, since to come out as trans means to tell someone you are trans vs to simply be at whatever level you're most comfortable. I am in no position what so ever to comment on coming out as trans.And I think it's an illusion to think it's more than briefly similar to coming out as Same Gender Loving. A woman just is a woman (cis or trans). A man just is a man (cis or trans). But there are some men and women who could be invisible so easily; who could ignore or walk away from the progress needed in gender equality issues and perceptions - but they don't.

To me it's somewhat akin to being bi-racial in an era of Jim Crow laws and choosing not to pass; knowing that someone could take your life for looking at the wrong person, for not being timid or grateful enough, or for 'fooling' them into thinking you were one of them when you're not. It's choosing not to pass knowing in the current climate it's legal to kill you if they so decide to (Lynchings were on the books, people). But instead they are choosing to be themselves despite a fuck ass stupid contingent that'd rather point fingers and weep long showy crocodile tears than work towards making this earth a better place.

So with all that said. Is there a transgendered super hero out there in a current and active comic? Is there someone using this analogy of courage to deal with aliens, magic and crazy techno villians?

And if there isn't - why not? Because someone needs to physically show, panel by panel exactly why statements like 'I believe gender is a purely social concept' is but so much privilege and an excuse to try and deny individuals their identities.

[ My thanks to Ami for reading through the drafts AND for her suggestion of Miss Martian, a character with a unique history and struggle to discover herself because she was 'born into a culture where she was seen as an aberration and taught to deny who she is'

I'd also like to note some of my own frustration in tidying up those drafts as I came to realize how important words are when discussing trans issues. Being unaware of the emotional weight of some words that are used to disparage transindividuls, I made some mistakes in word choice and some might still be here.]

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Reasons I Don't Like You

"there are some bad people in that place, and he's going to be exposed to things he's never seen."

Kill a gay man - get three years in prison. ONLY three years.

AND have your family have the fucking nerve to say shit like that and be listened to.

Day in, day out, black teenagers get in similar positions and it is NEVER reasonable that jail will do more harm than good to them. It is NEVER reasonable that they might need substance abuse counseling vs incarceration.

(1) Prisoners of the War on Drugs

(2) Prison Town: Paying the Price

(3) Prisoners of a Hard Life: Women and Their Children

So how's the future looking right now? Well apparently it's close to some combination of Jennifer Government and A Handmaid's Tale.

I never thought the concept of 'a jury of your peers' could be so fucking disgusting.

America's War on The Non White/Non Mainstream Other.


Thursday, June 19, 2008

State Of...


Attempting to settle in.

DSL withdrawal. Remedy next week.

In the meantime don't think I'm not trying to keep up, I am.