Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Vacation Vixen: Ellen Page

This was truly the year Ellen Page finally came into her own, and out. I’m looking forward to a lifetime of good things from this tiny Canadian. Very good things.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Monday, December 29, 2014

Vacation Vixen: Tatiana Maslany & Ksenia Solo

I can’t even with these two. I can’t wait to see our little Kenzi on screen with Cosima. Can’t. Wait. Can’t.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Vacation Vixen: Gillian Anderson

Sweet merciful Zeus, wasn’t “The Fall” amazing this season? I still have not recovered. But, dammit, am I going to have to start watching “Hannibal” now to get my weekly Gillian fix?

p.s. You can read my recap of the finale over at AfterEllen.

p.p.s. Oh, as you may have noticed, I will be on vacation for the next two weeks. But, fear not, I have left fresh, fantastic Vacation Vixens for you to enjoy in my absence. Seriously, they are lovely.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Freedom from Want

I hope wherever you are or whatever you celebrate or whoever you are with you are having the most merry and bright day. Thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts on everything from the major to the minuscule with me here. May your day be free from any want and filled with only joy. Merry Christmas, kittens.

p.s. I know, I know this is an ad. But goodness, the message is lovely.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

We Wish You a Merry Litchfield

Twas the night before Christmas and Piper, Alex, Taystee, Big Boo, Crazy Eyes, Black Cindy, Pennsatucky (Taryn Manning), Nicky, Morello (Yael Stone), Gloria and Red hope visions of sugar plums are dancing through your head. And some other stuff, too.

p.s. Oh, look, an extended cut with out takes!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

See John

Much has already been written about Shiloh Jolie-Pitt. Which is crazy, because, you know, Shiloh is 8 years old. Most of it has to do with how Brad and Angelina’s fourth child dresses. I’ve been guilty, too, five years ago when the world realized the then 3-year-old was a bon fide tomboy. Over the years more has been said. It has been reported by The Telegraph that Shiloh prefers to be called “John.” Which is, of course, perfectly fine. So I’ll use John. I do not know for certain what gender pronoun John prefers at this point, so I’ll leave that to him or her to decide in the future.

I think mostly what all the attention on John Jolie-Pitt reminds us how fascinated and frightened we are by the otherness can exist in gender. The binary of man and woman can be so blinding that some react primally to anything that doesn’t fit into the rigid this or that. I have to say most of the coverage of little John recently has been pretty good. I haven’t seen too many people with torches crucifying the Jolie-Pitt family for letting John be John. Though, granted, I haven’t visited any torch stores recently, so I don’t know all the scuttlebutt around those angry cash registers.

Mostly what I want to say is how proud, and a tiny bit jealous, I am at how much John gets to be John. While I have always identified as female, I yearned to wear what the boys did while growing up. I hated all dresses and skirts and frills. Lace made me itch and want to die. My parents were OK, but there were always those special occasions where I had to wear a dress. I hated those special occasions. So it’s lovely to see what when John goes out on (albeit much more glamorous) special occasions – like the red carpet for mama Jolie’s new movie – John gets to wear what John wants. Let people be people, it seems so simple. And on this 8 years old, it looks fantastic.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Matter of Fact

I sounds like a broken record, but everything about this season of “Lost Girl” just feels so damn bittersweet. The bitter we all know. The sweet has been, among other things, the successful moving on of the show’s cast. Ksenia Solo is already making time on set of “Orphan Black” with Cosima. And now Zoie Palmer has been cast as a lead in a new Syfy series, “Dark Matters.” I’m not familiar with the graphic novel of the same name it is based on. But the premise is like “Lost in Space” meets “Rip Van Winkle” or something:

In Dark Matter, the crew of a derelict spaceship is awakened from stasis with no memories of who they are or how they got on board. Facing threats at every turn, they have to work together to survive a voyage charged with vengeance, betrayal and hidden secrets.
Comic and series co-creator Joseph Mallozzi has confirmed on his blog that Zoie will play “The Android,” the only non-human member of the crew. He describes her character as:
In personality, she is more butler-like than your typical robot – concise, staid, yet surprisingly possessed of a subtly wry sense of humor, she is an indispensible member of the crew since she can exercise control over all the ship’s systems. And she isn’t shy about reminding everyone of the fact. An outsider among the ship’s human passengers, she is almost child-like in her earnest desire to fit in.
So like Spock and Hal and the robot form Lost in Space all rolled into a Zoie-like package. Though, can’t she have a name beyond “The Android?” How about Andi? An? Think about it.

Zoie will be working under some very familiar faces for the show. It is being produced by Prodigy Pictures, the homebase of “Lost Girl” and executive producers Jay Firestone and Vanessa Piazza. The show is being created by “Stargate” alums Mallozzi and Paul Mullie (who also co-wrote the comic). So it appears the source material will be in good hands.

Zoie seems a natural for this role. Her authoritative and calm presence lends itself to, and I say this in truly a flattering way, robotics. Plus her sense of humor should also hopefully shine through. Mostly, I’m just so glad she has found a new series. Because a TV universe without a regular dose of Zoie is not a TV universe I want to inhabit.

Friday, December 19, 2014

My Weekend Crush

Right, so I need to talk with someone else who watched “Ascension.” The three-night miniseries on Syfy was as brief as it was confounding. Still one of its most welcome attributes was the presence of Lauren Lee Smith, our beloved Soup Chef from “The L Word.” I didn’t recognize her for a second with that white-blonde short hair. (Yeah, I miss the red.) But I certainly enjoyed her presence, and I greatly enjoyed that they made her of the homogay persuasion (even if her lesbianism was only in discussion, and not any action we could see).

The show also featured a very good Tricia Helfer (Number Six on “Battlestar Galactica”) and a brief yet appreciated appearance by Rachel Crawford (Petra the circus performer from “When Night Is Falling”).

Anyway, back to the show. [Set Phasers to Silent: Spoilers Asteroid Field Ahead] Holy what? I actually appreciated the limited run of the series. Television has become such an investment of time that you get reluctant to try something new for fear of the loss of hours of your life. (Or maybe that’s just me and I should get out more.) But three episodes three nights in a row is beyond doable.

Also appealing was the premise, which was part retro drama, part morality tale. Fifty years ago a spaceship with 600 souls has been sent into the stars to ensure mankind’s survival. Now, half way through their 100-year journey, we get a peek into their lives as things start to get weird. The sci-fi story within a sci-fi story was cleverly wrapped. I actually totally did not expect the Night One twist (they’re still on Earth, whaaaat?) So then it became the Truman Show of space stories. And there was also a psychic starchild. Like I said, things started to get weird.

But I was pretty disappointed in the ending, which wasn’t so much an ending as when the cameras stopped. There were enough loose ends to wrap around the circumference of the Earth twice. What’s with that kid? Will they stay in fake space? Where the hell did that officer go? Why did they have to kill the lesbian? Yeah, they killed the lesbian. Sigh. Oh, Soup Chef, it was nice seeing you for a little while. Happy Weekend, all.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Wizarding While Gay

So this week J.K. Rowling went on a bit of a Twitter tear answering fan questions. And the question of representation an diversity in Hogwarts came up. She confirmed that people of every religion/belief/non-belief system are represented in Hogwarts (except Wiccans – aw, no Willow?) As far as individual affirmations went, she confirmed the presence of a Jewish wizard. And she also affirmed the presence of LGBT students. I mean, there’s a gay headmaster already.

This news is glorious, obviously. I respect Rowling, her work and the universe of good it has created immensely. But, and sadly there is almost always a but, I sure do wish she had made that representation more front and center in her actual work instead of clarifying in her after-publication addendums. What can I say, we humans tend to be a stubborn bunch and unless shown something directly we tend to not believe it. It’s sort of like how people who actually know a real live LGBT person tends to hate them less than those who only think of LGBT people in the abstract terms.

Anyway, like I said, it’s a quibble amid an ocean of good. Also, bonus points for the big gay graphic.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Plot Points

My continued apologies for the tardy postings. I am in the midst of recapping two shows and working my full time job and trying to be a somewhat social human being this holiday season. So something has to bah humbug, and that is timely blog posts. But, fear not. Only one more (sniffle) The Fall recap this season and then I will just be down to normal busy instead of ughwhatmakeitstop busy. Until then, please enjoy these screencaps from the last Lost Girl recap. I swear, sometimes I have no fucking idea what these writers are doing, but damn if it doesn't look pretty.

Read the full Ep. 502 Lost Girl recap over at AfterEllen.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Last Fall

Can you believe there is only one episode of “The Fall” left? Can you? I can’t. I won’t. I feel like it has been forever since the show started, but it was only five short episodes ago. While last season was a slow boil, this season has been a breathless tight-wire act. I didn’t know how this show could become even more taut and fraught with stomach-knotting tension, with so little of what is traditionally considered “action.” But it has. And somehow it has also gotten a lot smart, which – again – seems impossible.

And, once again, I give much of the credit to Gillian Anderson who has been a magnificent study of control, power, indignation and grace throughout this series. I have no idea how it will end. I have no idea if this is the end (like, will there be a season 3, who knows?) But I do know I feel very, very lucky to have been able to watch Gillian these past 10-hours of television. So, with the finale airing tomorrow in Ireland and Thursday in the rest of the UK, this is an appreciation of Ms. Anderson and this humdinger of a season. For my full thoughts on the penultimate episode (SPOILER: Oh my God, how satisfying was it seeing Katie – and of course Paul – arrested?) check out my recap on AfterEllen. Also, you know, any excuse to stare at Gillian Anderson some more is a good excuse.

[Click any of these to embiggen because you know you want to.]

Monday, December 15, 2014

Kiss This

Hey, want to see two hot ladies make out? No, not like that. This is serious. This is for JOURNALISM! The New York Times magazine gathered 18 actors together to share 9 kisses in celebrations of…of, please, like you need a reason. You’ve got to hand it to The Gray Lady, who else can get a bunch of celebrities to kiss for no good reason? Among them were Jenny Slate and Rosario Dawson. Kristen Stewart is among the other lip lockers, alas, not with a lady as the universe intended. (There’s also a fellas kiss, for the fellas. Equality!) You can see all the kisses here. Or just replay Jenny and Rosario. No, seriously, for JOURNALISM.

p.s. There is also a making of video. Because, you guys, SERIOUS JOURNALISM.

Friday, December 12, 2014

My Weekend Crush

So, looks like I’ll be recapping these ladies giving each other serious Eye Sex for another season. As much as I know – and do not expect – these two to actually become a couple, the way they look at each other. Lord. Have. Mercy. If the producers of “Rizzoli & Isles” had any eyes in their head they’d just give in to the chemistry and start “going with the flow,” to quote one DSI Stella Gibson. Now there is a woman who knows how go after what she wants. Like I was saying, this show is so…

May these two get on the elevator together, like Reed Smith should have. Get Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, December 11, 2014


Damn, if you ever wondered why the women in Shonda Rhimes’ shows give such good speeches, look no further than their creator. At The Hollywood Reporter’s Women in Entertainment Breakfast this week Ms. Rhimes gave what I think can only accurately be called a humdinger of a speech to the assembled room of industry power players. I can never as eloquently explain what she said in accepting her Sherry Lansing Leadership Award. So, please, do take eight minutes out of your day and listen. (You can also read the full text here.) It is a moving, powerful, funny and true talk about what it takes to break through a glass ceiling. It is pure Shonda. And it’s pretty damn perfect. Yeah, there’s a reason this woman has an entire Thursday night of television, and it’s a good one.

p.s. The Sherry Lansing Leadership Award is, interestingly, the same award Jodie Foster won in 2007 when she gave that now famous, toe-out-of-the-closet speech thanking “her beautiful Cydney.” The more you know.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Liz Lemon Party

Ain’t no gif party like a Liz Lemon gif party because a Liz Lemon gif party is MANDATORY. It’s been a long week and we’re only half way through. So I intend to recharge myself though the restorative powers of Liz Lemon. Oh, Lemon. How I miss you and your night cheese.

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Little recap, little recap...

I have been writing the Lost Girl season premiere recap But it is done and should post fist thing tomorrow morning over at AfterEllen. I feel like this little pig right now.

p.s. This whole process would have gone a lot more quickly if only I had a sack of tits to snack on.

Monday, December 08, 2014

SGALGG: Taylor & Karlie Edition?

Didn’t we almost have it all? For a brief, shining moment it seemed amid all the horrible things happening in the world (The Eric Garner non-indictment terribleness. The UVA Rolling Stone rape cover story fiasco. Etc. etc. etc.), we were going to be gifted with one glorious thing. Pop culture juggernaut Talyor Swift and Victoria Secret supermodel Karlie Kloss were “caught” kissing. On the lips. With their mouths. Lip-mouth kissing. And it was #confirmed. Well, if you call a blurry photo on Twitter of two blurry people with their blurry heads near one another in a blurry way “confirmed.” Ah, see, that’s where the “almost” part comes in.

Taylor’s rep promptly called the rumors “crap” and a Vine here and there posted as proof look exactly like two friends at a concert talking into each other’s ears because concerts are loud, yo. Look, as much as we may want Kaylor (is that a thing now, guess so) to be true in our heart of heart places, it’s probably not. T-Swizzle has never one pinged my gaydar. And, I’d love to think, if she did have any lady-on-lady inclinations she would be honest about them. I mean, she’s a millennial – don’t they think being gay makes them even cooler?

What this brief bout of wishful thinking about a Kaylor connection illustrates most is our continued desire, as a community, to see ourselves reflected. We always want celebrities to be gay. We always want more gay representation on screen. We always want gay stories told. This is a universal human condition. That we haven’t seen them enough is also, sadly a human condition. As a minority group, as with any minority group, our stories get shunted to the side all too often. Our TV, our movies, our media are awash in straight white stories. So, naturally, we hunger for something different. The ironic twist, of course, is the more diverse stories we see the more interesting the world becomes. I don’t know about you, but white guy saves the world from (monsters, aliens, zombies, robots, asteroids, dinosaurs, et al) gets boring. Seriously, yawn. We want new stories. And in the absence of them, we’ll take a few glorious moments of thinking a pop princess and a fashion model might actually be making out together in plain view.

p.s. Can we get a Kickstarter going to have Tegan & Sara rework their song to “Everything is Awful?” If we’re going to endure this shit storm of a news cycle, at least we should be able to dance to a proper anthem.

p.p.s. I wrote more about the lesbianing of T-Swizzle over at AfterEllen today, too.

Friday, December 05, 2014

My Weekend Crush

Oh, my beautiful babies. How I will miss you (well, I already miss you, Hale). Sunday marks the true beginning of the end. I keep saying it because I keep feeling it, but I still can’t believe it’s ending. How can something so fun, so sexy, so fae-bulous (groan, I had to) end? But like all good things this little Canadian show about a bisexual succubus and her merry band of friends (and sometimes loves, and sometimes enemies, and sometimes both) is not immune. I want nothing but the best for all of these characters. They deserve a good ending, they deserve the best the writers can do. Possibly even better. So let’s all hold hands and see how this thing ends. Happy weekend, all.

p.s. What does this new teaser mean? Is Bo finally embracing lesbianism to the fullest and moving to the Southwest to start a turquoise jewelry business?

p.p.s. As much as it pains me to see Lost Girl end, it gives me great comfort to see Kenzi and Cosima together.

Thursday, December 04, 2014

The Air of Progress

[Image via the NY Daily News cartoonist Bill Bramhall]

I remain deeply disturbed and deeply saddened by how we values lives, particularly black lives, in this country. First Mike Brown and now Eric Garner. That the grand juries in bother these American cities chose not to indict – which is not judging innocence or guilt, but just whether a trial should be held to determine innocence or guilt – boggles the mind. That wasn’t even asking for justice, that was asking for the chance to have justice.

What strikes me, too, is how insignificant these supposed “crimes” were to warrant what turned out in both cases to be lethal force. Stealing some Swisher Sweets. Selling a few loose cigarettes. How can we say we value all lives when this is the kind of infraction required to take one?

As much as we pat ourselves on the back for all of our “progress,” it’s beyond obvious that it is still not nearly enough. And interestingly just as it took a comedian to put the Bill Cosby rape allegations into perspective, it took another comedian to put our illusion of progress into perspective.

Chris Rock truly said it best in his New York magazine interview:

When we talk about race relations in America or racial progress, it’s all nonsense. There are no race relations. White people were crazy. Now they’re not as crazy. To say that black people have made progress would be to say they deserve what happened to them before. So, to say Obama is progress is saying that he’s the first black person that is qualified to be president. That’s not black progress. That’s white progress. There’s been black people qualified to be president for hundreds of years. If you saw Tina Turner and Ike having a lovely breakfast over there, would you say their relationship’s improved? Some people would. But a smart person would go, “Oh, he stopped punching her in the face.” It’s not up to her. Ike and Tina Turner’s relationship has nothing to do with Tina Turner. Nothing. It just doesn’t. The question is, you know, my kids are smart, educated, beautiful, polite children. There have been smart, educated, beautiful, polite black children for hundreds of years. The advantage that my children have is that my children are encountering the nicest white people that America has ever produced. Let’s hope America keeps producing nicer white people.
The majority in our culture will always determine our “progress.” The majority controls how any subjugated group, be it racial minorities or LGBT people, fare in society. Certainly, black people and gay people and others have rightfully risen up and demanded their rights. We have protested, we have rallied, we have educated. We will continue to do all of those things. Still, those rights are fundamentally not ours to take. They must be given by the majority which has progressed to a point where they are no longer frightened, angry, disgusted, confused and generally wrong about us. In this world, there should only be folks. But whether we like to admit it or not, we tend to see our differences before we see our similarities.

The question is not, have black people progressed. The question is, when will the majority look at itself and realize it hasn’t progressed, not nearly enough.

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Subtext of Interest

OK, enlighten me, Internet. How shippy is “Person of Interest” really? I’ve heard a lot about this Root and Shaw connection. I’ve seen a lot of subtext gifs. I’ve seen a goof bit of fangirl flailing. And now I need to know. On a scale of 1 to Gayzzoli, how subtexty is it really? I want it to be very gay, because I love a) Amy Acker (hello, Fred) and b) Sarah Shahi (hello, Carmen). So I very much want whatever their connection to be real.

Yet I’m still reluctant to start watching because a) Person of Interest is already on it’s fourth season, so that’s a lot of catching up, and b) My mom loves this show and, bless her heart, we don’t always agree on what constitutes must-see TV.

From the gifsets (the primary way I watch TV shows I don’t actually watch), it appears there was one near canonical moment when Root basically says to tell Shaw she loves her if she dies. What, I’m paraphrasing.

As an expert subtext whisperer, I do know that more than 15 months ago when the above photo of Amy and Sarah popped up on Instagram I thought, damn, they make a nice couple. Wouldn’t it be nice if the series went there?

So now I ask you, series of tubes. What am I missing out on? Should I catch up? Should I cruise fanvids? Or should I just continue following vide gifset. per usual?

p.s. Also, is their portmanteau really Shoot?

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

My Winter Song For You

A quick look at the calendar tells me it is that time of year again. Time for my favorite winter song. Also, pretty much all my TV shows have aired their so-called “winter finale” (that is not a real thing, stop trying to make “winter finale” happen, networks), I must resort to the comfort of song. Also, this song is just really, really pretty. May it be a long, and wonderful, December, kittens.

p.s. Though if you need to warm up, please check out my recap of this week’s “The Fall” over at AfterEllen. Never mind a yule log, all you need is the body heat between Gillian Anderson and Archie Panjabi.

Monday, December 01, 2014

Last Picture Show

If I was a body language expert (which, as lesbian, I clearly am after years and years and years of trying to figure out what that cute lesbian across the room who you were too afraid to approach and talk to was really thinking), I would have a lot to say about the new “Lost Girl” promo pictures. I would particularly have a lot to say about the new “Lost Girl” duo promo pictures. First, the pictures.

Bo & Lauren:

Bo & Tamsin:

Bo & Dyson:

Dyson & Lauren:

I call them, respectively, Love, Longing, Get Lost and Let’s Go Pound Some Brews & Talk About Chicks, Bro.

The snuggling of the Bo & Lauren picture cannot (and will not) be ignored. This is particularly noteworthy given that the fifth season preview showed a Bo & Dyson snog, but choked on Bo & Lauren – quite literally. But this, this snuggle will not be denied.

It seems so surreal that the final season of this show will be starting soon. And these will be the very last promo pictures from this series we get to see. While I still haven’t made my peace with the end, but I am very excited for start. And, of course, you can expect my recaps over at AfterEllen will follow.

p.s. You can also check out a little more about the promo pictures and posters released for Season 5 on AfterEllen today.

Friday, November 28, 2014

My Weekend Holiday

Ack! I am sorry. It is a holiday weekend here in the states, and a holiday built around the eating of mass quantities of food and then passing out on the couch. As you can see, I have no been very productive. But, I have eaten a lot of turkey. So, I think it is a fair trade. So please forgive my errant posting due to my holiday food coma haze and enjoy the ladies of SNL explain what it means to be a true Backhome Baller. Happy holiday weekend, all.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

A Rose is a Regan

Sometimes, as I’ve said many (many, many, many, may) times before, I can be slow. Sometimes, it takes five episodes before I realize the hot red-head in “Jane the Virgin” is the hot brunette from “Legend of the Seeker.” Now, in my defense, I never actually watched “Legend of the Seeker.” But, as a lesbian lady on the Internet, I have seen a gazillion fanvids and femslash gifs of the show for Bridget’s Kahlan and Tabrett Bethell’s Cara. So I feel like I know the really important bits already. (i.e. Hot ladies. Leather. Hair flipping. Swords. Gender-nonspecific kissing. Slow-mo everything. Etc.)

Still, I was slower than slow to realize that this person…

…is also this person:

This person…

…is also this person.


…is this.

And so…


I also just realized she was Rebecca in “White Collar.” What? Jesus, I would make a terrible eye witness. Change your hair color and I’m totally bamboozled.

Oh, and “Jane the Virgin” needs to get back to Luisa and Rose’s relationship STAT.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Serve and Protect

Here is what I believe. Police officers should be allowed to protect themselves and others with everything up to an including lethal force. Here is what I also believe. Police officers should use extreme caution and ultimate prudence in using lethal force. It should always be a last resort, always. Because there is no do over from dead.

I believe most police do just that, and risk their lives daily to uphold the law. But I also believe there are some who do not exercise nearly enough caution or prudence. And people who should not die do die because of that. And, again, there is no do over from dead.

Lethal force should not be used because an unarmed black teenager stole some Swisher Sweets. It should not be because an unarmed black teenager mouthed off to a cop. And it should not be because an unarmed black teenager grappled with that cop.

Should Mike Brown have done those things? No, probably not. But are those things are worth giving Mike Brown a death sentence? No, definitely not.

The question here is how and when and why lethal force is used. And the question is who gets the benefit of the doubt in this country. Is it an unarmed black teenager walking in the middle of the street? Is it the white sports fans setting shit on fire after they win a football game? Is it a bunch of white college students mad their favorite coach got fired? Or the white tea party militia dressed in combat gear with rifles pointed directly at federal law enforcement? There’s a theme here, if only I could put my finger on it.

People will point at the protesters and the small percentage with violent tendencies and say, see, this is what happens. See, this is why force is necessary. See, this is why they’re dangerous. They’ll use it as justification for their worst assumptions about people different than them. But what they don’t see is the reason. The anger, the hopelessness that is deeply embedded after enduring years, decades, centuries of assumptions made just like that. Does that excuse the lawlessness? No. But it puts it in context. Those scoffing at the reactions fail to see the chicken-and-egg conundrum in those stereotypes.

Reading Darren Wilson’s grand jury testimony about how he felt threatened – which I do not doubt he did – conjures up age-old racist tropes about thugs and brutes. He may not be aware he has them, but read his own words and they are there. I mean, at one point he even said, “it looks like a demon.” A demon. He also compared Mike Brown, who is 6’4, as much bigger than him like “Hulk Hogan.” Darren Wilson, it should be noted, is also 6’4. The question again is why, why he was so scared of this unarmed black teenager.

In the end I’m left with a deep sadness at the way we value lives, particularly those of minorities, in this country. An unarmed black teenager is dead, and no one will be held accountable for it. I hope all the reaction and protest and righteous anger about the grand jury decision in Ferguson leads to greatest understanding. That it will make us examine those assumptions and reevaluate what it takes to take a life. But my fear is that it will only continue to drive us further apart.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Off a Cliff

Trigger Warning: Sexual assault and rape culture discussion follows.

What do we value more than women’s [fill in the blank]? Sadly, in our culture the blank in question has far too many options. Opinions. Bodies. Lives. Of late, our cultural discourse has turned to what we value above women’s accusations in regards to rape. The catalyst for this discussion has been the resurfaced and renewed allegations of sexual assault by once revered comedy icon Bill Cosby.

No one needs any introduction of who Bill Cosby is. We named ugly sweaters after him and ate Jell-O because of him and felt a little better about race relations in 80s America because of him. He was Cliff Huxtable and everyone loved Cliff Huxtable.

But the man is always so much more complex than the myth. At this point, I’ve honestly lost track of the number of women who have come forward to share their all-too similar stories of unwanted sexual encounters with this man. Yet we clung to the myth until their chorus of accusations became an impossible-to-ignore din.

For decades, his positive public persona was more important than the women who dare to crack its highly polished veneer with the truth.

I’ve mused over the difference between the art and the artist more times than I wish I had to here in the past. Powerful men getting a pass on past misdeeds against women is a sad theme in our society. Roman Polanski. Woody Allen. Terry Richardson.

These men all still have careers and work with respected colleagues and companies because we choose to believe their reputations over women’s voices.

The he/said (or whatever configuration) of sexual assault is almost always weighed against the victim. The shame and the disbelief are the burdens the victim alone must carry. What was she wearing? What did she do? Why didn’t she go to police? The question is almost always why she didn’t do something. It is very rarely why didn’t he not rape her.

It’s the strangest thing, how we think about rape accusations. If I walked out of a building declaring I was robbed, people would gasp and help me call the cops. But if I walk about of a building and declared I was raped, well, is there proof? Were charges filed? Was he convicted? Did he go to jail?

As such, the evolution of public perception of Bill Cosby has been grimly fascinating to watch. The truth is these rape allegations are nothing new. They’ve been around for decades. But until the last few weeks, they’ve only been badgering whispers around the dark edges of what everyone assumed was a great man. They never took hold because of who was accusing him. A bunch of unknown women? Pshaw.

No, we didn’t pay attention until a male comic, Hannibal Buress, dared to utter the allegations out loud. And a clip of his talking about Cosby’s rape accusations went viral. Oh, wait, now a man said it? Hold on. And then, things went even farther still after a famous woman, Janice Dickinson, added her accusation into the chorus. Well, OK, this is a female celebrity – guess we can’t blow her off like the others. Netflix hold his comedy special. NBC cancels his show. TV Land pulls his reruns.

The simple fact is one woman’s voice was not enough. Nor were two. Nor were three. Nor were fourteen.

But what we have to ask ourselves, what we must change, is why. Why wasn’t it enough? Because we value so many other things – fame, entitlement, power, respect, male voices – more than women’s accusations. And until that changes the Woody and Roman and Terry and Bills of the world will keep getting away with it.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Good Cat

Isn’t it good when good projects go to good people? It’s just so…good. Out comic book artist Cat Staggs has been doing good work for a good long time now. Overuse of the word good? Shhhh, I’ve only just begun. She is currently an artist for DC Comics, and has created really good covers for everything from Smallville to Vampire Diaries and Star Wars titles. But now, in even more good news, she is doing to cover art for a new series of “Orphan Black” comics. Yes, ORPHAN BLACK COMICS.

She did all eight covers for Orphan Black Issue #1. Three of the eight have been released and, guys, they’re so good.

[Click to embiggen]

Speaking of good things, did you catch Cat and her wife Amanda Deibert in that Target ad? Ack, so much good it’s making my face hurt from the smiling.

Awwww. Good, right?