so ive been seeing this Maddox video (uh, is it 1999 or something) floating around with people praising it, despite it being bad. allow me to address some of his points: 1. “they say a man would never be shown in this pose, but i found an example where Spiderman was shown in this pose.” oh good. out of all the countless ways women are depicted in sexualized ways, you found one example where a male hero adopted the same pose. but let’s ignore the fact that this is an exceptional case and that, in fact, usually women in comics are depicted in ways men would not be. 2. “men are also shown in skin-tight outfits.” this also applies to the first point, because the obvious rejoinder is that men and women are sexualized in different ways. that’s part of the reason the male characters depicted in Project Hawkeye (a blog devoted to portraying male comic characters in poses female characters usually adopt) mostly just end up looking ridiculous, when women characters in the same poses are seen as attractive and desirable. part of this is heternormativity, but it is also a product of a culture in which women are desired primarily for their sexual features. so pointing out that men are also depicted in skin-tight suits, and spider man in a pose with his ass in the air, ignores that these signify different things for men vs. women. think about how our culture perceives women in revealing clothing versus how our culture perceives men showing of ftheir muscles. women are perceived as “slutty”, “impure”, “whores”, whereas men are seen as powerful and strong. you cannot ignore how these things are gendered, and that is exactly what Maddox does. again, this is why it is so strange to see men in typically female sexual poses, and why when men are put into some of these poses, they are not seen as sexualized. the skin-tight suits of male heroes are meant to display their muscles and how powerful they are, not to objectify them in a negative way. 3. “it is heterosexist to assume women are portrayed this way for men - you are ignoring lesbians” nah, man. you’re ignoring the fact that we live in a male-dominated society where most comic book artists are male and hence female superheroes end up being depicted from a male-gaze perspective. 4. “you’re being sex negative. you’re trying to make nudity and sexualization seem shameful.” nope. the reactions to these depictions of women in sexualized poses are not made in a vacuum. they are made in a culture where women are already devalued for expressing their sexuality, and where men typically only value women for their sexuality (a double-edged sword if i ever saw one). the problem is not that women are being sexualized, but that they are ALMOST ALWAYS sexualized, and ONLY valued for these features, within a society that sees women as lesser than for it. feminists do not think it is wrong or shameful to be sexual. they think it is wrong and shameful when they are valued solely for their role as sexual objects. 5. “these poses aren’t sexual. you MAKE them sexual in your own mind. it’s your fault these poses are perceived as sexual.” lmao did he seriously make this argument? first of all, it is fairly obvious to anyone that culture plays a huge role in what is perceived as sexual and what is not. if women were dressed and posed in this manner in real life, we would see them as sexualized. sure, i wouldn’t HAVE to do that, because it is partly arbitrary what signs and signals we use to identify sexuality and such, but that is a silly argument. it is like saying “well the words ‘fuck you, you piece of shit’ don’t HAVE to be an insult. words and their meanings are arbitrary and you only MAKE them mean that, in YOUR MIND.” yeah. okay. fuck you, you piece of shit. take that as a compliment or whatever and have fun navigating society ignoring what things mean to that society. 6. okay actually i’m done. but yes this video is bad and Maddox is bad.