Cosplay Girls

by Bear Hunter

Like many young men of my generation I read a lot of comic books, fantasy novels and I played a lot of video games.  I was very socially awkward as a kid and as a teen.  In some ways I’m still kind of socially awkward… I still have trouble chatting with women.  Also, like many young men I got sucked into the world of beautiful heroines in comic books.  I couldn’t figure out the girls around me but I always had Wonder Woman and the Scarlet Witch to fall back on.  I had the biggest crush on Rogue from the X-Men, a woman who was just as much of an outcast as I felt myself to be.

Those super hero women were just a fantasy.  I didn’t look at them as a statement on our world, only a secret delight for a lonely young man.  I’ve been to a few comic book conventions now.  Each time I step out onto the floor I’m more shocked than the last.  The girls dressed up as super heroes.  It didn’t hit home how sexualized the outfits really were until I saw them on real women.  In many cases the women are young enough to be my daughter.  I have to admit, it’s confusing.

I always looked at violence in comics as an acceptable release, a way to celebrate aggression in a way where no-one would get hurt.  I guess deep down I considered the sexuality in comic books to be the same.  Now that I see it materialized in front of my eyes with no fictional barrier I’m not too sure.  I’m not sure if I should celebrate it or try and cover up the girls with their own capes.

Maybe it’s empowering for some women, maybe even freeing.  I don’t know, I’m not a woman nor do I claim to understand them.  I’m just afraid they will associate strength and power with sexuality as opposed to valour and integrity.  Maybe I’m just afraid I’ll developed a strange sexual obsession with women half my age and stop paying attention to women my own age or at least closer to it.  I don’t want to miss out on meeting sweet and intelligent middle-aged women because I’m too busy staring at twenty-somethings dressed up like Sailor Moon.  Half of my motivations in life are already questionable, I don’t need at add anymore to the list.

Feel free to let me know what you think.

– Bear Hunter

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