feminism

Jenny’s Wedding is lesbianless- Movie Review

I just watched the movie Jenny’s Wedding which some of you may not have even heard of but it stars Katherine Heigl and Alexis Bledel as a lesbian couple getting married. The description for the movie is:

“When Jenny (Katherine Heigl) decides to marry a woman (Alexis Bledel), her conventional family must accept who she is or risk losing her forever.”

While this movie will never be an Oscar winner frankly because of its sub-pare plot, characters and over usage of music overs on people being sad, this movie was most disappointing because it featured no attempt at making a lesbian couple real nor relate-able. Furthermore, the story is far more about the straight couples around them than about Jenny and Kitty (Bledel) themselves. This is only one example of the multitudes of movies as of late which capitalize on the growing popularity of being liberal “and accepting the gays” but fail to portray real queer people with real full lives. One only needs to see the various boycott hashtag campaigns surrounding the upcoming Stonewall movie to see that queer characters are not getting the full character development and realism they deserve.

However Jenny’s Wedding had the makings of being a stellar female focused film with writer and director Mary Agnes Donoghue who wrote the screenplays for Beaches and White Oleander, however just because a writer/ director is women-centric does not mean she can pull of an authentic queer story. The couple in question, Jenny and Kitty lack any chemistry between each other, which is slightly understandable as there are four total scenes where they are seen showing affection towards each other and not all of those scenes feature them kissing. There is no presentation of their domestic lives together regardless that they have been in a commit relationship for five years. Furthermore, it is difficult to feel any authenticity or connection with these characters and their relationship when the love interest is lacking all resemblance of character development. You don’t even learn her last name! The description of the movie doesn’t even say that her name is Kitty. You have no idea what her family situation is, nor her job or anything about her except that she supposedly loves Jenny and is willing to “go along” with whatever Jenny wants as Kitty herself has no opinions or a personality. The first time you see any kind of affection between the characters is 25 minutes into the movie! Don’t get me started on the fact that this is movie is completely without any sex! The only mention of sex in the movie is during a blowup scene with Jenny and her father when he alludes to being confused about how to act because he doesn’t know how they have sex. Jenny then proceeds to humiliate her fiance about who wears the strap-on to make a point to her straight father.jennys-wedding1

Really this movie is not about Jenny’s Wedding or anything to do with Jenny and Kitty but is instead all about the straight people in her life. Of course, I specifically talk of her family because Jenny and Kitty apparently have no friends and Kitty appears to have no family of her own. While arguably this story is about Jenny’s relationship with her parents, very little is focused on the real grappling of Jenny’s revelation. Just a whole lot of sad montages covered over by music and her mother yelling at her father saying “We have to talk about this”. We get to see Jenny’s sister Annie come to terms with her unhappy marriage through the deepest and most moving part of the movie… her grass on the front lawn… (no sarcasm). The most developed characters in the story are Jenny’s parents and they lack any real dimension.

I have no real problem with the acting in this movie because frankly when you are given an steamy pile of hetero crap to act from, its hard to do a good job.  While this movie passes the GLAAD Bechdel test for queer characters called The Russo Test, it only passes because the main character is gay. Frankly, if you are testing whether the gay characters themselves are full characters with lives outside of their sexual preference and that a supposedly gay film is in fact about gay characters, this movie would fail miserably. As someone within the rainbow, I am tired of Hollywood capitalizing on this trend of “gay loving” without giving any real characters or reflecting pieces of people’s real lives. On another note- there is only one person of color featured in the film and they are in the last couple of minutes and have a non-speaking part and there are no differently able characters.  And would Hollywood stop playing Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’s song Same Love in every gay movie they can! Seriously, could you pick a song written or sung by gay people to symbolize that you should not be a bigot while watching this movie instead of a white hetero guy telling you to love the gays cuz they are just like us…

Wohoo, we have a film about gay people… but not really because no one lives in a shiny white world where everyone can afford anything they like and everyone is a picture of perfect health and body. I want a film about gay characters which are featured as real people with real lives, seems too much to ask right now.

Lilith Out!

Not convinced? Check out these reviews:

http://www.theguardian.com/film/2015/jul/30/jennys-wedding-lesbian-drama-katherine-heigl

http://variety.com/2015/film/reviews/film-review-jennys-wedding-1201538808/

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Forced Sterilization, Black Widow and Disability

!Spoiler Alert! Avengers- Age of Ultron

The overwhelming outrage Marvel studios felt after the release of Avengers- Age of Ultron from feminists across North America largely focused on the demeaning nature that Black Widow was portrayed as representative of the sexist problems riddling Marvel’s comics and movies. Yet, while as a character Black Widow was perhaps written into the script using cheap, obvious jokes, is no one going to talk about the revelation that she was forcibly sterilized? Furthermore, that she believes she is a monster because of it?

As a Marvel fan I was shocked at the scene between Natasha Romanoff (Black Widow) and Bruce Banner (The Hulk) where they are playing with the idea of running off together and Banner flips and reveals that he cannot have children and thus there is no future with him. Romanoff then reveals that as a part of the graduation ceremony in the Red Room where she was trained as an assassin/ spy, she was sterilized. It is implied that she tried to avoid it but could not and was strapped to a table for the procedure. Then the line…

“You know what my final test was in the Red Room? They sterilized me, said it was one less thing to worry about. You think you’re the only monster on the team?”blackwidow2

 

Before I lose my feminist shit, lets take a moment to clarify and look to the back-story of Black Widow. Firstly, while this article is critiquing the way that sterilization is casually tossed into the mix, that does not mean that I am criticizing the entire movie, nor all of Marvel comics-nobodies perfect. Now, looking at the back-story of Black Widow we see that there was two main ways that the Marvel big guys could have taken her character. In 1964, Natasha Romanoff was introduced as the villain Black Widow in the Tale of Suspense Vol 1. and in later comics it was revealed that she was orphaned by a Nazi attack and was then adopted by a Russian solider. Her skills developed under his training and caught the eye of the KGB, eventually making her the best assassin/spy and later coming into contact with the avengers and joining them. However, it was when her back-story was revisited in the Ultimate Avengers that this sterilization business comes in. Again orphaned by Nazis, adapted by Russian solider, she was tricked into thinking that she was training as a ballerina. Instead, the Red Room was a KGB training facility where they brainwashed, experimented, enhanced and trained young Romanoff among others to become KGB assassins/spies. Pregnancy was thought to be a weakness and family was considered the only thing that could get in the way of following orders. Thus, it became the graduation ceremony to sterilize these women. I want to clarify why this is a forced sterilization. Regardless if you think that the flash-back scene in the movie showed that Romanoff was forced or not, all of the women in this program were brainwashed, thus there is inherently a drastic power imbalance and a lack of choice.

To see all of her Back-story check out this                                                       Check out an article on Choice at HitFix

So Marvel writers chose to go with the sterilization/ Red Room route regardless that there was no real mention of this back-story in any of the previous movies. I’m not a mind-reader so I don’t know why they chose this but I would argue it is partially to make her character more human. Romanoff is kind of robot in her efficient, militaristic attitude and what Age of Ultron does, is bring her into being a soft squishy, womanly character that is deeply flawed and you can feel bad for.

We have to acknowledge the use of sterilization to further demonize the Russians as the greatest gift and job a woman can have is motherhood (note some sarcasm). Yet, looking at the history of comics in helping people to identify the “real” enemies in throughout history (Nazis, Russians, machines), using sterilization is an old hat in the comic world. Stay tuned for a blog about this!

Yet what can we say about the monster quote? I argue that this scene in particular is a struggle with ableism. It is fairly easy to see how Bruce Banner/ The Hulk has a disability- his split personality, uncontrollable anger, not to mention the infantilizing done in Age of Ultron when they use a lullaby to calm him down. Whether you believe that sterilization specifically is a disability, most can agree with a rather simple definition of disability as not being able to function at the level of “normal” (please note that this definition is problematic in many ways). What is the most “normal” thing about being a woman? To have children and Romanoff cannot do that. io9 noted that they wanted more from the back-story and character development of Black Widow then a sad story about how she can’t have kids and must adopt The Hulk as a giant baby to make up for it and I partially agree. Yet I think looking at this interaction between these characters as the interaction between two individuals who struggle consistently with a disability is a more powerful possibility. In fact, many people were stunned, including hardcore comic fans at the romance that blossomed between Banner and Romanoff as that is not in the comics. Perhaps their kind of companionship is more a companionship of those in similar communities, feeling similar feelings of Otherness and difference rather than because a guy and a girl must fall in love in Hollywood. While this idea gives me a warm, happy feeling in my belly, we cannot deny Romanoff’s statement about both of them being monsters in light of her sterilization reveal. Is she a monster because she can kill without emotion or because she can do this due to being sterilized. The statement is a little vague but still alarming. Perhaps, Banner and Romanoff’s characters will understand one day that being disabled is not a monstrosity but is instead another way of living. Navigating ableism is the bitch, not disability itself.

Lilith Out

Wicked Notes- on Exploration

Written by Lilith for Wicked Wanda’s Adult Emporium

“Sexuality is one of the ways that we become enlightened, actually, because it leads us to self-knowledge.” –Alice Walker

Just as children learn to walk and adults learn to function within our capitalist world, we as a species learn sexuality and how it relates to our selves and to those around us. Whether it be within the categories of gay, straight, queer or otherwise, sexuality is a huge part of today’s North American culture. We are obsessed with sexuality and sex because we have constructed it as fundamental to not only how we operation in our daily lives but who we are on a personal level. Essentially, sexuality has become a cornerstone of our identity. Yet while we enter into a spring that is as unpredictable as we can hope for in Ottawa, we reevaluate our lives and how we plan to live them during the warm summer months, including our sex lives. For some, the self-exploration and introspection of our sex lives is of regret and guilt at enjoying sexual interactions with those that make us question our judgement. Yet for others, it is about regret for not grasping onto the opportunities, figuratively and perhaps literally- taking the bull by the horns. Our sex lives are constantly under scrutiny and policing by society, our peers and by ourselves. Just as one refuses to wear that winter coat anymore- regardless that it is still a little cold for the spring jacket- one should refuse to not have a sex live truly fulfilling.

For Wicked Wanda’s, May is characterized by exploration, fantasies and experimentation in hopes of finding new, guilt-free ways of enjoying one’s sexuality and re-connecting with one’s body, and mind on a deeply personal and sensual level. Whether your exploration includes a co-captain, a crew or simply just yourself, reclaim your sexuality as a positive force in your life and in your identity. Many people see a distinction between being Vanilla and being Kinky, and furthermore juxtapose those sexual categories on the personality. If those categories speak to you or they don’t- being either or both or neither, it doesn’t matter. Whatever way you can enjoy your sexuality in a positive and supportive environment is what matters. So go ahead and try some toys in the bedroom, maybe some bondage or watch porn! Role play with a single outfit item or get together an entire scene. Explore different kinds of orgasms or focus on sexuality through sensual play. The month of May is all about you and how you want to enjoy your sexuality, and maybe if you let it, your fantasies will come true.

Come by Wicked Wanda’s Adult Emporium to check out all the ways to explore and experiment and with every purchase of $75 or more, you will receive 50 Shades of Great Sex DVD free.

May your Fantasies come True

See Wicked Wanda’s Here

Time Machines, Refrigerators, Supers and Sex An Analysis of Comic-book Troupes Through Barbara Gordon

Original Essay written for a university course on Disability and Sexuality-

Using popular culture to analyze a moment in time from the dominant societal perspective can be a powerful tool of cultural analysis and comic-books are arguably one of the most lush bodies of this kind of evidence. Comic-books have been criticized for the sexist and racist imagery over the course of their existence and yet there is very little scholarly critical analysis of the medium. Yet when exploring the cultural analysis surrounding comic-books, bloggers and online reviewers are diving into the deep intersectional problems and triumphs of their beloved literature. When considering sexuality and disability within comic-books, one character is commonly regarded as the treasured disabled heroine: Oracle. Irwin and Moeller identify the top ten stereotypes used commonly in the media to depict disabilities including the object of violence, the “super crip”, the nonsexual and the invalid (3). By exploring Oracle’s complex history we see various troupes which weaken disability stereotypes and perpetuate them, including sexy heroines, women in refrigerators, the “super crip” and the magical time machine.

Sexism within comics-books has been a large issue since their inception, however it is only with feminist critical analysis that we see the complex role that women play within comics and furthermore, how disabled women are used. Heroines often become sex objects throughmalegaze-comics the heteronormative male gaze of comic-books and while female readership is increasing, the depiction of women in comics is still reliant on male readers wanting sexy heroines. Whether it be the provocative costumes, poses and interactions with other characters in the story, women are often melted down into super sex symbols. These female heroes are meant to be sexually accessible by not only male characters but also by the male reader. At times, the only reason why a female hero is introduced into a story is to add sex appeal and a motivating factor; you can see this often times with the various women moving through playboy super hero Bruce Wayne/ Batman’s life. While these women are often powerful, they serve a purpose which lies within a patriarchal system of objectification and disempowerment. Barbara Gordon is one such character that was created to diversify audiences and add sex appeal to the Batman crime fighting team. Starting out as a teenager, Gordon became Batgirl and the love interest of co-sidekick, Robin. While extraordinary for her physical prowess and intelligence, Batgirl was not a well liked character because of her one dimensional construction. It was only when she was shot and paralysed in 1988 by the Joker in The Killing Joke does her character get a dramatic restyling and growing fandom. Her role as a heroine and sex symbol was extremely complicated by the violence she endured. Furthermore, her role as a sex symbol was forever changed because it was implied that she was also raped repeatedly after the attack, which effectively destroys her “super” status as a sex symbol, an innocent girl and a superhero. Her various statuses were effectively melted down to victim and her character dismissed by The Killing Joke writer Alan Moore. Yet, it is fascinating to look at how disability is factored into the sex symbols that heroines are often portrayed as.AR6mvUi

A popular and damaging stereotype of those with disabilities is that they are asexual due to their disability, and characters like Oracle complicate this stereotype significantly. Often those with disabilities are burdened by an asexual stereotype which “relies on impressions of disabled people as undesirable; disqualified for marriage or any sexual partnership and reproduction,” essentially a dehumanizing construct (Kim, 482). In Kattari’s article, she notes that “sexuality… love and [expression of] various desires is not usually recognized as a valid expression for people with disabilities” (501). Furthermore, Kim argues that the process of desexualization effectively “separates sexuality from disabled bodies, making it irrelevant to and incompatible with them” (483). While we can see evidence of desexualizating the disabled body in various other popular culture, comic-books and specifically Gordon’s transformation from Batgirl to Oracle, on and off the page is especially complicated. After The Killing Joke, writer Alan Moore had dismissed Gordon’s character, simply using her as motivation. However, writers Kim Yale and John Ostrander chose to takeover Gordon’s character in an attempt the correct the injustice they felt Moore had done to her character. Yale and Ostrander created Oracle, a disabled heroine who became extremely influential due to her technical abilities and strategic intelligence, arguably Oracle became a more powerful heroine then Batgirl ever could. In the hands of writers like Alan Moore, Gordon would have remained a footnote and arguably would have embodied the desexualized stereotype as her status as a sex symbol was forever compromised by her disability. Yet with Yale and Ostrander, they chose to complicate Oracle’s character as she suffered from PTSD, and continued to be a sex symbol for readers. Her relationship with Robin grew as they both took on new names and roles, further
complicating the asexual troupe as she was constructed as sexual, date-able and capable. As a character, Oracle became a triumphal representation of the disabled community with a complex storyline, character development and sex appeal, yet in some senses the win for disability is a win for sexism as well in this case. Further complicating the Oracle character is the objectification and male gaze still used when she is depicted and how the women in refrigerator troupe is a problem for disability and sexuality.

The women in refrigerators troupe in Gordon’s story combines objectification and the use of disability to create more complicated storylines for male characters like Batman, Robin and later Nightwing. Gail Simone describes this disturbing troupe as “super-heroines who have been either depowered, raped, cut up or stuck in the refrigerator,” to motivate or 152make more complex story arches for male characters. Simone published an online list in 1999 of all of the female characters in comic-books who were used for this purpose and recorded almost two hundred at the time. Feminist critics like Anita Sarkeesian with her YouTube channel Feminist Frequency popularize the critique of the women in refrigerators troupe for today’s readers. Barbara Gordon is a classic example of this troupe as she was used to motivate Batman to seek revenge after the Joker shot Gordon, and because Gordon’s original use was to motivate without gaining any of her own complex storylines. Yet Gordon’s character is even more complicated because of the direction that writers Yale and Ostrander chose to take. Their choice to make Gordon’s character into Oracle falls more actually into what many would expect male superheroes images (5)to experience: dead man defrosting troupe. John Bartol describes this troupe as “cases where male heroes have been altered or appear to die, they usually come back even better than before, either power-wise or in terms of character development/ relevancy to the reader”. Yet this greatly depends on whether one takes the dominant perspective on disability which is usually abliest or whether one chooses to view disability as not a kind of death sentence. Essentially, by seeing Barbara’s attack as a women in refrigerators troupe, one acknowledges dominant abliest ideology which constructs disability as the end of someone’s life or the end of their usefulness. Much like how Moore perceived Gordon’s character, disability becomes a tool to end a woman’s life or usefulness in favour of a man’s storyline. Yet, if one chooses to see Gordon’s fate as the dead man defrosting troupe then disability is no longer a personal disaster but is instead how Gordon becomes the more powerful and complex character Oracle. From this perspective, Oracle exemplifies how disability is not a death sentence in the literal and symbolic sense but can actually be a doorway to empowerment.

Yet even viewing Oracle as an empowered heroine embodying the dead man defrosting troupe is filled with tension as arguably this triumph can turn into another negative stereotype of disability: the “super crip”. The “super crip” “stems from the belief that life with a disability must necessarily be horrific and unsatisfying, and as such, we must admire persons with disabilities for being able to live “the way they do”” (www.trinimex.ca). In the case of Gordon, her ability to overcome her disability and excel despite her body makes her a figure to be admired and arguably her greatest super-ability is her tenacity to be able to live with her disability. In a sense, taking the dead man defrosting troupe too far and creating a superpower through admiration of being able to live with a disability, turns a possible positive to a negative. Her extraordinary “super crip” status allows her to remain sexually accessible to readers because admiration for heroes and admiration for heroism because of disability can be a fine line. Irwin and Moeller suggest that “those characters with physical disabilities that possessed special abilities were portrayed in such a way as to explain how a person needed to be exceptional to overcome the perceived barriers of physical disability” (4).Exploring the tension which rests between seeing empowerment due to disability or empowerment despite disability is especially complicated by the Oracle character because her original purpose was never to inspire any kind of admiration but merely to act as a plot device. Furthermore, exploring how the return of Batgirl and Gordon’s ability to walk adds another layer of disability and sexuality.

Batgirl_by_Nowlan

Batgirl’s return in all of her able-bodied glory marked a dramatic twist for fans and comic-book characters alike as the presumed permanency of Gordon’s disability was erased and her former sexually immature self comes back into the foreground. Despite the large fandom that the Oracle character had gathered over the twenty years she was in action, DC Comics choose to erase Gordon’s disability and bring back the iconic Batgirl in 2011. They originally choose Gail Simone who noted the women in refrigerator troupe to write the comic, later fired and then rehired her after fan outrage. This relaunch of the Batgirl character comes after the New 52′ initiative was started across the DC universe. A rather sudden, and slightly muddled turn of events saw Barbara Gordon “restored” to her former able-bodied self. While many fans were stunned by DC’s decision to “cure” Gordon’s disability according the multitude of blog posts and online forums, some were excited to see how the more mature and influential Oracle character would be channelled into the side-kick Batgirl. While opinions seem to be mixed according to my online research, it appears that Gordon lost her influence when giving up the wheelchair and donning the cape. The choice to change Gordon back into Batgirl and to remove some of her technological prowess is questionable at best. Arguably, becoming Batgirl is, in a sense, a way of “going back” to the “good old days” of able-bodiedness, a time machine if you will. As Gordon was shot at the age of eighteen, her sexual and personal maturity was greatly different then what fan have grown to love of Oracle. Essentially, the rebirth of Batgirl marks a negative turn back towards the medical model of disability where the focus is on curing and personal disability rather than societal based inaccessibility. While Oracle was arguably an empowered heroine, becoming Batgirl once again is perpetuating the idea that wanting to be “normal” and able-bodied is the ultimate goal. Yet, by going back to Batgirl, Gordon exhibits the kind of lack expected of those with a disability because she is no longer as influential nor can she erase the years living with her disability. While blogger fans have noted that Simone’s focus on Gordon’s PTSD and the repercussions of regaining her able-bodiedness is positive, the loss of Oracle as an active and powerful disabled heroine is mourned by many.

Barbara Gordon’s character transformation from Batgirl, to Oracle and to Batgirl again marks the tension which rests between many disability stereotypes and troupes, while also negotiating objectification and sexism within comic-book storylines. The story both on the pages and off of them of the development of Gordon’s character allowed for empowerment of a disabled superhero while arguably those wins where undermined by the women in refrigerator and the “super crip” troupes. While the scholarship on comic-books is dismal, the importance of analyzing today’s dominant perceptions of those most marginalized is extremely important and comic-books are the gateway to that kind of analysis. How the new change to Gordon’s character and the “miracle” of able-bodiness will effect the interaction between sexuality, gender and disability is yet to be fully realized.

Bibliography

Sarkeesian, Anita. #2 Women in Refrigerators (Tropes vs. Women). Video. Feminist Frequency. Uploaded Apr 6, 2011. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DInYaHVSLr8

Kim, Eunjung. “Asexuality in disability narratives” Sexualities 14(4), (2011) p. 479-493.

Kattari, Shanna. “Sexual Experiences of Adults with Physical Disabilities: Negotiating with Sexual Partners.” Sexuality and Disability 32.4 (2014): 499-513. Web. 12 Feb. 2015

Irwin, M., & Moeller, R. “Seeing different: Portrayals of disability in young adult graphic novels”. School Library Media Research Volume 13. Chicago: American Association of School Librarians (2010). Web. 8 Mar. 2015. Retrieved from: http://www.ala.org/aasl/sites/ala.org.aasl/files/content/aaslpubsandjournals/slr/vol13/SLR_SeeingDifferent.pdf.

See short Cultural Artefact analysis here

 See a related story here

A Note on Female Ejaculation

A note on Female Ejaculation

The month of April marks warmer times spent shedding our winter coats and donning our rubber boots in preparation for the coming torrential downpour, signifying it is spring. Spring itself is known as a time of rebirth, new beginnings and playfulness. Even as an adult we cherish times where our inner-child is welcome to enjoy our surroundings by splashing in that gigantic puddle or dancing in the rain. Spring for Wicked Wanda’s is a time to try new things, and to reconnect with oneself and learn new ways to pleasure yourself and partner/s. Our theme this month is April Showers – a focus on female ejaculation and the wonders of the truly fulfilling pleasure one can find in the bedroom.

Female ejaculation however is riddled with complex societal perceptions and reservations. Whether this is from a long history of Catholicism or the neoliberal capitalist society that doesn’t leave time for orgasms in our daily lives, our sexual culture is strangely distant from even the possibility of female ejaculation. There is arguably an intense stigma against female ejaculation, partially because it can encompass a wide variety of meanings. From squirting or gushing to very little fluid, every woman is different.

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Squirting for instance is regarded by some as an extremely unique phenomenon that most women cannot achieve. Others believe that only the most sexually promiscuous of women can achieve ejaculation to that level. Individuals like our Sexpert™ Julia ‘Muse’ Winston believes that with “proper instruction, attention, circumstance, and mental safety,” most women can squirt. Furthermore, Winston is the artistic mind behindThe Squirt Project which argues that female ejaculation and squirting specifically is incredibly healthy physically, mentally and spiritually and that the stigma against squirting needs to stop. Even in the sex world, squirting is fetishized as “different” and for different tastes. Squirting can be achieved by many in many different ways – solo or with a partner, from vaginal to anal, from clitoral to G-spot, the possibilities are endless.

On the other hand however, there is perhaps an even more intense stigma against those women who are not usually incredibly wet. A culture of criticism around the functions and expectations of the vagina lead women to be ever conscious of their possible “problems”. As oftentimes wetness is socially constructed as an indicator of desire; women can become incredibly self-conscious, leading to a vicious cycle of confidence breakers feeding into more confidence breakers. As I’ve heard many times: The biggest sex organ is the brain. There is a terrible epidemic of stigma against women who do not fit into the pornographic perceptions of female sexuality and that includes how women orgasm and female ejaculation.

Women’s bodies are incredibly capable in finding pleasure in many places, by many means and our culture’s judgey-face against squirting or for that matter, not ejaculating enough, is damaging to our sex lives. Confidence is the sexiest thing anyone can have and by supporting the consensual exploration of women’s bodies, we build confidence and thus we build better orgasms. Go out there ladies, find a way to make your naughty bits happy and perhaps our partners can help in the process.

To check out all the toys to help in your exploration, see our product selection online or come into the store to speak with our knowledgeable staff.

Wicked Wanda’s Adult Emporium

Lilith Out!

A Horrifying Representation of Comics *Trigger- Warning*

I have written about Barbara Gordon, Batgirl and Oracle before as being a disabled heroine and how sex and disability can interact in interesting and possibly damaging ways (Click here to see post). Yet, once again I felt compelled to write about the beloved character because of the horror inflicted on her ONCE AGAIN. As some may know, Batgirl or Barbara Gordon was shot and paralyzed in the story-line The Killing Joke by the Joker. What many don’t like talking about is the hours of gang-rape that was implied after the shooting. Yet as Batgirl dawns the cap again in a bizarre turn of events, where she no longer is disabled, she is still terrorized. This cover shows the kind of grotesque imagery DC is willing to put out as an embodiment of the Women in Refrigerator trope.  My reaction to this picture is one of immense distress and disgust. The proposed cover of a upcoming comicbook by Rafael Albuguerque in promotion for the Batgirl comics, this cover is disturbing. To be noted: Albuguerque did not originally make this cover until DC asked him to make one more extreme and it was at the artist’s request that the cover be removed (Click here for article).

Why do I find this so disturbing? The blatant sexualized violence against Gordon is reflected in the gun being pointed towards her crotch and the close proximity of the most insane and murderous villain to be featured in the history of comics. As he is putting lip stick across her face, her outright fear and the tears on the edge of her eyes is telling of the kind of situation this cover is trying to depict. The image of violence against women in this picture is horrifying and frankly triggering.

While I hope that this post does not trigger anyone else, i felt the need to share it because of the horrific turn that comic art has come too. One which sacrifices the well-being and emotional safety of its female audience for shock value.

This is a very desperate time for action to end violence against women. If it weren’t a problem anymore, do you think art like this would still be made?

If you or others that you know need help or someone to talk to, please see the organizations below:

SASCOttawa

ORCC 

The Sexual Assault Network

The Muff- Honest Thoughts on Pubic Hair

Femme Fatale

Article written for Wicked Wanda’s Adult Emporium, as Sexpert Lilith

The muff, bush, patch, forest, trimming and gift-wrap, to the carpet, happy trail, lady garden and pubes, pubic hair is a wonderfully strange aspect of one’s life and identity. For something which everyone thinks about at some point in their life, no one really wants to talk about it. From the historical roller-coaster of necessity and practicality, to the religiously informed aesthetics we see in pornography, pubic hair is complicated. My first vivid memory of pubic hair that I can remember was when I was some where around 12 years old and I was in the kiddy pool that my next door neighbour set up on the lawn in front of their house. It was a hot day and my best friend at the time and I were attempting to cool down in the sweltering heat when I look…

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Amanda Ryan Interview on Transgender Day of Remembrance

Lilith interviews the fantastic Amanda Ryan about the November 20th Transgender Day of Remembrance. We will look at the reasons and significance of this day and why it is so important for everyone to talk about it.

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Prof. Karaian on “Selfies, Sexuality and Teens: A Canadian Study” – Interview

Lilith interviewed Dr. Lara Karaian who is recently working on a project named “Selfies, Sexuality and Teens: A Canadian Study” at Carleton University. She has looked at the legal regulation and construction of sex, gender and sexuality; feminist, queer and transgender legal theory; risk management and regulation; (self)surveillance; the intersections of criminal and constitutional law; law and morality; critical criminology, cultural criminology, and porn studies.

To Listen, Click Here

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OCTEVAW Interview on Ending Violence Against Women

Lilith interviewed Erin Leigh, the executive director of OCTEVAW (Ottawa Coalition to End Violence Against Women). The 16 days of activism has ended and we have seen many fantastic feminist activism across Ottawa on the issue of violence against women. OCTEVAW talks to us about what they did and how important it is to continue doing activism everyday against this massive issue in Canada and Globally.

To Listen, Click Here

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