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Monday, June 22, 2015

Am I the only one seeing this?

I just wrote a letter (well, email) to DC comics. The contents were as follows:

Dear DC Comics,

First of all I would like to establish that I am a fan of the Justice League, I have enjoyed the comics and am very fond of the animated shows; I own the Justice League and Justice League Unlimited series on DVD, for example.

The other day I happened across a clip from "Justice League: Gods And Monsters" on youtube ( I had not heard of this animation, so I clicked on the link to see what it was. This particular clip was just a few minutes long and featured a Steve Trevor and "Wonder Woman" battling a giant robot.

I don't know the plot of this animated feature so I don't know the idea behind the changes to Wonder Woman, but I obviously it is not following the traditional interpretations of the character. That's fine, I'm not going to complain about a different take on an established character, I find such things can be quite entertaining. My problem is with the content of the clip.

First of all, both Steve Trever and Wonder Woman were killing their opponents. I don't have a problem with "good guys" killing bad guys if it's necessary; in Wonder Woman's case it didn't seem as if she needed to, but OK, this is clearly a more ruthless and, well, heartless Wonder Woman than I'm used to. I don't like the character, but that's OK, it's just a matter of personal taste. It just seems a little unusual for a Justice League story, as the Justice League usually avoid lethal force if at all possible, but fine. That's not the problem.

The problem is what happened after the battle was over. Steve Trevor tried to contact his superiors, but Wonder Woman grabbed his communicator and destroyed it, then ripped his clothes off. Steve seemed reluctant, but Wonder Woman didn't even talk, ignoring his suggestion for a safe word. She just started grabbing at him, and pushed him to the ground, where the scene ended.

Nevermind the fact that it felt just a little bit rape-y (Steve actually looks scared when she rips his clothes off, and she never says anything or responds to his questions, she just pushes him down and has her way with him). Nevermind that it's all completely out of character for any interpretation of Wonder Woman that we are familiar with (and just makes her seem like a generic fem-jock rather than a deep and well-rounded character that the best Wonder Woman stories show her to be). What I mind is that THEY ARE SURROUNDED BY DEAD BODIES! The bodies of the people THEY JUST KILLED! The corpses aren't even cold yet, but Steve and Diana are, well, fornicating in the middle of it all!

WHAT THE HELL! Seriously! Who the hell wrote this and who the hell approved it? I wouldn't be surprised to see something like that in an R-rated slasher flick (I wouldn't watch it, but I wouldn't be surprised), but in a PG-13 cartoon? Based on child-friendly comic book characters? WHAT THE HELL?

Why are they even turned on? Was killing a bunch of people sexually stimulating for Wonder Woman? I mean, it was literally less than three minutes between her stabbing a guy with a sword and watching him die, and ripping Steve's clothes off. Even if she's a villain in this feature, that's still utterly screwed up and not something I would expect, want, or be OK with seeing in a Justice League comic or animation!

To whomever is reading this, I ask that you pass this letter up the chain to someone who is responsible in some way for the content of DC animated features. I know that doing so would require a lot of effort and is not part of your job, I realize that you are probably a very busy person and I am asking for a lot, and it may seem silly to you to get worked up over the content of some cartoon, but I ask it anyway. Please, if you can spare the time, show this to someone in charge. Personally I find the idea of this animation being shown to children to be very disturbing, and I hope that DC can understand why.

Thank you for your time.

To be honest I could have gone on ranting about all the things that bothered me about that one short clip, like how Wonder Woman just stands there and watches -with a grin on her face no less - as Steve is repeatedly almost killed by a giant bullet-proof, rocket-proof robot (with, for some reason, very prominent female features). Even when he's caught in it's grip, and could die in an instant if it simply tightened it's grip, she pretends not to hear his request for help just to taunt him. But I decided that most of the rest of my criticism was much more subjective; besides, she could turn out to be a villain in this or something (she sure as hell is acting like it). At any rate going on about the details might have diluted my main message. That is, that the clip shows the main characters FORNICATING WHILE SURROUNDED BY THE STILL-WARM CORPSES OF THEIR VICTIMS! I mean, seriously, how the hell did something like that make it into a PG-13 cartoon?

Monday, January 26, 2015


I read an article a while back about a bed that uses steam to kill bedbugs (I don't have a link, sorry). The idea is that it's much healthier and safer than using insecticides. So I was wondering today, could you do that to a whole house? Put some big heaters in every room and raise the temperature of the entire house to, say, 60 degrees celsius over the course of a few hours? It would be much healthier than using pesticides and you'd be able to use the house again much sooner. The question is whether there's a safe temperature range that can reliable kill all insects without damaging anything, and the feasibility of heating the whole house to said temperature. It might be expensive, but I think it has potential, especially when you consider how insects tend to develop immunities to pesticides and that forces us to use more and more toxic chemicals.

Crazy idea or business opportunity?