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Monday, May 18, 2015 

Alan Kistler thinks Anita Sarkeesian's worth listening to

Kistler is a comics historian who's written a few quiz books about Batman and Spider-Man history. He's also allegedly a supporter of feminism, and he thinks Sarkeesian's video commentaries are great despite all the laughable goofs and other selfish nonsense she's written up:

Hey, Mr. Kistler, did you see Sarkeesian's video calling Ms. Pac-Man nothing more than "Ms. Male"? Maybe you should see that too! You'll either be laughing hysterically at how somebody can raise such a petty argument over a female variation on what began with a male character, or, you'll be shaking your head in disbelief. Be sure to read this whole article by a woman who isn't impressed with her visions by any stretch. Suppose Sarkeesian wrote such a put-down of Hawkgirl Shiera Sanders? Assuming you're really the Hawkman fan you presumably are, I'd think that wouldn't jibe well with your fandom. After all, Shiera's role as a superheroine was surely the earliest basing itself off of a male-originated role, and while it may not have been developed the same way Wonder Woman and Black Canary were in the Golden Age as their own female-originated concepts, Gardner Fox still had a very clever idea up his sleeve when he thought of turning Sheira into a costumed crimefighter in the 1940s and introducing women whose roles were based on male-originated superheroes has worked well in many cases.

As for Sarkeesian's latest, it sure is funny how she seems to like "androgynous" character design, though the character she speaks of here isn't quite as modestly dressed as she must think is so important. As I figured out over the past couple months of trying to research her MO, I'd noticed that in several cases she's acted like female protagonists who're good at combat and fighting don't exist, and when she does acknowledge them, she still puts them down, as she did with Ms. Pac-Man. That's hardly the most persuasive approach.

Surprisingly enough, Sarkeesian did once address a more valid issue like Women in Refridgerators, but with the way she's spent too much of her time on video games using such a narrow, unclear vision, it's uncertain she really cares. Especially if she doesn't care about men who've been victimized by irrational violence in comic books too, which is just as reprehensible. (Update: having taken the time to check the video more clearly, I noticed that even on this topic, she still makes very awkward mistakes, deliberate or otherwise, like speaking about Gwen Stacy as if she were a superheroine, telling that Big Barda was a member of Birds of Prey when I think she'd only been a guest star, and her claim she wasn't a Green Lantern reader doesn't help matters either. She also goofed in how she said the torture of Stephanie Brown spanned "multiple issues" when it was only in one or two issues of Robin where it took place, without making clear this was all part of a line-wide crossover. More curious still is how Identity Crisis and Avengers: Disassembled, two of the most standout examples of sexism in superhero comics from 2004, were not mentioned. I wonder why?)

Kistler also wrote two more tweets about computer games:

Some of these SJWs are less than normal themselves if they waste their time on petty issues like women drawn beautifully, sexily, stuff like that. I just don't see the point of these ambiguous Kistler comments either.

Labels: , , , , , ,

...maybe because you can't understand subtext?

This is Alan Kistler. I have indeed seen the other videos and arguments Anita made. Next time instead of writing an angry blog post about questions have for me, you can just ask me questions directly since you have my Twitter handle. If you're actually interested in answers and discussion, of course, rather than being angry. In any event, thanks for advertising me and my work, it's always appreciated. Cheers! :-)

Well thanks for visiting, Kistler. But angry? It all depends what the situation and subject are. IMO, when a commentator deliberately acts dishonestly on the most pressing of issues, that's when anger is called for. But this isn't as big a deal, though Sarkeesian honestly bores me with her awkward, trivial arguments against video games, a medium I hardly even care about today, and I really don't see the point in touting her as if she were really an expert. My suggestion: try to do the research she fails to accomplish, and then you'll see why she's more like Michael Moore than Frederick Wiseman.

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  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
  • I was born in Pennsylvania in 1974, and moved to Israel in 1983. I also enjoyed reading a lot of comics when I was young, the first being Fantastic Four. I maintain a strong belief in the public's right to knowledge and accuracy in facts. I like to think of myself as a conservative-style version of Clark Kent. I don't expect to be perfect at the job, but I do my best.
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