Breitbart News columnist, #GamerGate defender, and self-proclaimed “journalist” Milo Yiannopoulos has a bone to pick with the new female version of Thor. Turns out the gender-swapped Marvel character is the end result of “progressive hand-wringing” and “misandry” and will ruin male childhoods indefinitely.
Addressing his no doubt predominantly male readership Yiannopoulos wrote that we “likely greeted the news with bafflement and horror and then resolved never to pick up a comic book from that company ever again.” That is, assuming the vast majority of comic book enthusiasts are childish misogynists like Milo here.
And if you think I’m going too far when I call Milo Yiannopoulos a misogynist, I encourage you to read the rest of his column:
Thor a woman? It’s hard to believe the most macho, overtly masculine character in the comic canon could possibly be reimagined as a broad. But that’s almost certainly precisely the reason Thor was chosen: as a fuck-you to so-called nerdbros from the achingly progressive staff of today’s comic book establishment.
This has led to some questions from comic book fans. Questions such as: will Wonder Woman turn out to be a tranny? Is the Incredible Hulk only incredible because he endured cruel fat-shaming as a teen but didn’t let his size define him? And shouldn’t Spider-Man be a gay latino?
That last one’s not a joke, by the way: in 2011, Marvel unveiled a bisexual Spider-Man that was half-black and half-latino, called Miles Morales, to the consternation and confusion of ordinary comic book fans, as part of its Ultimate series of character reboots. We’re told “erasure,” whereby people’s pasts are scrubbed out by those in authority, is a social justice issue. Well, right now there’s erasure going in the basic, canonical biographies of some of Marvel’s most cherished superheroes.
Captain America, too, is changing: he’s becoming black. Changes like this are designed to provoke readers, and they do–not because readers are racist or sexist, but because they understand that certain characteristics are intrinsic to certain characters. James Bond and Captain America are obviously white. It is a part of their personalities. Thor is obviously a man; to suggest otherwise is daft.
Notice the gendered slurs (nice use of the words “broad” and “tranny” there, Milo) and claims that a person’s sex and skin pigmentation are intertwined with their personalities. Not only that, but he believes these superficial traits are “intrinsic” to these superheroes, which is as absurd as debating the ethnicity of Santa Claus.
Take for example, the Green Lantern. DC Comics fans are already acquainted with his back story. They know where he’s from, they know that his superpowers are derived from his ring, they know that he’s a member of the Green Lantern Corps. They also know that in the decades since he was first created that he has gone through several incarnations, one of whom was John Stewart. It was that version of the Green Lantern that was used on the TV series Justice League and its followup Justice League Unlimited, both of which I watched regularly. And in that version, John Stewart is African-American. Bear in mind that this adaptation aired in 2001, over a decade before the female Thor nontroversy.
Now, why would they turn a superhero who began as a white man into a black man? To “provoke” viewers whom television execs and comic book artists believe to be racist and sexist? Of course not, it’s just a matter of representation. The U.S. is less homogeneous and more diverse than ever before, and if you’re a black boy or girl who loves DC Comics, then it might be a tad alienating to see comic books constantly marketed to your white peers. It makes you an outsider, not just to a community but to a culture you want to be a part of. And you know what? I loved the Justice League and now I can’t picture John Stewart any other way. It doesn’t enrage me to see a traditionally white character designed as a black character. It has no impact on Green Lantern’s powers or likability. So why does Milo think comic book fans would be so horrified by it?
And it gets worse when Milo quotes (approvingly I might add) Vox Day, a repugnant woman-hater who is fond of making statements like “there is no such thing as marital rape” and “raping and killing a woman is demonstrably more attractive to women than behaving like a gentleman”:
As this blog post from science fiction writer Vox Day suggests, “strong women” very often represent little more than men in women’s clothing, with none of the virtues or subtleties that female characters can bring to a storyline.
“Most ‘strong female’ characters observably are not women, they are simply male characters dressed in female suits. They don’t talk like women, they don’t act like women, and when we’re shown their interior monologues, they don’t think like women either. They’re about as convincingly female as those latent serial killers who like to wear those bizarre rubber women suits. They are, in fact, the literary equivalent of those freaks,” says Day.
However it’s when Milo makes a connection to #GamerGate that things get a bit interesting:
Men don’t seem to care about gender-swapping great female characters, which rather gives away the game about the sort of agenda driving these awful decisions. Why is there a demand for female versions of male superheroes, but no demand the other way? I mean, have you ever heard of calls for a male Lara Croft? It makes very little sense, until you learn that comic books, fantasy and sci-fi were taken over years ago by ultra-progressive misandrists who basically hate their own core audiences.
Does that sound familiar? It should: the recent GamerGate controversy in video games happened because ordinary gamers, unlike comic book readers or fans of fantasy and sci-fi, stood up to the authoritarian moral panic brigade in the press and their feminist agitator icons and said: no. We don’t recognise the world you’re sketching out, and we don’t want your bizarre and outlandish politics to pollute our hobby.
Did you catch that? In the second paragraph Milo seems to drop the familiar #GamerGate mantra of “ethics in journalism” — the supposed reason for #GamerGate’s very existence — and states outright that it was a reaction to the “authoritarian moral panic brigade” and “feminist agitators” who seek to “pollute” their hobby with multiculturalism and gender equality. It’s the exact same backlash that happened following the announcement of a Ghostbusters remake with all-female protagonists, or the current one against the female version of Thor. It’s just a minority of straight, white guys who don’t like being made to share.