When the movie The Dark Knight came out, sure people were going to get hurt. Sure, maybe no one expected the “gore” that was with Two-Face, but it was still somewhat age-appropriate. A ten-year-old could watch the movie and grasp what happened in it. He could tell Two Face was burned badly and – although scary – would know he became a bad guy.
What I mean by that is people can tell the difference between right and wrong. If Batman hurts the Joker, it’s because the Joker hurt others. Although I don’t necessarily agree with that theory, it’s understood and is considered acceptable to a good majority of people. Bad people are bad.
A young person can watch that film, see what is happening, understand why it’s happening, and then do whatever they want with that knowledge.
Catwoman: Superheroine or Sleaze Bag?
So enter DC’s newest animated flick, Batman: Year One. It too, is rated PG-13 for the same reasons The Dark Knight was. But for the most part, arguably, parents will see an animated Batman flick and figure that it’s safe for kids.
As I watched Batman: The Animated Series as a child, I knew the difference between right and wrong. Violence was bad, bad guys get punished, Catwoman liked Batman (ew, cooties), etc.
But despite my understanding of right and wrong, or that Catwoman had a crush on Batman, as a child, I would not have known what to think of this:
Not too long ago, I mentioned the ridiculously over-sexualized characters in Superman/Batman Apocalypse movie – which was also rated PG-13. Evidently, who cares what our youth are watching, eh?
While I haven’t seen the movie (because it hasn’t been released yet), I have to ask: What the HELL is DC doing to Catwoman?
Here is Catwoman in Batman: Arkham City
Well that’s unnecessary.
And let us not forget the bondage concept art for the game!
So what we’re getting here is something entirely different from what I grew up with.
So She’s A Sleaze Bag Now?
Oh, Catwoman. What has happened to you? You were so innocent-looking (for a villain) and you were so. . . clothed. What made you turn into such a sleaze bag? I wish I could narrow down the time where DC decided, “Marvel has the Black Cat, so we need Catwoman to mimic her.” I’m not saying Black Cat is any better than Catwoman, either. I’m just picking on Catwoman now because, unlike the Black Cat, Catwoman is a lot more popular and has gone under such a radical change in very little time. Why is that? When did she become such a sex-fiend? Since when did she start wearing sexy lingerie under her costume?
. . .
Time for Some Major Damage Control
What I’m trying to get at is, as a child, I could understand right and wrong. It was given to me in the stories. Batman was a good guy fighting the bad guys. He wore a suit to protect him and had weapons to fight the bad guys.
As Catwoman – I have nothing. She’s unnaturally clothed for NO explanation, and is treated solely as a sex object. There is no purpose to why she dresses the way she does, nor is it explained.
So as a child, I can tell right from wrong, but here, the “issue” is not addressed. Therefore, naturally, I would have to assume Catwoman dressed as the way she is would be acceptable, right?
This is me, as a man speaking. I have problems with this because I just think it’s inappropriate to degrade any human to this level.
If I were a woman – if I had a daughter – what sort of implications would this have on me? As a boy, I know right from wrong. I would see Batman as a bad-ass and not know what to think of Catwoman. As a girl, I would know right from wrong, would see Batman as a bad-ass, then see Catwoman as what? A model? A skank? A villain? A good girl? A body? A pair of breasts? Is it acceptable then to dress as her? No one else seems to have a problem with it, right?
When the conversations about this are not being had, it is more damaging than just watching the cartoon and assuming it doesn’t affect anyone.
So now we have Catwoman in our cartoons, video games, movies and comics looking like this. If it’s acceptable for her in all of those mediums, surely it must be acceptable for other women in other mediums to be degraded too, right?
This is conversation which needs to be had.
What do you all think?