There are many things you can point to in superhero comics as examples of sexism and gender essentialism. Today we will ignore those. Today, we come not to bury comics and their handling of gender issues, but to praise them. Today we salute those brave men who stare down a world of gender-coded clothing choices and say, "No. Not on my watch. Not around my waist."
Emma Frost is stylish. Allegedly. I mean, that’s what I’ve been told, over and over again, by the dudes who write and draw her. She’s a scion of the Boston brahmins! She attends the swankest parties, given by the crustiest of the upper crust! She loves to feel sexy — in ways that just happen to coincide with the most thuddingly obvious fanboy desires! So classy! So urbane! Truly, what modern woman doesn’t consider what appears to be a $29.99 plastic corset from a strip mall sex shop the height of empowered glamour?
It's a sad truth about this world of ours, but our freedom is constantly under attack by Cobra Commander and his sinister army of snake-themed soldiers. I mean, no, it's not as bad as it was in the mid-80s, when you couldn't even chew gum, get a hamburger or listen to the latest Cold Slither record without finding yourself under assault by Night Creepers and Alley Vipers, but the threat is still out there, chipping away at our safety in the most unexpected ways.
Take, for example, the Commander's latest sinister plot: Taking over America two feet at a time alongside New Balance and BAIT, collaborating with Hasbro for a limited edition set of sneakers decked out with a snakeskin pattern in Cobra's traditional colors.
Everyone wants a piece of the Avengers pie. When a movie with a global audience this large is at stake, there's no brand deal that doesn't make sense to at least attempt. We've already seen Under Armour, Samsung and Gillette, among others, team up with Marvel and Disney to produce a few Avengers-themed goods. It would seem however, that Adidas, already responsible for Quicksilver's sneakers, isn't content with just running shoes with Avengers designs.
According to Chinese sneaker site Dunk, Adidas is planning on revisiting some of its more well-known basketball sneakers from years past, albeit with a comic book twist. Captain America, Iron Man, Hulk, and Thor will all get retrofitted onto kicks from the Adidas catalog, though your mileage may vary as to how attractive these shoes really are. Though I guess it doesn't really matter given that comic book-themed footwear for adults is rather limited outside of Journeys.
Pre-orders started yesterday for an awesome new line of Espionage Cosmetics nail wraps inspired by Kelly Sue DeConnick and Valentine De Landro's Bitch Planet and Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarsky's Sex Criminals. Nail wraps, for those who aren't familiar with them, are adhesive nail art that can be applied at home easily. Each style was approved by the creative teams on the books and is tastefully but clearly inspired by the excellent comics they're based on. Plus, not only do they have really cool designs, they're also glow-in-the-dark.
Annie Goetzinger's Girl in Dior is, unsurprisingly, a love letter to designer Christian Dior, both as a person and as a designer. The illustrations lovingly recreate many of his designs from the presentation of his first collection all the way up to the designer's death. The styles that Dior created changed women's fashion for the post-war era, taking women from more functional, simple clothing, back to more elaborate designs. Goetzinger's historical research is impeccable, but it's her art, and, more specifically, the way she illustrates clothing, that makes Girl in Dior so impressive.
As a tie-in to Avengers: Age of Ultron, Her Universe is collaborating with Marvel to create a line of Avengers-inspired apparel, available exclusively at Hot Topic. Designed by Amy Beth Christenson and Andrew MacLaine, the winners of Her Universe's "Geek Couture" Fashion Show at San Diego Comic-Con 2014, the capsule collection features bomber jackets, fit-and-flare dresses, and a jacket that resembles Black Widow's signature digs. Unlike the Avengers x Five Four Club menswear collection, the Her Universe x Marvel line opts for unabashedly bold motifs over subtlety, with over-sized Captain America shields and gold Loki silhouettes.
Imagine if you were stuck in this scenario: You want to attend Avengers: Age of Ultron on opening night, but you can't, because you don't have the appropriate skin-tight muscle shirt with the exact design of a member of the Avengers' chest to wear.
Well don't worry, all you people who I'm sure are afflicted by that dilemma. Under Armour has got you with its new collection of Avengers-themed compression shirts, t-shirts, leggings and shorts. It's part of the brand's Alter Ego line, which also includes some DC Comics items.
In preparation for Avengers: Age of Ultron, Five Four Club is collaborating with Marvel in designing an Avengers-themed menswear collection, launching April 1st. Five Four Club is a monthly subscription service that offers deals and stylist options on exclusive men's apparel to its members; each month, members receive a full outfit catered to their style tastes, from casual to business ready looks.
The Five Four Club x Marvel collaboration is a sophisticated, fashion-forward approach to the Avengers with a collection includes stylized hoodies and sportswear fit for Thor, crisp reversible button-up shirts in Captain America's color scheme, and tailored blazers with hidden pockets and Iron Man-printed lining.
DC Comics' solicitations for June reveal that various members of the Justice League will be getting makeovers, and the new looks include a fully-covered Wonder Woman and a casual Superman.
In an effort to phase out the New 52 branding, Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Green Arrow, and Green Lantern will get new costumes to replace the New 52 threads that they've worn since August 2011. Aside from a mysterious Bat-robot, the redesigns for Wonder Woman and Superman feature the most notable stylistic changes, which I will break down in terms of design and superhero costumes after the cut.
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