Thumbnail: In Praise of the Superheroic Male Miniskirt
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."
We speak, of course, of the male miniskirt.
Not a man wearing a female miniskirt, we should specify. If you're a dude and you wear a miniskirt, it's all yours. These men know that, and they own that, and they are proud. In a world where spandex is a practical choice for urban combat and capes never get anyone killed, the miniskirt is probably the least ridiculous thing worn in a superhero comic anyways.
Go ahead, you tell the ever-living eternal embodiment of space fascism that he can't wear a miniskirt. See if you can get half of that sentence out before he goes all "Omega Effect" and starts ending sentences with two exclamation points. Darkseid Is going to wear what he damn well pleases.
To stand with the Avengers --- a team that routinely fights a robot made out of indestructible metal --- armed only with a weapon that was state of the art circa A Real Long Time Ago, takes a lot of confidence. The moxie it takes to say, "I'm wearing a miniskirt, world" is small potatoes compared to that.
The superhero represents justice, doing the right thing, and all of that --- but most of all, the superhero is free. This is reflected in their powers, their adventures, and yes: even what they wear when they kick evil in the face. Declaring the miniskirt, or any clothing, off-limits based on gender is wrong --- and against wrongdoing, the superhero wins.