Slog News & Arts

Line Out

Music & Nightlife

« John Kerry... | This Weekend at the Movies »

Friday, August 15, 2008

San Diego Comic-Con: Full of Misogynists?

posted by on August 15 at 15:00 PM

Anybody ever tell you you look like She-Ra? Haw! Haw! Hey, come on back to my castle. I’m a real Beast-Man in the sack!

Kevin Church’s blog has news of what he considers to be pervasive sexism in the comic book convention-going community:

Overheard at San Diego Comic-Con while I was having lunch on the balcony of the Convention Center on Sunday July 27: a bunch of guys looking at the digital photos on the camera of another, while he narrated: “These were the Ghostbusters girls. That one, I grabbed her ass, ’cause I wanted to see what her reaction was.” This was only one example of several instance of harassment, stalking or assault that I saw at San Diego this time.

1. One of my friends was working at a con booth selling books. She was stalked by a man who came to her booth several times, pestering her to get together for a date that night. One of her co-workers chased him off the final time.

2. On Friday, just before the show closed, this same woman was closing up her tables when a group of four men came to her booth, started taking photographs of her, telling her she was the “prettiest girl at the con.” They they entered the booth, started hugging and kissing her and taking photographs of themselves doing so. She was confused and scared, but they left quickly after doing that.

I’m not exactly shocked at this news, but I think it’s an important conversation to have, especially since this year’s news coverage of SDCC seems to be all about how it’s the pop-culture event of the year. The fanboys might have to stop acting like douches when the whole world’s paying attention.

RSS icon Comments


actually why would you expect anything less from people that have no semblance of social construct outside of lycra and fighting?

Posted by Bellevue Ave | August 15, 2008 3:07 PM

Comic book nerds don't know how to act around actual women? Wow. Who would've thunk it?

Posted by alex | August 15, 2008 3:07 PM

You don't get a free pass to be an asshole just because you're a geeky comics nerd. The first guy should have been escorted off the premises by security, and the instant the second group touched her the police should have been called and the men arrested for assault.

Posted by Fnarf | August 15, 2008 3:19 PM

*joke about how nerds can't interact with females in an appropriate manner*

Posted by Brian | August 15, 2008 3:20 PM

Why touch, grab, hug and kiss when you can slap, punch, slice and dice?

Posted by i went there. i cashed that check. it was small | August 15, 2008 3:22 PM

Damn, Skeletor's let himself go.

Posted by NapoleonXIV | August 15, 2008 3:30 PM

@6: Although I'm really glad that fellow didn't try to dress as Fat He-Man.

Posted by demo kid | August 15, 2008 3:31 PM

What I think is pretty cool is how quickly the comic community embraced the story (originally written and posted at, The ISB, Progressive Ruin, Newsarama, and many others have all posted it as well.

If nothing else, the people who are spreading the news show there are more cool, responsible geeks out there than the gropey mouth-breathers.

Responsible geeks know to wait until you get home to furiously masturbate to the chicks dressed like Catwoman.

Posted by Karla | August 15, 2008 3:43 PM

@6 I thought Slade Gordon used to do marathons and such?

Posted by vooodooo84 | August 15, 2008 3:57 PM

More than 120,000 people attended Comic-Con 2008 yet, because of the actions of a literal HANDFUL of people, there exists "pervasive sexism in the comic book convention-going community"? That follows.

Posted by Dr. Savage Mudede | August 15, 2008 4:00 PM

this is easily the best photo on the internet i've ever seen. and i've seen A LOT.

Posted by josh bomb | August 15, 2008 4:08 PM

@10: That's a good point but there is still pervasive sexism in comic book culture.

Too often, jerks like these guys do get a free pass from their fellow geeks, who roll their eyes and shake their heads. The jerks don't get invited to the good parties, but they don't get told off, either. Sometimes their victims are too freaked out to do anything in the moment, and bystanders don't do much to help against anything short of full-on rape or general violent assault.

Posted by Breklor | August 15, 2008 4:12 PM

God fucking dammit, I'm sick of these few huge assholes making the rest of us comic book readers look bad.

Posted by Ben | August 15, 2008 4:13 PM

I am shocked!

Oh, wait comix fen ... um, nope, sorry, they've always been like that.

Just because they're famous due to G4 covering their do doesn't mean they've suddenly grown up ...

Posted by Will in Seattle | August 15, 2008 4:18 PM

@14, Will, saying Comic-Con is famous because of G4 is like saying the Special Olympics invented retards and cripples.

Posted by Karla | August 15, 2008 4:25 PM

Man, there are douches like that everywhere. Hey, ever been to Mardi Gras? Or, fuck, a party? A football game? Around a large group of people? At a bar? Socializing at all? Posting comments on the Slog? There's douches everywhere.

Posted by Jordyn | August 15, 2008 4:34 PM

Hey, Paul, I just wanted to also thank you for posting something douchey again. You'd posted a couple of things lately that weren't douchey, and I was getting worried that I might have to stop thinking you were such a douche, but you came through in the end!

Posted by Ben | August 15, 2008 4:38 PM

If I thought for one moment they'd grab my ass, I'd be on the first plane.

Posted by Vince | August 15, 2008 4:42 PM

It ain't the nerds, it is the "new people" who are flooding into Comic-Con, and acting like assh*les.

I have attended the last two years, and spoken with plenty of veterans. Most of the people are extremely polite.

Real fans work all year on their costumes, plan to meet up with friends, and wait patiently in line to see the writers/artists/celebs they obsess about. They value the experience.

You think Comic-Con nerds suffer from arrested development?

The d-bags who are showing up just to "check out the freaks and pick up some sluts" are a lot worse. And true to form, they are trying to ruin it for everyone.

Posted by Buzzy | August 15, 2008 5:05 PM
20's Comicon. Widespread reports are coming in of recently discovered misogyny at Comicon?!

First, pleas epermit me to usurp your newly inherited role as Captain Obvious by well, pointing out the obvious hilarity of rushing to publish the recent unearthing of misogyny at a sausage party

Second , let me ask, "Is exile not punishment enough that we have to root out the misogynists from within the fringe cultures they hide in?"

What's next? An internet compendium of people who don;t honor their gambling debts?

An expose on adversarial welfare moms who have called CPS on their downstairs neighbor if they leave the laundry in the drier to long or park in their spot?

I mean, say what you want about grown men wiht pontytails who live in Mom's basement and jack off to pictures of She-Hulk. At least they're no cripples hogging up your bus, right?

At least they're not, "Young urban males" selling what is most likely crack outside the townhouse you ju7st paid $1.2m for.

At leat they're not public toe clippers spotted next to the Lenin Statue.

their just men who will never, ever get laid because no woman can ever take the place of Rocket Tits in her star turn in Issue #1356 of Sectacular SpiderFish.

Blogosphere, will there be no social repugnance left at large and unidentified, unindicted?

Posted by Culture War All Day Every Day No Matter What, No Matter Where! | August 15, 2008 5:18 PM

Dumbass sez:

"Is exile not punishment enough that we have to root out the misogynists from within the fringe cultures they hide in?"

Not when you commit crimes it isn't.

Posted by Fnarf | August 15, 2008 6:02 PM


Yes, and it's long past time to call them out and kick them out.

their just men who will never, ever get laid because no woman can ever take the place of Rocket Tits in her star turn in Issue #1356 of Sectacular SpiderFish.

No, they are just men who no woman would ever fuck.

Posted by keshmeshi | August 15, 2008 6:35 PM

The main issue that is raised in the original post is "why doesn't comic con have an official anti-harassment policy?" - it is not "Women get harassed at comic-con." I am a woman, we get harassed everywhere.

I've been attending science fiction, gaming and comic book conventions in a professional capacity for over 30 years. I've had my share of unwelcome attention from fanboys. I have never encountered one who did not back off when told to do so.

Posted by Robot | August 15, 2008 9:29 PM

I went to Con 5 years in a row, and honestly, almost all of the people I met were awesome human beings. I am inclined to agree that the real problem is the new blood coming in (for more reasons than just the upped amount of harassment). In fact, the only person at Con who ever touched me without my permission was Billy West, who does not, in fact, have a problem with women.

Posted by Kat | August 15, 2008 11:11 PM

Next time, call the police. That will put a stop to this shit real quick.

Posted by Greg | August 16, 2008 9:45 AM

I'm in agreement with Robot. While I've never been to Comicon, I'm active in SF fandom and have been going to cons since 1975. Yeah, some boys act stupidly at cons. Yeah, some girls act stupidly, too. But, usually a "QUIT IT!" works well with people who are misbehaving. That's Step 1, before you go to con security or the cops.

Posted by Laurie Mann | August 16, 2008 11:20 AM

"Second , let me ask, 'Is exile not punishment enough that we have to root out the misogynists from within the fringe cultures they hide in?'"

People *in* the fringe cultures are rooting out the misogynists (and misandrists - yaoi fangirls, don't glomp any real guys without their permission) because we're sick of putting up with them.

Dammit, mainstreamers "exiling" assholes by pointing them at us is half the problem. If it wasn't for the "you're an antisocial creep so you should like comics" attitude, some of these jerks would go to sports bars or rock concerts or whatever instead of SDCC.

Posted by George | August 21, 2008 5:29 PM

Comments Closed

Comments are closed on this post.