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Frank miller homophobe?

 
  

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SphinxBunny
02:40 / 30.12.02
i've been looking at the dk2 threads and am kinda surprised that i haven't seen this come up. (if it has and i missed it, i apologize.)
overall, there was a lot that i liked and a lot that i didn't like about this story. but the last book, with the confrontation between robin and batman, really left a bad taste in my mouth. robin tries desperately to express his love for batman (not necessarily sexual love, though that is not ruled out), but batman ridicules him and reacts with brutality. and yes, this version of robin has become a homicidal maniac, but i got the impression that it was his frustrated/dysfunctional relationship with batman that drove him crazy in the first place.
it seems to me that miller has a problem with males who don't follow the uber-macho masculine ideal that the heroes of his stories convey. i can't say he's reacting against homosexuality so much as any emotional expression on the part of men that might be in any way "effeminate" and not of the stoic, grim and brutal manner of his sin city protagonists, for example.
does anyone else feel this?
 
 
Solitaire Rose as Tom Servo
03:37 / 30.12.02
I remember when something similar came up in the letters page of 300 when one side taunted the other by calling them boy-lovers...and Miller said it was because the Spartans felt that loving boys was an insult, but to love a man was a source of strength.

And I can see his version of Batman being a homophobe. He IS the ultimate Right Wing Authority Figure, isn't he?
 
 
Char Aina
06:27 / 30.12.02
isnt it more about batman's inability to form relationships of any intimacy than about homophobia?

i mean, the closest i would have come to him being homophobic(the character, not the author) would have been to perhaps say that he was afraid of his own feelings for 'the boy wonder' and reacted angrily to hide them.


and the point about him being the ultimate right wing authority figure... might have phrased that differently, but i do see where yo are going, and i agree, batman cannot be seen to be weak, and that rules out any luvvy duvvy stuff; gay or otherwise.
 
 
SphinxBunny
06:50 / 30.12.02
isnt it more about batman's inability to form relationships of any intimacy than about homophobia?

what about his relationship with carrie?
 
 
Irony of Ironies
11:25 / 30.12.02
Am I missing something? Are you saying *Batman* is a homophobe, or (as the topic title suggest) Miller is one? Because it seems to me that even if you decide that Batman is, that doesn't tell you anything about Miller. You can write a homophobic character without being one yourself.
 
 
Char Aina
14:14 / 30.12.02
i agree. how does any of this demonstrate homophobia on the part of the author?
is he always doing it?
 
 
Axel Lambert
14:53 / 30.12.02
The gay nazis in Give me liberty comes to mind...
 
 
rizla mission
17:46 / 30.12.02
Wouldn't exactly be a surprise if Miller was a bit homophobic, what with all that bloody ridiculous over the top Machismo that makes Sin City near unreadable..
 
 
Jack Fear
17:48 / 30.12.02
Except that the SIN CITY books are a send-up.
 
 
Jack Fear
17:49 / 30.12.02
As is GIVE ME LIBERTY, for that matter.
 
 
glassonion
18:05 / 30.12.02
he contributed a story to moore's aargh! [artistsagainstrampantgovernmenthomophobia] anthology back in the eighties. it's a weird nasty-looking story about a cyborg judge dredd thing that kills gays and doesn't get a particularly bad comeuppance. if give me liberty is a send up, is the fact it's hero is a strong black female character [miller's only]part of the send-up too?
 
 
Jack Fear
18:29 / 30.12.02
Martha Washington is the viewpoint character: she moves through an absurd world, and she's the only one who realizes that it is absurd.

I think that Miller is implying that her outsider status--being black, poor, and female--gives her the necessary distance to to recognize the absurdity of her world.

There's no similar viewpoint character in the SIN CITY stories--the characters all buy into the macho value system of the milieu--so they're more of an out-and-out black comedy. The reader is invited to have varying degrees of contempt for the characters: there's no possibility for empathy here.

BATMAN: YEAR ONE, which we discussed in another thread, is SIN CITY played straight—we're presented with a pack of laughably macho meatheads in an over-the-top sewer of corruption, but are then expected to take them seriously—and so it falls on its face.
 
 
SphinxBunny
01:14 / 31.12.02
i'm not trying to say that frank miller is a gay-bashing, "god-hates-fags" sort of guy. i have no reason to believe that he isn't perfectly tolerant and reasonable when it comes to real-life homosexuals. like i said in my first post, i don't think miller necessarily has a problem with homosexuality so much as men who are insufficiently butch.

in the first dark knight, miller's super-macho batman (which i can see being, in part, a parody, though he is still the hero of the story) is pitted against a preening, lipstick-wearing joker whose thought-captions suggest a romantic fixation on batman.
i seem to recall a line from batman's final fight with two-face, something like "we tumble like lovers" (forgive me, i don't have the book right now).
compare the treatment of the two villains. two-face is a sympathetic character for whom batman shows concern. intimacy between the two is suggested, but the macho portrayal of both batman and two-face kinda makes it "okay". the joker, however, is in no way sympathetic. he is simply a monster out to kill any- and everyone. he refers to batman as "darling", but batman has nothing but hate for the joker. batman, two-face, gordon, even yindell (the characters that the story allows the reader to identify with) are stand-up guys, while the joker is deadpan-swishy and unfathomably evil. just for example.

this isn't blatant anti-gay, or anti-effeminate-straight, and i don't believe that miller intends to write manifestos on proper masculine behavior. it's just that i've sensed something i don't like that in miller's work and wonder if anyone else has noticed this.
 
 
Spatula Clarke
02:05 / 31.12.02
But Two-Face is often used as a tragic figure, which is where the sympathy really comes from, whereas the Joker's just a homicidal fruitcake.
 
 
000
02:24 / 31.12.02
The feminine chaos to the order of masculinity in Batman...
 
 
bio k9
08:36 / 31.12.02
Oh, is Dave Sim writing Batman now?

I find it hard to believe that Sin City is all a send up. If it had been one or two stories I might buy it but hes been doing Sin City for a over a decade now. Thats a long time for a send up.
 
 
STOATIE LIEKS CHOCOLATE MILK
08:46 / 31.12.02
glassonion- I was gonna bring the AARGH story up- "Robohomophobe", I think it was called. Unfortunately, I can't find my copy anywhere so I can't quote bits of it.
 
 
DaveBCooper
18:26 / 03.01.03
Ah, yes, ‘Robohomophobe’ – I seem to recall a review at the time felt it was a bit inappropriate that the story contained so many potentially offensive slang terms for homosexuals.
Like Chairman M, my copy of AARGH!’s not to hand (they don’t let me store my comics at work), so I can’t add much.

DBC
 
 
Axel Lambert
19:30 / 03.01.03
Give me liberty might very well be a send up. I don't really know. But how does this save the nazi/gay "joke" from being offensive. Jack?
 
 
000
20:34 / 03.01.03
what with all that bloody ridiculous over the top Machismo that makes Sin City near unreadable..

The women are sluts, the men machochists. However, have you noticed that Miller also devotes a lot of attention on the naked male figure? Dwight in A Dame To Kill For, Hartigan in That Yellow Bastard and if I remember correctly, Dwight was naked on the opening arc of The Big Fat Kill.

He's queer as fuck.
 
 
Jack Fear
21:58 / 03.01.03
Give me liberty might very well be a send up. ... But how does this save the nazi/gay "joke" from being offensive. Jack?

Oh, it doesn't at all. It's hugely offensive, if you're determined to be offended.
 
 
I'm Rick Jones, bitch
17:55 / 20.04.05
The women are sluts, the men machochists. However, have you noticed that Miller also devotes a lot of attention on the naked male figure? Dwight in A Dame To Kill For, Hartigan in That Yellow Bastard and if I remember correctly, Dwight was naked on the opening arc of The Big Fat Kill.

He's queer as fuck.


Word. There's a lot of care lavished over his male characters. Marv can't understand homosexuality but he's mates with a trannie and a bit thick with regards to people
 
 
sleazenation
18:46 / 20.04.05
The women are sluts, the men machochists. However, have you noticed that Miller also devotes a lot of attention on the naked male figure? Dwight in A Dame To Kill For, Hartigan in That Yellow Bastard and if I remember correctly, Dwight was naked on the opening arc of The Big Fat Kill.

He's queer as fuck.

Word. There's a lot of care lavished over his male characters. Marv can't understand homosexuality but he's mates with a trannie and a bit thick with regards to people


Sorry, not seeing where this is supposed to add up. Dwight is drawn naked? Well, so is Ava in Dame to kill and are we going to discount the numerous lengthy strip sequences featuring Nancy?

The women aren't 'sluts' (a very dubious term indeed) as much as they are sexually active and, more importantly, sexually pro-active, usually able to assert themselves against males agression, sexual or otherwise either directly or through manipulation of other men.
 
 
This Sunday
19:31 / 20.04.05
I don't think my brain's equipped to handle 'men who kill and fuck all day long, that's okeh' but 'women who kill and fuck all day long, that's unfair, bad, and mysoginist' or someone who can't grasp that Marv's inability to grasp homosexuality is anything but Marv being Marv and having nothing to do with Frank Miller using a character for a mouthpiece.
This sort of thing crops up on messageboards, or just in conversation, nearly any time there's discussion of Miller's work(s), but - okeh, yeah costume-wise maybe I can see some area of complaint, but otherise - if he writes a homosexual (relationship or individual) in a positive or noncritical light, it's ignored, and if he writes a critical or insulting portrayal or even a character's opinion which is disagreed with, things devolve directly to 'Frank Miller hates gays' or 'Miller's a paranoid homophobe.'
Somebody with more patience than I, may take it on themselves to grab some scratch paper or an etchasketch and diagram out a definition of 'fictional characters,' but I think I'll just remain confused and stupefied.
I just swore of this business of defending the name of celebs and artists who I don't know personally, over my flu-med-fueled Mickey Rourke defense, and now I'm doing it again. Shit. I typed this so quickly, I wrote 'paranoid homophone' up above. Still, am I missing the part of fiction where everything that's said, done, inferred is the writer's personal opinion, or is this sort of speculation as foundless as it seems?
(Foundless to me... I'd like to believe these are nominally sane and reasonable people who post this stuff, 'cause I agree with many of them on other things.)
Alright, before I shut off and promise myself I'll never do this sort of thing again, I have to ask:
Has anyone ever heard (or seen in print) Miller himself say anything directly attributable (or even kinda blatant though plausibly deniable) that is in any way homophobic?
Or is it all Marv being thick or the Joker's lipstick?
Are we to start looking at Miller's Batman as a possibly positive, possibly negative potrayal of a harsh but ever-giving billionaire leatherdaddy masochist? Who, after a headshave, has his (corrupted/trained) underage assistant procure academics with bad haircuts and tights for his manic, seething masterplans?
 
 
I'm Rick Jones, bitch
12:37 / 21.04.05
Mayhap he's bi?
 
 
sleazenation
14:24 / 21.04.05
Mayhap he has been to life drawing classes... I heard on teh internet those turn you gay...
 
 
matthew.
19:37 / 21.04.05
One could make a case that Miller is gay or bisexual. Look at Ian Fleming and James Bond. Fleming was homosexual and see how he wrote James Bond, the ultimate ladies' man.

On the other hand, there's no way to really know, is there? I mean, just because a character or situation is homophobic does not mean the author is....
 
 
FinderWolf
19:49 / 21.04.05
Well, Miller is married to the famous Lynn Varley, but I never hear much about their marriage and I've never seen a picture of Varley herself. However, of course, I think that just means Miller keeps that side of his life private. I never found myself thinking he was gay, just a writer/artist who's very into the macho hero thing.
 
 
Never or Now!
03:12 / 22.04.05
One could make a case that Miller is gay or bisexual. Look at Ian Fleming...

I'm not convinced that that would hold up in court.
 
 
I'm Rick Jones, bitch
10:03 / 22.04.05
dude, some of frank millar's men look like the sex and that's comming from a straight.

He draws very sexy people.
 
 
sleazenation
14:01 / 22.04.05
...and Neil Gaiman's name sounds a bit gay, and he writes about gay characters sometimes and Dream is teh seXXXor, so maybe he is gay too.

Or not.
 
 
Our Lady Has Left the Building
16:51 / 22.04.05
This thread is gay.
 
 
I'm Rick Jones, bitch
19:35 / 22.04.05
Seriously, I can't understand why you're being resistant to the idea Frank Miller might be bisexual. S'not a crime, and speaking as someone who does not on the whole fancy men, Frank Miller draws some sexy fucking men in Sin City. He draws Marv too, but I don't fancy Marv. Unless you get me pissed enough.
 
 
This Sunday
20:56 / 22.04.05
Someone once told me I draw a sexy chicken, though, and I'm ninety-eight and a quarter percent sure I'm not lusting after, well chickens.
Whether you, I, or anybody other than Miller finds his drawings of men sexy, has little reflection on Miller's own tastes.
 
 
I'm Rick Jones, bitch
21:09 / 22.04.05
Ah! But it's all about the fetishisation of the male figure in Sin City. Which seems to imply... things.
 
  

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