This Sunday’s New York Times features yet another controversy over women’s place in comics–the exclusion of girls from a superhero-themed birthday party.The teaser for this story on the front page of the Style Section offers –“Superman, yes; Wonder Woman, no” — points to the horror that lies within. The parents of a little girl received a save-the-date card for the birthday party of a local five-year-old boy. However, as the fateful day approached, the little girl was informed that she was no longer welcome.
The reason: the theme of the party was going to be “Superhero Soiree.” As the letter-writer laments, “The party is now just for boys because of its ‘masculine’ theme, and my daughter was invited to a separate party for him just for girls.”
On one level, this infantile example of superhero segregation illustrates the truth universally acknowledged that if New York City were Gotham City in real life, most parents from the more privileged neighborhoods would be consigned to Arkham Asylum.
Yet it also speaks volumes about comics culture itself, or at least how that culture is perceived by those who are not one of us.
[Editors note: as for those parents who cruelly “uninvited” a small child, they are jerks and need to be ditched pronto. Just my opinion.]