186 – Trouble with Venus

186 – Trouble with Venus

I wish I was kidding. Was reading through Shortpacked! today and it made me aware of the girl turtle (and now I can’t find the specific comic that mentioned it, blaaaaaah). It kinda seems like the Turtles live action series is sort of the Star Wars Holiday Special of the franchise.

Clearly, I must watch both in their entirety.

… And now I want to comb through my Art History textbook and see if I can spot a recognizable girl Renaissance artist. None are coming to mind, which isn’t really surprising.

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Discussion (13)¬

  1. Styg says:

    After what I read yesterday, I can’t help but greet this with more cynicism than I know is healthy :( I read a rant by a self-described radical separatist lesbian about how Firefly was the most evil, malicious, twisted example of bigotry going, and she literally went into speculation about how Joss Whedon clearly rapes his own wife. Zoe being a professional soldier who respects her sergeant? That’s subjugation. Being a black woman married to a white man? That’s subjugation. Kaylee being a girl who’s good at engineering? That’s male fantasy. Inara being bisexual? That’s male fantasy, despite the author of the tract being lesbian herself! Kaylee not being tough? That’s stereotyping. Zoe being tough? That’s de-feminisation. Prostitution being a respected profession? That reinforces the economic dominance of women. Prostitution being an UNrespected profession? That reinforces men’s lack of respect for women. And so on, and so forth, and she freely admits to not letting anyone except other radical separatists post in the replies. Any man who tried to reply at first, no matter how polite and open to debate, was instantly shot down as a misogynistic, agenda-pushing monster who was trying to censor her… as was any woman who remotely disagreed with her.

    It was absolutely bloody hilarious. Forget the link, but it’s in TV Tropes somewhere XD

    (For the record, I’m not remotely anti-feminist, I’m just anti-idiot, and every group has those on its fringes! Not meant as a slur on Lyta, who over the course of the comic has proven herself entirely capable of balancing feminism with non-gender-related discourse.)

  2. Bee says:

    Ah dammit, I was going to say Artemesia Gentileschi, but she’s post-Renaissance.

  3. Bee,
    They played fast and loose with that “Renaissance Era” stuff. Donatello was pre-Ren. I think your suggestion is a good and valid one! Artemesia is an excellent name.

    Actually, what bugged me most about Venus wasn’t that she got named for a famous object… it was that she already HAD a name. She was raised in China (the show’s writers don’t say where in China. Just …you know… China.) After her father figure dies in the first episode, she had to report to her dad’s long-distance, astral-plane pen-pal who happened to be a giant rat living in a sewer with 4 sons who mock her accent, her native tongue, and her distaste for living in sewage, and who then rename her b/c the name she came with sucks.

    THAT’s why that incarnation of TMNT fails at characterization and cultural sensitivity. She could have been an interesting addition, if the original turtles hadn’t reacted to her as an action figure they could customize. Don’t speak your native language. Blend in to your new family. And throw out the name your freshly-dead father gave you. You’re in a AMERICA now!

    –Sarah

    P.S. I found this place b/c of the Project Wonderful ad for on Interrobang Studios. I’m likin’ it! :D Thanks for the ad buy. I’ll hang around as a reader.

  4. fic7i0n41 says:

    Anyone else remember Mona Lisa from the original TMNT cartoon? Granted she was a lizard rather than a turtle, but still… Another character named after an artwork rather than an artist.

  5. And with that, you’ve actually ended the list of ‘artwork-named’ female characters from the Turtles stories. There’s 2 of them. Out of about 45 female characters I know of.

    I agree that there are some sensitivity issues with the TMNT mythos, but really. Two ladies with kitschy art-based names is not a pattern.

    Besides, Mona was a kick-ass, older woman, non-love-interest (at least she wasn’t interested), smart, college-educated character who didn’t try to force herself into the TMNT family and went her own way at the end of the episode to fight her own battles against her own enemy without being standoffish or angry. I’d call her a ‘victory’ for fully-formed female characters in cartoon shows.

    (Run on sentences for the win!)

    –Sarah

  6. Noktelfa says:

    Now, I’m no TMNT expert, but I have ta know… How can you tell she’s a girl turtle? Do you turn her over? I tried that, and I still couldn’t tell…

  7. …for what it’s worth, I’m not just lurking this page, I swear. I just read the entire archive to get back here. Awesome comic btw. Reminds me of my years at another engineering school. :) Keep up the good work, Jenny!

    Noktelfa–
    Saban, the producers of Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers, designed a turtle with boobies. That’s how they know she’s a girl.

    If she actually used her mammary glands for lactation, the swelling and unexpressed breast milk would force her lungs to collapse. Mammalian pregnancies would be likewise problematic for the character, as the growing fetus would crush her internal organs. That’s the problem with being a hideously deformed mutant freak. Sometimes your mutation is actually lethal.

    You guys are gonna think I’m a total turtle freak. Back to the safety of fandom! AWAY!

    –Sarah

  8. Empiremaker says:

    Sofinisba Anguissola.

    A female artist of the Renaissance from Lombardy, specialized in portraiture.

  9. MadHatter says:

    I might point out that Venus is not merely a statue – Venus is the Roman name of the Greek godess Aphrodite, who was foremost the godess of love, but could be very vengeful and scary at other times.

  10. Kael says:

    @Sarah: For you knowledge of mutant biology I take my hat off to you. Even if it is 10 months late, it was just too good to not to give it recognition.

  11. xero says:

    that show was cancelled after one season 15 years ago (or well 13 as of this comic posting) KINDA late to get pissed about it

  12. Elvennations says:

    Don’t say that to a Firefly fan, you might not survive the encounter. :)

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