[edit for new readers, 04/30: this post was part of a wider hypertext debate and focuses on but one aspect of it. Please read my previous post
Once upon a time, there were two guys, Joe and Jerry, who wrote a story about this super awesome dude who jumps as high as the tallest building. And he flies faster than a plane. And he's got strength up the wazoo. And he's using his power for good (because he's awesome like that) so he's fighting crime.
Everybody knows how the story goes: eventually they found a comic book publisher and the story turned out to be this huge success and the start of a giant franchise, triggered an entire genre and made a ton of money.
The story about the guy who is the strongest guy on Earth is at heart the ultimate boy's wish fulfillment fantasy. Pure and unfiltered. I read the first issue once and thought that quality-wise it was pretty clunky. If it was fic, I would've thought 'badfic'. But hey, the target group loved it.
Eventually he got more backstory, more characters to fight and otherwise interact with, and more character. I haven't read a lot of Superman but I think it's safe to say that he's a more rounded character than he was when he started out. The writers had the chance to develop the character over time.
If we are talking Sue, Action Comics #1
's Superman would be the definitive one. But I think that would miss the point. He's not a Marty Stu, he's a hero. Heck, he's a Superhero
Then after a while we got Supergirl, and after Batman there was Batgirl, and a bunch more but I'm not that into superhero comics so I can't list them all. Whodathunk: girls like wish-fulfillment fantasies too. (And the female form of hero
. Not Mary Sue
No one has the right to tell girls that, no, they
don't need self-insert fantasies, because they're perfect the way they are. So they shouldn't indulge in those. It’s for their own good!
Know what it sounds like in my ears? Don't dream big! Know your place!
Thanks, but that's a world of No from this dreamer.
... This post was brought to you by more than one poster saying that Mary Sue fantasies are sexist and should be opposed because they teach young women that they have to be perfect to be loved. I think that is getting it completely backwards and is super-unhelpful. I think the opposite is the case: these fantasies can be very empowering and dammit, they’re fun and girls have as much a right to them as boys.yes, yes, I haven't even answered all my comments of the last few days but this post came to me as I was running, so I had to jot it down quickly and now I might as well post it. I hope I'm done with the meta now.
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