With summer con season now formally ramping up, it’s as good a time as any to remind folks that harassment is not okay – and what to do about it.
Over at Scalzi’s Whatever today, writer Elise Matthesen shares how she reported her sexual harasser at recent convention. It’s a fantastic post with great advice about making sure things are formally on the record – the perpetrator in her case is not a first-time offender.
Inspired by Matthesen, Maria Dahvana Headley shares some of her own tales of being harassed at genre conventions. A former pirate negotiator, she has this chilling statement: “The pirates in the maritime industry were generally a great deal more polite than the creeps in the SFF world. They stuck to terms.”
It’s been a while since we’ve addressed this topic, and sorry to be a downer as we approach the weekend, but this is important stuff for everyone to know.
Well, here’s a factoid for you: Only 30% of the speaking characters in last year’s 100 top-grossing films of 2012 were women. (Here’s those 100 films – how many of them were led by women? By my count, 12, the top one being The Hunger Games.) And that’s only the beginning of the facepalm-worthy figures.
And that’s just in front of the camera. Behind the camera? Well.
Her Universe has been dropping a lot of pics lately, and I have, alas, been a little too tied up to do much – until today, with the double (triple?) punch of the X-wing A-line and Hot Topic dresses. It also looks like we’re getting an Artoo costume hoodie, but I’m not sure about the purple shirt the little girl is wearing… Anyone recognize it?
We think these will be available very soon (like, next week, probably) – stay tuned! And Doctor Who fans, ThinkGeek is selling new Her Universe Time Lord and Dalek shirts, though Ashley does warn they run small.
I swear I’m not taking This Is Madness particularly seriously – some things I am happy to leave to Hondo – but let’s admit it: It’s particularly disheartening to see neither of the female characters made it past the second round.
Hell, Leia, perhaps the most recognizable Star Wars lady, could only muster 33% of the vote against a droid. Now I love Artoo, but come on: He’s a droid. And having no particular attachment to either character, I’m not sure what to think of Chewbacca’s victory over Ahsoka. I can understand favoring Chewbacca – I mean, who hates Chewbacca? – but Ahsoka is certainly one of the most developed characters (not female, just characters) to come out of The Clone Wars, and she still only got 35%.
So much for the theory of a Clone Wars surge, huh? Should we chalk Obi-wan’s victory over Han to Ewan McGregor fans who didn’t stick around for the other votes? (No cookies for you, Wantons.)
Does it even really matter? Of course not. It’s a goofy March Madness takeoff, nothing more. (And given that I generally have little patience for most March Madness ripoffs, I’m a little ashamed at even falling for this in the first place.) But it’s still a damn shame, and a key reminder: No matter how many t-shirts we buy, we’re not done yet, ladies.
If you were wondering why The Clone Wars’ Ashley Eckstein was chatting on the Star Wars Books Facebook today, well here’s your answer: She announced that Her Universe has acquired the rights to make Expanded Universe products! (As you may recall, the Mara Jade shirt for Celebration VI was a one-off and limited availability due to not having the EU rights.) Here’s what Ashley had to say about what’s to come:
We are designing Several NEW Star Wars designs this year. Everything will be debuting in May. We are making shirts, dresses, jewelry…We have Rogue Sqaudron designs AND I am SO excited to announce that Lucasfilm has given us the rights to design shirts for the women in the EU, so expect more Mara Jade and Jaina Solo designs!
She later asked fans to be sure to speak up about what EU stuff you’d like to see.
Later, a (male) fan asked “Why do girls pretend to like Star Wars?” (Really people? Really?) Ashley handled that pretty well:
Girls definitely do not pretend to like Star Wars. It’s a fact that close to half of all Star Wars fans are girls. There may be some girls and boys that pretend to know more about Star Wars than they really do, but I would encourage you to talk about Star Wars with them and teach them more. Sometimes people may pretend to know more than they really do because they want to fit in. But even if there is a seed of interest in Star Wars, it’s our job as fans to welcome NEW fans into this Universe. Especially during this exciting time! We are about to get more movies!
Of course there was plenty asked about The Clone Wars:
I honestly don’t know Ahsoka’s eventual fate. I encourage you to watch the Season 5 finale on Saturday because there are some surprises. You will get some answers and then you will also probably have a lot more questions…You must tune in and bring some tissues…
There’s plenty more, so check out the chat!
Her Universe and Ashley Eckstein today announced Year of the Fangirl, a new campaign to highlight geek girls. Ashley’s team – Tricia Barr, Erin Kelahan, Amy Ratcliffe, Victoria ‘Scruffy Rebel’ Schmidt and Lillian Skye – will be highlighting ladies as their “fangirls of the day.” You can fill out the form yourself or even nominate a friend (or twenty.)
In a new interview with About.com, Ashley Eckstein says that Her Universe hopes to expand beyond t-shirts. She namechecks “dresses, leggings, skirts, cardigans.” They already have one dress – the TARDIS, which remains a Hot Topic exclusive – but the idea of cardigans is getting a lot of love online.
And let’s not forget the Rogue Squadron sketch, which could (maybe) become a dress…
For the more immediate future, Ashley mentions Her Universe branded items:
I am very excited because we are currently designing my first Her Universe branded collection. Up until this point we’ve only focused on licensed designs, but girls have been asking for Her Universe branded items as well. These designs will be very graphic and inspirational. We tell girls to “Dream Your World. Be Your World. Flaunt Your World.” and I want our branded designs to represent that whimsy, inspiration and power.
What would you like to see Her Universe tackle beyond the types of tops, pajamas, jewelry and tote bags that they’ve already produced?
Let’s go to the mall, everybody! Retail staple Forever 21, known for designer knockoffs and sheer WTF, is now carrying this pair of (licensed!) Star Wars tops. The Darth Vader sweater will run you $24.80, while the stormtrooper muscle tee is $13.80. (via)
Tonight, we say goodbye to 2012. Here’s a look back at a few of the happenings in fandom this year – I’m sure you can guess at a few
The Hollywood Reportor has named Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy as one of their top ten power women in entertainment.
Kennedy is ninth on the list, which is led by Disney’s Anne Sweeney and NBC’s Bonnie Hammer.
The full list of 100 will be released later today.