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1. Popeye Stars in New DGK Fashion Collection

The famous cartoon sailor has inspired a new line of clothing and skateboards.

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2. SDCC ’15: We talk cape snaps, controversy and cons with the Batgirl of Burnside team

At SDCC '15 I talked with the Burnside Batgirl crew about their creative origins, how the look that launched a thousand cosplays came to be, how to handle creative criticism, and their earliest con experiences.

0 Comments on SDCC ’15: We talk cape snaps, controversy and cons with the Batgirl of Burnside team as of 7/24/2015 9:02:00 PM
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3. DreamWorks Revives He-Man, Richie Rich, Felix, and Underdog in the Most Expensive Way Possible

Here's a new clothing line for investment bankers and studio execs who want to pretend they like cartoons.

0 Comments on DreamWorks Revives He-Man, Richie Rich, Felix, and Underdog in the Most Expensive Way Possible as of 1/1/1900
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4. Rihanna, the Court of Appeal, and a Topshop t-shirt

Can a fashion retailer take a photograph of a celebrity, print it on a t-shirt and sell it without the celebrity’s approval? Yes, but sometimes no – not when the retailer has previously gone out of its way to draw a connection between its products and that celebrity, in this case Robyn Fenty, aka Rihanna. How did this begin?

The post Rihanna, the Court of Appeal, and a Topshop t-shirt appeared first on OUPblog.

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5. SDCC ’15 Photo Essay – Cosplay Culture

IMG_3070If you’re into cosplay, Saturday night is made for fighting the lines to get into the annual masquerade contest. Here are a few backstage pics from the show, along with a few other shots.

If you attended any of the panels I moderated, you know that my themes this year were community and personal connection. The above candid of what appear to be a mother and son is probably my favorite scene of the show.

As you know, guys have a proclivity toward taking pictures of cosplaying women in revealing garb, with little regard for who these women are as people. A pic I didn’t get: a young woman in an artful Poison Ivy costume who explained her costume to the photographer with a rather revealing statement: “I’d rather wear this every day than be slinging coffee.”

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Captain America stopped by lunch on Saturday afternoon, and judging by the detail on the costume he wasn’t a cosplayer but the real Captain America.

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The good folks at Comic-Con let me join the lucky few Jimmy Olsens and Peter Parkers who get to go backstage the shoot posed photos after each entry performs their routine. Before the show, however, cosplayers who aren’t part of the contest can have their photos taken as well. Harley Quinn dazzled the photographers with an array of poses …

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… and afterward she handed out business cards – turns out she’s a talented seamstress, designer and costume fabricator. This is the case more often than one might guess — cosplay is often a marketing tool as much as a form of self-expression, an aspect of the culture that your typical “babes of cosplay” photo essay tends to miss.

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The daughter of Batman and Poison Ivy enchants the photographers. Kids open the annual cosplay masquerade contest.

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Princess Anna of Arendelle. This is where being in the photographer area was rather illustrative vis a vis the real culture of cosplay. The cosplayers weren’t told to strike a sexy pose — the repeated requests were for them to show the fabric details, construction, and in many cases, lighting and other tech that didn’t show up all that well on my iPhone under bright lights.

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Fabric on display – cosplayers are asked to pose front, back, side to side, in angles highlighting key details, and finally, in whatever pose happens to be their favorite.

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This looked great, but when the head came off it looked like the costume had almost killed the wearer. These things are hot and heavy.

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The Transformers Bumblebee cosplay was a technological marvel to behold – and so tall that it couldn’t fit in the photographer staging area. As a result, we could photograph only the folks who made it work.

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Minecraft 3D.

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This costume was clever and funny – the Barbie doll was a fantastic touch. After the photographers called out for poses highlighting particular aspects of the design, one called out, “Show us your teeth!” — to which the cosplayer deadpanned: “I don’t have interesting teeth.”

FullSizeRender(3)

There were a number of other costumes worth highlighting, but like most of the other folks I know here, I’m beat.

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6. Marvel panel at NYCC Special Edition reveals no Secret Wars reboot

photo (1)

There were quite a few announcements the NYCC Special Edition Marvel panel. We learned of the fall launch of a new line of $1 comics featuring women of Marvel, saw new pages from the upcoming Lando Calrissian limited series, and were told of a new post-Secret Wars Iron Man series from Brian Michael Bendis and David Marquez.

But perhaps the most interesting moment of the panel was when Bendis, speaking on the dais with Marguerite Bennett (A-Force) and Charles Soule (Inhumans: Attilan Rising), said that Secret Wars was “never planned to be a reboot” to the Marvel Universe, and that “no continuity would be damaged or reversed.” Bendis explained that Secret Wars was always meant to be part of on-going continuity.

Bennett received loud applause when speaking to a fan during the Q & A portion of the panel who asked her what advice she had for women and girls interested in the comics industry. “Don’t be scared,” Bennett replied, “I’ve had one of the worst weeks of my life with hate mail and it doesn’t matter.” Bennet said she would “prove through her work, I’m not going anywhere.”

Sound issues plagued the presentation, which alternately found Bendis yelling into his mic and audience members having to approach the panel and speak into their mics to be heard over a panel in the adjacent space (separated only by a curtain).

Keep reading for panel exclusive images of forthcoming series, including those never before seen pages from upcoming Charles Soule penned series Lando!

photo 1

The new “True Believers” line of $1 comics debuts in September 2015, and will feature a women of Marvel theme for it’s first 10 issues.

photo 2

Marvel also showed art from their forthcoming variant covers, including several images from an upcoming line of Manga variants. A House of M variant cover was shown, drawn by Katsuya Terada (Blood: The Last Vampire).

photo 3

Marvel’s variant announcements continued with images of a line of variant covers honoring the fast-growing cosplay scene.

photo 4

Artist Alex Maleev joins Soule for the upcoming Lando limited series. Soule said the series would have “a lot of twists and turns” but that it would be the charming, “smarmy” Lando we all know and love, as Con-exclusive images were shown on the big screen.

photo 5

“New Armor, new villains,” promised Bendis of his upcoming Invincible Iron Man series, scheduled for release following Secret Wars. He promised the series’ first issue would have a “whopper of a last page,” and reveal the identity of Tony Stark’s biological parents. He also confirmed that, despite internet rumor, it was indeed Stark inside the Iron Man suit. Though he wouldn’t confirm how many limbs Stark still had following the events of Secret Wars.

photo 2 (1)

When a fan approached the panel to ask “how important are the X-Men” after Secret Wars, Bendis joked, “it’s almost like Marvel is screwing around with people who have X-Men paranoia.”

photo 3 (1)

 

5 Comments on Marvel panel at NYCC Special Edition reveals no Secret Wars reboot, last added: 6/10/2015
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7. Batman in Dior

There is more to Batman 47 than Joe ChillGirl in Dior has been getting great press worldwide for its depiction of one of the most influential premiere collections in fashion history, but there are a couple of classic superhero connections as well.

Sixty-eight year old fashion spoiler alert!

Protesting long skirts

As Girl in Dior aptly depicts, the designer’s debut collection split the fashion world. For some, the longer length of the skirts in Christian Dior’s first collection in 1947 was a step backward, but what ultimately won the day was a sense that Dior had tapped into deeper, more vital currents in the post-war West. Besides changing the course of fashion for a generation and, along the way, mentoring his successor in innovation, Yves Saint Laurent, Dior inspired a description that immediately became synonymous with his designs and, over time, any revolutionary break from existing style: the New Look.

Girl in Dior beautifully depicts the entry of this phrase into the fashion lexicon. After noting the presence of legendary Harper’s Bazaar editor Carmel Snow in the front row, author Annie Goetzinger lavishly recreates the moment when, following the show, Snow uttered the phrase that solidified Dior’s place in fashion history.

girl-in-dior-new-look

If you’re reading this site, though, chances are that you’re already thinking that the New Look sounds mighty familiar.

Check out this house ad and more on Dial B for Blog

It was, of course, the name famously — and not coincidentally — given to the modernization of Batman's appearance in 1964.

But that wasn’t the first time Dior’s New Look appeared in Batman comics – there’s also a reference contemporaneous with Dior’s early work.

Dior’s New Look garnered a lot of press in the U.S., from the revolutionary collections in the late ’40s to the Dior-mania of the subsequent decade and more. For our purposes, two articles in particular stand out: a January 1948 New York Times piece headlined “New Look to Stay, Expert Asserts” and Life Magazine‘s coverage of Dior’s latest “New Look” collection in February 1948.

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To see how such stories influenced comics, we can turn to the June 1948 of Batman, which re-tells Batman’s origin and includes his epic encounter with his father’s murderer, Joe Chill. However, that’s not the only story in this book, which deserves a digital restoration in full on Comixology (hint, hint).

The landmark Batman #47 actually opens with a Catwoman story called “Fashions in Crime.” The tale begins with Catwoman breaking out of jail, only to hear herself mocked by other women as she walks down the street while wearing her civilian clothes:

“Hmmph! She’s wearing a short skirt! She doesn’t have the NEW LOOK!”

As the women go on to ridicule her for not reading the latest fashion magazines, Catwoman makes the painful realization that “since [she’s] been in prison, the style has changed.” But this also gives her an entrepreneurial idea: she creates her own fashion magazine, Damsel, along with a Damsel fashion TV program.

Months later Damsel is the hottest media empire in the fashion world, and the scene shifts to an older socialite, who, wearing an elaborate hat, notes that Catwoman-turned-Damsel-publisher-Madame-Moderne’s latest designer favorite is “a gown by Millie Karnalee.” Karnalee’s name seems odd, but at the time it would have made sense as a pun on the popular American designer Hattie Carnegie, the subject of the January 1948 New York Times piece. Carnegie, besides, ahem, adapting (i.e. copying) Dior’s “New Look” at a lower price for the U.S. market, also made a point of condemning the predilection of younger women not to wear hats.

And despite a nifty later scene wear Batman cracks the case thanks to his encyclopedic knowledge of fashion illustration technique, that’s where the story begins to diverge from the world of Girl in Dior.

Apparently the writers weren’t aware of the free samples and ample cashflow that would have been accrued to the publisher of the world’s hottest fashion magazine, because Catwoman proceeds to use her newfound high-society access to steal clothes and rob women at an exclusive fashion show. Not surprisingly, the scene at Catwoman’s show is rather different from the more modest Parisian runways of the time — in true 1940s Batman fashion, it features “giant needles … scissors … thimbles … and a huge sewing machine!”

Girl in Dior might not end with a fight on oversized designer props, but it is nonetheless a most enlightening read. I could go on, but I’ll leave that to an actual reviewer – ceci n’est pas une critique de Jeune fille en Dior.

Girl in Dior

4 Comments on Batman in Dior, last added: 4/28/2015
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8. Fashion alert: Hot Topic offers line of Avengers apparel from Her Universe

Nerd girl fashion is popular…and stylish. Her Universe, the fashion line started by Ashley Eckstein, has been setting the trend for much of this and now they’ve teamed with Hot Topic to offer a line of Avengers outfits. Rather than cybernetic body armor and purple pants it heads more towards fishnets and sleeveless dresses. You can pre order it here.

The line was designed by Amy Beth Christenson and Andrew MacLaine who were the winners of the Her Universe “Geek Couture” Fashion Show at last year’s Comic-Con. So it’s a real cinderella story here.
The line includes:

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Captain America Halter Dress, $59.50

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Thor Sailor Dress, $59.50

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Stark Industries Bomber Jacket, $54.50

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Black Widow Dress, $44.50

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Black Widow Belted Jacket, $64.50

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Loki Halter Dress, $59.50

Hot Topic is offering a full line of Avengers gear. In fact while I was writing this piece I discovered these Marvel combat boots. So many cool things, so little closet space.

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0 Comments on Fashion alert: Hot Topic offers line of Avengers apparel from Her Universe as of 4/22/2015 12:55:00 PM
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9. Moschino x Looney Tunes

Urban Looney Tunes—they're back!

0 Comments on Moschino x Looney Tunes as of 3/2/2015 4:10:00 PM
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10. Pinup Girl Clothing Creates Magic of Mary Blair Collection

Mary Blair's artwork takes center stage in this new line of skirts and dresses from Pinup Girl Clothing.

0 Comments on Pinup Girl Clothing Creates Magic of Mary Blair Collection as of 2/19/2015 3:05:00 PM
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11. Activity books for long journeys and school holidays

We’ve a week’s holiday from school coming up and will be travelling around the country visiting family, and this means we’ve several multi-hour journeys ahead of us. Journeys are my favourite time for enjoying stories and our bags always include:

  • our mp3 player loaded up with a new audiobook and some old favourites, along with a splitter, so both children can listen at the same time should they wish to
  • a couple of new magazines or comics
  • an activity book or two for busy fingers
  • Favourite audiobooks include the How to train your Dragon series, voiced by David “former Dr Who” Tennant, enriched with great music and sound effects, David Walliams reading his own stories (not surprisingly, he does really funny voices), and Tony “Baldrick” Robinson’s Theseus and Odysseus. New for our next journey will be The Silver Brumby by Elyne Mitchell (thanks to @HawthornPressUK for the recommendation).

    As we subscribe to several magazines and comics at home, reading choices for the train are made from what is available in the station newsagents so that the kids get to try something they wouldn’t have at home. Often they’ll chose a wildlife, craft or archaeology magazine. Technically these may be marketed for adults, but they are often much more engaging than those aimed at kids as they have more content, fewer adverts and less “plastic crap” on the front (a bonus from my point of view).

    When looking for activity books to take on journeys my first port of call is always the online shops of museums and art galleries; generally speaking these are good sources of slightly more unusual or quirky activity books. This holiday I’ll be taking DoodleFlip Dress-Up by Hennie Haworth, Stickyscapes London by Robert Samuel Hanson, and also Stickyscapes Paris by Malika Favre.

    activitybooks

    DoodleFlip Dress-Up is a mix and match, lift the flap fashion colouring-in book. There’s lot to choose from; maybe your creation will have the legs of a ballerina, the floaty dress of a hippy, the accessories of a pirate and the helmet of an astronaut (all figures are female). Prompts suggest ideas for filling several blank flaps with your own designs.

    doodleflipinside

    Whilst advertised as 3+, I think the style of illustration will appeal to much older children (say 8+); the designs are quite detailed and relatively small and also look more sophisticated than many colouring-in illustrations aimed at young children.

    The two Stickyscapes books are great fun. They are large concertina style fold out cityscapes of the two cities, and come with lots of reusable stickers. One side of each fold-out shows the “real and present-day” city, whilst the other side depicts an “imaginary and historical” version of the city.

    londonunfolded

    There’s lots to learn and explore in both sticker books. A key to each scene is included so you can identify landmarks around the city, and the stickers (a mixture of present-day, historical and fictional people, forms of transport and items you might find on the cities’ streets) come with explanatory notes, making this much more than “just” a sticker book.

    stickernotes

    I have just one complaint about these books: The population of these cities is far more diverse than the stickers would have you believe.

    londoninhabitants

    In the London book, there are perhaps three non-white people represented (out of a total of 33 modern day inhabitants and visitors), or to put it another way 9% of the sticker book modern day population is probably not white. According to the 2011 census just over 40% of Londoners identified themselves as non-white. Comparable figures are not easily obtainable for the French capital, but I suspect the demographics of this city are not accurately represented by the stickers in the Paris book, which could be seen to suggest a 100% white population.

    parisinhabitants

    Of course these books are just a bit of fun, and some will say I’m making too much of the hard numbers. But I’d disagree. Why wouldn’t we want the illustrations of these great cities to reflect their rich, mixed populations more accurately?

    Alas we won’t be visiting either London or Paris during our travels, but at least we’ll be able to travel there in our imaginations, suitably decked out in the highest of fashion as designed by my kids! What book or story resources do you pack when you’re going on a long journey?

    Disclosure: I received the three activity books from the publisher.

    3 Comments on Activity books for long journeys and school holidays, last added: 2/12/2015
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    12. Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!)

    Fandom-inspired fashion certainly isn’t going anywhere; gone are the days of unisex, potato-sack tees as companies like WeLoveFine, Hot Topic and other retailers capitalize on the craze. The latest launch from Hot Topic is one of the most fandom-specific ones I’ve seen. It actually all revolves around a single character: Harley Quinn. And we have some to give away!

    Some of these offerings are basically straight-up cosplay fodder, like the Harley suspender leggings and dress:

    10278175 HarleenLeggings hi 222x300 Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!) 10277465 HarleenDress hi 222x300 Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!)

    Others aim at slightly more subtle/everyday approach, like an argyle cardigan or mesh-sleeve top:

    10280926 HarleenCardigan hi 222x300 Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!) 10232899 DCHarleenMeshTop hi 222x300 Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!)

    The collaboration from Warner Bros. Consumer Products and Hot Topic, dubbed Harleen, is available now at a fairly reasonable price point (mostly the $20 – $30 range).

    Also, if you’re one of those quizzie types, they’ve launched an app to hook you up with your ideal comics-related companion. While I’m not 100% convinced that the Joker is the right man for me, it’s only a few questions long and comes with a coupon for the gear at the end.

    PLUS: Giveaway! You can win a Joker and Harley Quinn Mesh Girls Pullover Top! To enter, tweet “I have mad love for Harley Quinn, @hottopic and @comicsbeat” Prize supplied by Hot Topic, and winner selected in a random drawing. The contest will end Monday, February 2 at noon est. Tweet away!

    1 Comments on Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!), last added: 1/30/2015
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    13. Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!)

    Fandom-inspired fashion certainly isn’t going anywhere; gone are the days of unisex, potato-sack tees as companies like WeLoveFine, Hot Topic and other retailers capitalize on the craze. The latest launch from Hot Topic is one of the most fandom-specific ones I’ve seen. It actually all revolves around a single character: Harley Quinn. And we have some to give away!

    Some of these offerings are basically straight-up cosplay fodder, like the Harley suspender leggings and dress:

    10278175 HarleenLeggings hi 222x300 Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!) 10277465 HarleenDress hi 222x300 Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!)

    Others aim at slightly more subtle/everyday approach, like an argyle cardigan or mesh-sleeve top:

    10280926 HarleenCardigan hi 222x300 Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!) 10232899 DCHarleenMeshTop hi 222x300 Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!)

    The collaboration from Warner Bros. Consumer Products and Hot Topic, dubbed Harleen, is available now at a fairly reasonable price point (mostly the $20 – $30 range).

    Also, if you’re one of those quizzie types, they’ve launched an app to hook you up with your ideal comics-related companion. While I’m not 100% convinced that the Joker is the right man for me, it’s only a few questions long and comes with a coupon for the gear at the end.

    PLUS: Giveaway! You can win a Joker and Harley Quinn Mesh Girls Pullover Top! To enter, tweet “I have mad love for Harley Quinn, @hottopic and @comicsbeat” Prize supplied by Hot Topic, and winner selected in a random drawing. The contest will end Monday, February 2 at noon est. Tweet away!

    0 Comments on Harley Quinn inspires new Hot Topic clothing collection (+giveaway!) as of 1/30/2015 6:48:00 AM
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    14. The Rip

    Did you hear it?

    Not the sound of traffic rolling or the chirping of nature out the window. No, that was a distinct sound. It was a rip. I’m sure it was a rip.

    I don’t dare look down. I can’t be positive it was me that ripped. It could have been someone nearby – or if it was me, maybe it was a piece of my shirt. That kind of thing happens all the time.

    Shirt tails spontaneously rip when exposed to direct light. It happens to guys over forty mostly because they don’t ever tuck their shirts in. I think they feel better if the curve of their belly isn’t accentuated. That way, people don’t know they’re wearing a 2XL. Sorry if that is rude. I’ve been there. I know what it is like to wear a 2XL. I don’t want to be mean, but HEY! You’re interjecting yourself into my stream of consciousness and trying to subvert the point. The issue at stake isn’t even whether I tuck my shirts in or not! The issue is whether the sound I heard was MY pants ripping.

     

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    I swear they aren’t too small. I’ve never been one of those guys to wear tight jeans. I certainly couldn’t pull off the whole skinny jean thing. Reason number 328 that makes me glad I’m not a girl (#1 being that we guys can pee anywhere). I hate tight pants. Okay, so I’m not dead, I don’t mind them on some people, but there should be a government application you have to fill out before you can wear your pants too tight. Mine would get rejected instantly!

     

    Besides, I hate wearing anything tight or constricting. I remember when I first joined the working world and business casual had not yet become acceptable. I had Walter Mittyesque daydreams about wrestling a bear and being drug around by my necktie. Well, they weren’t actually daydreams, I fell asleep at my desk often because I wasn’t quite used to being out of college. So I guess they were just dreams.

    HEY! There you go again. Stop it!

    Will you look down? I don’t want to. I’m afraid.

    NO!

     

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    If you look down, and my pants are ripped, then our relationship could enter a very awkward stage. Our friendship would never be the same. Kinda like when the strainer from the faucet flew off and sprayed water all over my pants. I lost a bunch of friends that day because everyone at work thought I’d peed myself. And when I said I loved that guys can pee anywhere, I wasn’t talking about the break room at work. I was more thinking in the woods. The great outdoors – manly stuff like peeing on trees or a fire.

    Who says we have a relationship anyway?

    I mean, you won’t even tell me if I have a large gaping hole in my pants… which would be bad. Real bad. Why does it always happen in public? Why not when you get them out of the dryer and you put them on in the privacy of your own home? A rip there would be much more pallatable. More forgiving. I could laugh it off and change clothes without anyone else knowing. But it never happens that way. Pants have a way of telling a story unlike any other article of clothing.

    Uh Oh! I feel a breeze – and not a natural breeze unless you live in a special colony or ride a boat and stick your leg up on the side.

    Oh well. Here’s to a rip-roaring New Year. Now that we’ve got this embarrassing sequence finished on day 3, maybe we’re covered on humility for the balance of 2015


    Filed under: It Made Me Laugh

    5 Comments on The Rip, last added: 1/7/2015
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    15. Guest commentary: Who Stole Superman’s Undies?

    movies man of steel henry cavill Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    Guest post by T Campbell.

    Can the soul of Western civilization be found in a pair of red briefs? Was our first great superhero at his strongest, his noblest, his superest, before modern interpretations stripped him of his underwear? Is there a connection?

    A generation ago, when those red briefs were an inseparable part of Superman’s design, he was the most familiar superhero by a wide margin, leading the field in film adaptations,[1] headlining cartoon shows,[2] and even winning over famous media critics who were fiction writers in their own right. Even now, if you believe superheroes have anything to say to American culture or the human experience, you sort of have to start with him, because he’s the prototype.

    Umberto Eco called him “the representative of all his similars” [3]  and Harlan Ellison described him as one of “only five fictional creations known to every man, woman, and child on the planet.”[4] Born in the early hours of a visual, easily reproduced medium, he was popular enough to codify most of what being a superhero meant. The Oxford English Dictionary even mentions him by name in its definition of “superhero”:

    su·per·he·ro ˈso͞opərˌhirō noun: superhero; plural noun: superheroes; noun: super-hero; plural noun: super-heroes. a benevolent fictional character with superhuman powers, such as Superman.[5]

    And yet, Batman emerged a year later with no superhuman powers at all, and he was far from the only superhero to flout that membership requirement.[6] What really seemed to make a superhero a superhero, in the minds of the public, was the benevolence, the codename and the costume.

    Superman is a strong man created by weak boys. Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster were nerdy teens when they came up with their first “Superman,” a madman with mental, not physical, powers.[7] Their second draft, far closer to the version we know, had what appeared to be a streak of white in his hair and a bare chest.[8] And those trunks, which persisted through other versions for eighty years.

    01 originalsuperman Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    Lacking any personal experience being strong, S. & S. took Superman’s powers from their beloved science fiction, and his costume from the circus.[9]

    01 ActionComic1 Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    Underpants on tights were signifiers of extra-masculine strength and endurance in 1938. The cape, showman-like boots, belt and skintight spandex were all derived from circus outfits and helped to emphasize the performative, even freak-show-esque, aspect of Superman’s adventures. Lifting bridges, stopping trains with his bare hands, wrestling elephants: these were superstrongman feats that benefited from the carnival flair implied by skintight spandex. Shuster had dressed the first superhero as his culture’s most prominent exemplar of the strongman ideal, unwittingly setting him up as the butt of ten thousand jokes.

    Grant Morrison [10]

     

    Actually, Siegel and Shuster thought of Superman’s other clothes as the mockable ones. To fully understand the significance of Superman’s costume, look at him when he’s out of it—when he’s Clark Kent.

    01 clarkkent Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    In virtually every version of Superman, Clark is an exercise in patient self-restraint, the ultimate man pretending day by day to be the ultimate common man. In his early days, this restraint was a superstrongman feat all its own, because Clark was extra pathetic—the better for Siegel, Shuster and the readers to identify with him.

    I had crushes on several attractive girls who either didn’t know I existed or didn’t care I existed. So it occurred to me: What if I was really terrific? What if I had something special going for me, like jumping over buildings or throwing cars around or something like that?

    Jerry Siegel [11]

    Kent looked like Shuster, who later lifted weights for five years but never developed the bodybuilder’s confidence.[12] If Kent’s daily humiliations echoed Siegel’s past, they also predicted part of Shuster’s future.[13] When Shuster’s worsening eyesight drove him out of cartooning, he went back to deliveries, showing up at his former publisher carrying a package and wearing a ratty, worn-out suit.[14]

    It’s not hard to imagine nerdy Shuster stammering “Sign here, please” in the same voice that Kent used to ask Lois, on their first date, if it wouldn’t be “reasonable” to let a bullying gangster have just one dance with her.[15]

    008 shusterman Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    Yet Shuster also drew Clark with a rock-hard physique that threatened to burst out of his jacket and pants at any moment. Every so often, after meekly tolerating an editor’s blustering or Lois’ icy contempt, “Clark” would crack a smile: if only they knew. For him, the angst Siegel and Shuster had felt in real life was just a pose, a suit he put on sometimes. And then he’d hear someone in trouble and strip off his shirt to reveal the S-shield underneath. The red trunks would soon follow. Underwear, for the underself.[16]

    01 alex ross Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    It was all just a game. Everything was going to be all right. Superman cheerfully presided over a world of bright rainbow colors where hurts and humiliations were temporary. Indeed, after a couple of years he developed a code against killing—a code most superheroes also followed.[17]

    They also imitated the briefs, especially his most immediate peers—the original versions of Batman, Robin, Hawkman, Hourman, Starman, Dr. Fate, the Spectre, the Atom, and the Star-Spangled Kid all rocked the look as seen below. [18] And yes, more than half of those heroes also followed his “Somethingman” naming convention.

    01 Justice Society of America Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    The 1960s and 1970s still saw plenty of new trunks-wearers among Avengers like Giant-Man and the Vision, mutants like Magneto, and gods like Orion. The Thing wore only trunks, and the Hulk torn purple pants. Other gods and mutants (Thor, Darkseid, the early X-Men) wore onesies broken up with a belt.[19] Strangely, two X-Men who each disdained the other’s sense of style—Cyclops and Wolverine—went full trunks-over-pants from the 1970s into the 1990s.[20]

    01 Jim Lee X Men 11 Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    This tendency to assign the look to gods and mutants, though, instead of more central figures like Captain America, Mister Fantastic, and Spider-Man, may have been an early sign that it was on its way out. These newer Marvel characters stood out from the first generation by being more fully realized people in their civilian identities, if not eliminating the dual identity altogether. Of the marquee Marvel heroes, only Thor, whose fashions and godly nature made him the exception that proved the rule, was introduced with a Clark Kentish self-denying secret identity.[21]

    Superman’s influence continued to erode as the decades wore on. Newer heroes showed less interest in the code against killing or in names ending in “-man.”[22]  And costume redesigns left the trunks behind. The X-Men got into black leather for a while, and their later, more colorful costumes still left the briefs out.[23]

    Tim Burton’s 1989 Batman film “de-briefed” comics’ second most famous underwear wearer. Batman never went back to the briefs in any succeeding movies: they began to fade from the comics as well, as shown in this sample of Ben Moore’s larger survey of Bat-suits seen in various media, covering the period from 2005-2012.[24]

    01 batman infographik e1419850900988 Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    The look could still show up in the deliberately retro stylings of a film like The Incredibles; despite fashionista Edna Mode’s disdain for capes and insistence that “I never look back, darling, it distracts from the now,” her creations had an old-fashioned flair that matched the traditional values of their wearers, the kind of nuclear family that seemed to headline most sitcoms from the 1950s to the 1980s.[25]

     Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    Superman, for many years, seemed content to be a bit old-fashioned. His brand hadn’t been about “cool” for a long time: it was more about safety and stability. The comic-book Superman of 1962 or 1988 was more scientist than slugger, often approaching problems from a cool remove. His peers honored him as the one who came first, and therefore someone who didn’t need to follow the trends. He had, after all, defined them.[26]

    002 comic superman Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    Nevertheless, as superheroes and popular entertainment in general grew increasingly impatient with the “no kill rule,” the temptation to challenge Superman for wearing last year’s morals was overwhelming. The movies of the 1970s and 1980s danced around the issue by making Superman’s foes inanimate[27] or leaving their fates uncertain.[28] But many of his best-loved adventures, the ones that could claim to influence his canon, saw him sorely tempted to end a life—or even saw him succumb.

    However, this was always an ending for the character as we knew him, as proved by what came next. In one such story, Superman instantly punished himself by giving up his super-powers and retiring.[29] In another, he died along with his foe.[30] In a third, he had a mental breakdown and went on a long journey of soul-searching before returning to duty with an even firmer vow, “Never again.”[31] In multiple stories of a world not our own, a world gone wrong, Superman deciding to kill is his first step toward villainy.[32] And at least once, he used magicians’ stage tricks to fool the world into thinking he’d broken his rule—just to show how terrible a Superman unchecked by restraint would be.[33]

    01 superman nobody has the right to kill Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    The conservatism is unmistakable but charming.  Nearly all fictional franchises create a moral universe that rewards readers for following them, and Superman is no exception. However much he struggled with it, refusing to kill would always be The Right Choice. Other heroes would always look to him for guidance, saluting his cape as if it were the flag. Underwear on the outside of your pants totally works.

    The super-briefs stayed on for generations, in comics, movies, TV, Halloween costumes and branded, official kids’ underwear—an incentive to finish toilet training if ever there was one. [34]

    005 super underoos Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    And then everyone seemed to reject them at once. In 2011, Jim Lee redesigned all DC Comics’ top-selling characters, giving them the scratchy, slightly self-conscious “edginess” that had made Lee famous.[35] But the artist who had kept Cyclops and Wolverine in trunks now broke precedent. The red of Superman’s trunks shifted to his belt, and its buckle took a shape echoing the chest symbol. The trunks vanished.

    I think you have to go for the core elements that are critical to the costume and freely change what looks dated… For me, the red trunks on Superman, you didn’t notice. It gets colored in blue anyhow.[36]

    003 comic superman postpants Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    In the same year’s Action Comics, Grant Morrison and Rags Morales emphasized the populist strain in Siegel’s early, Depression-era stories. Theirs was a Superman for the 99 percent, and his costume was the believable result of a reporter’s salary: a screen-printed T-shirt, short cape, and jeans. [37] Morrison explained:

    We felt it was time for the big adventures of a 21st-century Paul Bunyan who fights for the weak and downtrodden against bullies of all kinds, from robot invaders and crime lords to corrupt city officials. The new look reflects his status as a street-level defender of the ordinary man and woman.[38]

    004 action comics superman Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    The filmmakers of 2013’s Man of Steel found the trunks clashed with their concept of the costume as alien armor. Even director Zack Snyder, whose adaptation of Watchmen had featured two trunks-over-pants designs to the comic books’ one,[39] now found himself breaking precedent.

    The costume was a big deal for me, and we played around for a long time. I tried like crazy to keep the red briefs on him. Everyone else said, “You can’t have the briefs on him.” I looked at probably 1,500 versions of the costumes with the briefs on.[40]

    006 man of steel Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    Who stole Superman’s undies? Morrison takes responsibility for his part in it, Lee shrugs about careless colorists and readers, Snyder bows to the input of unnamed advisors. Their earlier output, though, suggests they had no dislike for the design, just a need to follow popular taste rather than acting as if Superman still shaped it. But fashion, as ever, sends a message about its wearer.

    In Man of Steel, the blue is navy, the yellow rusty and gritty. Smallville’s Clark operates without a costume at all. Both versions of Superman are painfully unsure of themselves, closeted, desperate, and far less successful than earlier versions at preventing collateral damage.[41] Smallville averaged one death per episode in each season.[42] Superman’s first TV outing, The Adventures of Superman, averaged none—and lasted six seasons to Smallville’s ten.[43]

    Analyst Charles Watson puts the Man of Steel death toll at 129,000, with the last of those deaths by Superman’s own hand.[44] Contrast this with Superman: the Movie, in which Superman saves everyone at risk from a devastating earthquake except Lois Lane, whom he then rescues via time travel. Man of Steel opened in eight times as many theaters as Superman: The Movie.[45] An influential new beginning, and by his old standards, an inauspicious one.

    Man of Steel Superman may scream in anguish after killing General Zod, but unlike in the other stories where he crosses that line, he seems to get over it pretty fast. One scene later, he’s cheerfully knocking an Army drone out of the sky. He actually seems more relaxed and happy after the killing is done! No doubt Lois’ approval helps, but even so.

    01 man of steel close e1419854857831 Guest commentary: Who Stole Supermans Undies?

    Man of Steel screenwriter David Goyer appears to be weaving some acknowledgments of that issue into its sequel.[46] He would like to assure you that the Superman you remember from your childhoods isn’t gone—he’s just not fully reborn yet.

    Our movie was, in a way, Superman Begins; he’s not really Superman until the end of the film. We wanted him to have had that experience of having taken a life and carry that through onto the next films. Because he’s Superman and because people idolize him, he will have to hold himself to a higher standard.[47]

    It’s true that Smallville and Man of Steel focus on a young Superman who hasn’t had a chance to become the graceful legend of earlier works. But these have been the portrayals to reach the widest audience in the last decade. [48] Even in current comics, though they have a lighter color scheme and mood, he’s an impulsive younger man with a quick temper.[49] The latest Superman project to be announced, TV’s Krypton, will take place thirty years before his birth.[50]

    Put it all together and you’re left with the impression that Superman’s 21st-century caretakers would rather invoke the smiling, life-preserving, cool-headed circus superstrongman than actually show him. Will the next film change that? Will it give him the power and certitude to preserve all intelligent life in his path with a calm soul and a wink at the viewer? Or is that Superman no longer filmable, a relic to be tossed out like a pair of outgrown briefs?

    Tights may tell.


    [1] 1978’s Superman: The Movie earned nearly six times its budget and spearheaded the only superhero film franchise of the following decade.

    [2] Some variation of Super Friends, always with Superman as the headliner, appeared on TV from 1973-1986.

    [3] Eco and Natalie Chilton. “The Myth of Superman. The Amazing Adventures of Superman. Review.” Diacritics, 2(1), pp. 14-22. Spring 1972.

    [4] Ellison, Foreword to Dennis Dooley and Gary Engle, Superman at 50: The Persistence of a Legend, 1987.

    [5] Oxford English Dictionary entry, 2014. Found via Google search, November 22, 2014.

    [6] Batman later used gadgets as sort of substitute super-powers, but other figures—the first Atom, Wildcat, and the Spirit, among others—used nothing but ordinary fists.

    [7] Jerry Siegel (illustration by Joe Shuster), “The Reign of the Superman,” Science Fiction: The Advance Guard of Future Civilization #3, 1933.

    [8] Les Daniels, Superman: The Complete History, 2004, p. 17.

    [9] Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, Action Comics #1, 1938.

    [10] Grant Morrison, Super Gods: What Masked Vigilantes, Miraculous Mutants and a Sun God from Smallville Can Teach Us About Being Human, 2012.

    [11] Gerard Jones, Men of Tomorrow: Geeks, Gangsters and the Birth of the American Comic Book, 2005, p. 63.

    [12] Tom Andrae with Geoffrey Blum and Gary Coddington, “The Birth of Superman,” Nemo #2, 1983.

    [13] Craig Yoe, Secret Identity: The Fetish Art of Superman’s Co-creator Joe Shuster, 2009; Brad Ricca, Super Boys: The Amazing Adventures of Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster—The Creators of Superman, 2013.

    [14] Joe Simon, My Life in Comics, p. 188, 2011.

    [15] Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, Action Comics #1, 1938.

    [16] Alex Ross for Alex Ross and Paul Dini, Superman: Peace on Earth, p. 7, 1938.

    [17] Editor Whitney Ellsworth was the driving force behind this rule, as early as 1940, years before the Comics Code Authority.

    [18] Art by Jerry Ordway, Who’s Who in the DC Universe #12, 1986.

    [19] Tim Leong, “A Venn Diagram of Superhero Tropes,” Super Graphic: A Visual Guide to the Comic Book Universe, 2013.

    [20] Art by Jim Lee for X-Men #11, 1992.

    [21] Dr. Donald Blake is more complicated than we can cover here,

    [22] Wikipedia’s “List of notable superhero debuts” shows a tapering off of such names after the 1960s.

    [23] Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely, New X-Men #114, 2001; Joss Whedon and John Cassaday, Astonishing X-Men #1, 2004.

    [24] Selected from Ben Moore’s 2012 “Batman Infographic: Every Significant Bat-Suit Ever,” found at Screen Rant, http://screenrant.com/batman-infographic-every-batsuit-benm-144238/.

    [25] Brad Bird, The Incredibles, 2004.

    [26] Image by Jim Lee for DC Comics.

    [27] In Superman: The Movie and Superman Returns, natural disasters are the chief problem; in Superman III and IV, the main villains are destroyed but arguably not truly alive.

    [28] Superman II.

    [29] Alan Moore, Curt Swan and Kurt Schaffenberger, Action Comics #583, 1986. Source of the image below and the last “Silver Age” Superman story.

    [30] Dan Jurgens, Superman #75, 1992. The famous, notorious “Death of Superman.”

    [31] John Byrne, Superman #22, 1988; Jerry Ordway, Adventures of Superman #450, 1989; Roger Stern and Kerry Gammill, Superman #28, 1989; George Perez, Action Comics #649, 1989. John Byrne’s last Superman story, and a heavy influence on Man of Steel in terms of who Superman kills and why.

    [32] Central premise of the video game Injustice: Gods Among Us, released in 2013, ongoing storyline in the Justice League/Justice League Unlimited animated series (2001-2006) and invoked in the climax of 1996’s Kingdom Come by Mark Waid and Alex Ross.

    [33] Joe Kelly and Doug Mahnke, Action Comics #775, 2001. Adapted into a 2012 direct-to-DVD animated film, Superman vs. The Elite.

    [34] Photo from http://savinginsalinas.blogspot.com/2011/09/yard-sale-finds.html. Superman has had many adaptations but this was true of virtually all of them until 2011.

    [35] Geoff Johns and Jim Lee, Justice League #1, 2011 (image source), and George Perez, Superman #1, 2011. Lee’s career goes back to 1987.

    [36] WonderCon 2013 panel, “WC13: Jim Lee Talks DC, Answers Fan Questions and More!,” Comic Book Resources, March 30, 2013, http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=44604.

    [37] Grant Morrison and Rags Morales, Action Comics #2, 2011.

    [38] Dareh Gregorian, “Bird? Plane? Superdude!,” The New York Post, July 18, 2011.

    [39] Nite Owl wore them in both versions, but Ozymandias picked them up in the movie. Comics 1986-1987, film 2009.

    [40] Reed Tucker, “‘Steel’ this movie,” The New York Post, November 25, 2012. Image from Man of Steel, 2013.

    [41] In addition to the film itself, see Emma Dibdin, “‘Man of Steel’: Zack Snyder defends Superman’s ‘collateral damage,’” Digital Spy, August 30, 2013.  

    [42] According to smallville.wikia.com. In some seasons it was as high as three.

    [43] 1952-1958; 2001-2011.

    [44] Graphic by Chris Ritter, “The Insane Destruction That the Final ‘Man Of Steel’ Battle Would Do To NYC, By The Numbers,” Buzzfeed, http://www.buzzfeed.com/jordanzakarin/man-of-steel-destruction-death-analysis, June 17, 2013.

    [45] Box Office Mojo. http://boxofficemojo.com.

    [46] Devin Faraci. “Find Out Superman’s Situation In BATMAN V SUPERMAN,” Badass Digest, December 15, 2014.

    [47] 2013 speech at the BAFTA and BFI Screenwriters’ Lecture series.

    [48] 2006’s Superman Returns was far less profitable and problematic in a different way.

    [49] Johns, Lee, and Morrison have confirmed this is deliberate.

    [50] Lesley Golberg, “Syfy, David Goyer Developing Superman Origin Story ‘Krypton,’” The Hollywood Reporter, December 8, 2014.

    13 Comments on Guest commentary: Who Stole Superman’s Undies?, last added: 12/31/2014
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    16. {Review} kate spade new york: places to go, people to see

    Review by Kit places to go, people to see By Kate Spade New York Hardcover: 240 pages Publisher: Harry N. Abrams (October 14, 2014) Language: English Amazon | Goodreads kate spade new york: places to go, people to see focuses on the how, where and why of travel through the lens of the always-inspired kate spade new york girl. this new volume features vibrant photography, old-world glamour, a

    0 Comments on {Review} kate spade new york: places to go, people to see as of 12/11/2014 4:34:00 PM
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    17. Sports Moment: Jets QB Geno Smith hits a new low with poorly styled outfit

    geno smith Sports Moment: Jets QB Geno Smith hits a new low with poorly styled outfit

    If you are a New York Jets fan, as I am, you know that the best part about supporting this team is finding out just how awful and bizarre things can get. I know other football teams are terrible and have weird things happen, but when you throw in the New York media fishbowl, you get a special kind of magic. That magic has been on full display for the last few years with the wonderful soap opera known as The Jets Quarterback Situation. The Situation seemed to be okay for a few years (2009-10) when young Mark Sanchez led the Jets to the AFC Championship game TWO YEARS in a row. But then….it went pear shaped.

    Sanchez and the franchise faltered in 2011 and it was revealed that flamboyant coach Rex Ryan had a tattoo of Sanchez at the same time it was discovered that Ryan liked to make rather sweet foot fetish videos with his wife. In 2012, Sanchez was joined by back-up quarterback Tim Tebow, already a sensation for his God-fueled rampage with the Bronco despite not really being able to do things like throw the ball. This led to a three ring media circus of insane proportions as model-dating Sanchez and God-loving virgin Tebow were cast as antagonists, while all they wanted to do was stand around on the sidelines pretending nothing was happening. Sanchez was eventually sidelined for keeps after being injured in the last quarter of a meaningless pre-season game, leaving Geno Smith and Michael Vick to enact this year’s version of the sacrifice of the Corn King Quarterback for bloodthirsty fans.

    In his first year in 2013, Geno Smith proved to be a…work in progress. That progress was stalled entirely this year, with Smith’s skills such as they are wilting under the New York media scrutiny, and yet another drama over whether washed-up Vick should led the team. At this point the Jets are 2-11, and well on their way to one of the most futile years any fan can remember.

    On Sunday the Jets lost in overtime to the Vikings, 30-24 in a game that wasn’t as close as it sounds. Although Smith didn’t have the horrific game he had on Monday night, Gang Green could only muster a bunch of field goals in five red zone attempts.

    NOW, if you are really a Jets fan you know that the best part of being horrible is how the SNY analysts rip the team to shreds after every game. It’s a guilty pleasure we’ve all enjoyed for years. The current crew is a bit more mellow than the Adam Schein/Joe Klecko years, but yesterday they managed to find a new way to be critical, tearing into Smith for how he was dressed for the traditional post game press conference. Smith came out in some kind of shapeless white smock that looked like something Uncle Owen would throw on to go check on some vaporators out on the moisture farm. It’s true that it was very cold in Minnesota, and Smith was probably only trying to bundle up for the brutal 10 yard journey from the players entrance to the team bus, but that was no excuse for the SNY team. Even after the worst shellacking, Sanchez would show up for post game appearances in a suit and tie, a look that the SNY team of Brian Custer, Erik Coleman, Ray Lucas and former special teams coordinator Mike Westhoff found far more suitable.

    Just watch.

    I hope you will forgive me for my one sports moment of the year. I added this video to the library of great jets moments such as Mark Sanchez eating a hotdog on the sidelines,

    and a more recent event where he reviewed the food options available at Philadelphia’s Lincoln Financial Field, where he’s playing pretty well now that he doesn’t have New York’s psychotic mind blitz coming at him on every waking moment.

    Obviously, poor Geno Smith has crumbled under the pressure, and so has his closet.

    4 Comments on Sports Moment: Jets QB Geno Smith hits a new low with poorly styled outfit, last added: 12/8/2014
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    18. Underoos are back from Hot Topic —and they’re for adults

    underoos batman Underoos are back from Hot Topic —and theyre for adults

    Going about your business clad in the underwear of a superhero is a god given right, and it’s not just for cosplay any more: Hot Topic is now offering underoos in adult sizes including Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman, Batgirl, Harley Quinn, Captain America He-Man and Skeletor. Please note, these are actually branded Underoos, after a a long ago brand of child sized superheroic undies, as our pal Paul at Idle Hands revealed. And they come in actual underoo packaging.

    You’ll note that on the site, female underoos wearers do a saucy butt turn so we can see if the underwear makes your butt look good which is very very important.

     Underoos are back from Hot Topic —and theyre for adults  Underoos are back from Hot Topic —and theyre for adults

    Men merely truck their undershirt into their underpants in order to look…heroic. Is that a real thing???

     Underoos are back from Hot Topic —and theyre for adults  Underoos are back from Hot Topic —and theyre for adults

    There is also this Batman bra. This could make getting to second base a big surprise on date night.

     Underoos are back from Hot Topic —and theyre for adults

    0 Comments on Underoos are back from Hot Topic —and they’re for adults as of 11/14/2014 9:39:00 PM
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    19. Remembering 100 years: Fashion and the outbreak of the Great War

    In August 2014 the world marks the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War.

    A time of great upheaval for countless aspects of society, social, economic and sexual to name a few, the onset of war punctured the sartorial mold of the early 20th century and resulted in perhaps one of the biggest strides to clothing reform that women had ever seen.

    The turn of the century began with a feeling of unease and fevered anticipation regarding the changing political climate; the ‘new woman’ of the fin-de-siècle and the clothes associated with her threatened to disrupt conservative gender values of the middle and upper classes. But the position of women was about to take an even sharper turn. As it soon became necessary to recruit women into the war effort, hemlines got shorter, cuts became looser, and the two-piece suit took centre stage for the first time, making way for more practical attire. Women experienced a relative degree of liberation, entering professions and industries previously dominated by men, which created the need for an entirely new ‘working wardrobe’.

    Official Yeowoman’s Costume of the US Navy 1101 Delineator, November 1918. Commercial Pattern Archive, University of Rhode Island.
    Official Yeowoman’s Costume of the US Navy 1101 Delineator, November 1918. Commercial Pattern Archive, University of Rhode Island. Joy Emery explores the development of US service uniforms and the introduction of women’s trousers during the First World War in her authoritative A History of the Paper Pattern Industry (Bloomsbury, 2014).

    Permeating mainstream and avant-garde fashion and fuelling the rise of the female’s role in the public sphere, fashion was about to move in a new, androgynous direction. Practical clothing influenced by men’s tailoring led the way and the suit, newly composed of jackets and skirts, developed its own identity as a women’s garment with soft, loose lines. In the world of high fashion, Paul Poiret and his taste for the ‘exotic’ firmly established the innovative trend for the tube-like silhouette, which reverberated throughout the fashion sphere more broadly. The kimono similarly burst onto the scene, reflecting the sentiment for looser and freer garments. Also, perhaps less well-remarked is the rapid development of the department store in Europe, which acknowledged the increasingly varied roles of women and made ready-made garments more available than ever before.

    The changes were not only evident in Britain. Relationships between Germany and the French houses that dominated the fashion scene became increasingly fraught at the outbreak of war. As Irene Guenther remarks in Nazi Chic?, “the war was viewed as providing the perfect opportunity to unseat France, militarily and sartorially, from its throne. Because the conflict had slowed down the French fashion machine, a space had developed that the German nation was eager and ready to fill.” Luxury items imported from France, including silk, lace, and leather gloves were forbidden and a culture of “make do and mend” was established, which was set to echo throughout the Second World War that was to follow.

    The Great War and its disruptions, dislocations, and recastings is rarely remembered for its creative output, but the war made way for innovative fashions and manufacturing techniques to suit a rapidly changing society and the new roles for the women and men who inhabited it. The sartorial changes witnessed in this turbulent decade became visual signifiers of the larger upheavals facing British and European society more generally, and we only have to look to our sartorial history from this period to sneak a peek at the way in which societal roles were uprooted and the face of women’s fashion markedly changed.

    The post Remembering 100 years: Fashion and the outbreak of the Great War appeared first on OUPblog.

    0 Comments on Remembering 100 years: Fashion and the outbreak of the Great War as of 8/16/2014 8:57:00 AM
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    20. Natsko Seki: dynamic urban illustrations

    Telephone booths

    Bookshop

    Westminster

    Italy

    Eating & Drinking

    Natsko Seki collages lively, saturated scenes of urban life from her own drawings and photographs. Begging to be explored, each illustration is populated with human activity and contains clues left by a moment in time that—if only yesterday—is now lost. Iconic architecture stands as a grandiose reminder that Seki’s people are living in the shadows of history and are unknowing participants in the writing of their city’s centuries. Seki’s interest in architecture, fashion, and contemporary urban life has landed her commissions with Transport for London, Royal Historic Palaces, The Guardian, Bloomsbury, and Hermès. In 2013, Louis Vuitton published a book of Seki’s London illustrations as part of their travel books collection. Seki grew up in Tokyo and studied illustration in Brighton, UK. She now lives in London.

    A look into Natsko Seki’s process | Online Portfolio

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    21. Starlord’s jacket now available in both men’s and women’s sizes

     Starlords jacket now available in both mens and womens sizes

    It’s Autumn now, and it’s been a long time since we attempted to ride the coattails of Guardians of the Galaxy, 2014’s breakout stars. But now that the weather is getting colder you may be needing a transitional jacket, for those snappy autumn days (or warming autumn days if you live in the South). Anyway, New American Jackets is selling pleather replicas of Starlord jacket from Guardians of the Galaxy — available in both mens and women’s sizes. It looks to be a nice detailed jacket in a flattering burnt sienna color. Men’s runs $140 and women’s $139 but both are “on sale” now.

     Starlords jacket now available in both mens and womens sizes

    Guardians of the Galaxy Jacket 600x800 Starlords jacket now available in both mens and womens sizes

     

     

    New American Jackets sells various other pop culture themed coats, like a Rick Grimes jacket—inexplicably crisp and clean and not gore clotted, bu you can fix that my sleeping in in every day for a month—a Keanu Reaves Hellblalz er trenchcoat—hopefully to be upgraded with the new TV series—a Smallville duster, a Katniss coat, a Drive jacket with the scorpion and all. So whatever your Halloween or cosplay plans, they can be purposed as a practical if nerdy garment for even non-con days.

    Rick Grimes Season 4 Suede Jacket 600x800 Starlords jacket now available in both mens and womens sizes

     

     

    Via Geek Tyrant

    0 Comments on Starlord’s jacket now available in both men’s and women’s sizes as of 9/26/2014 11:16:00 AM
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    22. DC admits sexist t-shirts sent wrong message

    hnstkfyouyjogyvkioie DC admits sexist t shirts sent wrong message

    Over the weekend at the Long Beach Comic Con, Tamara Brooks found some officially licensed DC t-shirts that gave messages that were a bit outmoded, to say the least. Tom Spurgeon quickly labeled them “repulsive,” and everyone else was all like reducing Wonder Woman to a victory level on a sex video game, really? Well, after CBR wrote to DC “DC wrote back and said, we agree:

    DC Comics is home to many of the greatest male and female Super Heroes in the world. All our fans are incredibly important to us, and we understand that the messages on certain t-shirts are offensive. We agree. Our company is committed to empowering boys and girls, men and women, through our characters and stories. Accordingly, we are taking a look at our licensing and product design process to ensure that all our consumer products reflect our core values and philosophy.


    WHAT TH–! What century is this? Comic Book company, you are supposed to remain silent and just internally fret over these kinds of things, not step up and do the right thing by admitting it was not the best official message to send?

    supermandoesitagain DC admits sexist t shirts sent wrong message

    To be honest, I find the first shirt repulsive. I get that showing Superman is a bro who bang hot chicks is an upgrade for his bulgeless underpants image. But…not the best way to get that across. The second is reminiscent of other t-shirts where the wearer declares she in training to be a trophy wife or whatever. Kinda silly but not the worst thing I’ve seen. But yeah, maybe not the best message for a company that is clearly trying to del with a surge of new customers who are more sensitive to this kind of thing. So yeah, end of kerfuffle, before it ever really got going.

    images2 DC admits sexist t shirts sent wrong message

    8 Comments on DC admits sexist t-shirts sent wrong message, last added: 10/1/2014
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    23. Her Universe and Ours

    image 158x300 Her Universe and OursSigns aren’t the only thing greeting attendees at the entrance to New York Comicon. Amidst the registration booths and all too quickly emptied bins for lanyards ReedPOP has its own boutique, featuring the geek-chic fashion of Ashley Eckstein’s Her Universe line.

    Her Universe has become a significant presence at both the San Diego and New York conventions, which in turn reflects as place as a market leader in pop-culture inspired fashion. I had the pleasure of speaking at length with Ashley back at SDCC after her successful geek couture fashion show, and as an attorney I have to say that she is a role model for anyone who wants to incorporate copyrighted and trademarked material in their line. In a world where “it’s better to ask forgiveness than permission” has led any number of creators astray, she has from the outset been conscientious (and ambitious!) in licensing characters for Her Universe clothes.

    But that’s not the only way in which Her Universe reflects the better angels of geek community’s nature. Besides integrating the participatory spirit of comics-related media discussed in my last post, Ashley has also been a prominent advocate of geek fashion’s capacity to empower those who wear it, both through her clothes and her anti-bullying activism. Create, speak, show others who you are with fear – where the less imaginative may just see licensed properties, her community sees freedom woven into her designs.

    Which brings us to the future of geek couture and its role in the community’s future. Walk around San Diego and New York Comic-Cons and you’ll see expressive fashion everywhere, from handcrafted TARDIS earrings and comic-related t-shirts carried in the ubiquitous TARDIS bag to sophisticated cosplay and brands such as Her Universe itself. As the Her Universe show embodied back at San Diego, the key to the future is to go beyond prints and other reproductions of licensed material to transformative geek-inspired design – in fact, for a useful indication of where things are going, watch the development of the co-branded Marvel line announced last July.

    As I discuss in my Fashion Ethics, Sustainability and Development class for the Fashion Law Institute, when we wear clothes we wear ourselves – our values, our aspirations, our communities.* It should, then, come as no surprise that when we look at geek couture, we see the future.

     

    *Check out Professor Susan Scafidi’s “Fashion as Information Technology” for more on this.

    0 Comments on Her Universe and Ours as of 10/12/2014 5:15:00 PM
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    24. DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own

    By David Nieves

    Even though Los Angeles is the entertainment capital of the world, ten years ago, you’d be remiss to find comic conventions, toy shows, or most other forms of pop culture gatherings. The monthly mini show at the Shrine Expo was at times more a flea market than a convention and Frank and Son’s collectibles is always basically a swap meet. Today, there’s an overabundance of conventions and expos in L.A. for every facet of fandom. Seems like very weekend, fans of the popular arts have a place to gather somewhere in Southern California and that’s far from a bad thing.

    This weekend in Pasadena CA; artists, toy makers, and vinyl sculptors of all kinds gathered at the convention center for DesignerCon or Dcon as it’s commonly known. If you’re an art connoisseur or a collector of unique toys this show is for you. Dcon smashes together collectible toys and designer goods with urban, underground and pop art. The show is over 70,000 square feet and features over 300 vendors, art & custom live demonstrations, and much more. Attendees can get prints by quirky artist Michelliezoid, the barbwire covered bat from Skybound Ent, or something from Prints On Wood by Tara McPherson and Greg “Craola” Simkins.

    Dcon also host a limited number of informative and fan panels covering topics such as crowdfunding, character design, and building a style all your own.

    However the real star of the show is the floor. Traversing the straightforward rows of aisles is simplicity. A person could walk the entire floor to get the lay of the land and easily find the booths they want to get back to. One of the most interesting parts of Dcon is that no two booths are even remotely alike. First you see the adorable art of Unicorn Crafts and then turn around to look at the zealously detailed horror dioramas of Jackorama. One of our favorite exhibits was the Lego recreations of some iconic comic book covers by ComicBricks. The Iron Man: Demon in a Bottle cover was exquisite right down to its tiny bottle of hooch.

    The show has a very niche appeal. If you’re looking for comics, or figures from Mattel you won’t find them here. But if you enjoy innovatively designed toys like Giant Robot or gallery quality art by masters like Jeff Soto then this show is well worth the low low price of $7 for entrance.

    Dcon continues Sunday from 10am-5pm at the Pasadena Convention Center. Find out more info at DesignerCon.com. Check out a few pics from the show below.

    IMG 0379 100x150 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0375 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0374 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0373 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0371 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0370 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0369 100x150 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0367 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0366 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0365 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0362 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0358 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0356 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0355 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0354 100x150 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0352 100x150 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0351 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0350 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0348 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0347 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0346 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0345 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0344 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0342 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0339 100x150 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0338 100x150 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0335 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0334 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0333 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own IMG 0331 150x100 DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own

    0 Comments on DesignerCon Tells a Toy Story All Its Own as of 11/9/2014 3:16:00 AM
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    25. $14 sale at the Comics Beat TeePublic store

    teepublic beat $14 sale at the Comics Beat TeePublic store
    Speaking of that gifting time of the year, we’ve just partnered with Tee Public to offer the first ever Comics Beat TeePublic Store. TeePublic is a site that offers shirts designed by independent artists—there are hundreds of designs available but The Beat staff has specially curated a store just for our readers.

    AMD there’s a $14 sales on all shirts until tomorrow. So what are you waiting for? Support independent artists, support the Beat and get a snappy t-shirt to wear to your next comic-con.

    6 Comments on $14 sale at the Comics Beat TeePublic store, last added: 11/13/2014
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