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T O P I C     R E V I E W
Member # 2205
 - posted June 16, 2015 12:36
Originally posted by Shooshie:
[QB] I think I've seen every JoT cartoon ever drawn, and if memory serves, today's Game of Thrones comic marks a historic first for JoT, and for most comics. Women's bare breasts have arrived! I'm defining "bare" as "exposed nipples." That's major for any comic these days, short of Robert Crumb and the "alternative" comics, of course, or anything Manga, or... Well, I'm talking about comics that normally maintain newspaper comic standards. You have to admit, it's pretty rare.

Does that represent a change in attitudes about female nudity? Or is it just that when talking about Game of Thrones, you can't very well illustrate it without a bare breast or two? Shows like GoT or Black Sails, or Masters of Sex have made nudity mainstream, and while I probably represent the baser instincts of the male sex, I believe the world is healthier for it. The sanitized world in which many of us grew up in the 1950s, 60s, and 70s just didn't represent the reality I knew. Some would say reality or not, it just isn't necessary. No, it's not necessary, but it sure makes a show seem more natural and less awkward.

I mean, would we have wanted to see Julie Andrews' bare breasts in the Sound of Music? Not necessarily, though there was a scene where she was putting on pajamas, but the point is that it would be nice if it just wouldn't have mattered. (She later revealed them in... was it Victor Victoria?) I'm not talking about full-frontal nudity or graphic sex. Just a topless woman. A lovely, innocent, bare-breasted woman. How nice it would be if the standards didn't encourage us to COUNT the movies, pictures, books, comics, or actual incidents in which a breast is revealed. And don't even mention "wardrobe malfunctions." Of all the contrived headline grabbers! It only works because we were taught there was something nasty about a bare-breasted woman, so naturally she must apologize [wink, wink — free news coverage!] when the bra-cup pops open and reveals her cool nipple piercings! When the hippies started going topless, everyone thought it was degenerate. Heck, there was John Lennon and that devil woman Yoko in bed for all to see! Most people had to check it twice just to make sure it was indeed as degenerate as they thought the first time! (Y'know? Yoko really was a pretty woman, both dressed and bare)

Needless to say, newspaper comics just steered clear of anything that remotely might have triggered the thought of nudity, much less an actual drawing! People were all buttoned up. Nevertheless, for over a century, savvy readers have delighted in the veiled references that get past the censors, and many if not most cartoonists have squeaked some awesome examples through, undetected.

Brooke McEldowney comes tantalizingly close in 9 Chickweed Lane or his hobby webcomic, Pibgorn, to revealing it all, but of course he can't, being in newspapers all over the world. Still, he manages to get some superlative wordplay in there, and he seems to enjoy dancing right on the boundary line. Frank Cho, in Liberty Meadows was always pushing the envelope, but tired of the battle and dropped the newspaper comic. Even LuAnn, last week, had her shirt all mussed up, as though hands had found their way up there in the dark. Of course, Greg Evans couched it in a lesson to teach teens to talk about their limits. But the very idea that it seems somehow perverted to wish for less censorship in a family comic is indicative of how dated those "standards" really are. So yes, it's a silly thing, but much appreciated by this reader now that the ice has been thawed even a little at JoT. (and I thought the ice had been thawed in the 1960s!)

The puritan upbringing and squeaky-clean TV, magazine and newspaper standards backfired. By the time I grew up, all I could think about were girls who liked to get naked and romp on the beach or in a fountain or lake. Amazingly, they weren't hard to find! Ahh... freedom at last! Yet media land, outside the internet, is to this day, 50 years later, still stuck in 1965 Brady Bunch purity.

Well, not to get into my life story; just that it feels fresh just to see those two little red circles in a line-drawing about Game of Thrones, and the mention of baring your breasts. It's only a comic, and yet comics represent the repression, depression, expression, ridicule, idiocy, and yes, the Joy of the human spirit; all the things that make us laugh.

Small steps, yes, but thanks for those small steps.


PS: Now you'll have to revisit Y2K with the beautifully drawn ladies that graced its pages. Or not... Hey, 15 years ago I had to tell myself that the TTBs were "just comics."
Member # 50409
 - posted June 19, 2015 21:40
Loved the Jot cartoon series, i always thought that some of the scenes inspired that cartoon ren and stimpy, what else does game of thrones tell us about modern culture?
Member # 123
 - posted June 22, 2015 12:27

lol, awesome post!

I believe we had an earlier comic with some sexy wee fairies, but only in the print version can I confirm nipples, which I will, of course, share for you here...



EDIT: OMG! so does this recent comic! Sheer fairy clothing for the win! JoT is a hive of debauchery!
Member # 2205
 - posted June 24, 2015 02:24
Holy cow! I've been so inattentive! Here were sheerly dressed fairies all over the place, and I didn't even notice! One might say a dot does not a bare-boob make, and yet one tiny little dot made the difference in those examples. But they had tremendous precedents: Disney's Fantasia illustrated Beethoven's 6th Symphony (the Pastorale) with mythical centaurs so bursting with sex that one could never look at a mare (that's a female horse, city kids) in quite the same way without blushing a little. Anyone who has seen cells from the early run-by's knows that those horse-girls had nipples and blushing breasts right up until the final versions, when they got sanitized with whatever was the 1930s version of Photoshop. (I guess that would be the air-brush) And in most cases, the difference was just a dot.

To dot or not to dot. That is the question. Whether tis nakeder to bare the slings and narrows of outrageous portions or merely to dot their nippled centers and face the censor's acerbic tongue...

Well, you know how I vote!


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