Published on April 29th, 2016 | by John Bakema
Confessions: About Mummy, Vampirella, Isabel and more…
First of all, I confess. Bless me comics-god for I am indeed a sinner.
Secondly, thank you Richard for finally coming out of the casket (as in coming out of the closet, only somewhat slightly different). I’m joining you in this brave attempt to complete absolution. May we one day make the holy pilgrimage and purify ourselves in the lakes of Minnetonka, where our fellow fallen sinner Prince has gone before.
It is a brave thing to do in these dark times of political correctness gone too far. Yet here we are, coming out…
How did my affection -addiction if you will- come about? For that I have to dig deep in my darkest memories of childhood, coincidentally that period where you discover there’s more to your li’l friend than doing peepee alone.
Reading comics already like Asterix & Obelix, Lucky Luke, Bob & Bobette, Donald Duck, etc. I discovered there was more….superheroes. Dove right into it.
I have those 2 Moonstone “Vengeance of the Mummy” comics too by the way! And we share that Vampirella thing. I remember this Jose Gonzalez pic vividly. It was end of the 70ies/very early 80ies I guess in some magazine, an article about American comic book characters like Spiderman, Hulk, Superman, Batman, etc. all of which I had already discovered. And there was that Vampi pic with a blurb what she was about. But that pic….lying curled, those thighs, that look….that incredible drawing. It was years later when I actually read a comic featuring her, end 80ies/early 90ies when Harris/Dark horse resurrected her.
Another comic that had a…..and yes I’ll say erotic attraction to me is a not too obvious one, Belgian comic Isabel, book 4 – De ceintuur van Cassiopea. It’s about little girl Isabel and her uncle Hermes, a man with hooves for witch who can do magic. He has this utterly beautiful girlfriend Calendula. There’s also Kalendula, the great great great grandmother of Calendula. Through magic she is young again……and that image is ingrained in my memory, gloriously beautiful. Later in the book of course she loses the battle and turns to the old hag she really is…..making it an odd thing to have been attracted to her. Much like when you would unwrap your hot mummy to find out she isn’t that well preserved after all.
Those were my first comic-wise. And yes, later there were more…..Shi, Hellina, Lady Death, Luxura, Razor, Avengelyne, Hari Kari, Zenescope, Cherry poptart and lots more. The so-called bad girl craze of the 90ies, with Zenescope a bit later.
Much frowned upon. But why? Because it degrades women? I call it the opposite, it’s a celebration of the female form in comics and a tad different than the regular superheroine fair…..which is just as ‘bad girl’…..I mean Deodato’s Wonder woman, Psylocke, Jim Lee’s Voodoo…..homina homina.
First and foremost I like the art, plain and simple. Yeah, Luxura may have nudity and sex (tame by the way), but I’m mostly mesmerized by Kirk Lindo’s way of drawing that hair…..that’s insane!
It’s comics, it’s fantasy, it’s fun. And I don’t see women as less or as objects because of such comics, that’s ridiculous. I just appreciate nice art, exaggerated art sometimes and goofy as it may be, scantily-clad women in such comics. Nothing wrong appreciating it, nobody is harmed because of it. And don’t think for a minute that I’m sitting in the basement spanking the monkey with a comic in the other hand, that’s equally ridiculous as saying these comics degrade women. They celebrate women. And for me it’s a fun part in the comics medium next to superheroes, adventure stories, funny stories less serious stories with non-realistic art and whatever there is in this rich medium.
Bad girl comics are bad in a good way.
There. My confession. My sins out in the open. My special corner in hell can be made.
Sincerely, John Bakema
Born in 1970, grew up in little towns in South-Holland and North-Holland, had a home in Amsterdam for 5 years, residing a bit outside of Amsterdam for most of my life. Despite being an enormous comic book geek (and regular books with maybe less regular subjects for some), music lover (metal too), movie addict and hardcore gamer I managed to get married once, when I got out of the basement and even became a dad. Now living with my son in a completely male household trying to avoid it becoming one big mancave…..which it actually is but without losing sight of ‘normal’ people, even of the female kind, being able to enter of their own free will (mwuhahaha) without running out in terror because of the smell and male perverted indulgences inside. I have actually managed to find some middle ground there…..I think.