First off, this tongue worries me. If it were mine, I would bite it. And that’s a terrifying and awkward feeling.
Anyway, the main problem with Starfire, for me, is how easily her personality was changed. It’s not that she’s emotionless and dull, it’s not that she’s just a pretty unrealistic body to gawk at. It’s that Starfire was an established character, with a set personality—as my husband says, an open loving Klingon warrior type—that was so easily disregarded. If this was a new comic about some other alien, people wouldn’t mind as much. I mean, take Tarot for instance. She’s a fucked up dead-ish witch panty-showing male gaze sex bimbo, and yeah, the plots are gory and terrible and have haunted vaginas (the link is as bad and gory as you think it is), and yeah, maybe I did have a friend tell Jim Balent to his face he’s horrible since I couldn’t make it to SDCC, but in general, it would have been scoffed at and more or less ignored. Not fan-rage about it. There never would have been this outcry if “sex has nothing to do with love since I am unemotional” Starfire was someone else, and not someone who had been a positive female figure, who used to gain her powers from the strength of her emotions. With what Starfire is now, we’ve lost yet another healthy passionate character. And that’s something to mourn, and it’s why people are so upset. Why do these people arguing that Starfire fan’s are overreacting not see that they have lost something they cared about, replaced with something in no way similar or as good? People say that the new Starfire comic wasn’t intended to be read by a blog writer’s seven year old, that’s it’s adult so of course she won’t like it. They are missing the point; Starfire is no longer herself, and even this little kid can see that. Why can’t you?
And it is indicative of a bigger problem as a whole. Catwoman suffered a similar fate in the reboot (I haven’t read ant of it though, I will this back if it’s not true), and in general, female super heroes are few and far between. I actually read today, “women say they want more women in comics, and when they get them, they complain. Women, when will you understand, it’s not the industry holding women back, it’s YOU.” And then my head exploded in pure unadulterated rage.
Having the presence of a cis-lady with her tiny tiny waist and ridiculously huge tits afloppin’ for the male gaze is not enough to appease women. Having a vagina around does not an engaging, whole, ass-kicky female make. This? This right here, with Starfire? I’m not going to be thankful and gracious and shut up because the industry considered a drastically changed Starfire good enough. It’s not good enough. What would be good enough is that old well-rounded realized character, and to not be called a bad feminist because I expect just that much.