What It Would Really Take To Genderflip A Character

Today’s stunning gender flip is Mr. Lawrence Croft, the Tomb Raider himself.  You can see him merrily having his half-naked videogame adventures here:

Lawrence Croft, Tomb Raider

The problem is that while people are investing a lot of time gender-flipping characters to show, say, how ridiculous Batman looks if presented through a girl’s fantasy lens or various male comic characters presented contorted into female poses, that never quite gets across the effect.

Because you show this to your average dudebro, and he barks a laugh.  “That’s hysterical!” he says, and moves on.  And for this to be a true equivalence, you’d have to engineer a culture where he laughs, and moves on, and then realizes that everyone else – in fact, the majority of people he knows – sees nothing at all wrong with this. When he laughs, his friends would have to give him that sideways stare that says, “What’s funny?”

In fact, he’d determine a vast majority of them are for this look.  Actively.  They admire it, and are disappointed that he does not have it.  This ludicrous pose and too-perfect body was precisely what people expected him to be.  The possession of this body would, in fact, be more important than anything else he’d ever done.  If he became the editor of a major magazine or the Secretary of State, people would still weigh in on his body – whether he was too unattractive, what kind of suits was he wearing.  People would fuse their compliments of his performance and his looks effortlessly, so he’d be a smart-looking senior executive, as if to explain that really, a large part of your success is how you look.

But no!  It gets worse!  Because while you’d be pressured to dress like this silly, useless guy all the time – showing up at a club in a popped collar and khakis would have the whole crowd groaning, telling you that you didn’t come dressed to party – if any part of your body failed to meet this standard, you would have let everyone down.  There’d be guys sniggering at your flabby abs, and now that you’ve displayed your ass – as everyone had specifically requested – now its cellulite would be up for grabs.

Your failure to be attractive for them, to fall short of Lawrence Croft, would be treated as a personal failure.  It’s not that they have ridiculous expectations, it’s that you’re not good enough.  This guy on-screen, this candy-physiqued dude that you thought was a joke, is in fact what you’re supposed to aspire to.

And here’s the harshest truth: he’s the best choice.  Out of all the other men in movies and videogames – you know, the ones who swoon helplessly into womens’ arms, standing by placidly while the women choose their own destinies in a hail of gunfire – this guy is comparatively awesome.  At least this guy’s not a prince in a castle waiting to be rescued, he’s out climbing things and shooting them.  He looks stupid, but at least he chooses his own destiny.

Until, you know, all these people who think Lawrence isn’t quite cut enough, or naked enough, get ahold of the franchise and determine that, like every other man in videogames, he’s not really capable of being adventurous until he gets neutered.  It’s a dark and gritty world, my friends, and just like Theon Greyjoy, you can’t have a male hero really motivated until he’s experienced the loss of his testicles and gone on a mad search for revenge against the women who cut them off.  Your only true path to independence lies in being snipped, because otherwise why the hell would a guy be so ready to have adventures?  He must be damaged.

(And you know, a lot of guys are damaged.  You know a ton of guys who had their testicles, well, maybe not torn off, but threatened or severely yanked by women on dates.  Whenever people try to report this, you’re usually seen as overreacting.  Women just do that to balls.  You can’t just let them touch your balls and then not expect them to try to remove them!)

Eventually an outcry from some men – who are largely seen to be overreacting, but whatever, we’ll humor those humorless guys – causes this storyline to be, er, cut off, but you still realize that there’s a lot of guys out there who seem to think that the only way you can possibly be interesting is to either inseminate a woman (and then often die before birth), or to have your insemination rights violated.

That.  That’s a true genderflipping.  And while a few pictures may cause some heads to turn, it can never ever get across the full idea of why those gender flips are important.

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