Here’s blogger Courtney Stoker laying into Simon Pegg for some
appreciative comments he made about Comic-con attendees dressing up like
Princess Leia: http://storify.com/cnstoker/cosplayers-are-geeks-too
Did Pegg claim the Leia cosplayers were there to fulfill his sexual fantasies? Since Stoker makes the claim multiple times, let’s take a look at that first. Clearly the phrase “sexual fantasies” doesn’t appear in any of his tweets. Did he imply it then? “I’ve got a thing about cosplay girls” he says. “They’re like zombie stormtroopers, a glorious combination of beloved things.” Then he posts the pic and describes Homer Simpsons trademark sound of desire.
Does Simon Pegg have a sexual fantasy regarding Leia cosplayers, and what is it? It’s not clear because he, of course, never mentions sex or sexual fantasies. But here’s the thing: a sexual fantasy by definition involves sex. So it’s really unlikely that just looking at a picture of girls in bikinis fulfills any kind of fantasy. That wouldn’t be much of a fantasy! An actual sexual fantasy would involving having sex with them. Did Simon Pegg say he was going to have sex with them? No. Did he claim that the whole reason they dressed up was to sex him up good and proper? Of course not. Did he suggest that they were “existing solely for [his] fantasies”? Fuck no.
So bullshit count so far: 1.
Stoker’s other initial accusation is one of objectification. She doesn’t entirely explain how Simon objectified them, or what she means by the term. Online dictionaries are rather sparse on its meaning, so let’s see what Wikipedia has to say:
“Sexual objectification refers to the practice of regarding or treating another person merely as an instrument (object) towards one’s sexual pleasure, and a sex object is a person who is regarded simply as an object of sexual gratification or who is sexually attractive. Objectification more broadly is an attitude that regards a person as a commodity or as an object for use, with little or no regard for a person’s personality or sentience.”
In Stoker’s view, how did Simon objectify the women? She doesn’t say in her tweets. She just repeats “objectifying” and “turning women into objects”. Is it expression appreciation, or the way he did it? Here’s what she says on her blog: “This kind of attitude is really common and really destructive. It reduces cosplayers down to objects, and suggests that they are NOT fellow geeks, but actually decoration. They are only there to serve as fantasy fodder for male geeks. You know, the actual PEOPLE in this equation. (A good sign you’re objectifying women: you’re comparing them to food.)” What attitude is she talking about? Saying they’re a combination of beloved things? He never specifies what those beloved things are. It’s probably the donut reference that really got to her.
Except he wasn’t comparing the girls to donuts. Homer Simpson is a notorious oaf who makes a gurgling sound when he sees anything, food or otherwise, that fills him with longing; donuts are probably the most iconic subject. Simon was trying to pick something self-deprecating and humorous that almost everyone would recognize. Was it a crude method of expressing appreciation for beauty? Yeah, definitely. Was he saying that the women are objects, that they’re like food to be eaten? No. God no.
Bullshit count: 2
Finally, she talks about agency. “Sexuality implies some agency on their part.” What I don’t even. As if these women were forced, at gun point, to make and then wear these costumes. The slave Leia costume, worn only in 1 part of 1 Star Wars movie, when Leia was captive of the disgusting Jabba the Hutt and forced to deal with his advances and nasty slimy tongue. An outfit so revealing and sexy that it became an iconic symbol of geek fantasies for decades to follow. (On Friends, Jennifer Aniston’s character even wears it at Ross’ request.) Stoker would have us believe that not only are these cosplayers completely unaware of the history of the costume, they are also completely oblivious to the fact that wearing a bikini costume expresses some kind of sexuality, and then of course she’d also have us believe they had absolutely no choice in the matter.
Bullshit count: 3, 4, 5!
Hopefully, in the future, Simon Pegg will have a little more sense than to try and engage the loonies, assholes, and trolls that go out of their way to pick a fight with him.