Fourcast! 61: Exploitation!

September 13th, 2010 by | Tags: , , , ,

-Good news!
-If you’ve ever wondered how often we can say “boobs” or “pornography” in sixty seconds, this is definitely the show for you.
-If you’ve ever wanted to hear David and Esther debate the use of exploitation in comics and media, this may be the show for you.
-I mean, what’s the difference between porn and exploitation cinema?
-(The answer is probably “narrative.”)
-Is exploitation ever okay?
-If you’ve ever wanted a show that has a debate that ends in consensus, or even a point, then you should probably listen to some other podcast.
-Fifty minutes, whoo.
-6th Sense’s 4a.m. Instrumental for the theme music.
-See you, space cowboy!

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4 comments to “Fourcast! 61: Exploitation!”

  1. Interesting that you bring up Superman and the KKK, ’cause that happened, and it worked out well for the world: http://io9.com/5394980/how-superman-defeated-the-ku-klux-klan

  2. And now you get to that. And THAT’S why you don’t comment until the end of the podcast[/Arrested Development]

  3. @BringTheNoise: Yeah, considering the holy terror the Klan raised through the ’50s and ’60s, I think that story is way, way overplayed. It’s nice, but doesn’t really reflect reality.

  4. Early in your broadcast, you seemed to have trouble defining what exploitation is. What immediately leapt to mind as I listened was exploitation is when sex (for example) is used to sell something that has nothing to do with sex. An example that gets up my nose every time is how women in yogurt or diet food commercials are portrayed as having an almost orgasmic experience while some sort of male narrator talks about how “sinful” and “decadent” the snack is. Eating yogurt has nothing to do with sex, but the commercial is using the illusion of sex to sell you something. Compared to that, commercials for condoms seldom come off as as exploitative, as they are selling a product that actually has to do with sex.

    Exploitation is troubling because the commodification of sex and violence not only dilutes the meaning of real sex and violence, it also flattens the natural complexities of situations into easily packaged soundbites. Coming back to comics, that is why when real world complex issues like race or sexual discrimination show up in comics they tend to annoy me as a female reader. Like Esther, I have very little patience with the defense “it’s a parody” as it skirts too close to “can’t you take a joke?”, the last refuge of misogynists everywhere.

    I just made a final connection as I typed that last sentence: exploitation is about privilege. The exploiter often co-opts something that is not part of their experience or identity as a selling point, ie someone who has never experienced violence or crime personally glorifies violence and gore in their work.