Why do so many women seem to take offense to the costumes of many (most?) female comic characters?
(Before I continue I'd like to point out that I am female and don't really have an issue with T&A in general, as long as it's used with some modicum of taste. Basically, I don't really care whether characters (female or male or whatever) prance around wearing essentially nothing as long as it's not the focus of the story in question- I'm not interested in the fanservice, but at the same time it doesn't really bother me much. Maybe I read too much crappy manga growing up, who knows, it's not important. Either way, I sure as hell don't mind being exposed to T&A if it helps fuel the comic industry. A decent amount of it is pretty easy to avoid by simply not reading titles that center around fanservice. )
What I have trouble understanding is why women get so upset about scantily-clad fictional characters. I've heard the whole 'it's not how a strong, empowered woman would dress' thing and I don't agree- a strong, empowered woman wears whatever the hell she wants to, because she's strong and empowered. Are women really that enraged by two-dimensional depictions of their gender being shown in various states of (un)dress? Does the female body really disgust them that much? And yes, sexualized female characters exist in comics- is an empowered, strong woman not allowed to be a sexual being?
If it's an equality issue, I'd like to think my point still stands. Why shouldn't a character- male or female- be able to dress any way they damn well want to?
And personally I don't believe that exploitation is a fair accusation in this case. They're illustrations. How does illustrating an issue of Vampirella involve exploitation? Yes, I understand that the typical Vampirella reader is interested in the series for (likely) sexual reasons, but how does that change anything?
Ultimately, I don't believe that people who don't read comics have a right to pass judgement on them. And a strangely high percentage of people who complain about revealing costumes and (either supposed or legitimate) overly-sexualized characters don't actually read comics at all. I mean, I suppose most of them will read a few issues or so, but they don't reallyread them; they'll either flip through while paying little to no attention to the writing (focusing instead on the illustrations) or only really pay attention to aspects of the story that support their preconceived notions.
So I ask you fellow, members of comicvine, am I missing something? I'd appreciate any help you can offer on understanding this issue.