Note: The title of this post has been changed. While the original title was intended to be ironic, some readers were confused by it. They felt that we, Heavy Metal, were condemning Adam Hughes’ art as “inappropriate” and they read the post (or didn’t read it) as a prudish attack. That’s not what we’re about; hell, we’ve been just as “inappropriate” as these sketches since 1977 and proud of it. But anyway: Above is your new, totally literal, irony-free title and this is your new “note” about it. The text below has not been changed.
When it comes to bawdy pinup-style sketches of superheroes, nobody can hold a candle to Frank Cho. Wrong! Adam Hughes can, and does. We can’t speak to volume — we don’t know who has done more of these things — but in terms of quality and attitude Cho and Hughes are on the same page.
RELATED: What the Hell is Frank Cho Doing?
Not everyone is a fan of what Hughes and Cho do. It’s actually a topic of debate — whether these cheesecake-y, sexualized versions of superheroines (and Tomb Raider and Princess Leia), sometimes called “good girl art,” are fun or evil. On the one hand, it is, unashamedly, sexualization of a character in a genre that is (or was initially) aimed at young people. On the other hand… the sexualization has been there from the beginning, particularly when it comes to the usual suspects/subjects like Power Girl, Catwoman, Black Cat, Poison Ivy and Tomb Raider.
As to the sense of humor — well, maybe you think there’s something funny about superheroines popping out of their improbable costumes, maybe you don’t. Maybe it’s lampooning the sexuality we pretend isn’t there, maybe it’s making the “problem” (if problem it is) worse. Some of these are funny, others are stupid.