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• • • Being a journal by artist and designer John Coulthart, cataloguing interests, obsessions and passing enthusiasms.


 

Frank Miller and 300′s Assault on the Gay Past

Frank Miller and 300‘s Assault on the Gay Past.
No sex please, we’re Spartans.

 


 

Posted in {comics}, {film}, {gay}, {noted}.

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6 comments or trackbacks

  1. #1 posted by Wiley

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    Aw, I like Miller. I just think he has certain fetishes for different attributes that he believes to go well with his more violent and hardened characters, though this usually applies to most of them. I thought it was the army of Thebes that was made up primarily of male lovers. Anyway make-up and extravagant piercings are pigeon holed as homoerotic by reactionaries far more than being inherently ‘gay’ symbols themselves. I think its just a love of decadence and destruction that drives Miller’s imagery. Anyway I don’t think he’s a homophobe, but then again that’s just my opinion, I could be wrong. I have to see that movie, if blades were still the most popular weapons of war . . .

  2. #2 posted by John

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    I don’t think Miller is inherently homophobic either, although that group of gay fascists in Give Me Liberty (named Aryan Thrust!) is a bit unlikely. If there’s one group that hates gay people, it’s fascists of any stripe. (And yes, I know Hitler made exceptions for Arno Breker…)

    Alan Moore complained a while back that it seems like everything Miller does has to be hardboiled, there’s little nuance anywhere. So 300 in Alan’s description is “hardboiled Spartans”. Hollywood has been ignoring the polymorphous sexuality of the Ancient Greeks and Romans since the Hayes Code so this is nothing new. Maybe Frank knows more about the sex lives of the Dorians than Plato, Cicero et al?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spartan_pederasty

  3. #3 posted by Wiley

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    I guess everyone, mostly without thinking, tinges whatever they may do whether its drawing or writing or whatever, with their personalities. It goes back to Millers fixations, namely gritty and decadent, but all manner of things can be gritty and decadent, so i am ever willing to give Miller a little extra lenience. My ideas are colored in a similar way to his anyway, so I guess I’m just biased.
    I’ve heard some criticize Moore as being always artsy or symbolic. In most cases this would annoy me (even though they’re probably overreacting, I haven’t read enough Moore anyway, hell, I’m not even well read, I am too visually oriented) but in Moore’s stories, there are always these hidden worlds and uncertain pathways, at least in the case of V, From Hell, and Killing Joke, his only books I’ve read, to keep it all very pleasing. I love the symbolist painters, I hate their title, because when things are overly symbolic they dwell too much on meaning, and I’ve never looked at or read anything for its meaning, rather its ability to fill one’s surroundings with its atmosphere.
    I’ve nerver found Moore too symbolic, I’ve never Miller too hard boiled, its probably just their personalities, but that’s all assumption anyway. On the other hand, I absolutely hate where they’ve taken the X-Men, I was a fan my whole childhood, but those days are long gone. Fuck the X-Men, I guess if many fans were to compare 300 with how the X films came out, it’d have to be great.
    No executive, be it Hollywood or History Channel, is ever gonna be able to put themselves in a properly ancient pagan mindset, and truly capture what a madhouse the Mediterranean must have been. Having mentioned symbolist paintings I’ve only seen one painting depicting a certain Goddess of a thousand young whose name evades me, having a multitude of tits, once worshipped in Greece. Bronze Roman penis charms, and post mortem sexual modifications carried out on Egyptian mummies are nowhere to be found. They always seem to remember the ultraviolence so it could be worse. They’re always ever so eager for depictions of macabre femenine sexuality for all of us boorish heteros. Its too bad Clive Barker lost his edge, I always liked his paintings and earlier movies better than his novels, no forest of penises can frighten me away so long as plenty of bloodshed accompanies.

  4. #4 posted by John

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    Having mentioned symbolist paintings I’ve only seen one painting depicting a certain Goddess of a thousand young whose name evades me, having a multitude of tits, once worshipped in Greece.

    There’s a great painting along those lines, Diana d’Efeso e gli schiavi, by Giulio Artistide Sartorio that I’m always trying to find a larger copy of:

    http://www.symbolistart.net/painting.php?painting=fin/sartorio1.jpg

    Very strange stuff.

    The thing with 300 and Hollywood is, as you say, pretty much down to Hollywood being fine with extreme violence but still having big problems with sex. Alan and Melinda were making that point–that violence is accepted but sex condemned in western culture–when they created Lost Girls.

  5. #5 posted by John

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    That Sartario painting has reminded me he’s worthy of a posting here.

    Update: And here it is: The art of Giulio Artistide Sartorio, 1860–1932.

  6. #6 posted by Kian

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    In all Hollywood movies directed by imbecile directors the Persians are always the Baddies, Evil, Cowards, Cruel,Brutal Killers and the Greeks are always the Goodies and Angels from God.
    I think Frank Miller is sucking too much Greek Dick!

 


 

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