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Chain Mail Bikinis Don't Count As Armor, and Other Thoughts (Mild Spoilers)

Comics Alliance calls it "The story Disney should have been telling for the past 20 years," and while I believe Disney plays its part in a healthy mix of fairy tales for children, every little girl (and boy, for that matter) should read a comic like "Princeless." "Princeless," from Action Lab Entertainment, introduces us to Adrienne, a princess who is not interested in waiting around in her tower to be rescued. A prince even shows up at one point to do just that, and she turns him away, saying, "Don't let the dragon hit you on the way out." Love it. 
All the issues of "Princeless" (4 so far) are filled with beautiful colors and funny dialogue that, frankly, people of any age could enjoy. But I have to say "Princeless #3" is my favorite to-date. It really struck a chord with me. In her adventures, Adrienne meets a blacksmith's daughter named Bedelia, who's not too bad at smithing herself. Bedelia is thrilled to have a female customer in the shop, because she's created a special "Women Warriors" collection, with garments that look suspiciously like the scanty costumes worn by famous female warriors we've all seen many times before. Bedelia boasts: "The chain mail bra has a super industrial clasp to make sure your bosoms stay secure in the heat of battle. We call it 'the Sonya.'"

Not surprisingly, it's a little reminiscent of this:

Red Sonja getups - along with Slave Leia costumes and Catwomen costumes and Lilu costumes - are a-dime-a-dozen at conventions (Google it, if you dare), and something tells me this is not because there are a HUGE number of dedicated female Red Sonja fans out there. I mean, call me a skeptic, but if I see a tall, perfectly tanned girl with an obviously augmented figure at Comic-Con, I just have serious doubts that she grew up as a geek and, like the rest of us, was made fun of for it. Sorry. I just don't buy it.

Look, I've heard the saying, "If you've got it, flaunt it!" And that's fine. Women should be proud of their bodies, and comfortable in them, no matter what shape they happen to be. But you're flaunting it at a comic book convention. Where there are nerds. Probably many sexually frustrated nerds. And you know it.

Can I get a "P! -- A! -- N! -- D! -- E! -- R! -- I! -- N! -- G!" What's that spell?! Pandering!!!

K, got off on a tangent there... Anyways, I'm not the only geek girl out there who finds the idea of a bikini as armor a little ridiculous (I mean, if you really went through battle in that, could you maintain that perfect complexion? I think not...). It was refreshing to laugh alongside the authors and artists of "Princeless" at that very idea, and consequently, to see Adrienne acquire a way more awesome and way more practical suit of armor. :)

If you are interested in checking out "Princeless," I downloaded it from here. They have an app, too, so you can conveniently read your purchases on your phone!


  1. While I am male and do appreciate the human female figure, I completely agree with you. I have NEVER understood costume designers putting a thong with little metal rings on it on a woman and calling it armor. The only way that armor would work is if it was also magnetized so it would draw the opponent's blade toward it during combat. I think there should be a required class in universities with costume design degrees in which the members of the class, male and female alike, must put on the red sonja armor above and then have mock fights with bamboo swords (the bamboo being slightly cracked so each strike would expand the crack and drawing it away would tighten it... which would grab just a LITTLE flesh and pinch like hell.. just to give them a feeling what bare flesh goes through in REAL combat). I am sure that 5 minutes after that exercise started, each individual in that class will better understand that the sexist armor that TOO many female characters wear is crap.

    But I go on... It is 5 till, so this class is over. Remember that there is a test next Friday on chapters 2 and 3, and, while I will be in my office on Tuesday and Thursday, I will not be there on Wednesday. So if you need to talk to me, don't stop by on Wednesday. (just a little joke on me.. my way of admitting that I sound like a professor)

    1. GreyWolf - I like the way your brain works. I had to laugh at the image of an entire class of students (male and female) wearing Red Sonja armor, and the cracked bamboo swords would be a nice touch. :)

      It is nice to know there are some members of the male sex out there who can appreciate the female figure and yet not deny it some sensible armor. Could not agree with you more! (And people who sound like a professor are welcome on my blog anytime.)

  2. Thanks for the kind words about Princeless Michelle! I'm glad you liked it and that the book is finding people who can really appreciate it. I'll never forget the con where I was approached by a scantily clad female Batman and Robin. It was a strange moment which got even stranger when we found they were handing out vouchers for their strip club. P-A-N-D-A wait, what was I spelling.

    Anyway, great article and thanks for the love. I linked up your article on my facebook so others could enjoy.


    1. Wow! I honestly didn't know there were strip clubs that will cater to the geek demographic... I guess I should have figured. Now, THAT is pandering.

      I'm thrilled you liked the article, and thanks for spreading the word. :) That is vastly appreciated here on my humble, fledgling blog.

  3. excellent put up, very informative. I ponder why the other experts of this sector do not notice this. You must proceed your writing. I'm confident, you have a great readers' base already!
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  4. Way. To. Go! I love this review... it appeals to my feminist sensibilities ;) I will definitely have to check out Princeless. It's exciting to see a comic that reflects the true nature of being a strong woman.

  5. Woops! I almost forgot to mention it is refreshing to see that the protagonist isn't caucasian!

    1. Yeah, they are very entertaining, and I have to admit, they make me want to delve into the world of comics a little bit more. And I agree about having a heroine who isn't the typical tall, impossibly slender, white princess with long, golden tresses. Golden tresses are lovely, but princesses come from everywhere and are born to all kinds of people! :) And most little girls want to be princesses at some point in their lives. (Some girls never grow out of that...ahem. Haha.)

      I also like that Adrienne has SEVERAL meaningful relationships in her life, not just a romantic, shallow relationship with a prince.


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