Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Stereotyping Women's Lib in the Romance Comics - Young Love's "Cry Like a Real Girl!"

Happy Women's History Month, everyone! March got away from me and here we are already more than halfway into it, but I couldn't let the month pass by without at least one post for Women's History Month. Today I have for you, "Cry Like a Real Girl!" from Young Love #108 (February/March 1974), penciled by the legendary Win Mortimer. This doozy of a story featuring Angie, a "liberated female," was on the newsstands precisely 40 years ago and isn't one that you'll soon forget. Since it's a short one and every panel packs an important punch when it comes to understanding the trick ending, the story is presented here in its entirety. Click on each page to read!

Alright, take a minute to digest that. You may want to read it more than once (I know I sure did). Ah yes, despite her convictions, Angie used the high school feminist club to outsmart and clinch Brad as her steady. But they were cool with that! I really haven't read much about the Women's Movement on high school campuses (most literature on the topic tends to lean toward college-aged groups), but this story certainly makes me want to research it more. The beautifully illustrated "Cry Like a Real Girl!" plays up on all the stereotypes that society at large had when it came to the "libbers," only to show that they would be the ones with the last laugh. What do you think? Condescending stereotypical pop culture drivel from a warped past, or ingenious storytelling and execution worthy of remaining in our collective conscious?