athornton: Angry.  Drunken.  BOFH. (Default)
[personal profile] athornton
Went and saw the Tom of FInland show at phd gallery in St. Louis this weekend ( http://www.phdstl.com/tom_of_finland.html -- go if you're in town and you don't mind Tom of Finland; there's some good stuff there).

I finally realized what I like about Tom of Finland and why it dovetails with what I was doing with Stiffy Makane. Namely, there's Tom on his art:

"In those days, a gay man was made to feel nothing but shame about his feelings and his sexuality. I wanted my drawings to counteract that, to show gay men being happy and positive about who they were. Oh, I didn't sit down to think this all out carefully. But I knew, right from the start, that my men were going to be proud and happy men!"

The thing I really like about Tom of Finland pieces is--and hang on for a second here--their innocence.

Yeah, I've thought about that noun and it is actually the one I mean.

These are sexual beings, happily engaged in indulging their lust, in a fantasy world in which there are no emotional or physical consequences for doing so. And that's pretty much the Stiffyverse as well (Carthage notwithstanding, in _Mentula Macanus: Apocolocyntosis_), it's just that Stiffy is into girls too. (And fruits and vegetables). Now you certainly can make the case that this is a peculiarly male fantasy. I think you're wrong, but it's a case you can make.

So, that, in turn, probably helps to clarify why in _The Undiscovered Country_, the character portrait at the start is a fat, late-period, sweating Ron Jeremy (well, late-period for 2001--he's, ahem, even more so now), but after the player character undergoes Tantric Jedi Training with Space Moose he becomes--what else--a Tom Of Finland leatherman. Also you'll note that the highest rank you can achieve in *that* game is "Tom Of Finland", although it's also revealed that you have become Space Moose's Bald Dwarf.

So Stiffy--the ithyphallic Hermes--is simply another avatar of Kake. Not sure quite what to make of that yet.

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athornton: Angry.  Drunken.  BOFH. (Default)
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