Better Living Through Graphic Storytelling
A Comics Blog About Shit We Like
13 March 2007
Miller's Ubiquitous Struggle
...these are the dichotomies that echo precisely that central and
extremely persistent anxiety about gender—one that paints masculinity
not as a birthright or even as an achievement, but as an endless
narrative of constant struggle.

Amanda Andrade has a pretty good review of 300 over at Stylus Magazine. She compares the original Miller text with Snyder's adaptation, albeit a muddy, mushy kind of comparison where it's hard to tell from Andrade's mild disdain which is which, and draws on some interesting thematic conclusions in Miller's work.

It raises an interesting point. After a certain point in my life, I kind of gave up on Miller's creator owned work, merely because I no longer felt any particular attachment to his themes of men and women hardened by the brutality and unfairness of life to the point of visually stunning graphic violence and awkward, shadowy sex acts. I was done with the hyper-machismo, even from an "ironic", or at least self-aware perspective. But Andrade's review of the film points to Miller's use of meta-masculinity as an expression of personal struggle, and the wrestling of conflicted ideals of gender. Of course, with Miller, the icon of hard masculinity always wins out, but it's still an interesting point.

Perhaps the best part of the article, however, is the one-sentence synopsis given in Stylus' RSS feed: "It's hard to spell 'Homo eroticism' without 'Heroism'."


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