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“A couple of us like to do female versions of preexisting male characters. One of our friends, Psykitten Pow, she had a female Flash,” says Tallest Silver, who organized the group and who dresses as Batma'am. “One night, we were all hanging out and I said how funny it would be if we had a whole Justice League with swapped sexes.”
Cosplayer Kit Quinn, who has turned up in L.A. Weekly's San Diego Comic-Con photo galleries previously as Dr. Mrs. the Monarch and Slave Leia, took on the role of Superma'am because, Silver says, the two friends have “a great dynamic” and Quinn's hair “has an amazing curl.” They brought in their friend Mia Ballistic as Green Lantern because she had a “pinup-y” quality that fit with the era when Hal Jordan came onto the scene.
“All of our personalities connected to a character,” says Quinn.
Silver sketched the group with her and her friends as Justice League characters.
“We decided that we needed to make this happen.”
Then she started calling her male friends to take on the female roles. Soon, Wonder Man, Power Guy and more joined.
Gender Bent Justice League became more than a group cosplay. It's also a comment on the differences between the costumes associated with male and female superheroes in comic books.
“We try to keep it pretty scantily clad for [the men] because that's how women are portrayed,” says Silver. “We weren't scantily clad for ourselves because that's not the point. We're showing that girls can be clothed and be superheroes because, most of the time, they aren't.”
Gender Bent Justice League debuted at WonderCon this past April. The response was so good that they decided to take the idea to San Diego.
“For the most part, everybody loved the idea,” says Silver. “They loved the concept. And they loved that the guys were showing some thigh and that the ladies are covered, but we still maintain an aura of sexy.”
Right now, Gender Bent Justice League has fourteen members and seems to be growing. In addition to Batma'am, Superma'am and Wonder Man, there are Green Lantern (Halle Jordan, Flash (Wendy West), Aqualass, Green Arrow, Vixen, Power Guy, two Hunters, Martian Maneater and Plastic Lass. There is also a Black Canary who was unable to make it to the con this year and they may have an Atom joining the fold.
More photos on Page 2.
Update (8/30/11): Does Gender Bent Justice League have anything in common with crossplay? Find out in “Crossplay: An Introduction.”
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