There’s this comic I read, called Sister Claire! Recently it got an extra author and the writing gained levels, and major backstory for the nuns (it’s a comic about nuns) and one of the nuns is transgender, which is great.
What isn’t great is the comments everytime said nun, Sister Oscar who is a lovely lady who sparkles and is based off the character from Rose of Versailles, appears. They’re full of ‘he’s more of a man than us!’ ‘is he Claire’s real daddy?’ and ‘CAN WE PLEASE HAVE SOME CLEAR EVIDENCE ABOUT WHAT GENITALIA OSCAR HAS’ which is giving me the flying heebies.
If you don’t know what something is, you ask. That’s a good life policy. Or googling it. That’s also a really great policy. Some concepts can be kind of surprising if you’re a lil’ sheltered. I once met a man (who actually was a total creep but that’s unrelated) who actually believed bisexual meant full on hermaphrodite. I explained, then he sent me a dick pic, and then I had to tell him if he ever spoke to me again I’d report him to every single moderator that ever existed but I’m pretty sure that had nothing to do with the first part but I feel I’d be remiss if I didn’t include the whole story.
Anyway. Sister Oscar’s nethers. Why on earth would you need to know that? In what way is your viewing experience enhanced by knowing what’s going on under that habit? Do you lay up at night and think about trans people and go ‘GOD, I wish I knew if there was a weiner or a vulva down there god this is just burning me up WHY’ because it’s kind of unnerving. I’m not telling you what’s going on with me except for there’s a holy light and sometimes lepers are cured.
And I saw the mildest ‘please stop misgendering her’ from one of the authors met with ‘stop with the hostility it interferes with our LEARNING’ which is apparently super super fragile.
I totally get the argument that someone being confused getting greeted with a wall of swears can be somewhat detrimental, but if just being told ‘hey, stop’ clearly is enough to set you off I don’t think you’re trying.
Oh yeah, I forgot to say! The nuns all have superpowers and there’s a mecha. And one nun is pregnant with the messiah. You know, basic stuff.
While Elena (Yamino) and I can’t relate to this issue as personally as you do, dear reader, we do also feel a sense of trepidation posting pages or stories that feature Oscar prominently because of the inevitable ignorance (and stupidity, and foulness) that floods the comments. We want Oscar to make people happy, especially those of you who find her relatable in some way — and we want to do right by her, if that makes sense. We know Oscar shoulders a good deal of representation in the comic and we want to emphasize that without it also being the only thing her character is there for: she’s transgender but she’s not in the cast to be the token transgender person, the end. She’s so important for so many reasons, for who she loves and what she fights for and what she does, and how she moves in the world we’ve made around her, and it is endlessly frustrating when someone in the comments ignores all that in favor of bugling, “LOL but does she have a weewee or a wawa?”
Still, Oscar’s a main character in our story, and we won’t let a little negativity reduce her to a stereotype or keep her from being seen. More than that, we will continue to keep a close eye on the comments and do our best to make them a safe space for our readers… we anticipate and will try to alleviate occasional instances of cluelessness, but slurs and transphobia will not be tolerated.
That’s a promise, from me and Elena and Oscar too.
We hope you keep reading.