The Dawn Chorus

Fresh Australian Feminism

Zoo Weekly Wants You To Have A Hand Shandy Over These Hot Murdered Models

Posted by Clem Bastow on December 5, 2008

Sometimes in the blogosphere it feels like there is a statute of limitations on the timeliness of reblogs, but when I stumbled upon a post by feminist blogger (and D&D enthusiast!) Crimitism via su’s comment at Hoyden, I thought that despite being a week past its “blog-by” date, this absolutely had to be brought up again.

To wit: Zoo Weekly‘s feature on “hot” models who have been murdered.

(scan via Crimitism)

(scan via Crimitism)

Is a feature such as this surprising from a magazine whose website currently features a hilarious gallery (“Beer Goggles Babes!“) of “ugly” women to laugh at, or who have run competitions to win, variously, a divorce, a breast enlargement surgery for your girlfriend, or a lifetime’s supply of deodorant for Australia’s hottest feminist?

Surprising, no. Alarming, horrifying and rating off the charts in both misogyny and bad taste? Definitely. **Triggering** and generally faith-in-humanity-destroying details over the jump.

Not having seen the article myself (I don’t make a point of buying Zoo unless I want to induce a catastrophic depression), I can only rely on Crimitism’s scans and recaps – but I think we can definitely take his word for it:

“Every year, dozens of catwalk cuties meet a grisly end at the hands of obsessed sickos”, and what better way to confront this than print some half-naked pictures of them covered in cartoon blood? And because real corpses tend not to be sexy, they’ve thoughtfully made up an anonymous model to look sort-of-dead and stuck her at the top of the page. To help turn on the readers. With a corpse. And photographs of dead women. To anybody who thinks otherwise, I present Page 2:

Click to Enlarge

If you’re not already feeling queasy, the fine folk at Zoo then go on to highlight models who have committed suicide, because evidently that’s just as sexy as murder:

When turning murder into wank material ceases to be edgy, the next step is, of course, suicide.

Click to Enlarge

“Her face, which once graced the cover of French Elle and Russian Vogue, sadly graced the pavement”. Har.

To summarise: Models get raped and murdered by their partners and obsessed stalkers. This is not an occupational hazard, it’s the fault of men who feel entitled to their bodies. We’re therefore going to reaffirm your entitlement by printing semi-nude pictures of them, then talk about their deaths in lurid detail. They also kill themselves sometimes, what a waste of boobs! We’ll ignore the epidemic of violence faced by non-model women, because they don’t meet our masturbatory aide standard. Anybody who has any problem with this is just being PC.

The Zoo piece goes beyond being simply infuriating – I find it deeply saddening. Not just because of the tarnished memories of these women (who, as Crimitism notes, are only given airtime by Zoo in the first place because they’re “hot” – pity all the non-hot women out there who are murdered or kill themselves), but mainly because of what shit like this must be doing to a wide portion of the male population (and it is wide – Zoo‘s officially surveyed readership/circulation is 554,000 – and probably more).

My awesome Mum used to rage that “the patriarchy is bad for women and men” when 21-year-old me had a lame boyfriend who used to whine about feminism, and instances like this only serve to illustrate that in high-def. What does it do to men – to their psyches, their hearts, their minds – to, in essence, tell them that it’s okay to have a wank over these dead women? How does that then trickle down into their treatment and opinion of women in “real life”?

Furthermore, considering the Government’s ‘Australia Says No’ campaign, and more recently the White Ribbon activities, how on earth does this teach men that women are to be respected?

If there’s a more pressing case of “please write to the publishers” than this, I’d like to see it. Men’s magazines full of scantily-clad women are one thing, this is very much another. Tell ACP that Zoo has gone too far:

Head Office
ACP Magazines Ltd.
54-58 Park Street
Sydney NSW 2000
Tel: (02) 9282 8000
Fax: (02) 9267 4361


11 Responses to “Zoo Weekly Wants You To Have A Hand Shandy Over These Hot Murdered Models”

  1. It is, as was noted, not only infuriating but really very sad. Very sad.

    Who are these idiots who write and read that magazine?!

  2. tina_sparkle said

    ^^ men.

    LMFAO =)

  3. Amber said

    I am not easily shocked but that is revolting. Don’t you love the “more dead hotties” arrow at the bottom of the page?

    My husband was equally horrified. I don’t actually think most men are into this shit, it’s the brain-dead wankers at Zoo who are so untalented they have to resort to these kind of cheap stunts to fill their wank mag.

  4. Richie said

    And, really, stuff like this should logically stop the whole “feminists hate men” argument dead. Outside of the SCUM Manifesto, you’d be hard-pressed to find even a vague dislike of men in explicitly feminist texts – because they’re about criticising systems, not people – but this is completely mainstream.

  5. audrey said

    I just….I can’t….wow.

  6. Leah said

    The connection this ‘article’ makes between sexual arousal and violence against women is completely sick.

  7. mscate said

    appalled doesn’t say enough…

  8. Bearded Lady said

    Reminds me of the ‘crime scene’ photo shoot that was on America’s Next Top Model . Disgusting.

  9. caitlinate said

    Interesting that the website is hosted by ninemsn.

  10. mediastuff said

    Agreed. It’s pretty miserable, but it’s really about the tone. There’s nothing actually wrong with thinking that a recently deceased woman was attractive, prior to said passing. But “Sadly recently passed ladies we found quite attractive” is, you’ll agree, less immediately catchy as “World’s hottest murdered models”. Still, issues of circulation-boosting, publicity-generating coverlines aside, this is horrible.

  11. Amy said

    I would not class myself as a feminist, but on certain subjects I share the same sadness and anger. I’m so disgusted by the win a boob job comp that Zoo mag advertised, and constantly have to view this damn thing at every shop I go to – I can’t take it anymore. Especially after reading this article – I want to see them fall (let me know if you a have any advice on how to this happen). Articles such as the above are destroying the next generation of men, fathers, leaders – what will our world come to at this rate! Men have become so desensitized, because some sick person, hardcore porn movie, or magazine (ZOO!) encouraged them to think its ok to make all their sick fantasies come true – don’t care about the woman they are doing it to – there just holes for your enjoyment. Have any of these men stop to think that maybe some of these girls killed themselves because they could not take the pressure and the shame of being a object any more- of course not all woman are slut and love it! (that was sarcasm on the end)

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