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