Sexual harassment is a topic that often rears its ugly head around large conventions such as San Diego Comic Con. While conventions have begun to implement anti-harassment policies (SDCC emailed all of its ticket holders to let them know harassment would not be tolerated) that didn’t stop one SDCC attendee from harassing Alicia Marie, friend of self-proclaimed Queen of the Nerds, Adrianne Curry.
On Sunday, July 27 Adrianne Curry from America’s Next Top Model shared her friend Alicia Marie’s status on Facebook.
YESTERDAY, myself, dressed as Tigra, was with the above-mentioned friends and we were all in the super crowded San Diego Comic-Con International Gaslamp area taking photos with #SDCC peeps and fans. Some total A$$H0LE came up behind me and tried to stick his hands in my bottoms and then yanked my tail and pants down.
I just freaked out, screamed trying to keep my bottoms up — but Adrianne Curry literally took off after dude WITH her Catwoman whip and chased him down, beat his ass. Punched him across the face with the butt of her whip — he had zombie blood on his face – got on her costume. Katrina got in his face, Todd shoved him, the guy ran off – huge ruckus and yep some people got their cell phones out of course.
Looking at Marie’s Tigra cosplay, the seriousness of this assault becomes even more disturbing.
With her costume primarily consiting of just a bikini top and bottom, the attempted removal of Marie’s bottoms would have left her more than slightly exposed. Luckily, Adriane Curry (in her Catwoman suit) came to the rescue, beating up the person who pantsed her friend.
“I beat the shit out of his face with the butt of my whip …..which is a real bullwhip”
On Facebook Curry shared Marie’s status regarding the assault and added, “I beat the shit out of his face with the butt of my whip …..which is a real bullwhip.”The mental image of Curry hitting Marie’s harasser in the face with the butt of her whip just feels like a win for women who have been sexually harassed at conventions everywhere.
Curry is no stranger to harassment at Comic Con when it comes to being scantily clad. In 2011 she was allegedly kicked out of Comic Con for wearing an outfit that was too revealing. Should she ever don such a costume again, perhaps more people will think twice before trying to touch Adrianne (or her friends) inappropriately.
Harassment at Comic-Con
Harassment at conventions is unfortunately something many people have begun to expect from nerd culture. A recent survey by Janelle Asselin shows that 13% of people attending comic conventions report having unwanted comments of a sexual nature made about them at conventions, and 8% of people of all genders reported they had been groped, assaulted, or raped at a comic convention.
While the percentages may seem low, Asselin puts them in perspective by demonstrating how many attendees of San Diego Comic-Con have possibly been harassed.
To put these percentages into perspective, if 13 percent of San Diego Comic-Con attendees have unwanted comments of a sexual nature made about them this week, that would be around 17,000 people. And if eight percent of SDCC attendees are groped, assaulted, or raped, that’s over 10,000 attendees suffering harassment
So theoretically, 25,000 people may have been verbally harassed, groped, and assaulted in a sexual way during San Diego Comic Con last week.
Initiatives such as Geeks for CONsent have begun actively fighting the demeaning attitudes towards women at conventions, which they say is amplified at gatherings where cosplay plays a heavy role.
While fighting harassment with harassment is not necessarily the optimal way to change attitudes towards women in nerd culture, it’s difficult not to laud “vigilantes” like Adrianne Curry for taking matters into their own hands. Fighting back is an option, so long as your cosplay includes a blunt instrument.