WATCH: Meet SheZow, The Boy Who Would Be A Girl Superhero

A 12-year-old boy named Guy (natch) uses a magic ring to transform himself into the legendary crime fighter, SheZow, by saying “You go girl!” (natch). You should see what happens when he says “WEEEEEERQ!” — Guy becomes the legendary up-and-coming superhero drag queen, Xtravaganza LaBeija.

The gender-bending Australian cartoon, aimed at 6-11 year-olds, began airing last year in December but will make its stateside debut Saturday on the Hub — Discovery Communications and Hasbro’s bastard child masquerading as a kid’s cable network. We can all agree that One Millions Moms or someone holier than thou is going to launch a protest against this show for promoting gender confusion or whatever, right? Well, that doesn’t seem to phase the higher-ups at the Hub.

“When I first heard about the show, my reaction was ‘Are you out of your minds?’” Margaret Loesch, chief executive of the Hub, told the LA Times. “Then I looked at it and I thought, ‘This is just funny.’”

Funny, maybe. But an interesting, and dare we say even groundbreaking, message to kids that being a girl doesn’t make you “less than” or inferior in any way — we can get on board with that. Also, we’re kinda looking forward to Halloween when boys and girls will go around in go-go boots screaming “You go girl!” at each other.

It’ll basically be like Halloween in Greenwich Village.

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  • msfrost

    What Gender confusion, on the part of others maybe, but that is their problem. He knows exactly what his gender is.

  • tardis

    Looks like we forgot about the anime Ranma ½.

  • Ogre Magi

    I bet the christians are already foaming at the mouth about this

  • Cosmic Destroyer

    @Ogre Magi:
    Never mind them, Sheila Jeffries will go after it for not passing the Bechdel Test or something.

  • truthteller

    My abuela was the strongest PERSON that I ever met. When her husband, my grand father died, she continued to raise their 8 sons and 1 daughter. She was smart and escaped a dictator in the Dominican Republic and made sure that our entire family never forgot our roots. I have met many strong intelligent women and never see them as less than a man!

    There is no doubt in any sane mind that girls/women are strong, smart and capable. This is the mantra of our lives, but more and more the images of and for boys is the exact opposite. If you don’t believe me take a look at t.v. and think about if boys did to girls what you see girls doing to them. We don’t support males equally, and that is not good for our society. Even if you throw in history, two wrongs don’t make a right and you should never punish the sons for the sins of the father or grandfather. Boys need love too.

    Boys in this country are still fragile and need to see that men can be strong and intelligent without the harmful images of being angry, mean, violent or harmful to others.
    As a man of colour, I wonder if people would feel as excited about this cartoon if it was a young black boy that turned into a white superhero or even a girl that turned into a boy superhero.

    Males, especially young gay males and those of colour NEED a lot more positive images and not those that say to be strong he must be female.

  • truthteller

    FYI: I have been a heavy reader of comic books for almost 20 years, My fav, for a long time was WonderWoman, best actually when written and drawn by two gay Latin men. This cartoon does not show that women are strong, we have enough cartoons that show that. Why not have a girl turn into a female hero and kick ass…like HIT GIRL from the movie and comic Kick Ass?

    Who is this cartoon for? Don’t tell me gay boys, bc that would prove my point about making gay boys into girls. I know it is not for straight boys. Yes someone is trying to send a message, and I received it, but don’t want it.

  • startenout

    @truthteller: So essentially, you’re saying screw all the possible trans-kids who might see this harmless and funny cartoon and think, wow that’s like me; I count and I could be great.

    Or maybe just breathe and actually watch the thing before you judge it; or don’t, because you’re a grown man and just leave it for kids to decide if they will or won’t watch it. G.I. Joe didn’t make me straight, Wonder Woman didn’t make me gay, and My Little Pony didn’t turn me into a horse, so let’s just calm down a sec, ok.

    You’re more homophobic and judgmental than the entire Right Wing.

    And as a man of color myself, how about we start worrying about the examples being set in our own neighborhoods before we put the responsibility on an Australian cartoon?

  • truthteller

    @startenout: I’ll just say this one thing. I have seen the cartoon and you can find it on line. How is this about the trans population? The boy turns into a girl and then back. That is not the trans experience. At best it may be argued that it is for young drag queens as the super name suggests.

    As we have been taught by women and the feminist movement, there are no “harmless” images. Everything is made with a point and has a message.

    We are what we learn as kids. Cartoons do shape us and stay with us over the course of our lives as you have just shown.

    Please don’t name call. I am not homophobic bc you say so. And I am just as judgmental as the next human, no more, no less. And as the ENTIRE right wing..? That is just silly to say.

    When people of colour make cartoons and shows that I find offensive, as I have done in the past, I do make my voice heard. This cartoon is being shown in America as of this up coming Saturday. (RIF)I work my ass off showing a positive image for Latinos daily, but I can also look at these things as well with a critical eye. As for the “start” part, speak for yourself, I have been doing the work you state for over 20 years. My mind is strong and I can work in many areas at the same time. Everything is connected.

    You have your opinion and I have mine. Yours is not better or superior because you say so. My voice matters just as much as yours. Know this!

  • startenout

    Being humorless in the guise of political correctness has gotten SO boring.

    Anyone else remember when being gay meant fun?

    Since this kid is not portrayed as gay and is fully aware of his gender even when dressed as a girl because of a silly magical screw-up, exactly what child is being hurt here?

    Other than learning that it doesn’t matter what you look like on the outside when you know what you are on the inside, what’s the negative message?

    And don’t worry about me “starting” to set a good example, either. I have been an out, African-American public school teacher and volunteer since 1998. And yes, sometimes I do act like a girl. How did that happen when this offensive show wasn’t on television when I was a kid?? Must have been the Flintstones. Great Space Coaster? Voltron! Silly Lions.

    Either way, it doesn’t make me worth less than the more manly specimens who were raised not to be “fragile.” And if your children are watching so much TV that it shapes everything about who they are and that they, God forbid, think it is okay to behave outside of approved gender lines, then it may be time to turn it off and enroll them in a swim class or soccer club before butch women and fey men are everywhere. Oh, wait. They are and always have been.

  • truthteller

    @startenout: Wow! Showing your very low self-esteem in the guise of intelligent thought. I wish you self-love and compassion, and the hugs you truly need.

    I won’t read anymore of your posts as I don’t wish to encourage your…well, anything.

  • startenout

    @truthteller: Wow, disguising your lack of spirit and humility as pity. A true sign that there was nothing but hot air in the first place, since I am nothing but positive about who and how I am.

    I will continue to respond to all shallow thinly veiled attacks on the “girls” who have always been the leaders who fought to make our entire community stronger since Stonewall. I will also try to help the self-loathing of people like you who don’t think they are good enough if they don’t align to an antiquated ideal of masculinity and choose to tear down anything that doesn’t equate to those standards.

    Enjoy beating your drums in the woods. I shall pray for you.

  • queerjubu

    There is actually a cartoon show that pre-dates this — from 1983 in fact — in Japan called Stop Hibari-kun.

    In this show (also a long running comic book/manga) a boy named Kosaku is orphaned and taken in by the local yakuza (mob) boss. The boss has several children, the oldest, Hibari, is a boy who is always dressed and behaves as a girl.

    Kosaku and Hibari are in high school together. Hibari has a crush on Kosaku and he can’t quite deal with it — either his attraction to Hibari and the fact that Hibari is a boy.

    Hibari is the star of this show, and always comes out ahead in the end.

    Then there was Patariro — about a midget king whose chief spy was a sexy gay man who seduces the head spy from the enemy country (and then they have a series long affair). The affair is presented quite romantically. Also both a tv show and a comic book from the 80s in Japan.

    Both these shows defy Western convention (and for that matter Japanese propriety) yet were extremely popular. And no Japanese organizations protested these shows.

    You can probably find them online, though whether they have subtitles or not, I don’t know.

  • startenout

    @queerjubu: Very cool!

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