As I was reading through the latest issue of Entertainment Weekly—out now for May 13th—and other entertainment news outlets, it hit me! Though it might seem that our world has been taken over by live action zombies (an oxymoron in more ways than one), throne gamers, mutants, and/or presidential candidates—walking, dead, power wielding, stumping, or prideful, in which I personally think of the characters and the characteristics as being indistinguishable from one another—spandex has come back into vogue. And not the Madonna kind of vogue, either.
What I’m talking about is the zenith of film or tv characters embodying the superhero-ine persona—with body defining spandex costumes to match (with a caveat that I haven’t actually seen these films, but you can’t escape notice of them, online especially):
- There is Superman, currently reincarnated in a series of films featuring the athletically muscular Henry Cavill (right). The new costume seems so skin tight as to be painted on him (right). Note that the scaly texture of the costume fabric seems to convey a greater roughness than the smooth texture of old. And as his alter ego Clark Kent, Superman wears the classic accessory of eye glasses with his business suits—though the fact that no one can recognize that Clark and Superman look exactly the same but for the glasses and spandex, respectively, is truly a suspension of disbelief.And besides, Superman is probably ticked off that he has no neat gadgets to play with like Batman does. However, Superman’s whole body is a gadget—flying, running, seeing, hearing, etc. Nope, not going there. Ha! But then there are other benefits to being a superhero—with or without gadgets–in that they sometimes get the girl.
- In which case, perhaps Superman might consider dating the lovely—though painted an indigo blue–Mystique from the XMen films, with Jennifer Lawrence being all blue Smurf like with several strategic appliances covering her naughty And she has scales, too. So, perhaps, neither Superman nor Mystique would be concerned if some of those scales rubbed off on the other. Though Mystique’s form of camouflage is shape shifting to a non blue mutant look—complete with designer clothes and/or gender bending impersonations—I’m referring to the previous films I had watched with Rebecca Romijn. So no wearing spandex for Mystique—unless she morphs to wearing it.
- And continuing in the woman powered theme, we can harken
back to Xena Warrior Princess (right) portrayed by Lucy Lawless. I think I had maybe seen one episode of this tv show years ago. But I liked the premise of a strong woman with athleticism, cunning, honor and could whoop anyone’s tush.She dressed like a gladiator—from the Paris runways of Jean Paul Gautier or some other futuristic Olympian. Leather, metal—and little of both combined to make a free moving garment that reflected Xena’s toughness.
- And then there are the Power Rangers (right) —suited up from head to toe, including face masks. Anyone could be in there. This is the ultimate in super hero-heroine anonymity. Or producers not wanting to pay hefty royalties to big name stars. Head to toe spandex and helmuts. Impressive!
- Everyday super heroine’s are you and I. We wear our spandex literally—as in body shaping girdles (moi)–and figuratively, with regard to the way we reinvent ourselves for different situations. Only a few minutes after showing my newish coworker how some online administrative systems worked, we were beset by sales reps wanting to sell us a new office equipment item that we don’t need.Though our equipment is 8 years old or more—and has a few glitches a year requiring the repair guys to come out to fix it—by and large, it is working well. Why should we replace it? I say we should get the most out of the old machine before we buy a new one—as does our equipment committee charged with reviewing purchase requests.
But the Sales reps (term used loosely here) were determined to make a sale. They pressed further for a commitment of purchase, and I parried back stating a logical argument against it—we need to see comparison specs to determine the feasibility of the purchase, our volume required a higher monthly quota than the 3,000 below our current estimate they quoted, then they threatened that they would no longer service our equipment since it was old. To which I responded that’s too bad, but a future purchase requires us to look at other vendors as well. He replied that we’re weren’t required to, but do to make sure that we’re maximizing our benefits.To say that the guy was patronizing and overbearing, would be kind. And when I reminded this sales rep who launched into his sales pitch even though my coworker and I were in a training session—that my coworker and I had to get back to our own training discussion—it took me repeating it three times before he said he would leave us to do our work. The sales guy was the worst example of someone just trying to make a quick sale, with very little attention paid to listening to their clients—us– and him not seeming to attempt to find an equipment solution that would work for us. If, indeed, we even need a solution at the moment, since our office equipment is still working.
After the sales reps had finally left, our young male student office worker praised me for standing toe to toe with this sales rep—even though I was sitting down, as he tried to loom over my coworker and I. I had replied to the sales rep that after a lifetime of making big purchases at work and at home (cars, home, etc.), I know a thing or two about negotiating and reviewing purchasing decisions. So fending off our pushy sales reps should be a piece of cake, if that person would just recognize that they’re not making headway with me. Arrgggh!
And to what do I attribute my fierce some—but professional–zeal to? Why to my spandex girdle that also encases my thighs and torso (below my girls). Not only is the girdle great back support, but it helps one stiffen their resolve. My superpowers are not flying, nor existing beyond the grave, nor even clairvoyance. But every day, I help a student register for classes or graduate, manage purchasing educational supplies and equipment for us, and/or aide in compiling various administrative reports, etc. So I have a little bit of warrior in me, to fight the every day battles that arise.
So “Look! In the outer office. Is it a bird? Is it a plane?” No, it’s just Xena-Grati—in her hidden spandex, and without the leather and metal armored breastplate. Snap!