Oh for the love of little green apples…
I first heard about this from Hoyden about Town. Essentially, villian Chameleon impersonates Peter Parker and sleeps with Peter’s room-mate. When people start to point out to the writer that this constitutes rape, his response is:
“My understanding of the definition of rape is that it requires force or the threat of force, so no. Using deception to trick someone into granting consent isn’t quite the same thing.
“Which is not to say it isn’t a horrible, evil, reprehensible thing that Chameleon did. He is a bad man.
“He insults parapelegics[sic] and dips people in acid too.”
Faith in humanity sinking…
So, according to Fred Van Lente, someone being blackmailed into sex, isn’t rape. Someone having the choice of losing their job or putting out, isn’t rape. Someone drugged unconscious or passed out being penetrated (you need violence for rape, remember?), isn’t rape. Someone thinking they’re with one person when it’s really another isn’t rape.
Actually, according to courts in the US (you’ll want to check your specific state laws) and Canada, if you impersonate someone else to gain sexual access to someone, it is indeed sexual assault. If someone has not consented to sex with YOU, it is rape. Period. It doesn’t mean you can’t pretend to be a fighter pilot to impress a chick at a bar, although trust me, we aren’t ever fooled. It does mean you can’t bang your twin brother’s girlfriend without her knowing which twin you are.
Fortunately, several folks over at i09 have been calling this guy on his bullshit. Not all of them. There are still a fair number of idiots who don’t get it, but at least some people are speaking out on this.
The second offensive part of this is the fact that after sleeping with “Peter” once, the character in question immediately turns into the controlling girlfriend from Hell. Really? You think women do that? Seriously? Have you met one?
Honestly, the most likely result of a tumble on the kitchen floor with a previously platonic room-mate would be some awkward silence, a lot of “um”-ing and “So, uh, where do we stand after this afternoon?”* Shit, I can draw the panel in my head. But I guess a hot Latina in Spiderman’s t-shirt is way more interesting than showing her fully clothed, rubbing the back of her neck and awkwardly not meeting Peter’s eyes.
So, to paraphrase Keith Olbermann, “Mr. Fred Van Lente, today’s Worst Person in the World!!!” Ok, not the world. Just my small part of it.
*Yes, I speak from experience here. Sigh. My libido has ever been my Achilles’ heel, and hot geeky boys my kryptonite.