Howdy, buckaroos! I have just put out my latest TG ebook, 1950s Sitcom. The premise of this book is that two guys get stuck in a 1950s sitcom in the manner of I Love Lucy or The Honeymooners. One of the guys, of course, finds himself transforming into a sitcom 1950s housewife, while the other settles into a comfortably boozy life as an entitled husband.
The story is broken up into three episodes, and it is very funny, if I do say so myself, while also having an overall Twilight Zone-esque tone of quiet horror. The stories were commissioned by a client who prefers to remain nameless, but I do want to thank Anonymous 2 for this great idea. I hope you enjoy!
If you are familiar with the manga Backstreet Boys or the cartoon series inspired by it, Goku Dolls, then you know the plot of the live action movie Trans-Sweetie. Three tough guys are forced to get sex-changes and become a girl group pop band.
I don’t know of an English translation, but the action is easy to follow nonetheless. We see the boy’s (mostly) shocked expressions as they see their new selves for the first time, watch them trying to den their new genders (the struggle to pee standing up is very amusing). We watched as they are dressed up in girly costumes and forced to compete on a TV show (they fail) and are then subjected to a grueling diet and training program including dance and gymnastics, of course wearing cute outfits (one wears a top that reads Barbie). And, we see them come to terms with their new lives, finding a kind of middle-ground between their past identities and new genders.
I predict you will love The Venus Lily, a premium illustrated story now available on tgcomics.com.The Venus Lily follows the story of Matt Baxter, a hard-boiled private investigator in the mold of Dash Hammet’s Sam Spade. The story stands out for several reasons:
Matt Baxter’s character is thoroughly developed before the change. I like this because it makes his journey more interesting and believable. We get to know him as a man, so his gradual change into a woman has more resonance.
The change is, as the title of this entry suggests, slow. The writer is very patient and Matt’s body changes gradually, leaving him in denial as to what is happening for quite some time.
Matt is skillfully maneuvered into some very feminine roles– no spoilers– that compel him to perform as his new sex. It’s interesting to watch him deal with being a woman in a man’s world.
In addition to the excellent story telling, the story features fantastic illustrations in a jagged, atmospheric style that perfectly compliments to mood and atmosphere of the text. The Venus Lily is one of the top TG publications of the year, and invites multiple readings. I would say that either the story or the illustrations are worth the price, and together they are a bargain! Check it out!
One third of all men and women surveyed by Justin Lehmiller for his book, Tell Me What You Want, reported fantasizing about trading bodies with a member of the opposite sex. I found the number surprisingly high. I had often imagined the number much lower. And yet, thinking about how many mainstream movies and television shows and books and comic books have explored the body swapping theme, I suppose I should have imagined it much higher.
Tragically, there wasn’t any more depth to this question, and it left me wondering– did they fantasize about trading bodies with specific people– a lover, a crush? A celebrity? Or was it more abstract?
Though I would have liked more depth, I still found the number interesting. It also made me wonder how many people may have still been too embarrassed to admit to this fantasy.
Some other numbers: 25% of all men and women reported fantasizing about cross-dressing. 59% of women and 26% of men who identified as “heterosexual” fantasized about having sex with a member of the same sex. Both men and women fantasized about changing their own gender role, or the gender role of their partner. Men reported fantasies of being feminized, and women reported fantasies of feminizing their male partners and taking the dominant role.
No women reported fantasizing about being masculinized by a partner, but this makes perfect sense to me in that the masculine fantasies they have involve them seizing power and demanding dominance, so it is something they take and do not wait to be given.
As an author and a human being fascinated with gender fluidity, I read the book primarily out of curiosity as well as looking for potential inspiration. I didn’t love the author’s speculation on why people have these fantasies– he suggest that they mostly rise out of insecurity, which may in some cases be true, but I think often people’s personalities are simply more diverse and multi-faceted than the binary constructs of gender allow, and we simply have a multiplicity of needs and interests. Sometimes people need to be dominant; sometimes they long for the pleasure of surrender. Sometimes people who are deeply in love not only long to be near the person they love, but to be the person they love.
Just some musings. I thought my readers might find the numbers interesting, as I did. If you would like to read the book, you can find it on Amazon.
In the recently released episode Striking Vipers, Black Mirror finally plunges into the murky world of online gender cross playing– and I do mean finally! In this episode, two college buddies enjoy playing a video fighting game much like Mortal Combat. They each have a favorite character. Danny always plays Lance, while his friend, Karl, prefers to play a female character named Roxette. Neither finds this problematic.
Until a fully immersive version of the game becomes available. In this new version, the players find themselves inhabiting the bodies of the characters they play– and even experience the physical sensations. Jumping into the game, Danny once more plays Lance, and Karl, Roxette. Karl jokes about what its like to have boobs, and the two start fighting. Soon, the sexual tension simmering beneath their play- fighting turns to making out, and eventually hot, steamy sex.
The show explores how this impacts them and their relationships, both with each other and their wives/lovers. They question whether they are really cheating, wonder if they are gay. Danny, in particular, struggles, as he is a married man with kids. His suburban life bores him. Is he living a lie?
Each man discovers he is more fluid than he imagined, but that their sexual attraction exists only online– at least the physical side. Karl rhapsodizes about how much he enjoys the female orgasm, but he can’t get that in real life. Meanwhile, it is interesting to me that Danny’s wife is named Theo, drawing the gender fluidity out further. I don’t want to give away the specific ending, but once the men have opened up Pandora’s Box, let’s just say there in no going back. I feel what the show suggests it is not so much that the online gender bending changes them, but simply allows them to express a part of themselves that was always repressed.
Most people, in my opinion, are many genders, but society works very hard to make us comform to a specific notion of biological gender. This episode there is a little girl and guy in everyone just waiting for a chance to get out.
Bradley has always felt like a girl, but his whole life he’s suffered in fear, hiding his true self. What would his Dad say if he found out? His Mom? And, he’s sure all the other kids at school would laugh at him. But the girl inside Bradley longs to be free, and over the years she is determined to free both herself and Bradley from living a lie.
As some of you know, I have had the pleasure of creating several stories on commission from a wonderful person who prefers to be known only as Anonymous. Each of these stories has been a joy to write. I feel Freedom is the most special of all these commissions. Please check out a free sample at the links below:
AFK starts with the premise that a bunch of people who play an online role-playing game find themselves trapped in the game as their avatars. This, happily, leads to a lot of fun gender exploration that goes a little beyond the things we’ve seen before (TWSB).
In the world of the familiar, we do have a womanizing bro who finds himself trapped as a petite Asian “warrior princess” initially wearing a chain mail bikini. The actress who plays “him” does a great job depicting a guy in a naturalistic way, and the character is well-written– hiding his former gender out of shame, struggling to deal with male attention and sexual assault.
In addition, we have the less common female trapped as a male– and though she is not explored as fully, there are some very fun scenes dealing with her discomfort over having male anatomy.
Most interesting of all, though, is a character who refuses to reveal their real world biological gender, telling anyone who asks “none of your business.” This character does the most to challenge gender steretypes because it is very hard to guess what her identity is– in the game she is biologically female, but her attitude and mannerisms could belong to either a man of a woman– which is true in real life of many people. So, I find her the most fascinating.
The show is on a budget, but the love and care of the whole crew is evident in the work. In addition, if you have ever played a MORPG, the show is full of really fun little jokes about the gamer life and the culture inside these games. The identity explorations even getting into people discovering there are multiple versions of themselves inside the game (in the form of their other accounts.)