Maxim Has A Weird 'Gamer Girl' Fetish

This week, Maxim launched a contest to find its very own Maxim Gamer Girl. Like a pig hunting truffles in the wild, Maxim will scour the streets of America for the perfect "video game vixen". Wear your "hottest outfit", the magazine commands. "First come, first serve."

Clearly the magazine doesn't realise that this is 2012.

Now on one hand, picking on Maxim for objectifying women might be like picking on a dog for licking its own feces. It's just what they do.

On the other hand, this is more than just objectification. By turning the idea of Gamer Girl into a sexual fantasy alongside the likes of common dreams like Sexy School Girl or The Girl Next Door, Maxim is fetishising the 42 per cent of gamers who happen to be women. Girls who play video games are no longer human beings who enjoy a certain form of entertainment. Now they're caricatures.

Can you imagine a full-page spread on "Girls Who Read Books?" Would Maxim readers get off to "Filmgoing Vixens"?

I have absolutely no problem with girls showing their skin in Maxim. It's empowering for many models and enjoyable for many readers. But this idea that Gamer Girl should be a category of its own, that the girls who enjoy video games should be placed on some pedestal and treated like a precious unicorn to be captured and worshiped by men everywhere, is absolutely sickening.

Fortunately, there's sanity in some of the comments on the casting call article. Though a few girls are excited at the opportunity to model for Maxim, most of the commenters are acerbic and hilarious.

"Does it matter that I'll still be pre-op at that time?" one gamer writes.

"If you fit the 'video game vixen mold', as defined by Maxim, you're likely a Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volley Ball character," another says.

The most disgusting part of this whole thing? High-profile gaming publisher EA supports this.

Casting Call: Maxim Gamer Girl [Maxim via EA]

Photo: (C) Bryan Sikora / Stockfresh.


    I'm pretty sure a fairly high percentage of women went to school, or lived next door to somebody...

    lol yrrnn has a good point. Schoolgirls are sexy, gamergirls are sexy. Its not diminishing the industry or anything dude. Get off your high horse

    Most of this article is seems fairly valid, but it comes across like more a sort of pseudo-intellectual winge. Words like "sickening" or "disgusting", are too strong. Please Jason, go back to handing out leaflets for Socialist Alliance.

    First, who truly cares? The only people who would be offended by this are ugly women or people taking the moral high ground, the rest of us have no problem looking at beautiful girls whatever they may be doing.

      Wow... just... wow... I'm always a little heartened when articles like this come along and then the whole effect is completely ruined by all the comments like this that follow.

      Honey. I'm a burlesque dancer and I've had a history of glamour and nude modelling, so I assure you I'm more attractive than anything you've ever been able to pull(and I highly doubt that you've ever been able to pull anything given your attitude) and I have an issue with this. All it's going to to do is impose a standard on how gamer girls are supposed to look. We already face this shit from the rest of society , we shouldn't have to cop it from those within our own culture.
      And seeing as you're making assumptions about the people who object to this, I'm going to say the only guys who approve are those who never get to see a girl in the flesh. That's ok, keep up your attitude, because girls like me make a lot of money out of chumps like you.

        And it's that kind of narcissism that gives women a bad name too.

          Its that kind of narcissism that gives 40 year old men posing as burlesque dancers on the internet a bad name.

    The gamer girl sexual fantasy isn't new. Hell it's a staple among our more socially troubled brethren. I'm just more amused this appears on the back of the fake geek girl article...

    Thank God no one objectifies firemen, or footy players.

    "Maxim is fetishising the 42 per cent of gamers who happen to be women."

    Like the older ladies at my work who play Farmville-style games on their iPhones? Thanks for the mental image...

    I'd totally pick up a Maxim if it had a "Girls Who Dun That Book Learnin" feature. Shouldn't surprise anyone that Maxim is staffed by pigs. I'm sure they'll just pick the most attractive but vapid girl who thinks she's a gamer because she played Mario a couple times and has Angry Birds on her phone.

    There are many attractive, genuine female gamers out there who don't wear it on their sleeve, and it's a really nice surprise when you find out. But I'm sure the winner will be a cookie cutter Olivia Munn or that ghoul reporter from Mass Effect 3.

      Bar your last sentence, I couldn't agree more with this comment.

    So very properly taking them to task for their superficial & objectifying misogyny but then seemingly approving a transphobic comment as being ascerbic and hilarious?

    Yeah you've still got a ways to come Jason...

    I have absolutely no problem with girls showing their skin in Maxim. It’s empowering for many models and enjoyable for many readers.

    So it's all well and good until they start taking our womenz? You can't say posing in Maxim is empowering then flip it around a few sentances later saying that it reduces women to fetishes. If you're ok with a cheesy 'girls of the arctic tundra' calandar then you can't turn around and complain when we do a 'girls of Kotaku' calandar that's just as sleazy.

    While it's perhaps a little unseemly, I think you're looking at this from the wrong perspective. What we're seeing here is the march of progress in the acceptance of video games into mainstream culture. Do you think this could have happened a few years ago? Gamers are moving from bucktoothed pale nerds in their mother's basement to cool and potentially sexy in the eyes of the mainstream. If Joe Six-Pack is looking for a few scantily glad girls wielding console controllers in his psuedo-porn mag, it can only be a positive thing for the games industry.

      It'll only be a positive thing for guys in the games industry. For girls, it'll just be another way of telling us that we're not worth jack-shit unless we look like Lara Croft...

    Pfft, it'll be a bunch of stupid attention-seeking bimbos who can't tell the difference between a PS3 and an Xbox 360, who think they're gamers because they play Angry Birds on their phone.

    This is an incredibly short sighted article. I fail to see why it is so disgusting. Maxim write magazines targeted at men- and men happen to think scantily clad women are attractive. What's the difference between a women wielding a controller and a women wielding a wrench or a gun when they all have most of their tits out to a guy?? Maxim just want some fresh material- I suggest you get off your high horse mate.

    Also re EA - Sex sells. This is not a new concept

    Look, we play games where women are portrayed in a certain way, a way which does not at all belong to the realm of what intelligent 21st century people would like to think of as a decent way to portray women. Nevertheless we collectively enjoy these overblown, silly fantasies. There are many exceptions, many games which strive to give female characters more depth, but the cliché 'hot vixen' is still the norm. To condemn the transportation of this ingame trope into real life (as far as a photo-shoot can be regarded as real life) is a form of hypocrisy, unless, of course, you have never played and enjoyed a game starring an exaggeratedly beautiful pixelated female kicking the asses of evil.

    So, when do I get to see what I'm supposed to look like? Thanks.
    I'll stick to my cargo and, zombie-stomping boots.

    It's a contest for girls who want to try modelling (and they have to play games too).

    There's nothing wrong here, there's no pedestal, no sexism. They just want to do a themed shot.

    I usually support the Kotaku authors, but this is just garbage.

    Just one other ignorant faonby comment. Everybody got free games. Not just the people stollen from but EVERYBODY! The people stollen from got all there money back. And 1 year of 1 million dollar protection plan. ALL FREE! So what is that $1million plus 20 dollars per game and there were 4 games so thats 80 plus whatever was stolen so they are potentially dishing out $1,000,000,080 for 1 person. Yeah and ounce again. I like microsoft nintendo and sony. I just hate retarded comments.

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