Rocket Racer News Update May 2023
It has happened again! By which I mean that Rocket Racer has appeared in a real comic again. My people informed me that Bob made an appearance in the latest issue of She-Hulk, so I had to check it out. Like last time it is a single-panel appearance. But whereas last time I was able to say it fit well with my take on the character, this time I find this:
The scene is thus: the titular She-Hulk, Jennifer Walters, attorney for super-people, walks into her office. A bunch of people are there waiting for appointments, including the Rocket Racer! Bob gives a wolf-whistle at the sight of Jennifer, so she says she’ll accept any client first except him.
Obviously I don’t like to see Bob as a catcalling prick. That’s not the kind of guy he’s usually been. I accept that he’s a criminal and he has certainly endangered innocent lives with his crimes. I don’t need him to be some paragon of virtue. But his crimes aren’t the same thing as sexual harassment. And I have to add for the record, Bob has even met She-Hulk before when he worked alongside her and some of the other Avengers. She was wearing considerably less then and Bob reacted perfectly normally. Here’s she looks good, but it’s just a dress and she usually wears the equivalent of a swimsuit. The idea that she’d walk into a room and Bob would be unable to control himself doesn’t fit with the man we’ve seen before.
Of course, I won’t lie, my main concern is how it conflicts with my “head-canon” wish to see Bob revealed to be asexual. I’ve discussed it before . There is no direct proof that Bob is asexual within the comics, but my desire for more Ace representation and the fact there also no direct proof that Bob is not asexual have caused me see it as an ideal choice. But now there’s this scene where he objectifies a woman just because she walks past him in, what I maintain is a nice-looking but perfectly normal dress, that I have to contend with. I don’t care for that.
I haven’t been reading this She-Hulk book, but I have read and enjoyed some of writer Rainbow Rowell’s other work, including on Marvel’s Runaways (on which I think she’s the best writer the book has had so far), so I can’t blame her too much. I’d wager that this scene was crafted with the idea one of the loser supervillains would whistle as Jen and Rocket Racer’s name was picked almost at random from some list of potential loser supervillains. It’s like someone going through a book of stickers and finding which sticker they want to add to a page. Bob is just a sticker here. I know that writers can’t care about ever character, and Bob is definitely a character that almost nobody cares about. But he matters to me, so if I’m gonna continue logging my thoughts on this character on my website, I obviously had to register my complaint here, where nobody will care.