brace yourselves!! im gonna talk about some STUFF. im gonna write a huge-ass post about rule 63 because i have been seein some discussion about it but i want more! need more discussion. BEAR WITH ME. then tell me wat u think.
so ok: it seems like what RULE 63 colloquially refers to, 99.9% of the time, is basically taking either a boy character or a girl character and swapping them to the “opposite”* gender. yeah??
*opposite??!! hmmmmm that doesnt sound right, lets come back to that later
i will demonstrate with this homestuck character:
thats the general idea right?? you might refer to it as “genderswapping” or “genderbending” or a word with gender in it, because the idea is that karkat is a boy, but on this bizarro flipside mirrorverse hes a girl.
BUT WAIT A MINUTE!!
thats not quite right! if all we did was swap out karkats gender, it would look something like this:
actually, the redesign process referred to as RULE 63 swaps out A LOT OF THINGS. things that are assumed to go hand in hand with gender, such as: sex, assigned sex at birth, pronouns, presentation, name, sexual orientation, etc. etc. etc.
thusly, “gender___” doesn’t describe the process very well at all!! there’s a lot more that typically goes on here.
(side note: the above is is [thankfully] not how everyone would rule63 a character, im just using it as an example of how i see it done 99.9% of the time)
pretty much THE ENTIRE CONCEPT OF RULE 63, as it is employed in most cases, relies on some age-old widely-upheld highly-problematic tropes/assumptions/stereotypes, such as that:
- theres only really the two genders (man vs. woman)
- they exist as opposites like night and day
- DITTO for pronoun sets (he vs. she), presentations (masculine vs. feminine), etc.
- certain characteristics (clothes, body parts, names, whatever) are necessarily gendered… for example: a skirt indicates ladyhood; a mustache indicates dudeliness; etc.
none of those things are true, but the idea of genderbendswitchswaps and many of its applications are based upon them.
so what are u sayin cadaverousculottes? nobody can ever draw a cute girl karkat with a skirt because its too binarist???
no way thats not what im saying at all!! by all means play upon these established stereotypes in your character redesigns all up and down the road. pls interpret Girl Karkat any way that makes you happy, especially if its cute or funny or even empowering.
but at the same time maybe consider mixing it up a little! like i dont know change sollux’s gender to “androgyne” and make up a fashion sense to match. or several fashion senses. or draw what you think uranianUmbra looks like and then draw what you think she would look like if she was neutrois (or if she wasnt, whos to say she isnt??). or draw boy kanaya but keep the skirt. or take your “____ is ____ and was assigned ____ at birth” headcanon and turn it flipways. or write several different sexes and genders and pronoun sets and styles of dress and demeanor and body types and names of homestuck characters on the sides of several different dice and roll them and draw what that gives you.
or maybe dont do any of these things. its up to you rly. no one persons karkette design is better or more canon than anyone elses. (none of them are canon as it turns out….) just remember that these FEATURES COMMONLY ASSOCIATED WITH GENDER dont always “line up” or “match” the way they’re “supposed to” in real life and they dont have to in your rule 63 designs either :)
ANYWAY if anyone actually read all that pls let me know if i have faltered in my logic somewhere, or what ur thoughts are. thx!!!
help this is a really good post im going to start crying