Queen Hippolyta – Prized Possession (part one)

Queen Hippolyta is a mixture of Monica Martin...

Queen Hippolyta is a mixture of Monica Martin…

As night fell, so did the rain. As thunder boomed across the black sky, so did the merciless pounding of war drums. Akiyama marched, hands tied behind his back and a blindfold wrapped around his eyes, toward the Forbidden Palace.

The Forbidden Palace rests in the heart of the Amazonian Empire. Akiyama is going to see Queen Hippolyta, the despotic tyrant who rules over the Amazons. The reality of being so far into enemy territory, where many of his friends and ancestors have perished, is enough to make Akiyama sick to his stomach.

Throughout his entire life, Akiyama has ingrained into his psyche the belief that the Amazons are his tribe’s mortal enemy. A courageous young Samurai warrior representing the powerful Nakatomi clan, Akiyama was captured in battle just hours ago and immediately was ordered to pay Queen Hippolyta a visit.

Akiyama couldn’t see the rain, but he could feel it. Like an ocean falling from the sky, he could not be sure whether his village would be flooded by morning or if they would avoid the worst. He thought about his father, his mother and his four brothers. He thought about his clan. He thought about his own life. Would Queen Hippolyta brutally execute him as a demonstration of her cruelty? Would his capture deter General Ijiri from launching another sneak attack against the Amazonian occupiers?

General Ijiri, a very wise man, loves Akiyama like his own son. He cannot imagine what the powerful military leader is thinking right now, knowing Akiyama is being escorted to his inevitable death.

The two guards accompanying Akiyama take him up a long flight of stairs. Finally they reach indoors, as Akiyama feels the rain stop. He hears whispers coming from all directions. He hates the Amazons, but respects them. Their brute strength, strategic cunning and relentless spirit should be admired by anyone. He also fears them, especially their ruthless Queen.

He hears two large chamber doors open. One of the guards kicks him in the back, forcing him to fall forward. The doors close with a loud thud. He hears a voice; a low, gravelly voice that reverberates with unquestioned authority. One of her bodyguards comes toward him and rips off the blindfold. Akiyama blinks several times to adjust his eyes to the light’s dull yellow glow. Finally, he looks up, still on his knees, and regards the all-powerful Queen who has ordered for his presence.

Standing at an impressive 6’ 5”, Queen Hippolyta wears a regal velvet green backless dress that shows off her enormously strong muscles. Statuesque and carrying the confidence of ten thousand brave warriors, Queen Hippolyta’s golden bronze skin, long black hair, piercing green eyes and strikingly gorgeous face perfectly complement her large muscular frame. With biceps the size of coconuts, a chest as broad as a bear, legs as thick as tree trunks and abs that not even her protective breast plate could hide, Akiyama now understands why she could move mountains and men at will. Who in their right mind would possibly want to defy her?

“Prisoner, stand up and come towards me,” she commands. Her authoritative voice seemingly causes the ground to shake.

Akiyama struggles to stand, as he is still in a tremendous amount of pain from the evening’s battle. A large cut bleeds across his muscular chest. He may not have the muscle mass or remarkable strength of the Queen, but he can hold his own. Akiyama eventually comes to his feet and takes several paces toward the throne, which sits at the center of the palatial chamber.

“What is your name, prisoner?”

Akiyama looks around and notices at least two dozen muscular female bodyguards standing at attention around the chamber. Wearing metallic body armor and holding six-foot long spears, Akiyama knew his chances of escape were nonexistent. He decides he could not put up a fight and accepts his fate.

...and the flawless Alina Popa.

…and the flawless Alina Popa.

“My name is Akiyama, samurai warrior of the Nakatomi clan,” he proudly announces. Queen Hippolyta steps forward and circles him, inspecting Akiyama’s appearance. Several inches shorter than her, Akiyama’s athletic body and handsome appearance pleases the Queen immensely. She unexpectedly feels a tinge of attraction toward the young samurai. He may be a representative of her mortal enemy, but her undeniable lust for this young man supersedes whatever hatred she feels for his tribe.

“You are an impressive youth. I am not surprised that you have fought my armies many times and did not die,” Hippolyta observes. She extends her right index finger and feels Akiyama’s wound. He is taken aback by the remarkable strength she demonstrates with just that simple motion. Feelings of lust also immediately erupt within his soul. “What shall I do with you, prisoner?”

Akiyama remains silent. Queen Hippolyta faces him directly. Her eyes darken.

“Answer me, boy. In what manner should I treat you, my captured prize?”

The young warrior looks around the room. He notices disdainful smiles coming from her array of lethal bodyguards. His heart races faster than it ever has before.

“Do what you will. I will accept whatever punishment you lay on me. It will be an honor to die for my tribe. I am prepared to endure your worst.”

Her eyebrow rises slightly. She locks eyes with her prisoner, stares at him intently and bellows with laughter. The rest of the chamber remains eerily quiet.

“Very brave of you. I was expecting a different answer. Something more in the realm of begging for mercy or offering to become a spy for my army. But not this.”

“I am glad I can please you,” he says with scorn. Queen Hippolyta stops laughing and grabs his throat. Akiyama feels the air cutting off from him. He drops to one knee, looking up at his enemy with fear in his eyes.

A castle overlooking the mountains.

A castle overlooking the mountains.

“You do not speak unless I give you permission to speak, is that clear?” she commands. All Akiyama could muster is a weak nod of his head. Seemingly pleased with that reaction, she drops him to the ground and walks back toward her throne. Akiyama coughs and gasps for air. The Queen snaps her fingers and two bodyguards approach the wounded prisoner and grab him by both arms. They hoist him up to his feet and drag him toward their leader.

“You will discover that my temper can be volatile at times, fair youth. I try to be as gentle as I can, but I cannot let weakness enter into my mind. The moment I relent on my brutality is the moment my Empire will begin to crumble. I will not let that happen,” she says. “You will soon learn why the Amazonian High Council chose to put me in charge. You will also learn why I had them all put to death so that my power could be omnipotent.”

Rumors of Queen Hippolyta murdering all eighteen members of the Amazonian High Council, which had ruled the Amazonian Empire for a thousand generations, circulated around the Kingdom. Nobody in the Nakatomi clan believed it fully, except for the Emperor, whose sister once sat on the Council. It was partially out of anger of his sister being killed that he ordered for the Samurai Army to rise up against the Amazons and form an insurgency.

The Queen motions to the bodyguards to take Akiyama away. They pick him up and elevate him off the floor.

“Take him away,” she orders. Akiyama and the two bodyguards start to move toward the front chamber doors.

“Stop! Not that way.”

The guards halt and turn around toward their Queen. Drops of sweat roll off Akiyama’s handsome face. He struggles to breathe.

“Take him to my bed chamber.” An audible collective gasp arises from the room. Obediently, the two guards change directions and head toward a back exit facing north. The Queen holds up her left hand to silence the room. As Akiyama and the two guards exit, he steals a quick glance her way and instantly makes eye contact with her. He sees in her eyes a wicked combination of anger, craftiness, deviousness and irrepressible lust. She smiles as the stone doors close behind him.

Walking down a narrow and vast corridor, Akiyama is taken deeper and deeper into the heart of the Forbidden Palace. They pass by an outdoor training area, which is still busy despite the persisting rain. Akiyama sees hundreds of Amazon warriors lifting heavy rocks, pushing large boulders, practicing combat with bamboo sticks, pulling ropes with stones attached to them and running laps around the square. He is stunned to see so many gorgeous muscular women of all shapes, sizes and ages diligently training to become elite warriors. He’s fought many of them before, so he knows how formidable these women can be in the heat of battle.

Jeannie Paparone is demonstrating what a typical Amazon warrior would look like. No doubt, very deadly.

Jeannie Paparone is demonstrating what a typical Amazon warrior would look like. No doubt, very deadly.

They turn direction and walk up a small grassy hill. Once they reach the top, Akiyama sees a small castle overlooking a lake. A beautiful garden surrounds the castle from all sides, featuring flowers he’d never seen before, as well as marble statues of ancient Amazon Queens from centuries past. All of them as muscular and intimidating as Hippolyta, he can see that she’s descended from a long line of legendary warriors. But none of them compare to Hippolyta’s impressive accomplishments, as right now nearly seventy percent of the Kingdom is under Amazonian control, which far exceeds the forty percent achieved by Hippolyta’s great–great–great grandmother many moons ago.

One of the guards takes out a key and unlocks the front door. They motion for Akiyama to go inside.

“Go in. We will close the door behind you,” one of the guards tells him.

Looking up at a majestic stone spire that reaches up to the Heavens, Akiyama is enjoying the icy rain drops falling on his face.

“Get in, prisoner,” the other guard orders. “Do as you’re told.”

Akiyama takes the hint and steps inside. The doors close behind him. The two guards take out broadswords from their belts and stand at attention by the door. Inside the castle, rich tapestries and polished furniture adorn the entryway. On the walls are paintings celebrating the victories of past wars. Akiyama feels disgusted when he sees a portrait of the Nakatomi Emperor’s head being held up by Hippolyta’s great grandmother. This story is taught to every young boy growing up in his clan. It is with a sense of righteous vengeance that Nakatomi Samurai warriors live every single day of their lives.

Moments pass. The rain continues its downpour. A flash of lightning sweeps across the skies. Akiyama finds a mirror hanging on the living room wall and inspects his wound. The cut has clotted, but the pain still persists. He sees his disheveled appearance and says a short prayer to himself, wishing the gods above will grant him good fortune in this time of peril.

Out of the corner of his eye, he notices a procession of female guards marching in a straight line toward the front entrance. A looming sense of dread suddenly fills Akiyama’s heart. He knows she’s coming for him. There’s absolutely no chance of escape. Whatever happens will happen. Akiyama will accept his fate no matter what transpires in these next moments.

An elegant flight of stairs in an old European castle.

An elegant flight of stairs in an old European castle.

The front door opens. It’s Queen Hippolyta, dressed in a scarlet red night robe and an elegant violet gemstone necklace hanging between her bountiful breasts. She closes the door. Her imposing frame struggles to fit through the small entrance. Akiyama can only stand still, completely frozen in time.

“So, boy. What is your name?”

“Akiyama.”

The Queen approaches him. Even from a distance, Akiyama can feel the intense heat rising from her powerful body. Her scent. Her presence. Her authority. Her muscles. All of it petrifies Akiyama with both fear and awe. He does not know how this will end, but he knows she has different intentions than whatever she implied earlier in the throne room.

“I am pleased that my army brought you to me. I did not expect my captured prisoner would be so…pleasing to the eye. Congratulations, Akiyama,” she says, wiping a drop of rainwater from her immaculate face. Akiyama’s breathing becomes more serene. He does not presently sense the degree of danger that he had felt before.

“Am I allowed to speak?”

She gives him a curt laugh. The Queen walks toward a sturdy oak table and pours herself a glass of wine. She takes a sip and turns to face him, leaning her daunting body against the wall, right next to a painting of two Amazon warriors cutting off the penis of a captured enemy soldier.

“When we are alone in my castle, you are free to speak whenever you feel the urge to do so. When we are in front of my fighters, you must obey the proper protocol. From now on, you must address me as ‘my Queen.’ It’s how we must do things around here. Do you understand?” Akiyama nods his head. Queen Hippolyta appears to accept this response.

“Good. Then go with me to my bed chamber. Now.”

As she turns toward a staircase running along the center of the foyer, Akiyama boldly chooses to exercise his right to freely speak.

“What do you intend to do with me, my Queen?” She stops and finishes the rest of her wine. She sets the empty glass on a nearby bookshelf.

“I intend to enjoy your presence for as long as I wish. You will eventually meet your unavoidable demise, but before that happens, I must get what I want from your short time left on this Earth.” An ominous rumble of thunder rolls across the night sky. The castle, lit by candlelight, casts a spooky orange glow that makes Queen Hippolyta seem almost otherworldly in her appearance.

“I understand. You are the Queen, and I am your prisoner. Do with me what you will, my Queen.”

Queen Hippolyta, filled with untamed desire, sweeps toward her young prisoner and picks him up with her strong arms. Akiyama temporarily forgets his fear as he feels her bulging biceps press against his body. She kisses him on the lips and bites down on his tongue. He tastes blood as she removes her mouth from his. She feels no remorse whatsoever.

“I intend to, young boy.”

Holding him tightly, the Queen takes her prized possession with her and walks up the stairs toward her bed chamber.

To be continued.

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For Female Bodybuilding Fans, Workout Videos are Our Porn

The next generation of female bodybuilding, Shannon Courtney.

The next generation of female bodybuilding, Shannon Courtney.

We all have our own vices.

Some of us like to gamble. Others like to party “in da club” till the wee hours of the morning. There are some who enjoy high-fat and high-sugary foods a little too much. How about smoking? Or excessive drinking? Or, *gasp* hitting the Mary Jane a few times here and there?

Unless you’re an ascetic monk living high in the Tibetan mountains, most of us have vices that we’re either proud of or wish would remain a secret. But let’s face it. Unless your vice hurts someone else, what’s the true harm? I, for example, am not one to claim to be a police officer of “outstanding character.”

Another popular vice that many of us share is pornography. Whether we’re talking about late night pay-per-view skin flicks, dirty magazines, snuff films, or good-old-fashioned Internet porn, we all know what we’re dealing with. Porn is everywhere in our society. On the cover of magazines, in popular movies, in clothing store advertisements, in music videos…everywhere. Not just hidden underneath your mattress or behind the playground monkey bars. Both softcore and hardcore porn (however you define either term) is saturated in our culture.

It’s so saturated, we sometimes forget what we’re seeing. Most of us would point to a Jenna Jameson video and say with definitive confidence, “That’s porn!” However, we might look at a Beyoncé music video and say, “Well, it’s not quite porn, but it is quite risqué. I would say…that’s NOT porn.” Fair enough. Everyone has the right to hold their own standards.

The real definition of “pornography” is as follows: “Printed or visual material containing the explicit description or display of sexual organs or activity, intended to stimulate erotic rather than aesthetic or emotional feelings.”

This photo of Lisa Cross might give me a heart attack if I stare at it long enough. But I'd die a happy man.

This photo of Lisa Cross might give me a heart attack if I stare at it long enough. But I’d die a happy man.

Basically, porn is media that’s intended to turn you on. It doesn’t have to be explicit. It doesn’t even have to be visual. Written erotica can constitute as porn if we assume a wide all-inclusive definition. Are risqué music videos or provocative fashion ads intended to sexually arouse you? Well, not primarily. They’re intended to persuade you to buy record albums and clothing. But if the adage that “sex sells” is true – which nobody would argue it isn’t – certainly eliciting an erotic response is one of the tactics used to convert advertising media to sales.

Alright. We’ve established that porn is everywhere. We’ve also discussed that porn can manifest itself in a variety of ways, not all of them explicit. Porn can also have objectives outside of just turning you on, such as convincing you to open your wallet and buy something. Other objectives could include persuading you to think about a social issue in a different way (nude PSAs by PETA, anyone?) or inspiring you toward self-improvement (pole dance aerobics isn’t just for exercise, people!).

This all ties in to female muscle fandom, trust me. What, did you think this post would be totally unrelated to what my blog is primarily about? I start with this simple question:

As a female muscle fan, what turns you on the most?

Many of us would answer with traditional responses like FBBs masturbating, FBBs having sex with scrawny guys (or each other), FBBs dancing around in the nude, FBBs glamorously posing in the nude, etc. Essentially, we get turned on by FBBs doing things in from of the camera that traditional looking women also do in mainstream porn. But if there’s one thing I understand about female muscle lovers, it’s that we’re especially turned on by something else entirely, something that’s not necessarily X-rated.

Workout videos.

Or, more specifically, videos of female bodybuilders doing what they do best: building their bodies at the gym.

When I say “workout videos,” the image that probably immediately pops into your head is that of what Denise Austin and Jane Fonda created in the 80s and 90s. Or maybe those old-school Tao Bo videos by Billy Blanks. Ah, yes. Those were the days. The good old days of cheesy music, bad camera angles, bright yellow stretch pants and enough sweat to fill a small lake. I can’t imagine what it must’ve smelled like in those studios. Yuck.

But, no. These are not the type of workout videos I am referring to. Instead, I’m referring to amateurish or semi-professional looking videos of female bodybuilders pumping iron in the gym. They could be shot on a cell phone camera, a store bought camcorder, or perhaps an actual professional-quality video camera. They could be shot for Flex magazine, Bodybuilding.com or for the FBB’s own personal brand. Quality notwithstanding, the idea stays the same: video footage of beautiful athletes doing what they do best.

For female bodybuilding fans, workout videos are our porn. They are what turns us on the most. They titillate us unlike any other media. We find them more arousing than videos that are explicitly sexual in nature. Sound strange? Let me explain what I’m talking about.

As female bodybuilding fans, we don’t just love the final product. Yes, of course images of Alina Popa or Lisa Cross looking ripped and contest-ready can be a divine spectacle to behold, but we’re just as interested in the process it took them to look that way in addition to drooling over how they eventually look.

What’s arousing about female bodybuilders isn’t just that they look so damn sexy, it’s also the fact that they have to bust their butt in order to look that good. There’s something about the strenuous nature of bodybuilding that makes these athletes so remarkable. Female bodybuilders are especially intriguing because their looks are both unconventional and supremely difficult to attain (and maintain).

This is why a grainy 90-second clip shot on an iPhone of a female bodybuilder, completely covered in sweat pants and an old t-shirt, squatting 300+ pounds is way more erotic than watching two silicone-enhanced teeny boppers sucking on each other’s clits with awful automated music playing in the background. If I were a sheltered teenage boy, the latter might excite me like no other. But as an adult, that stuff bores me to death. It’s unexciting. I’d even go as far as to say that it’s disgusting.

Watching two nameless 18-year-old women engaging in sex acts with total lack of interest or passion while moaning from an orgasm so fake it belongs in a can of Velveeta cheese isn’t erotic. It’s dumb. It’s an insult to my intelligence. It’s sophomoric. It’s a shame to the word “erotic.” I’m not necessarily knocking on those who actually like this sort of thing (I’m just kidding – I am knocking on you!), but get with the program, people! Doesn’t authenticity count for something anymore?

Ah, yes. Now we get to the heart of the matter. Authenticity. Workout videos are authentic. I’ve seen a fair share of fake or staged workout videos, but the ones that are real are so fun to watch because it gives you a brief glimpse into the process it takes to transform a woman’s body from “sexy” to “All-Powerful Goddess.”

If more women looked like Mavi Gioia at the gym, I'd go there every single day of my life.

If more women looked like Mavi Gioia at the gym, I’d go there every single day of my life.

But it’s not just about the process of becoming a bodybuilder or the authentic nature of these videos that excite us so much. There’s something unspeakably tantalizing about watching a woman work hard to achieve her dreams. Maybe it’s because a lot of us guys aren’t accustomed to seeing women lift heavy at the gym. There’s an Internet meme that says that “A girl in the gym is much hotter than a girl in the club.” I would agree with that wholeheartedly. But why do I feel that way exactly?

Maybe it goes back to the meritocratic nature of our society. We love female bodybuilders because they earn their beauty. Not every one of us is born with a beautiful face or flawless skin. But we can (to an extent) control the rest of us. A bodybuilder does exactly that. They are in complete control of their physical selves, even to the point that it becomes an obsession. A ripped body is something you earn with your sweat and labor. Mother Nature may not have given you other natural physical gifts, but if you want six-pack abs, you can go out and get it. If you have the willpower to do whatever is necessary to get it, of course.

Another reason why we love watching women lift is because it goes against our collective history. Historically, men were the laborers and women were the caretakers. Men were expected to do all the heavy lifting, both literally and figuratively. The fact that men are naturally stronger than women explains a lot of this. But these gendered roles still in many regards persist to the present day. So when we’re in the gym – and I should hurry up and say that the “workout video” thing could also apply to stealing peeks at women lifting at the gym – and we see a cute girl deadlifting more than her own bodyweight, it’s pretty damn sexy to watch. Very damn sexy.

Breaking the old rules of male/female roles? Making an effort to sculpt a sexy body instead of relying on plastic surgery, deceptive clothing (padded bras, for example) and heavily caked-on makeup? Yes, please!

Workout videos, and seeing up-close-and-personal women lifting heavy weights, are without a doubt our porn of choice. Regardless of the production values or quality of the video footage, this excites us more than anything. Here’s an example:

On Lisa Cross’ Facebook page, she’s uploaded a short video that illustrates exactly what I’m talking about. It’s a ridiculously short clip of her squatting a ton of weight on a hack squat machine. In the brief 41-second video, we can hardly even see Lisa. We can’t see her face. Nor her full figure. In fact, she’s as completely covered as a nun. No sexy revealing clothing. Nothing glamourous happening here. But she’s lifting a jaw-dropping amount of weight. And you can clearly hear her grunting as she squats up and down. Her heavy breathing isn’t exactly orgasmic, but its resemblance is impossible to ignore. But most important, you truly get the sense that she’s working her tail off. This isn’t showing off for the camera. This isn’t staged. This isn’t theatre of any sorts. This is authentic. She’s actually working out with the real intent of getting stronger and bigger. This is the master artist in action. She didn’t earn my nickname for her, “Lisa Cross, the British Bombshell,” just by sitting on her butt, watching TV and eating potato chips all day long. She’s a beautiful sexy Goddess because she’s willing to do the dirty work a lot of us aren’t too keen to do.

That might be the best explanation yet. The Dirty Work. Porn videos are also known as “dirty videos” because they show people engaging in unclean, filthy sex acts (as dubbed by certain folks). But ironically, workout videos of FBBs doing the dirty work of heavy lifting, grunting, sweating and torturing themselves for the sake of self-improvement are way more sexually exciting than watching two nameless bozos who can’t act have unemotional sex with each other. That stuff is a dime a dozen. Witnessing an elite female bodybuilder work on her craft is like watching Laurence Olivier perform Shakespeare, Luciano Pavarotti sing opera or Itzhak Perlman play the violin. You cannot look away from watching the elites do what they do best. The rest of us mortals can only stare and passively watch.

To reiterate a previous point, men who love muscular women aren’t just interested in the final product. We’re also interested in the process it took to achieve that final product. Workout videos, and other related media, excite us for reasons we can’t fully explain. Watching that video clip of Lisa Cross – and for the record, you can hardly even tell it’s actually Lisa! – genuinely gives me the chills. It makes my heart skip a beat. It’s a feeling I can’t explain, but every female muscle fan knows what I’m talking about. But it’s not just this particular clip. It’s the thousands of others like it.

Alina Popa doing leg lifts. Debi Laszewski doing lateral pulldowns. Colette Nelson bench pressing. Brandi Mae Akers doing bicep curls. Lindsay Mulinazzi deadlifting. Jana Linke-Sippl killing her arms on a bicep machine. Shannon Courtney punishing her rock-hard quads at the gym. Mavi Gioia doing triceps extensions. The list goes on. And these are videos that I’ve seen. No doubt there are countless more like them out there on the Internet ready for us to drool over.

The larger point is that female muscle fans love strong women for a variety of reasons. It’s not just about lust or appreciating a certain aesthetic. Female bodybuilders are unique in so many ways. They have a quality to them that’s almost impossible to describe, but equally impossible to ignore. Once you’re hooked, you instantly “get it.” You understand their appeal and even begin to wonder why you didn’t notice them earlier. I honestly cannot believe why I didn’t become attracted to FBBs sooner. I really started to notice them when I was 18 and a freshman in college. And how did it start? I was researching workout videos online and stumbled upon amateurish clips of beautiful women lifting at the gym.

Well, viola! There you go. For many of us, including me, workout videos were what got us hooked in the first place. So there’s a reason why they hold a special place in our hearts. The element of sentimental value is also at play here. Maybe that explains a lot. Maybe there’s something about witnessing a beautiful woman exert herself at the gym that lights a fire inside our souls. It begins the “Madness,” as the expert blogger Female Muscle Slave puts it.

Come to think of it, calling workout videos “porn” cheapens what they mean to us. “Porn” is what people view to fulfill a momentary sexual urge. Workout videos, on the other hand, have a more spiritual component attached to them. It’s like a music lover watching Sir Georg Solti conduct Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. Or a great philosopher delivering a lecture on the state of the universe. It’s poetry in motion. Watching a strong, muscular woman lift is like a religious experience, or to put it in more easy-to-digest secular terms – it is art. Female bodybuilders are artists. And watching them lift is like watching a painter paint, or a sculptor sculpt, or a musician compose.

Female bodybuilders are masterpieces of human achievement. And witnessing them transform into who they are is as enticing as it gets. Just ask any one of us. All we can do it sit back, relax and indulge in the captivating beauty on full display before our eyes.

The Impeccable Female Form

Would I consider Jay Fuchs to be "perfect?" In a word, "yes!"

Would I consider Jay Fuchs to be “perfect?” In a word, “yes!”

What defines the perfect female body?

It’s a more difficult question to answer than you’d think. For those of us who are attracted to women, we just know beauty when we see it. We can’t describe it. We can’t explain it. We can’t quantify it. We just know what a beautiful female body looks like whenever we are fortunate enough to come across one.

If you took a poll of hundreds of straight men (and perhaps some lesbian women) to describe the “perfect female form,” the answers you’d get would probably be pretty predictable:

Gorgeous face.

Big boobs.

Sleek arms.

Long, smooth legs.

Rounded butt.

Hour-glass hips.

Curved back.

Yadda, yadda, yadda. Certain adjectives may change, but the general idea stays the same. Our collective definition of the perfect female form is for the most part fairly uniform.

But for fans of female bodybuilders, our personal definition of perfection is significantly different. We prefer not sleek arms, but bulging arms. We love long legs, but we’d rather gaze upon veiny thighs the size of tree trunks. We love calves big enough to crush a watermelon. We love breasts just like any other guy, but we’re perfectly willing to sacrifice noticeable cleavage if it means her broad pecs are allowed to shine boldly.

Everyone has a different definition of “perfect.” The results from this imaginary poll may be varied, but odds are they will share in common the aesthetic we’ve come to accept in today’s world: a perfect combination of slenderness with curves.

Call it the “Marilyn Monroe Look.” Or what Cindy Crawford was back in the 1990s. Or Kim Kardashian today. Famous sex icons come and go, but beauty is more or less timeless. True, historians will point out that light skin was considered beautiful back in the Middle Ages because it demonstrated wealth and prestige. People with tan skin were considered poor because they had to labor outdoors all day long, as opposed to their pale skinned peers who had servants do their dirty work instead. Today, almost the exact opposite is in vogue. Tanned skin communicates healthiness, vitality and trendiness. There’s a reason why tanning salons are so darn popular. Tanning practically seems like a full-time job for some people these days. Giving people tans definitely is, that’s for sure.

A vast majority of us would consider the women you see on the cover of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit magazines or featured in Victoria’s Secret ads to be the peak of female beauty. The names and faces may change over time, but atypical-looking women usually don’t find themselves so widely plastered across such media. Caitlyn Jenner being a unique exception, what most of us consider “beautiful” can typically be widely agreed upon.

So this begs the question: If beauty is, by and large, relatively universal, can the same go for perfection? Is the “perfect female form” something we can widely recognize? Or do differences of opinion make this conversation moot?

Marilyn Monroe, the greatest sex icon of her generation, perhaps of all time.

Marilyn Monroe, the greatest sex icon of her generation, perhaps of all time.

The best way to answer this question is to pose yet another question: What specifically defines “perfect?” In baseball parlance, a “perfect game” is when a starting pitcher retires all 27 batters in a row without giving up a single hit, walk, hit-batter or error. No one reaches first base in a nine inning ballgame under any circumstances whatsoever. Even if an error is committed by a defensive player, which is obviously not the fault of the pitcher, the perfect game is undone. If the center fielder accidentally drops a can-of-corn pop fly, the perfect game ends, even if 99.999999 percent of the time he makes that catch.

So, in baseball, “perfect” isn’t a passive state of being; it’s an accomplishment. Something isn’t perfect simply by being deemed perfect. Perfection isn’t passive. It’s active. It requires work. It requires meticulous labor to reach a goal. Leonardo da Vinci’s “La Joconde” (better known as the “Mona Lisa”) didn’t happen by accident. He didn’t just splatter paint onto a canvas Jackson Pollock-style and call it good. Rather, he put much thought into his process and painstakingly worked to render his creation. That’s why art critics call it a “masterpiece.” That’s also why these same critics cringe at what is known today as “modern art.” While it could be bold and expressive, a lot of the modern art you see hung up at respectable museums don’t appear to be that artistic. I’m no art connoisseur myself, but I can certainly see the difference between a Rembrandt and a dried up piece of animal dung meant to represent the existential nihilism derived from our excessive militaristic oppressive capitalistic Euro-American-centric hetero-normative patriarchy.

What just happened? I don’t know.

The point is that perfection is an end goal, not just a mere label we place onto an object. The Impeccable Female Form is perhaps not just an opinion, but a commentary on the state of femaleness, cultural aesthetic and male/female dichotomy. For example, Michelangelo’s sculpture of David is considered a Renaissance masterpiece. Created in the early 16th century, the marble male nude of the Biblical hero David represents the height of human power. In the Old Testament, David was a hero who defeated his enemies with help from the Almighty. David is The Man if there ever was anyone who deserved that nickname.

The sculpture, at the time, symbolized the zenith of the human form. Standing tall and proud, David’s muscular stature and overwhelming confidence should instill fear into his enemies. Not even the mighty Goliath stood a chance against our celebrated hero. Meant to signify the fierce independence of the Republic of Florence, between 1501 and 1504 Michelangelo crafted his legendary masterwork with the political implications of power, authority and the almost God-like importance of one man on Earth, in mind.

In David, we’re supposed to see exactly that. A man with God-like implications here on Earth. Thus, in a very literal sense, David perhaps was supposed to represent the Impeccable Human Form. In a world dominated by men, “human” became synonymous with “male.” Female beauty was almost kept in a separate category. Male beauty was human beauty. If humans were created in the image of God, it make sense a perfect looking human would be the closest we can ever get to actually witnessing God up-close-and-personal.

"David" by Michelangelo.

“David” by Michelangelo.

The perfect human form, therefore, now has the element of the divine attached to it. If men are gods, are women goddesses?

The answer is unequivocally “yes.” Women are indeed goddesses. A perfect female form would in fact be a close reflection of divinity, just as male perfection was once considered. Zeus may be wholly powerful among all gods, but Athena shouldn’t be disrespected in her own right. The ancient Greeks believed the gods in the heavens shaped the affairs of the men and women below. They even personified their gods into the images of men and women. How interesting.

This is a long way of getting to the point that should be obvious to us all: the Impeccable Female Form should reflect the same strength, gracefulness, power and beauty we’ve come to appreciate in today’s female bodybuilders. Alas, our much beloved muscle bunnies aren’t just athletes. They’re symbols of human perfection. And they didn’t get that way by accident or privilege. They earned it with their sweat, dedication, hard work and treasure.

Like a pitcher tossing a perfect game or a bowler rolling a perfect game, they had to earn their stripes. David, likewise, wasn’t deified (as much as a mortal man can be) arbitrarily. He had to go out and defeat Goliath. Then he had to rise through the ranks and become King of Judah. Whether you’re religious or not is not the point here. The point is that perfection is never granted passively. You have to earn it every step of the way.

This explains why many women (and men) resort to plastic surgery, fad diets and unauthorized medication (which may or may not be effective) to achieve the “perfect look.” Most of us are not born flawlessly beautiful. Most of us look at Monica Bellucci on the silver screen and think to ourselves; “I’ll never look that beautiful because she was born that way.”

Indeed, beauty is genetic. There’s no escaping that fact. No amount of makeup or trips to the surgeon’s office will undo what Mother Nature (a.k.a., your family’s gene pool) gave you. However, we’re not necessarily talking about facial beauty. We’re talking about the human form, which is what your silhouette looks like. We’re referring to not what you look like in a mirror, but what you look like behind a white screen and bright light.

As a young lad growing up in the late 90s and early 2000s, ex-WWF diva Rena Mero was my first major celebrity crush.

As a young lad growing up in the late 90s and early 2000s, ex-WWF diva Rena Mero was my first major celebrity crush.

You can, to a point, control what your silhouette looks like. Female bodybuilders are doing that every single day of their lives. What they choose to eat, when they choose to eat, when and how they lift weights, when they sleep, what supplements they take…all of these choices are carefully made to ensure their bodies can look a certain way. Crafting a perfect combination of muscularity, symmetry and femininity, FBBs are truly artists in every sense of the word. Just as our friend Michelangelo sculpted with marble, FBBs work with their own flesh and blood. Sounds pretty hardcore, doesn’t it?

If we assume female bodybuilders to be artists, are they not working toward the goal of attaining perfection? Even world champion bodybuilders should never rest on their laurels and assume they’ve “arrived.” That sort of complacency breeds mediocrity. The mindset of a champion dictates that you constantly work toward self-improvement, regardless of what people say or how tangibly “good” you already are at your sport. In this respect, female bodybuilders (and their male counterparts) are indeed artists, striving toward sculpting their perfect masterpiece with the materials given to them by God. As Amedeo Modigliani used a paintbrush and palette as his tools, a bodybuilder uses dumbbells, barbells, and food as theirs.

So it makes perfect sense for the Impeccable Female Form to come from a bodybuilder. After all, they “earn” their physique through hard work, dedication, scientific precision and sacrifice. No one wants “perfection” to be a product of passive entitlement. A slender looking woman may in fact be beautiful, but isn’t there something to be said for a physique that’s very darn difficult to attain? Looking like Alina Popa is a challenge that only an elite number of women will ever be able to achieve. Her flawless balance between being highly muscular and unquestionably feminine makes her as unique of an athlete as there’s ever been. And that is no exaggeration.

This is not to disrespect or discount the challenges of maintaining a “traditional” feminine look. The point of this blog post isn’t to shame or condemn any particular body type. Instead, I’m trying to illustrate a larger point: the ideal female form – or perhaps, better yet, the quintessential female form – should lean more toward the muscular than the skinny. Bulky rather than thin. Bigger instead of smaller. You get the idea.

The simple argument that the Impeccable Female Form should be that of a bodybuilder implies that strength should be a crucial facet to femininity. Ignore any of that talk about the “weaker sex.” That’s complete and total nonsense. If we genuinely want to lift up women as being strong, independent beings, this paradigm shift is a welcomed first step. Aesthetically speaking, if the Impeccable Female Form is defined as being muscular, curvy and strong – does this not communicate empowerment more than mere words? Words are cheap. Action is not.

Besides making an obvious feminist statement, a Muscular Feminine Ideal does more to break down negative stereotypes than anything else. For as much as our society preaches the importance of “female empowerment,” how seriously do we accept this? Do we truly mean that, or are we more interested in patting ourselves on the back and verbalizing what we want instead of actually pursuing what we want to see change? I leave the answer to these questions to you.

Whether or not anyone will ever accept this frame of mind is not the point. Not everyone will agree that muscularity should have anything to do with how we define female beauty. Nor should we all agree to this. But as female muscle fans, we share the inherent belief that there’s a reason why we love strong women beyond simple lust. I believe that wholeheartedly. We may not explicitly know it, but we know female bodybuilders represent something bigger. A female bodybuilder isn’t just a competitive athlete; no different than a soccer player, basketball player or tennis player. We know they belong in a separate category apart from the rest. Am I right?

Indeed, there is something noteworthy going on. Bodybuilders, both male and female, symbolize the highest form of human achievement. They represent the human being at its pinnacle of perfection. There’s a reason why Michelangelo chose to portray David as a strong warrior instead of a skinny average Joe. Wonder Woman may not traditionally be illustrated as being muscular, but you definitely can tell the artists who draw her would definitely do that if they were given more lenient creative license. That might not help them sell more comic books per se, but they would be making a pretty bold statement in doing so.

The Impeccable Female Form personified in Lindsay Mulinazzi.

The Impeccable Female Form personified in Lindsay Mulinazzi.

Deep down inside, female muscle fans wish more women in society looked like Larissa Reis or Shannon Courtney. Not necessarily out of selfish fetishistic reasons (although that is a major part of it), but because we truly believe society would be better for it. The Impeccable Female (and Male) Form isn’t just about determining what kind of eye candy we like best. It’s more than that. It’s about maximizing what it means to be a human being, a creation of God (or whatever higher power you believe in). If we assume the Imago Dei theological concept to be ingrained into Western culture, we take on the belief that bodybuilders of all genders are doing what they can to become Divine.

Not in a literal sense, but in a figurative sense. A muscular man or woman isn’t actually a god, but they’re the closest we can get here on Earth.

So, what exactly defines the perfect female body? Divine. Intentional. Elite. Strong. Powerful. Potent. Authoritative. Commanding. Muscular. All of these things.

Regardless of your ideological or theological background, every single female muscle fan knows the women they love are bigger – and not just literally – than most of the people we encounter day-in and day-out. They represent something tangibly deific. We don’t refer to them as “goddesses” for no good reason.

Oh yeah. Goddess. I do seem to recall that label being put onto a female bodybuilder at least once or twice. Now we all know why that is. We view them as belonging to a higher status than the rest of us. They’re gods among men, or goddesses among women. We intrinsically know this to be true.

The Impeccable Female Form explains all of this. Muscles are a form of physical Nirvana that every one of us is striving to achieve. Maybe not in any practical sense, but we feel it intuitively. I’ve never considered my love for female muscle to have a spiritual component, but the more I think about it, perhaps it does.

Maybe we female muscle fans are helping usher in a new age of Enlightenment. Are we the forbearers of a shift toward a higher level of Consciousness?

Uh, yeah. Probably not. But it sure is fun to think about. This is probably overthinking things, but life is too short to shortchange yourself. Don’t be afraid to take pride in your female muscle fandom. You may not be a modern day culture warrior, but you are definitely on the right track. Muscular women are beautiful, and our world would be a better place if every man, woman and child felt that way.

Can I get an “amen?”