Well, FemBots are synthetic milk for those who dream about getting rid of the cow.

Fembots were a pop-culture staple long before Austin Powers battled them—witness the popularity of The Bionic Woman, The Stepford Wives and Blade Runner. But what is it about curvaceous cyborgs that stirs the imagination? To some, fembots represent the perfect male fantasy: They’re sexy and submissive and have more techie features than the Xbox 360. But they also have a dangerous side that can reduce walls to rubble and make an army retreat. Perhaps the fembot’s allure resides in her ability to walk the line between total obedience and unfathomable power.

Feminist science-fiction writer Amy Thomson, author of robot-comes-of-age novel Virtual Girl, suggests that the fembot myth is attractive to men because it deals with “a woman you create and control.” But tech journalist Daniel Wilson, author of How to Survive a Robot Uprising, argues that fictional fembots have hardly been portrayed as controllable—in fact, he claims, they’re often presented as the most dangerous robots of all, because feelings of attraction to them could leave their victims vulnerable to attack. “A sexy robot that’s aggressive could be a wolf in rubberized skin,” he says.

Then again, machine sex is just sophisticated masturbation.

  1. woktiny says:

    what if you don’t know its a machine?

  2. Mike Voice says:

    I prefer to think of it as an elaborate form of masturbation, rather than a sophisticated one… 😉

  3. Olivia O says:

    Woman as servant, woman as monster it’s two sides of the same misogynistic coin.

  4. Greg says:

    Hey! Thanks for reminding me that I haven’t listened to Zappa’s “Fembot in a wet t-shirt” in way too long.

  5. Angel H. Wong says:

    I want a bearmanbot! One with a heavy duty hydraulic pump would be nice 😉

  6. Jamers says:

    This is very old in literature – Tristan, of Tristan and Isolde, built a simulacrum. Stepford Wives, Blade Runner, Harry Mudd, etc. Not to mention RealDolls.

    I don’t think it’s so much of a point of wanting something you can control as finding somebody who won’t nag. I am pretty sure that women dream of a mascbot who likes to do dishes as well.

  7. Bill says:

    What about that babe in T3?
    Bad news! or as Mr. Arnold would say, ” I have the perfect spot for you in my next Terminator movie!”
    get a dog instead…

  8. Don says:

    “because feelings of attraction to them could leave their victims vulnerable to attack.” Wow. Just like real relationships. Well, some anyway. BTW, another poster named Don has appeared on this blog. You could recognize me because I’m the better looking one, but to avoid confusion, I’ll henceforth become the Poster Formerly Know As Don, or Pfkad.

  9. bac says:

    Doesn’t everyone want a Cherry 2000? Do not know about Cherry 2000s? Watch the movie Cheery 2000.

  10. nilidsid says:

    Conceiving of a thing and making it real are two different things.

    I’ve generally found that the actresses who play robots successfully present attractive and alluring robots. And, I enjoyed that.

    But the recent Japanese robot–which is real–took me by surprise.

    They did a very good job of making her look very human.
    They did a very good job of giving her a fairly sweet demeanor.

    I found myself attracted too her.

    I then realized that I was attracted to plastic, and I was instantly creeped out.

    I like real women with real and complete personalities.
    I don’t like plastic women. In fact, there are plenty of popular actresses that are much too plastic for me.

    (I’m reminded of Cherry 2000.)

    I’m not sure I’m ready for real female robots. The idea gives me the willies. (And, I don’t mean that it makes my willy happy.)

    What will really happen to society and culture when faced with plastic people?

  11. nilidsid says:

    And so, it appears that my revulsion is well documented.

    Uncanny Valley

    The Uncanny Valley is an unproven hypothesis of robotics concerning the emotional response of humans to robots and other non-human entities. It was introduced by Japanese roboticist Masahiro Mori in 1970. It states that as a robot is made more humanlike in its appearance and motion, the emotional response from a human being to the robot will become increasingly positive and empathic, until a point is reached beyond which the response quickly becomes strongly repulsive. However, as the appearance and motion continue to become less distinguishable from a human being’s, the emotional response becomes positive once more and approaches human-human empathy levels.

  12. nilidsid says:

    And, another link:

    reception bot

    I find the microphone boom to be funny.

  13. Smartalix says:

    I think androids will eventually adopt stylized features to avoid the revulsion complex. A hot chick that looks like a comic-book drawing would be sexy but obviously not human.

  14. OhForTheLoveOf says:

    #3Woman as servant, woman as monster it’s two sides of the same misogynistic coin.

    Comment by Olivia O — 8/31/2006 @ 5:54 pm

    There really is no reason to level a charge of misogeny.

    It isn’t like fembots don’t have a huge female fanbase. They are cool. And asthetically, generally, females are more desirable than male forms. But there is a certain element who sees women as you seem to think they do… but I think that usually it isn’t so much mysongeny as plain old run of the mill misanthropy.

    Let’s face it, there are men who hate women and women who hate men and whites who hate blacks and asians who hate… it just goes on… but at the heart of all these people, no matter who they activelt hate, they passively hate just about everyone else and themselves too…

  15. Mike Cannali says:

    there was a twilight zone episode on fembots – antone remember it?

  16. Hedley says:

    Obligatory Futurama quote:

    Fembot: Why? Why? I came here from a faraway planet ruled by a chavinistic Manputer that was really a Manbot. Have you any idea how it feels to be a Fembot living in a Manbot’s Manputer’s world?

  17. OmarTheAlien says:

    I liked the cool chick robots in “Battlestar Galactica”. I wonder, are they for sale? Is financing available? Or is there a warehouse full of deactivated babes somewhere in California? And, could I tell the difference? And, do I really care if I could tell the difference?
    And, oh yeah, lets not forget the rather uppity chick robot in “Spacehunter: The Forbidden Zone”. She was awesome, until some asshole off a garbage heap burned her.

  18. Smartalix says:

    Cyborg babes are the best of both worlds.

  19. GregA says:

    And here all these years I thought nerds couldn’t get the girls because they were shy…

    As it turns out all that porn has twisted their minds and they prefer cyber sex….


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