Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Title 9 for Comic Books?

Interesting story about the most prominent female superhero: Wonder Woman.  J. Michael Straczynski, who was the guy behind Babylon 5, has revised her origins and the artists have revised her look.  There has been much talk about a WW movie, originally with Joss Whedon behind it, but so far not so much progress.

I didn't follow Wonder Woman much in the comic books (which will appall an Aussie friend of mine), but in the great divides of the world (ex: John/Paul; Stones/Beatles; Jacob/Edward), I made mine Marvel and not DC.  So, I was a big fan of the females in the X-Men (Phoenix, Kitty Pryde, Storm, Rogue) rather than collecting Wonder Woman.  The TV show, on the other hand, came along at the right time--the mid-1970's.  Well, the right time for this guy. 

Anyway, why revise? 
“She’s been locked into pretty much the exact same outfit since her debut in 1941,” Mr. Straczynski wrote. “If you’re going to make a statement about bringing Wonder Woman into the 21st century, you need to be bold and you need to make it visual. I wanted to toughen her up, and give her a modern sensibility.”
He added, “What woman only wears only one outfit for 60-plus years?”
Well, I would agree, but moving in the direction of less skin showing would seem to be bucking the fashion trends of the last sixty years and not in the direction fan boys would like.
Mr. Lee has drawn his share of sexy superheroines (the X-Men’s Rogue among them), some in skimpy costume, and knows what many fans will ask: “Why am I covering up her legs?” Ultimately, he wanted her to look strong “without screaming, ‘I’m a superhero.’ ”
The punchline of the piece is a depressing one--Wonder Woman is not in the top 20 of sales.  But then again, I guess I am partly to blame.  How about you?  And making her more universal with less American Flag-esque and less leggy costume, is that going to make things better?

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