1854 Dicktator.

I got a set of Wonder Woman comics that span a large timeframe. The first one in the set is an older origin story sort of thing that is sort of timeless. I enjoyed reading it. The next one was not that… It basically concerns itself with the staff that serve Wonder Woman’s needs in the modern world and I was taken aback by how much I didn’t give even one shit about a single character. This from a person who loves stories about the mundanities of life. I also noticed that Wonder Woman has evolved over time from a “do goodder” to a hostile combatant. Superheroes are a reflection of the events that shape the writers and I think a person could write one hell of an essay about the evolution of Wonder Woman. She started as a very empathetic character and has had a lot of that personality covered over by the “realistic” grittiness that has become common in media of the last two decades, perhaps even three. It’s very strange. There are two other books in the set, so maybe I’ll come back with more findings at a later date and amend my statements here. I will say this much though: the DCAU version of Wonder Woman is probably the most balanced and enjoyable version of these two extremes melded into a single version of the character.


Wonder Woman began as a bondage – D/S fetish character.

The biopic came out – I need to watch it. Apparently the granddaughter is not happy about it (she says it’s not an accurate portrayal of her family) and it also is *not* based on the book “The Secret History of Wonder Woman.”


I am actually in the process of (very, very slowly) writing that essay and I need to really get cracking on it if I’m going to get it published, as Wonder Woman is very “hot” right now. The “grim and gritty” trend basically started by Alan Moore and Frank Miller (and Moore has since said he regrets that he had a hand in starting that) affected a whole lot of superhero characters and continues to. Alex Ross’ and Paul Dini’s “The World’s Greatest Superheroes” is, IMHO, a nice counter to those characterizations.

The “Wonder Woman” movie presented her character more as I remember it from reading the comics when I was a kid; she’s strong and fierce, but also compassionate.

I also want to work She-Ra into my essay (I’ve already written about her in an unpublished article) because there are so many parallels between She-Ra and Wonder Woman. I know there wasn’t a ton of explicit violence in She-Ra because children’s television standards, but, like Wonder Woman, she focused on protecting and helping people and fighting against oppression. (It didn’t strike me until recently that the Etherian rebels were basically Occupy Wall Street 20 or so years before Occupy!) She-Ra also kind of lived in a “lesbian/bisexual/pansexual paradise” – something I also didn’t pick up on at the time I was originally watching the show, but which seems SO obvious now!

PS: I am very jealous of your comic set! Of course I have a bunch of the comics but there are so many that it is kind of overwhelming.

Straczynski was involved in She-Ra and I think He-Man. He later went o to shine as the show-runner and main writer of Babylon 5, which also has a deep mixture of the gritty and the idealistic.

Yeah…that was one of those things- [probably because they wanted to sell related toys, to kids who were about 3-10 years-old, and you cant sell violence to those kids + get away with it]- I think, In She-ra, and He-man, both SR + HM: 1) couldn’t use their sword/weapon unless it was in a self defense move and 2) both SR + HM couldn’t punch or kick anybody, on their shows.

I wonder: could they kick a rock, or a soccer ball, and nail someone with it? Hm.

An interesting thing to note is that most comic book writers refer to that period of increased “grittiness and darkness” in comics as the Iron Age of comics. Compared to the Gold and Silver Ages of comics, the Iron Age is in fact a product of people being interested in comics that showed more violence and grit because people felt that comics had become too disconnected with reality. Reality can be dark and violent, and people wanted less fantasy and more realism in comics. It also bled over into a lot of TV and books at the time.

To be honest, I like how comics have evolved over time. We went from a Superman who couldn’t be scratched being the eternal boy scout without any sort of mental trauma or facing any real consequences from his actions. Batman was more gritty, but still fairly fantasy in that no matter how pear shaped everything went in a story, the ramifications only affected Batman and very few others around him. Then during that grimdark period of comics, Superman went through many stages of mental anguish and became less of a indestructible paragon into an actual alien humanoid with real emotions and could be killed if not careful. Batman’s actions leaked into other DC comics, sometimes killing main characters. Marvel had a few characters (Wolverine and Punisher, for example) that really evolved from that period.

My favorite example of a character who was edgy and somewhat gritty that didn’t really come from that period – but is a product of that kind of thinking – is Marvel’s Sentry (Robert Reynolds). He started out as an April Fool’s joke, but his character was incredible. The most powerful (and consequential) hero of the Marvel universe, he still strikes me as a great example of reality vs fantasy in terms of superhero fiction.

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that this is honestly where the comic book industry jumped the shark in my view. I don’t read comics to reflect upon reality, I read them to escape from reality. If people consider that an insult to their intelligence, then why do they bother reading comics?

Wouldn’t their employer notice if they suddenly had the same address? I don’t foresee Thomas being down with this while they still work together. This will be an interesting conversation….

First we had, “Pussy Control”,…then we had, “Dicktator…I guess the next page will be named, Middlesex.

I was going to directly post a comment along the same lines but good sense made me stop.
Unfortunately or fortunately, good sense never gets the deciding vote so I am just going to give an indirect reference to the followup strip after that one …. TTC, eighth station east of Yonge and Bloor

TTC, eighth station east of Yonge and Bloor?
Is that the subway station, that is shaped like a giant, yonic symbol? :D

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