Saturday, April 14, 2007

Wonder Woman, where are you?

I am so tired of all the princess crap. I really, really am. I have never been a princess-type and have grudgingly but freely allowed and participated in the princess thing for Jellybean. But, as I was perusing the toy aisle for one little toy to toss in the Easter baskets, I saw them. The 3-pack of classic Justice League superheroes. Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. Now, I was a Wonder Woman-type of girl. Not the Linda Carter Wonder Woman. The full on comic book heroine, Wonder Woman.

I have to confess to a love of old comic books. Not the new perverted written for creepy middle-aged men comic books of today, but the good old written for kids comic books of my childhood and before. I come by it honestly. My grandfather was a Vice President of World Color Press, the inventor of the comic book. I had the coolest Grandpa of all-time. He would give us literally boxes full of comic books. Wonder Woman, Thor, Archie, Richie Rich, Ghost Rider, Superman, Spiderman, Katy Keene and on and on. I loved them. I love comic book heroes. I do not, however, like movies based on comic book heroes. The color drawings were awesome of course, but the language. The written words of the classic superhero comic were beyond marvelous. They have really dumbed them down (I know.) in recent years, but when I was a kid the melodrama was everything a little girl or boy could dream of. I know. You don't believe me. but see for yourself...

Here is a copy of my all-time favorite comic book. It is Wonder Woman vs. The Leviathan. In it she is fighting against the Nazis. Lucky for me, I was a child of the 70's. Wonder Woman had gotten her powers back and was put back in WWII. She was strong yet, fair. I loved the connection to mythology through Paradise Island. It probably didn't hurt that when we took various personality tests in high school, one of them was the Jungian based Goddess Archetype test. (No, this is not some sort of newage pagan thing, it is a psychological theory.) After taking this test I scored very high into the Diana/Artemis type. Strong, outdoors, protector of women and children, good friends with the love of my life (and if you recall the story, highly competitive. maybe to a fault. ok, yes, to a fault.) And of course, Wonder Woman is also Princess Diana, Queen Hippolyte's daughter, aka. Lt. Diana Prince.

So, all this is tell you this. What happened to Wonder Woman? Jellybean was immediately enamoured of her new action figure, though she couldn't understand why someone would want to fight bad guys wearing only their underwear. (hmmm...fine point. to which I could only answer, "That a man drew her.") But, she didn't know what Wonder Woman did. What were her powers? What was her story? What was she like in action?

I pulled out my beloved copy of Wonder Woman and sat down and read through it with her. She couldn't get enough. This was a character that made sense to her. She's a princess but doesn't need saving! She's a beautiful woman who is fighting bad guys. She is doing the saving. Finally, it clicked for my rambunctious daughter. She had a game she could play with the boys! My house has been The Hall of Justice all week. But, I love my copy of Wonder Woman #233. love it. I don't want it hurt. So, I thought I'd just go buy a copy of a new Wonder Woman comic. Silly me.

This is what I found.

I can't tell you how much this hurt my heart. I mean, What the hell?! This isn't Princess Diana. Sure, she used to be dressed in her underwear. And yes, people have questioned the imagery of the Lasso of Truth. But, she didn't rely on her sexuality to fight evil. She wasn't Wonder Dominatrix! This isn't the woman I want my daughter to emulate as a superhero. I'm devastated. I know I sound like, "Back in my day," but back in my day, Wonder Woman was, well...wonderful. So, tomorrow I'm heading out to the comic store in the hopes of finding some 1970's Wonder Woman comics and I'll be perusing my movie store for Super Friends.

Why do all things for girls have to become so...naughty?


Jenni said...

And this is where I fall out of my chair with a resonating *CLUNK* and laugh myself silly because, girl, we are undeniably clones of one another.

What you said. Yeah, ditto...WW is my hero and I own a vintage hardback book of her exploits, including the story of her beginnings on Paradise Island (found in an antiques store...sputter!). I loved the tv show as well, and had a life-sized poster of her on my wall as an 11 year old, much to the chagrin of my teen sister.

You may be dismayed, however, to find quite a bit of racism in some of those older comics...mine includes a black bellboy carrying a suitcase and commenting "Dis shore am hebby! What ya got in here, books?" groaaaaan...

HowEVER, I cannot express how tickled I am that we share this as well. And how disgusted I am to see the "modern" version. If WW had a grave to be in (and obviously she doesn't), she'd be rolling over in it.

Cakes said...

Jenni! My whole body is laughing!

Yeah, I've steered clear of the pre-1970's ones for that reason, which is soooo unfortunate because she was outraged by how much families had to pay for a jug of milk!! LOL!