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What the hell is wrong with DC?
May 21, 2014 11:10 AM   Subscribe

Most mainstream comics have a serious problem dealing with women. See Women In Refrigerators (previously). But DC seems to be doing particularly bad lately. Witness this conversation by David S Goyer in which he compares She-Hulk to a porn star.(more She-Hulk info here and here)

This is particularly important because Goyer co-authored what will be the first appearance of Wonder Woman on the big screen.

To be fair, DC was the home of both runs of the all-female super group Birds Of Prey with Gail Simone as the writer. As one of the originators of the Women In Refrigators discussion, they get some points for that.

But none of that excuses why they can't seem to make a Wonder Woman movie. This despite having had some pretty big names attached and developing some considerably less iconic characters first (Seriously, Metal Men?)

Well, at least indie comics never have that problem......
posted by lumpenprole (140 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite

 
Maybe they've decided that since Marvel has the current worldspanning blockbusters locked in until at least 2018, they'll go for the "men who don't believe / are threatened by women who actually read comics" crowd.

(Yeah, weak, but...)
posted by Tailkinker to-Ennien at 11:17 AM on May 21 [3 favorites]


I have feelings on this matter.

The current she-hulk comic is pretty awesome, by the way. Mostly about her being a lawyer for superheroes (and a superheroic lawyer). So she's have to beat up some doombots to file papers with the courthouse in time. It's smart and entertaining. Javier Pulido is doing the art, and not very porn-star like at all. (this is what it looks like when she and Matt Murdock go out on the town)

Yes, it sucks that a lot of female characters have names based off of better-known male characters. Yes, there is something to be said about the dimorphism of superhero characters, and how female body types tend to fit a certain mold. I much prefer a Jennifer Walters who is gargantuan and clearly muscular. However, trashing the entire character - who has a lot more going for her than her body type - based off of cheesecake artists, is pretty goddamn ignorant and gross.

Also, no, the character isn't there for the hulk to fuck. It's his goddamn cousin.
posted by dinty_moore at 11:19 AM on May 21 [12 favorites]


There was at least one story Marvel published in which the Hulk was rampaging and some superhero agency figured out he was in heat and that She-Hulk had to go calm down his mating urge somehow. It was gross as shit. They didn't have sex at the end of it but you could kind of see the writer salivating and it was not okay.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 11:21 AM on May 21 [3 favorites]


"Witness this conversation by David S Goyer..."

Oh, no.
posted by brundlefly at 11:21 AM on May 21 [3 favorites]


In related news, Man Of Steel 2 has a title now, and it's even more inexplicably weird than you expected.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:23 AM on May 21 [3 favorites]


was that a "Justice Leak"?
posted by oneswellfoop at 11:25 AM on May 21 [2 favorites]


She-Hulk is one of the greatest superhero women ever. I can't think of anyone better.

Sexuality and all. Because yes, it's entirely possible to be sexy AND powerful AND funny AND smart. The trouble in comics isn't that women are sexy--the problem is that almost all of them are portrayed in some sexualized manner. Much like "damsels in distress," it's not a problem of individual stories so much as an over-saturation of the same thing over and over again.

But She-Hulk?

Complaining about her is basically complaining about fun.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 11:25 AM on May 21 [26 favorites]


Shulkie is totally awesome and I will cut anyone who says otherwise. Including people who get paid to write or draw her.

Should you want some fabulous She-Hulk action without having to worry that artists will do terrible things to her, I recommend Marta Acosta's novel The She-Hulk Diaries. It was a hoot.
posted by asperity at 11:28 AM on May 21 [5 favorites]


You know what we need? A She-Hulk TV series. Like The Good Wife, but with more smashing. ABC could double-bill it with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., have crossover episodes, the works.
posted by Cash4Lead at 11:30 AM on May 21 [17 favorites]


Also, no, the character isn't there for the hulk to fuck. It's his goddamn cousin.

Sadly, Marvel has gone there, and gave us inbred Hulk "greennecks" in the process.

I wish I was joking.
posted by NoxAeternum at 11:30 AM on May 21 [7 favorites]


Also her current comic is (a) written by an actual lawyer and (b) as far from the stereotypical cheesecake style as it's possible to get.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:30 AM on May 21 [1 favorite]


Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish: "In related news, Man Of Steel 2 has a title now, and it's even more inexplicably weird than you expected."

I don't know about everyone else, but I look forward to the time when I can refer to the disastrous legal precedent set by Batman v. Superman.
posted by Strange Interlude at 11:30 AM on May 21 [11 favorites]


Ugh, that's exactly wrong and dinty_moore is exactly right.

IMO, She-Hulk (ideally drawing off Dan Slott's run) would be a great first Marvel movie led by a female protagonist. She's smart*, she's funny, she's not driven by trauma. She's done street level to cosmic work, and her non superheroic life can be actually interesting instead of just source of interference. W/r/t her sexuality - she's shown sexual agency instead of being a pure object of desire.

*and in a good, worked-for-it way! Instead of the lazily informed 14 PhD fallback.
posted by The Gaffer at 11:31 AM on May 21 [4 favorites]


From that transcript, Goyer does sound like a sexist, unimaginative douche, but I will note that the host, Mazin, also sounds like an enormously sexist twat. I get that Goyer is actually (slightly) important whereas Mazin doesn't actually matter besides hosting a podcast, but it's weird to read a transcript where two assholes are ragingly sexist and have the headline of the article be "This One Asshole Is Ragingly Sexist".
posted by mstokes650 at 11:35 AM on May 21 [1 favorite]


Sexuality and all. Because yes, it's entirely possible to be sexy AND powerful AND funny AND smart. The trouble in comics isn't that women are sexy--the problem is that almost all of them are portrayed in some sexualized manner. Much like "damsels in distress," it's not a problem of individual stories so much as an over-saturation of the same thing over and over again.

This. There’s a difference of agency, also – She Hulk is an unabashedly emotional character – she’s incredibly smart, but she has a temper, indulges herself, and doesn’t apologize for it – and she’s still shown as competent! And not a villain! That’s pretty goddamn awesome in a female character.

Sadly, Marvel has gone there, and gave us inbred Hulk "greennecks" in the process.

Well, they're wrong and should feel bad about many of their life choices. Much like Goyer.
posted by dinty_moore at 11:35 AM on May 21 [9 favorites]


it's weird to read a transcript where two assholes are ragingly sexist and have the headline of the article be "This One Asshole Is Ragingly Sexist".

Fair enough, I was just more pissed off that this is the guy who's doing the first appearance of Wonder Woman
posted by lumpenprole at 11:36 AM on May 21 [1 favorite]


That was messed up on several levels. And Goyer's follow-up about Martian Manhunter was astonishingly tone-deaf and insulting to DC's readership. I hope the next thing we hear about him is that he's been fired.

She-Hulk (ideally drawing off Dan Slott's run) would be a great first Marvel movie led by a female protagonist.

And fitting with the Marvel Cinematic Universe's style of "no secret identities", she's already written that way. Everyone knows that Jennifer Walters is She-Hulk and vice versa. The name is kinda goofy, but again the benefit of the "no secret identities" thing is that she can just be Jennifer Walters, no superhero name required (or only occasionally mentioned, like how Black Widow is generally called Natasha Romanoff in the movies and when she's referred to on Agents of SHIELD).
posted by jedicus at 11:38 AM on May 21 [6 favorites]


I was at that event, as a Scriptnotes fan rather than someone who knows anything at all about comics so I had no idea if Goyer's representation was accurate. From the audience reaction and the hosts', it kind of felt like everybody wanted that riff to end as soon as possible for various reasons. Goyer seems like something of a character.

Craig Mazin wrote the Hangover sequels and maintains a churlish persona (on the podcast, I don't know about anywhere else), so nobody was looking to him to be a bastion of anti-sexism or any particular expert on comics.
posted by Lyn Never at 11:39 AM on May 21


Wasn't aimed at you, lumpenprole (you did a good job fleshing it out with supporting links, and lord knows DC has seemed to be pursuing the cave-man niche lately), just an observation about the Mary Sue article.
posted by mstokes650 at 11:39 AM on May 21


NoxAeternum: "Sadly, Marvel has gone there, and gave us inbred Hulk "greennecks" in the process. "

Of course, that one was courtesy of Mark Millar's "Old Man Logan" storyline. Which, like all Mark Millar Marvel stories, is a "What If..." story set on Earth-Negative-Infinity, where everyone is some kind of hardcore psychopath. He and Goyer are like the Batman and Superman of creepy comic book writers, a "World's Douchiest", if you will.
posted by Strange Interlude at 11:40 AM on May 21 [18 favorites]


Batman vs. Superman - the movie we need
posted by nubs at 11:42 AM on May 21 [2 favorites]


Is Goyer actually giving his impression of She-Hulk? Or is he giving his interpretation of what might have been going through the minds of the original creators?

There is a lot of "was", "were", and "they", etc type stuff in the transcript snippet that I read. Not so much with the "I" or "is".
posted by sparklemotion at 11:45 AM on May 21 [1 favorite]


She-Hulk and She-Ra are both characters that started as insulting offshoots of the originals but are actually way better and more interesting. I picked up the She-Hulk free comic a few weeks ago and it was really good, especially when she had to fight Tony Stark's lawyer-bot. Smart stuff.

(although the recent movies have done better things with Hulk, but mostly when he's not actually being Hulk).

(I have many thoughts and feelings about the plotlines/romances of She-Ra that I will not burden you with here).
posted by emjaybee at 11:46 AM on May 21 [5 favorites]


Second appearance, after The Lego Movie.
posted by ckape at 11:48 AM on May 21


Sadly, Marvel has gone there, and gave us inbred Hulk "greennecks" in the process.

I wish I was joking.


Well, that's thanks to Mark Millar. Here's a tumblr post by Brandon Graham (author of many fine comics, including the shockingly good reboot of Rob Liefeld's Prophet) that nails Millar just perfectly:
[Millar's] comics are like power fantasies that don’t want to push things too far. Power fantasy without risk. and he’s working with so many fantastic artists. He’s got Frank Quitely drawing a lesser version of the Authority. (that they both already worked on) Romita Jr doing his shitty teenager version of year one, & Duncan Fegredo working on something described as “The Fast and the Furious’ without cars” and then this Starlight is the story of the Dad from the Incredibles going back to Flash Gordon’s world.

If I was some evil genius that gained power by having good artists work on sub par ideas I would invent Mark Millar.
It might seem a bit odd to characterize Millar's books as not "push[ing] things too far", but I agree with him--despite trucking in a lot of shock value, Millar really hasn't done anything in particular to advance the medium.
posted by Halloween Jack at 11:50 AM on May 21 [13 favorites]


Just to respond to the headline, what's wrong with DC started long before, but was certainly exemplified by a certain comic a few years ago.
posted by Catblack at 11:50 AM on May 21


I hadn't even thought about it that way, but the Lego Movie was basically already a better DCU movie than anything we could ever hope for from Snyder/Goyer/Nolan & co.

(The animated DC stuff has been running rings around the rest of DC for decades, of course.)
posted by kmz at 11:53 AM on May 21 [6 favorites]


I found She-Ra more interesting than He-Man solely because she was identical. Like, if you watch the two shows with an eye towards their construction, from a narrative point of view they're functionally identical. You could take any She-Ra script, change the names around, and it would be recognizably an episode of He-Man.

And that's amazing to me. It's the only 80s cartoon I can think of with a female protagonist which was structurally no different from a show made for boys. I love it.

The other thing about She-Ra that always sticks in my memory - and I am sorry if you had not noticed it before, because now you will not be able to unsee it - is that, for no apparent reason, none of the women on the show are drawn with visible ears.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 11:54 AM on May 21 [24 favorites]


What sticks in my mind about She-Ra is the episode written by J. Michael Straczynski where He-Man is shown to carry 40,000 feet of rope in his fur speedo.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:56 AM on May 21 [1 favorite]


That ain't rope.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 11:57 AM on May 21 [22 favorites]


Just to respond to the headline, what's wrong with DC started long before, but was certainly exemplified by a certain comic a few years ago.

I can never get enough of Chris Sim's very factual descriptions of comic book plots that make them sound deranged and terrible. “Green Arrow’s sidekick does heroin because he can’t get a boner” will now join "DC sends a space cop with a magic wishing ring and a Robin Hood cosplayer on a trip across the country because one of them didn’t know racism existed and the other didn’t know drugs existed, and the result is one of DC’s most highly regarded stories" in the list of phrases I just can't get out of my head.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 12:00 PM on May 21 [15 favorites]


That ain't rope.

Given that he throws it into low orbit and uses it to rip parts off a passing spaceship, that only raises far deeper and more disturbing questions.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 12:02 PM on May 21 [9 favorites]


The Gaffer: IMO, She-Hulk (ideally drawing off Dan Slott's run) would be a great first Marvel movie led by a female protagonist.

Hate to spoil it, but there's already been a first Marvel movie led by a female protagonist: Elektra. And, if you want to play loose with the definition of "Marvel movie", Red Sonja.
posted by IAmBroom at 12:02 PM on May 21 [4 favorites]



I also object to using "porn star" as an insult (no chance this guy ever watches porn, right?), but that's a whole 'nother bit of rage.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 12:03 PM on May 21 [9 favorites]


I think "Marvel movie" here refers to a movie produced by Marvel's own studio, rather than licensed out as Elektra was.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 12:03 PM on May 21


The Dan Slott She-Hulk was really great. I'm glad to hear the current run is good, too.

Damn shame DC keeps doubling down on comics as unapologetic boyzone.
posted by Zed at 12:08 PM on May 21 [3 favorites]


Yes, that is exactly what I meant and not that I completely forgot about the Elektra movie.


The reader should at this point imagine my eyes scanning shiftily.
posted by The Gaffer at 12:09 PM on May 21 [9 favorites]


DC Comics’ New 52 Edges Towards Landmark 52nd Cancellation
posted by Uncle Ira at 12:11 PM on May 21


Ugh, this is so shitty. And worse, unimaginative. John Byrne sexualized She-Hulk in pandering and ridiculous ways, but played into sight gags and fourth-wall-breaking humor when he did so. However full the art was of blatant fanservice, Byrne's She-Hulk had personality and wit and was absolutely not in the Hulk's shadow.

What's troubling is that unlike She-Hulk, who has a fairly innocuous backstory, Wonder Woman really is a character with a problematic, sexualized origin. Seriously, she's a woman with a lasso written by a guy way into bondage. I don't trust anyone who gets hung up on imagined Shulkie fantasies not to reduce Wonder Woman to a fetishized sex object.
posted by knuckle tattoos at 12:14 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


(The animated DC stuff has been running rings around the rest of DC for decades, of course.)

This, this, a thousand times this.

I wish Paul Dini, Bruce Timm and the late Dwayne McDuffie could just do all the media treatments for all the superheroes...from both DC and Marvel.

There's just so much JL and JLU nailed about race and gender that my jaw still drops when I go back and watch some of the episodes.


A lot of the direct-to-video cartoons build on that too. As did the Teen Titans, nuff said. And Young Justice should have been given more of a chance....

Anyway, I simply can't comprehend why the DC comics and live action movies have such a hard time following suit.
posted by lord_wolf at 12:15 PM on May 21 [3 favorites]


Hate to spoil it, but there's already been a first Marvel movie led by a female protagonist: Elektra. And, if you want to play loose with the definition of "Marvel movie", Red Sonja.

One of the things that has pissed me off about the talk around a WW movie has been the standard reply that Elektra and Catwoman ruined the idea of female led superhero movies.

As if Daredevil and Batman And Robin didn't exist.
posted by lumpenprole at 12:22 PM on May 21 [18 favorites]


There's just so much JL and JLU nailed about race and gender that my jaw still drops when I go back and watch some of the episodes.

Yeah the way that show -- ostensibly a kids' show -- dealt with sex and relationships just as a matter of fact for people was more mature and realistic than just about 95% of what I've read on the same topic in a JL-related comic.
posted by griphus at 12:23 PM on May 21 [3 favorites]


I swear every person on the DC staff must have shorted their stock or something, because nothing else can explain the unending stream of extremely public misogyny coming from that bunch. Oh, no wait, I forgot idiocy.

On the other hand, if you told me Marvel had passed around a memo instating a Bechdel Test quota, I wouldn't be the least surprised. Books like She-Hulk, Captain Marvel, Ms. Marvel and Young Avengers aren't just great books with well-written female hero leads, they're a physical rebuttal to DC's "hurf durf bewbies for virgins" approach to their (imagined) fanbase.

I hate to admit it, but I think the reason for it is ultimately Disney. They may be a global conglomerate who want to synergize every franchise from lollipop to theme park ride, and hit every form of media on the way, but at least they prefer making money to employing out-of-touch, women-hating pricks. And they know degrading 51% of your potential customers is not where you start.
posted by Freon at 12:30 PM on May 21 [13 favorites]


She-Hulk is GREAT, she was the only choice when I was asked to write a Marvel What If? kinda story.
posted by The Whelk at 12:33 PM on May 21 [5 favorites]


Ah, man, David Goyer? Fuck David Goyer.

The fact that this guy is writing the Justice League movies AND the proposed Sandman movie, and then wants to make the comic-book-nerds-never-get-laid joke, with his bare face hanging out, cements my disinclination to ever see the movies. Which, honestly, was already pretty solid because I think Zack Snyder would best be employed making film adaptations out of Insane Clown Posse mythology. Haven't seen "Man of Steel". Won't see "Dawn of Justice".

The sexist bullshit riding on top of the whole thing? That lowers the whole thing thing into an entirely different category. It turns it from "annoying to me, but even I don't take my personal annoyance as a sign of anything important going on" to "these are not merely bad artists but ethically suspect people."

I'd love, absolutely love, to see Kevin Feige announce tomorrow that they've decided to do a She-Hulk movie just on general principles. They should find some shit-hot female director, and a shit-hot female screenwriter, or one woman who can do both, and hand the project to her.
posted by Ipsifendus at 12:33 PM on May 21 [17 favorites]


Maybe one of the upcoming movies will be able to sneak in a reference to Walters down in Legal. Hell, if they borrow the Slott storyline, she could show up in Asgard as a Cosmic Judge, serving papers to Odin or something.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 12:34 PM on May 21


"How many people in the audience have heard of Martian Manhunter? ... How many people that raised their hands have ever been laid?"
I laughed at this, mostly because Hey dude, you're the one free-associating about congress with a cartoon character.
posted by octobersurprise at 12:35 PM on May 21 [4 favorites]


First in whith a casting recommendation: Aisha Tyler to play Jennifer.
posted by Ipsifendus at 12:37 PM on May 21 [24 favorites]


If we're discussing fantasy Marvel movies: I'm waiting for a Wasp movie where she gets to be a) a competent business woman who is in no way ashamed of being in a "girly" business and b) a superhero who CHOOSES to give herself superpowers because she wants to fight crime. I'm assuming (hoping) she'll be in Ant-Man, but she deserves her own movie because she rules.
posted by chaiminda at 12:39 PM on May 21 [6 favorites]


...I think Zack Snyder would best be employed making film adaptations out of Insane Clown Posse mythology.

ICP, for all their faults, are very well aware they're dudes in clown makeup rapping about different worlds they made up. Zack Snyder, meanwhile looked at a spaceman in a skin-tight blue uniform and said "there's my Jesus." And then he had Jesus straight-up kill a dude.

Basically what I'm saying is that if ICP directed the next Superman movie, at least it'd be fun.
posted by griphus at 12:40 PM on May 21 [23 favorites]


Man, I don't want just a She-Hulk movie. I want a She-Hulk TV show. I'm going to need 22-26 episodes a year of that at least.

Also, since we're wishing for things, it has to be on a recreated Ally McBeal set, and RDJ-as-Stark has to show up for a 30 second cameo and mention how this place gives him the weirdest sense of deja vu.
posted by Freon at 12:40 PM on May 21 [20 favorites]


First in whith a casting recommendation: Aisha Tyler to play Jennifer.

With Lexi Alexander to direct.
posted by lumpenprole at 12:41 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


Having seen Big Money Hustlas and Stranglemania: Fuck yes I would watch an ICP-directed Superman movie.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 12:41 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


I would watch a Superhero Legal Dramedy so hard I'd even watch the commericals.
posted by The Whelk at 12:42 PM on May 21 [10 favorites]


I would watch a Superhero Legal Dramedy so hard I'd even watch the commericals.

It's The Good Wife meets Agents of SHIELD!
posted by Zed at 12:44 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


they could interact with DAMAGE CONTROL
posted by The Whelk at 12:44 PM on May 21 [8 favorites]


I hate to admit it, but I think the reason for it is ultimately Disney. They may be a global conglomerate who want to synergize every franchise from lollipop to theme park ride, and hit every form of media on the way, but at least they prefer making money to employing out-of-touch, women-hating pricks. And they know degrading 51% of your potential customers is not where you start.

I don't know if I'd give so much credit to Disney for Marvel not being a suckfest. Warner's animated and TV divisions manage to not be so consistently shitty--which now that I think about it, is almost the inverse of Marvel--or are at least no worse than "blandly unappealing" (Smallville after season 4ish), and can often be extremely good (most of DCAU). I talked about this in the Gotham thread, but Arrow has been getting better the further along it goes IMO, and the Flash series looks really promising. It seems more like it comes down to either the movie and/or the comic book companies themselves.
posted by zombieflanders at 12:45 PM on May 21


Oh! And if you're truly salivating at the idea of a Superhero Law, be sure to check out the totally awesome Law and the Multiverse blog.
posted by Freon at 12:46 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


The Whelk: "I would watch a Superhero Legal Dramedy so hard I'd even watch the commericals."

Coming this Fall to ABC: SINGLE GREEN FEMALE LAWYER
posted by Strange Interlude at 12:47 PM on May 21 [21 favorites]


be sure to check out the totally awesome Law and the Multiverse blog.

A MetaFilter original!
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 12:48 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


Single female lawyer
fighting for her client!
Smashing supervillains
and being self-reliant!
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 12:49 PM on May 21 [51 favorites]


Confession time: EVERY TIME She-Hulk is mentioned in a Metafilter thread I get the Single Female Lawyer song stuck in my head.

...I'm glad I'm not alone.
posted by Twain Device at 12:54 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


Ipsifendus: "First in whith a casting recommendation: Aisha Tyler to play Jennifer."

This is great casting, not just because Ms. Tyler is all-around awesome, but because she'd get to play a strong woman of color who turns into an even stronger woman of a completely different color.
posted by Strange Interlude at 12:56 PM on May 21 [67 favorites]


They never called me back.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 1:56 PM on May 21 [1 favorite]


How is Tyler at acting? I like her on Whose Line is it Anyway?, but I've never seen any straight acting roles she's been in.

Casting Hulk as black could have some unfortunate racial implications, but She-Hulk traditionally has excellent control so I don't think it would be the same issue.
posted by tavella at 1:58 PM on May 21


I've been thinking about this since the discussion in the last thread, and I think my ideal Wonder Woman movie would be a bit like Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Somewhat inspired by the caption at the bottom of this piece of fan art that was published on Project Rooftop, I would scrap a lot of Diana's back story. Yes, she'd still be semi-divine (maybe she'd still be Zeus' daughter, because who isn't), and she'd still be an emissary from Themyscira, which I envision as working similar to Asgard in the Thor movies.

The way I envision it, she starts out as the very idealistic daughter of a noble family, who enters the competition to become the representative that Themyscira sends to the outside world (because reasons) to learn about them and help them. She wins, moves to the US, and enrolls in high school, where she promptly becomes extremely disillusioned- partly by the general level of inequality and violence in the US, partly just by not fitting into the social structure of high school.

She winds up on the periphery of a group of "tough girls" at the school (I don't know if I want to go "'60s girl gang" or have more of a modern Chola thing with this), because they are actually more accepting of her than any of the other cliques.

So she's homesick, alienated, and conflicted, because she's not sure if she even still wants to be part of her adopted society, but still feels compelled to help people.

Anyway, this sets up the main narrative, which is "something, something, big bad, violence, saves the world, etc." It's probably cliché, I think it sounds better than anything this Goyer person might come up with.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 2:13 PM on May 21 [4 favorites]


How is Tyler at acting?

She's reliably hilarious doing voice work on "Archer".
posted by Ipsifendus at 2:14 PM on May 21 [5 favorites]


Casting Hulk as black could have some unfortunate racial implications, but She-Hulk traditionally has excellent control so I don't think it would be the same issue.

First superhero comic I ever picked up, in 2nd grade, was the Avengers. She-Hulk was part of the line-up. From the start, I assumed that she was originally African American. And there she was, bantering it up with Hawkeye, palling around with Wasp and absolutely playing an equal role on a team with Thor and Iron Man and Cap.

I fell in love with her immediately, and now that I'm an almost-40-year-old nerd she is still perhaps my favorite superhero.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 2:15 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


I had the chance to read over the first issues of the new DC trainwreck, Futures End. I think they finally have managed to outgrit grit itself, by jumping over a gritty shark across a gritty tank of grit. It feels like Cronenberg had a mean day and set free a bunch of technoorganic asshats that want to borg even the amoebas in sight. Ugh. DC, you have forsaken me.
posted by Iosephus at 2:32 PM on May 21 [5 favorites]


DC has become unreadable for me. They have no idea what to do with their female characters -- and if you can't get those iconic and awesome characters to work, then it is time to pack it in.

Gail Simone should be in charge of overseeing all their female characters -- or better yet, all of their characters, period...
posted by Alexandra Kitty at 2:44 PM on May 21 [6 favorites]


Gail Simone should be in charge of overseeing all their female characters -- or better yet, all of their characters, period...

Gail Simone as DC Editor In Chief? Where do I sign the petition to make that happen?
posted by KingEdRa at 3:21 PM on May 21 [3 favorites]


Now is as good a time as any to spend your comic book dollars on stuff that doesn't suck as bad as 100% of DC/Vertigo and 78% of Image, Avatar and Marvel.

Try some 2000AD omnibuses on for size - start with Nemesis and go from there. Strangers in Paradise and Stray Bullets both have new complete collections out, and they are just fab. Alan Moore's Miracleman is being reissued by Marvel, and whatever you might think about that, it sure looks better than it has ever looked before. IDW is doing Rogue Trooper reprints. Aliens is getting a reboot from Dark Horse pretty soon.

If you have to spend money on DC, pick up the Marshal Law deluxe collection, or Swamp Thing, or Morrison's Animal Man omnibus, which is the only thing Morrison ever wrote that didn't annoy the hell out of me, and even then was still pretty annoying.
posted by turbid dahlia at 3:39 PM on May 21 [3 favorites]


if you told me Marvel had passed around a memo instating a Bechdel Test quota, I wouldn't be the least surprised.

I would. For the movies, anyway. Really, Marvel only looks good on female representation in its movies because the bar's so damn low compared to DC. It's worth remembering that Joss Whedon's Avengers and the first Captain America movie both fail the simple, obvious Bechdel test, and even Winter Soldier with its strong female characters only barely, arguably, passes. Bechdel's influential formulation isn't the be-all and end-all of judging women's roles but it's a solid one, and Marvel has not been doing that great by its measure.

How much of the promotion for Guardians of the Galaxy focuses on female characters and backstory? What percentage of the movie - which appears to have bought pretty heavily into the standard four-men-for-every-woman-on-the-team standard action nonsense - will feature female characters? Will Guardians of the Galaxy pass the Bechdel test? The 3:9 ratio of women to men in the main cast list at Wikipedia is not really compelling evidence of Marvel's heroic commitment to female representation on screen, if you leave asses like Goyer at DC out of the equation.
posted by mediareport at 3:44 PM on May 21 [1 favorite]


After watching In a World, Lake Bell became my #1 choice for She-Hulk.

She's got the acting chops and the comic timing; she's got the voice to carry off the courtroom speeches; she's got the jawline and the physical presence for the tough stuff.

She wrote and directed In a World, too, so just hand her the whole thing.
posted by Karlos the Jackal at 3:48 PM on May 21 [7 favorites]


Whoa yeah dye her hair and she's a dead ringer for my mental image of Jennifer.

Maybe if Marvel can't get "Budapest" off the ground I should just write it my own damn self.
posted by The Whelk at 3:53 PM on May 21


78% of Image

Gonna just chant "buy Rat Queens" for awhile, in between prayers to N'rygoth.
posted by Pope Guilty at 3:54 PM on May 21 [10 favorites]


That actually looks pretty good, I might have to scope it. Thanks.
posted by turbid dahlia at 4:06 PM on May 21


Try some 2000AD omnibuses on for size


*Obligatory exhortation to read Halo Jones*
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 4:23 PM on May 21 [1 favorite]


Oh God. Rat Queens. Everyone who loves comics should try Rat Queens, because damn.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 4:24 PM on May 21 [3 favorites]


In re: DC's problems. They aren't DC problems - they're comic book problems.

The comic industry has always been slow to change and you could even make some arguments that it has actually never changed at all. I worked in a comic shop as a child and worked through the boom and crash. I never found too many female characters outside of Uncanny X-men that i found readable - and even then it was spotty.

I think that webcomics will eventually drag mainstream comics kicking-and-screaming into the real world, but that's going to take a generation still. The best thing that anyone can do is vote with their dollars and their vocal opinions.

In re: Mark Millar's mediocrity.

Holy shit it's validating to read that someone else thinks he's awful.
posted by Fuka at 4:27 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


Also on Image's side, there's Lazarus and Pretty Deadly and Rocket Girl and Saga (there's new Saga today, even!) I haven't gotten around to reading the relaunch of Glory yet, but I love that character design so much.
posted by dinty_moore at 4:28 PM on May 21


On a phone so this is difficult, but seriously this character design is too fantastic not to share.. Take that, sexual dimorphism!
posted by dinty_moore at 4:32 PM on May 21


Also on Image's side, there's Lazarus...

I dumped this recently because nothing has happened for like nine issues.
posted by turbid dahlia at 4:45 PM on May 21


Also revival! I forgot revival was image.
posted by dinty_moore at 4:56 PM on May 21


Speaking of 2000AD, John Wagner's recent Judge Dredd arcs (published in TPB form by Rebellion) are great.

Day of Chaos volumes I & II beats any superhero/science fiction sage DC or Marvel have managed in years - they're more intelligent, better at building a credible fantasy world and offer superior craft skills in the writing and drawing alike. It was Joe McCulloch's Comics Journal review of this story which made me realise I needed to start reading Dredd again, and I'm so glad I did.

Amazon has these books too, and you really don't need that much Judge Dredd background to enjoy them. It's a crime they're not better known (and better appreciated) in the US market.
posted by Paul Slade at 5:02 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


I told Mark Millar he was awful on twitter and he told me that he had sold a bunch of comics and made some movies and stuff so nyah nyah nyah.

Actually, come to think of it, I didn't even TELL him that, I just referred to him in passing as an example of stunning mediocrity and within moments there he was, replying to l'il ol' me...

Whatever.

I can't believe that in a world where Marvel is all "raccoon with a raygun! Thanos! The muffuggin INFINITY GAUNTLET, YO" and making bazillions upon bazillions DC has people who still snicker at Martian Manhunter fans. It's OK to LIKE YOUR OWN MATERIAL, FOLKS. Jeez. I mean, DC has plenty to be ashamed about, but Martian Manhunter ain't even near the top of the list.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 5:36 PM on May 21 [12 favorites]


Wasn't there supposed to be a pre-new 52 universe Black Canary and Zatanna comic drawn by Paul Dini coming out soon? That is the only thing I heard of that made me think that DC might consider taking my money.

Which is sad, because I do love their characters.
posted by dinty_moore at 5:42 PM on May 21


I've worked for DC and Marvel.

I'll let you figure out who was less of a pain in the ass to deal with.
posted by The Whelk at 5:44 PM on May 21


Wasn't there supposed to be a pre-new 52 universe Black Canary and Zatanna comic written by Paul Dini coming out soon?

Apparently it's called Bloodspell and is out next week.

Martian Manhunter will make an appearance in it.
posted by dinty_moore at 6:08 PM on May 21


I just want put a good word in for J'onn J'onzz, Manhunter From Mars. There's a ton of great story hooks for the character. He's the thinking man's Superman. Unlike Supes (who was raised on Earth) J'onn J'onzz really IS The Strange Visitor From Another Planet and I already thought of several different stories that play off that premise just writing this post. If David Goyer can't tell a story about The Martian Manhunter, then its a failure of imagination on his part.

As far as Goyer's take on She-Hulk goes, this was a guy who didn't get what makes SUPERMAN work; why am I not surprised that he completely misses the mark on She Hulk. This guy continues to get work only because he is a known commodity to Warner Brothers execs. I'm terrified to see what his version of The Sandman will be.
posted by KingEdRa at 6:11 PM on May 21 [7 favorites]


The thing that seems the most puzzling to me (not the most infuriating, just the thing that sits wrong, because I'm not surprised by the rest of it) is that I know J'onn J'onzz from the Justice League cartoons. I suspect this is true of a lot of people - a hell of a lot more than read comics, period. He's one of the main characters in a decade's worth of popular children's television. A lot of people who don't consider themselves nerds know who he is, just because they either were a kid or procreated within the last fifteen years, and had access to cartoon network or netflix.

The guy tried to make fun of nerds to nerds, and he couldn't even make fun of them correctly. That's a pretty stunning amount of poor decision making.
posted by dinty_moore at 6:27 PM on May 21 [9 favorites]


I'm terrified to see what his version of The Sandman will be.


Oh, you know, nothing big- he'll probably just want to tweak Death a little bit to bring her more up-to-date with what their "intended audience" expects.


Seriously, for someone who has worked on supposedly "Goth" films, this guy does not get Goth. And I liked the Blade trilogy.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 6:33 PM on May 21 [1 favorite]


I can't find a decent clip to illustrate this, but Colin Salmon (Oliver's stepfather on Arrow; M's deputy in the last three Brosnan Bonds; a million other things) would be PERFECT for Martian Manhunter.
posted by Ian A.T. at 6:48 PM on May 21 [3 favorites]


Mark Millar is the worst thing to happen to comics since Rob Leifeld, and at least Leifeld has the virtue of apparently being a really nice guy in person.

I'd been worried that the Marvel movies would take a lot of cues from the Ultimates line and the "edgy" bullshit Millar puts out, but luckily almost all of those Ultimate influences are visual rather than a matter of characterization or tone.

But now there's this Goyer jerk, and... argh.

As others have said, I'm worried that Wonder Woman's presence in the next film will just make her the scapegoat if it tanks with fans. They're plainly going to make a good opening weekend just because people will go out of curiosity, but word of mouth will quickly make this film sink or swim... and so far DC/Warner has done a bang-up job of making that word of mouth seriously negative.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 6:57 PM on May 21


Millar started out with a fair bit of promise but then took the express to Pandertown and started making the comics equivalents of lad mags and TAP OUT shirts. It's pretty frustrating to think about. Goyer sounds delightful too.

I'm terrified to see what his version of The Sandman will be.

That to me was the one of the two saddest parts of the whole thing. Sandman may not be Shakespeare, but putting someone with that aggressively bro-y a worldview in charge of it is, well, like the other saddest thing: putting him in charge of writing Wonder Woman's first appearance.
posted by middleclasstool at 7:08 PM on May 21 [1 favorite]


One of my favorite moments in the Authority (and I realize I mention StormWatch/Authority a lot, but damn is it good) is that they met a not-at-all-disguised version of Millar's Ultimates book and just kicked the shit out of them.

As for Martian Manhunter, not only is there his presence in Justice League, he's got a really great story arc in The New Frontier, which is a who's who of Silver Age comics.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go find where I put my She-Hulk trades. That one''s hard on the Avengers Mansion, don't ya know.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 7:16 PM on May 21


It's been a while but I don't remember Ellis' Authority fighting Ultimates analogues. If you're referring to the issues where Captain America rapes Superman and Batman avenges him with a jackhammer as favorite moments, and I hope you're not, they were written by Mark Millar.
posted by The Hamms Bear at 8:09 PM on May 21 [1 favorite]


Plus, Millar actually wrote those particular Authority issues BEFORE he moved on to do The Ultimates with Marvel, so it's almost like those were an audition piece or something.

In fact, the whole reason that The Ultimates exists is because somebody at Marvel thought it would be cool to reboot the Avengers in the same kind of "widescreen" action-film mode that Warren Ellis and Bryan Hitch pioneered in the early issues of The Authority and its predecessor, StormWatch.

For his part, Millar's runs on Authority/Ultimates were just him doing his own less-inspired riff on Ellis' Authority writing style.
posted by Strange Interlude at 8:25 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


Ellis's Authority was both a recovery from the sheer awfullness of the Stormwatch/Aliens comic, and an attempt to replicate summer blockbuster movies. It ess pretty successful. Millar injected clumsy politics, clumsy dialogue, and artwork that made the characters look like fetal rats. In other words, though he meant well, he made the comic suck. And things have been downhill since then. Which is a pity, because he does bits and pieces in his comics that are really good.
posted by happyroach at 8:56 PM on May 21


Rat Queens sounds pretty good... I've done an AskMe if anyone else has titles to recommend.
posted by rifflesby at 9:05 PM on May 21 [1 favorite]


Millar injected clumsy politics, clumsy dialogue, and artwork that made the characters look like fetal rats.

Well, the first two are definitely Millar's fault, but he was just the writer; If you didn't like the art, that's all on Frank Quitely. FWIW, I don't think Quitely's wavy/puffy drawing style is for everyone, but he's hardly bad.
posted by Strange Interlude at 9:27 PM on May 21


Marvel only looks good on female representation in its movies because the bar's so damn low compared to DC.

I was troubled when Feige said he wasn't sure about making a Black Widow movie because they "wouldn't get the credit" on account of she's already a big known superhero. Damn it, dude! That's a good reason to make a movie about her. I would like to give you money and see that movie please.

I would also like a ticket for the Aisha Tyler Lexi Alexander She Hulk movie, please. Likewise, justice demands that Katee Sackhoff play Captain Marvel in the same way it demanded Patrick Stewart play Professor Xavier. It's so perfect that it's irresponsible to not put that together.

J'onn J'onzz, Manhunter From Mars. There's a ton of great story hooks for the character. He's the thinking man's Superman.

Love him. Always thought it was an interesting contrast that he and Superman both lost their worlds, their people and their families, but J'onzz lost all of that as a grown martian who could understand the loss.

Millar started out with a fair bit of promise but then took the express to Pandertown

Truth. His comics have interesting riffs on old ideas and tons of vileness inbetween. There were bits of Old Man Logan that I loved and there was also shit stupid stuff like the Hulk Inbred Hillbillies, dumb gross stuff that only works if you understand these characters as poorly as David Goyer. No way Bruce and Jennifer would do that but LOLYOLO, cowboy Wolverine needs to fight someone.

The nerve, making guys like Brian Hitch draw all those big panels and splash pages just to set up dipshit cheapshot jokes. CAPTAIN AMERICA WOULD NEVER SHIT ON FRANCE THAT WOULD NEVER HAPPEN IN A MILLION YEARS WHAT ARE YOU DOING?
posted by EatTheWeak at 12:14 AM on May 22 [3 favorites]


If anybody wants a good read, Gail Simone's Welcome to Tranquility is absolutely fantastic.

I think Millar does some interesting stuff. Superior and Nemesis are basically horror stories set in the superhero genre.
Superman: Red Son is not that bad considering he showed how there is a jingoism usually constructed around Superman, especially in the older comics, which is often defining of the character, but he then strips the character of it and allows him to keep Superman as Superman which is a direction I wasn't expecting.
Wanted is interesting as far as it pertains to the ideas in which Moore has explored concerning ideology. He didn't invert the ideas so much as subtract it's presence, and in turn having a completely apathetic character end up as a sociopathic ideologue anyway. Apathy doesn't free you from ideology, just makes it directionless. Power allows an enactment of ideas and using the power of killing, as we have seen from plenty of world leaders throughout time, is... powerful.
Kick-Ass is about where power fantasies can lead us. It's also a blatant commentary on comics itself, which the movie version takes it's cues and gives us the movie ending.
Millar is also one of those artists that does seem to take delight in some of the more juvenile aspects of his art, which is problematic to say the least, and is what I think most are reactive about.

It's worth remembering that Joss Whedon's Avengers and the first Captain America movie both fail the simple, obvious Bechdel test,

Huh, yeah, hadn't thought of that. The Avengers has a lot of layers to it, but I would point out that one of those layers consists of flipping the "male gaze" as Whedon is fond of doing. I would also make the argument that Black Widow is the central character to that movie and, except for the beginning, the plot mostly turns on her actions.
posted by P.o.B. at 2:50 AM on May 22


"It's a GIRL, but look at the size of her!"

There's nothing in that entire article that made any sense.

1) Why on earth are we talking about She-hulk in the context of DC.
2) Why the hell are we ignoring the fact that She-hulk is an awesome character.
3) WTF with all the DC hate?

This is interesting, from Wikipedia:

The reason for the character's creation had to do with the success of the Incredible Hulk TV series (1977–82). Afraid that the show's executives would suddenly introduce a female Hulk, resembling the popular Bionic Woman, Marvel decided to publish their own version of such a character to make sure that if a similar one showed up in the TV series, they would own the rights

Here's the very first she-hulk panel from the early '80s.
I'm calling "less enlightened times", and I'm going to try and forget I just went and read Savage She-Hulk #1 as some kind of half-assed research.
posted by zoo at 3:10 AM on May 22 [1 favorite]


Brian Michael Bendis comments (and has since deleted it and is claiming he was deliberately misquoted):
Here’s what I think, and just so everyone is clear I don’t know David, I’ve never met him, I had absolutely no dog in this fight.

I will answer your question with a question: how come professional writers are not allowed to spew silly nerd nonsense but everyone else is?

every day I open my tumbler ask box to so many questions and so many comments that are about a range of subjects that are equally ridiculous or even more ridiculous to the point of making no logical sense whatsoever. :-)

it was comic book day today and many of you went to the store and many of you engaged in silliness of equal or greater value.

if this guy wants to spout off nonsense about she Hulk or Martian ManHunter he is allowed to.
posted by fight or flight at 5:52 AM on May 22


I would also make the argument that Black Widow is the central character to that movie

Maybe. She's a strong character, for sure, but there are plenty of movies with single strong female characters. The Bechdel Test goes just a tiny bit further, and asks for 2 named female characters who have *one* conversation about something other than a man.

It's a pretty fucking low bar, Avengers fails it, and the fact that Winter Soldier's argument for vaulting over it is exactly one seconds-long interaction speaks volumes about how seriously Marvel takes female representation in its movie universe. By which I mean: not very seriously at all.
posted by mediareport at 6:22 AM on May 22 [2 favorites]


I'm not going to defend Winter Soldier as a great feminist movie by any means, but it's failure to pass the Bechdel Test is a limited data point. It's an action movie with a five person team at the end, two of whom are female, neither of whom are a love interest, and one of whom is arguably the movie's second lead. Two of the bigger problems with female representation in comic book movies (that there can only be one and she's a love interest) aren't problems for Winter Soldier.

In an ideal world, that's not much, but in the actual world of comic book movies in 2014? It's something.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 6:31 AM on May 22 [10 favorites]


Yeah, like I said above, the Bechdel Test isn't the be-all and end-all and there's quality comic book feminism in Scarlett Johansson's Black Widow, for sure. But one seconds-long Bechdelian conversation between women in a 2-hour movie? Not really something to be proud of. We'll see if Guardians of the Galaxy does any better, but I'm not particularly hopeful given Marvel's history.
posted by mediareport at 7:06 AM on May 22


I'm sure Gamora and Nebula will talk, but it would have to be about something other than Thanos.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 7:43 AM on May 22 [3 favorites]


It's interesting that Bendis tried to assert that someone who's arguably one of the most powerful people working in superhero films should be held to exactly the same standard as any random tumblr commenter.
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:19 AM on May 22 [1 favorite]


Bendis has been a force for good in the past in calling out bullshit. Pity about this time.
posted by Zed at 9:28 AM on May 22


I'd be a lot more sympathetic to arguments about why Black Widow would not make a good lead from Feige if there was another female character in a feature film that he was willing to go with instead.

Maria Hill, Carol Danvers, Jennifer Walters, Squirrel Girl

Seriously, just announce one, and maybe I'll consider the arguments against a black widow movie.
posted by dinty_moore at 9:56 AM on May 22 [1 favorite]


The Sad thing is this doesn't surprise me, and also I bet Goya gets ZERO official punishment or reprimand for this.

What's even sadder is people like Goya are in charge of expensive high profile projects featuring female Superheroes, and when those projects produce weak, underwritten, shallow or nonsensical female superheroes no one will point and say - 'Look it's all the fault of the douche-bags in charge', no they majority of viewers / consumers will say Look female superheroes suck'.
posted by Faintdreams at 10:13 AM on May 22


Squirrel Girl?

OK, now I want to see a movie where She-Hulk has to fight both MODOK and the Alabama legal system to help Squirrel Girl marry ROM the Spaceknight.

The thing about Guardians of the Galaxy is that if they can make that movie a hit then they've proven that they can pull out anything from the back catalog, and they've got fifty years of weird stories ready to go...
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 10:33 AM on May 22 [1 favorite]


Maybe that will get them to clear up the ROM rights.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 10:37 AM on May 22


Stan Lee responds. Bonus: She-Hulk the Riveter
posted by Cookiebastard at 11:05 AM on May 22


Unsurprisingly, Lee’s recollection of She-Hulk’s creation differs greatly from the scenario presented by Goyer. “I know I was looking for a new female superhero, and the idea of an intelligent Hulk-type grabbed me,”

That's awesome. In Stan Lee's mind she's not the female hulk, she's the smart hulk.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 11:19 AM on May 22 [6 favorites]


Craig Mazin has posted some clarifying thoughts.
posted by Happy Dave at 11:30 AM on May 22


That's one of the great things about She-Hulk – despite the name, she's there's much, much more to distinguish her from her male counterpart than her figure. It's nice to know that was in their minds from the beginning.

(I mean, I'm sure the trademark grab was part of it too, but that obviously wasn't the entire idea)
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:31 AM on May 22


Speaking to the question of what's wrong with DC:

When I was watching 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' one of the things that struck me is that Steve Rogers is an unabashed idealist. And they let him be that, unapologetically. That's who Captain America is; what he's supposed to be. And it's great. I mean there's a few jokes about him butting up against the modern world but they're good-natured jokes. Then I thought, isn't that also what Superman is supposed to be? How long has it been since he was allowed to be that way? In 'Man of Steel' he was dour and sullen and angsty. It's like they're embarrassed by the more wholesome aspects of their characters over at DC. Do they even like their characters? Or do they only think of them as brands? And they don't know how to sell Original Formula Superman do they focus-group and navel-gaze themselves into making a humorless overlong epic about an angry misunderstood douchebag in a cape because that's who they think their core audience identify with. At Marvel they at least seem to like what they're doing.
posted by wabbittwax at 6:17 PM on May 22 [11 favorites]


Weight and health is something that should be taught as a kid.

I loved that quality in the (Green) Arrow TV show, too - though that was more about the genesis of a man from I-will-get-revenge to I-will-do-right. Along the way, "gritty" became "if you aren't sad and disgusted by the end of this book/comic/movie/tv show we're doing it wrong," and it's really driven me away from a lot of things one would think I'd like on paper, being an action fantasy kinda girl.

And man... I would kill for a good Wonder Woman show - but keep her origin the same, damnit; none of this child of Zeus nonsense (people like to retcon out Athena's mom, too, just because Zeus swallowed her). I would kill for a Black Widow/Hawkeye Buddy Cop movie because THEY NEED IT THIS NEEDS TO HAPPEN. I have recently gotten really attracted to Marvel Girl - I blame Rachel and Miles. And She-Hulk just seems completely badass. I just really wish for once we could have a major franchise lineup with more women than men; I was so sad when the Avengers had just Natasha (even though I totally love her and Scarlett Johansson) and she never spoke to the awesome other women who were right there. Sitting right next to you. Look. Over there. TALK TO HER DAMNIT.

And a decent Storm. Storm is awesome. Storm is love. Storm is the wonder which comes at night to assure all little children we are important. STOP FUCKING UP STORM.
posted by Deoridhe at 6:42 PM on May 22 [1 favorite]


Petition for Lupita Nyong'o as Mohawk Storm.
posted by casarkos at 11:37 PM on May 22 [4 favorites]


The scary thing is, the current Marvel crop of movies (and the season final of Agents of Shield) actually has me thinking about a Rom Spacetoaster movie and going "Yeah, that could actually be cool."

That's a scary amount of goodwill. I hope they don't squander it.
posted by happyroach at 12:12 AM on May 23 [2 favorites]


Gail Simone kicking ass and taking names.
posted by kmz at 9:15 AM on May 23 [5 favorites]


Chris Sims wrote a takedown.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:02 AM on May 23 [3 favorites]


I just want put a good word in for J'onn J'onzz, Manhunter From Mars

I want to put in MANY good words for J'onn J'onzz. I am a lady and he is absolutely my favorite superhero and people who make fun of the character as well as the people who like him are just the living worst.

One of the best things about J'onn in the animated movie featuring his origin story is that when he meets the other superheroes, he is still basically a naked green Martian, but he looks at his new friends and realizes he needs to brain-magic himself some clothes. However, since he's surrounded by people wearing superhero costumes, he kind of tries to take cues from all of them, and the result is a cape (like Bats and Supes), a tight pair of briefs (like Wonder Woman and Superman), crossed suspenders which appear to be his own design, and the rest of him is bare (again seemingly inspired by Diana). He's from space, so he doesn't know that only lady superheroes are supposed to show that much skin, so he copies Diana without a qualm. And I love that.
posted by a fiendish thingy at 6:25 AM on May 24 [3 favorites]


FILM CRIT HULK Weighs in on She-Hulk
posted by homunculus at 1:57 PM on May 24


Superdames is having a she-hulk weekend in response.

Regarding Manzin's response, Gail Simone and Film Crit Hulk have touched on this a bit, but the original question that lead to this response was what would they do to a character to revamp them. It's not even what their thoughts were on the character, or how that character had been handled previously, it's on how to revamp it. And apparently poor art and writing in the past means that character only deserves to be reduced to the worst aspects of any of their creation forevermore.

Yes, there have been shitty storylines and art with She-Hulk in it, because there are thirty-five years of comics with She-Hulk. And, surprise, sometimes there's a lot of problematic art and writing in comics. But it seems like previous bad writing and horrible costume decisions doesn't hold back the white guys and doesn't keep people from trying to revamp their characters.

Pointing out shitty writing of women in the past as a reason not to bother writing women in the future of comics does not fly with me. Even ignoring that this has already been done with She-Hulk, it could have been a chance to talk about what they'd do with the concept to subvert the issues they've had with the character.

justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow: Squirrel Girl?

Squirrel Girl. (The GLA came up in the Guardians of the Galaxy thread, and then someone fancasted Helen Murray, and hey, she definitely doesn't have the 'complications' that they tend to ascribe to Black Widow or Wonder Woman).
posted by dinty_moore at 2:39 PM on May 24


And man... I would kill for a good Wonder Woman show - but keep her origin the same, damnit; none of this child of Zeus nonsense

You take that back! The child of Zeus so-called "nonsense" is what makes modern Wonder Woman awesome.
posted by zoo at 6:02 AM on May 25


wait, what? Wonder Woman is the child of Zeus in the continuity du moment?
posted by Zed at 9:04 AM on May 25


That's not all Zed. Even hovering over this link is a spoiler, but if you're not that bothered... this happens too.

Wonder Woman is my favourite DC Comic.
posted by zoo at 9:56 AM on May 25


There’s a lot I like about Wonder Woman’s Nu-52 run (Cliff Chiang’s character designs foremost), and there’s a lot more that I think works. But the change in mythology kind of ruined the series for me – the being a child of Zeus, the fact that all Amazons are now rapists willing to sell their sons into slavery, the fact that all of the Amazons are now dead, Ares being her mentor, the fact that every woman Diana interacts with is either portrayed as evil, petty, or helpless … it makes it hard for me to support. Any one of them I would have been okay with – not happy, but willing to excuse, but they kept on piling up. And I would have been probably still been willing to read it if it weren’t a Wonder Woman comic, but this version of Wonder Woman doesn’t feel like Wonder Woman at all.

I was reading it for a while, but I’ve tapered off as the rest of my pull list grew. I don’t think I’ve read it in a year – it might have changed course since then, but nothing I’ve read makes me think it has.

DC Women Kicking Ass has a writeup of the Black Canary and Zatanna comic I mentioned upthread - it's still looking good, and apparently Dini wrote it as 'a love letter to the more upbeat, carefree spirit of DC comics'. So that's a good sign.
posted by dinty_moore at 5:53 PM on May 25


She-hulk is awesome.

Go read Ms. Marvel.

That is all.
posted by Fizz at 10:36 AM on May 26


dinty_moore: the fact that all Amazons are now rapists willing to sell their sons into slavery...

Don't blame DC for that. That's historical canon, straight from the people who invented the Amazons in the first place two millenia ago.
posted by IAmBroom at 2:31 PM on May 27


For 70 years, writers have capriciously cherry-picked a handful of elements from the classical Greek sources about Amazons, rarely having much more correspondence than the basics: a matriarchy of warrior women ruled by a Queen Hippolyta.

If Brian Azzarello wants to now cherry-pick a different bit, I think it's odd to suggest the blame should lie elsewhere.
posted by Zed at 4:47 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


Yeah. It's also not like Azzarello's take on the Amazons is otherwise steeped in mythological accuracy, either.

And then the Amazons were all killed off (and had stayed dead for at least a dozen issues by the time I stopped reading), so it's not like he was leaping to explore Amazonian society.

Again, there are things I enjoyed about Azzarello's take on wonder woman. The treatment of the Amazons is not one of them. They don't have to be perfect or live in a Utopia, but I think there might be a middle ground between that and making everyone but Diana a rapist.
posted by dinty_moore at 9:50 PM on May 27


I'm not saying Azzarello isn't an idiot (don't know him from Adam, myself), but: "Amazons were a tribe of women who captured men, used those war prisoners to impregnate themselves, killed the men and the male babies - and shot arrows really well" is about all I ever knew about them from Greek myths. So, yeah, I'd say he's cherry-picking the most obvious and best-known cherries.

Still, he did pick those parts, as opposed to the next thing I learned as a teen: "They cut off their own right breasts to improve their archery."
posted by IAmBroom at 2:44 PM on May 28


But here's the thing - Azzarello isn't working off the Greek myth, primarily*. He's working off of the DC character who has had its own mythology, only very loosely based off of the Greek myth. Wonder Woman is not a new character: for seventy years the story was that the Amazons exist on Themyscira/Paradise Island because of the will of the gods. Diana exists as their ambassador of Peace to Man's world. The specifics of that change, but the basics stay the same - Superman's from Krypton but raised on a farm in Kansas, Bruce Wayne's super rich and his parents died, Diana is the ambassador of Peace.

It's pretty clear that he's expecting the readers at the beginning of the issue where the 'truth' is revealed to believe that the previous origin story is still intact - hell, Diana herself believes that baby Amazons exist because of divine will. Azzarello isn't ignoring the previous origin story - he's rejecting it (and, in-text, finding it laughable). Which, okay, it's his book, his prerogative - but to what purpose? He's just made a huge, fundamental change to the way that the readers (and Diana) understand of the society where she grew up. But we never get any real reflection, and the next time we see the Amazons, they've been turned to stone**. The story moves on. So why bother?

I don't think Azzarello is an idiot, but I do think that the new Wonder Woman run has a surprising number of issues with women, considering that it's freaking Wonder Woman.

*which, okay, even if it were - the choice of what gets left in because 'historical accuracy' and what gets abandoned in fantasy with regards to women and minorities is pretty BS. It's almost always about reflecting the author's imagination of the past - where things were more unjust but it's okay because 'that's how things were back then', whether or not they actually were. It's used as an excuse to get away with stories we find unpalatable today. Suddenly the thing that's most important to retain about the Amazons wasn't that they were archers, warriors, or sliced off a breast, but that they were rapists? Seriously?

** Admittedly, the Amazons tend to die a lot in Wonder Woman comics.
posted by dinty_moore at 9:30 PM on May 28 [1 favorite]


OK, thanks for all that perspective, dinty_moore. I'm not following the new WW, but I was aware that rape and infanticide were stock-in-trade for the Amazon legends.
posted by IAmBroom at 9:26 AM on May 29


Wonder Woman Costume Designs We'd Love To See On The Big Screen
posted by homunculus at 3:36 PM on May 29


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