Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Random Wonder Woman Weirdness
When I was a kid my mother used to tell me how she had raised her niece almost like a daughter. The two of them would sit around and read the absolute only comic book they liked-WONDER WOMAN! Now, even though I was a self-styled comic expert from an early age, I didn’t "get" WONDER WOMAN at all. I liked the Andru-Esposito art but the goofy villains (the Paper Man, Egg Fu) of the camp sixties could hardly make up for the goofy, sexist scripts (mostly by Robert Kanigher). The 1940’s and ‘50’s reprints, with their eccentric, almost woodcut-like art by Harry G. Peter, were even more bizarre with the heroine consistently being tied up and lots of talk about "loving submission" and "Sappho" and female domination.If you check out Les Daniels’ WONDER WOMAN book of a few years back, you’ll get an idea about the unusual (to say the least!) life of William Marston, Wonder Woman’s creator, and how his progressive(?) beliefs and lifestyle affected his very calculated creation of WW and, ultimately, the young people of this country!
Lately, though, I’ve been able to reassess WONDER WOMAN and, for the first time, read a number of the original stories. Surprisingly, I found them uniquely stylized and much more entertaining than I had expected. Spotting random panels of kinky weirdness in 1940’s WONDER WOMAN stories is unfairly simple but here are a few.