Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Wonder Woman

So I saw something interesting today that you may have also seen. It's no surprise that I would see it, being the comic book geek that I am. But this new development in the world of Wonder Woman has hit the mainstream media and is causing something of a stir.

What you see to the right is the new look for Wonder Woman. Now, I'm all about seeing change every now and then. But is this really what we want to see from an iconic character, possibly the world's most famous super-heroine?

Back in the 90s, DC Comics thought it would be a swell idea to change the looks of Superman and Batman. Both of these new looks turned out to be temporary. But were the ideas temporary because that's what the story warranted all along, or did the outcry from fans across the nation cause them to go back to their classic uniforms?

Okay, I'll concede the point that it all may have been for story purposes. In Batman's case, Bruce Wayne (as Batman) had his back broken by the villain Bane. Therefore, a new Batman took his place, one who was a lot tougher on criminals than the real Batman. So the new guy designed his own outfit to look more like a suit of armor.

And as far as Superman: Electric Boogaloo is concerned, that was just a weirdly complicated story that, as a kid, I never really felt panned out in the end. Something happened to change Superman's DNA and so his powers went nuts. So for a while he was on tour with the Blue Man Group, but then, suddenly and with no real explanation, his classic powers and suit returned. I never really understood it. And, sadly, I pride myself on how much I know about Superman's back story.

Anyway, the big news is Wonder Woman. Her 600th issue came out this week, so to mark the milestone, she got some new clothes. Believe me, I get the argument for the new duds. What woman in her right mind, Amazon warrior or not, would wear the thing that Wonder Woman has been wearing for the past 70 years? How would anyone be able to fight in it. I mean, as a guy, sure, it'd be fun to watch a gorgeous woman try to fight in that attire, but I'm guessing it just wouldn't be practical.

Also, let's think about it from a modern perspective. Turn on the TV and you see female characters who never wear the same thing twice. I know, that's not real life. But wouldn't it be kind of believable to think that our super-heroes have a somewhat wider wardrobe than just the one outfit? They change clothes when they're living in their secret identities. Why can't they change when they're saving the world from total annihilation?

I won't jump on the bandwagon and start complaining about the princess' new clothes. I think it's a practical change. But, honestly, I don't see it becoming a permanent change. I'm guessing that, just like in the 90s, there will be a massive public outcry and, sooner or later, Wonder Woman will be back in her classic uniform...

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