Friday, July 14, 2006

COMICS - Should Superman be with Wonder Woman or Lois Lane or...?

Ratzo's latest blog post contains a link to an interview with Reginal Hudlin, writer of "Black Panther," and President of BET Entertainment, which all but "had me at 'hello,'."

When I got to this part, I was so hooked that I *knew* I was going to have to post about it, no matter how briefly:
"Why did you choose T'Challa's [Black Panther's] first love over his ex-fiancee, Monica Lynne?

RH: Because Superman should be with Wonder Woman, not Lois Lane..."
Eventually, I think I'll end up posting about the entire interview, but, for now I wanna focus on that ballsy-ass statement (but it's certainly not the first). That interview, in general, and that line, in particular, say a lot about where Mr. Hudlin's "head is at," regarding the realm of fictional characters.

There's much more to his interview, apparently, but I wanted to address this part, for now, and ask:

Should Superman be with Wonder Woman or Lois Lane or...?



(By the way, if you really wanna run with Hudlin's comparison, then Superman should be with Lana Lang, as she was his first love... that I know of, anyway.)

24 comments:

Luke Cage said...

I think that Superman should be with Wonder Woman. However, I understand his mentality to be with Lois. She's more needy of Superman, than WW would be of him. Talk about a blow to his ego that would be right? Plus Lois has enough nonsense going on around her to get herself in just the right amount of trouble so that Kal-El could rescue her azz, every.single.time.

Just like Thor should be with Valkyrie, and Storm should be with Black Panther and Bishop should be with Photon (Captain Marvel). See the likenesses man?

Anonymous said...

"Superman should be with Wonder Woman" is pretty much Fanboy-think -- the same thinking that gets Superman supremely powerfull out juggling planets -- there is an old addage of "Never give the Fans what they want" - and a professional writer would approach the comics at what builds stories and characters, and not what titilates cheaply.

I will agree that Superman should be with Lana, tho' -- because Lois is a real B*tch who always tried to ruin Superman's secret ID.

--TN

West said...

re: luke cage's "I think that Superman should be with Wonder Woman. However, I understand his mentality to be with Lois. She's more needy of Superman, than WW would be of him. Talk about a blow to his ego that would be right? Plus Lois has enough nonsense going on around her to get herself in just the right amount of trouble so that Kal-El could rescue her azz, every.single.time."

This explains why someone might want Lois with Supes, but...

re: luke cage's "Just like Thor should be with Valkyrie, and Storm should be with Black Panther and Bishop should be with Photon (Captain Marvel). See the likenesses man?"

...are you saying they should be together because they're both super-strong and can fly?

By the way, "Bishop and Photon (whose name was stolen, yet again)??"

Howcum?

re: anonymous's ""Never give the Fans what they want""

There's value in that, I suppose. A number of times, when fictional characters are finally given what we want to see them get, the stories kinda putter.

But I also think it can lead to other interesting stories.

re: anonymous's "I will agree that Superman should be with Lana, tho' -- "

Howcum?

Luke Cage said...

...are you saying they should be together because they're both super-strong and can fly?

Well, yes and no. It does come down to their powers, but with Thor's big ego, a mortal woman wouldn't stand a chance trying to squeeze that big ol' head of his into her house's door.-lol Now Valkyrie, of Norse mythology herself and a minor Goddess' whose sole purpose was to line up the red carpet in Valhalla, along with the other valkyries to serve drink and look after the tableware and drinking vessels for their fellow Norse Gods. How fitting for Thor huh?

As for Photon & Bishop.. Aaah, I just love the fro' on Photon and since Storm's already taken by Wakanda's King, well Photon's not a bad trade off...-lol

Anonymous said...

re: west's re: anonymous's "I will agree that Superman should be with Lana, tho' -- "

Howcum?


well, mostly because you suggested it -- i really was just throwing out a lil' Lois hate - but if you want me to go into it a bit more, either Lana or Lois are plot devices created specifically for the purpose of being women in Superman/Clark's life -- whereas Wonder Woman was created to be her own character (with her own She-Lois plot device, Steve Trevor) -- this makes Lana viable, and whereas putting Wonder Woman in the role undercuts her independant character and starts to define her instead by her relationship with Superman. She becomes, by default "Wonder-Lois" -- tho' it's possible Superman would have to fill the role of Super-Steve in WW's books - i somehow don't see DC rolling with that too often/easily.

Does this mean any characters not intially created TO BE together can't be made an item? No - but i do think it is a greater consideration, what is gained or lost for each character by putting them together. whereas if they are specifically created FOR that role, clearly nothing is lost - they are serving thier purpose.

-- TN

Ragnell said...

Seconding TN's thoughts here.

West said...

I don't recall seeing super-strong characters who are in long-term relationships, despite how much sense it'd make for them to prefer each other.

Ignoring the Super-status-quo, I'd say that I'd prefer to see Superman with Wonder Woman.

Who the-powers-that-be create for him to be with isn't as important, to me, as who it makes sense (and good stories) for him to be with.

Ragnell said...

West -- But it doesn't make sense for him to be with Wonder Woman. He fell in love with Lois Lane. That's the kind of woman he likes. Diana's a totally different personality.

The only reason people think it makes sense is because they think it's like he's the Football Captain and she's the Head Cheerleader. And even in that they're wrong as Diana's Captain of the Track Team and Lois is the Head Cheerleader.

Ragnell said...

And I don't see the "good stories" that come out of this WW-Superman attraction. How exactly are they better than the ones with Lois?

West said...

If falling in love with one kind of person meant you could never fall in-love with any other kind of person, this would be an even sadder world than it already is.

As far as how exactly these stories with WW would be better, I'm just saying there's a lot of potential there.

Do you agree that it makes sense for an invulnerable man to be with an invulnerable woman?

Ragnell said...

Do you agree that it makes sense for an invulnerable man to be with an invulnerable woman?

Not that Man of Steel, Woman of Kleenex shit!

Look, here's the thing, you really want to be placing the two together based on their physical characteristics? That's like, the epitome of shallow. One of the great things about Superman was he fell for a pushy, aggressive, not traditionally attractive career woman because she excited him. You want to chunk that relationship in favor of a surface commonality?

And Diana, do you really want the world's preeminant superheroine paired with the only guy who's physcially more powrful than her? What the hell kind of message does that send?

West said...

ragnell, nobody here is stealing your candy, bending your comics, or slapping your momma, so why are you taking this so personally?

re: "Not that Man of Steel, Woman of Kleenex shit!"

Not JUST that. It's not just he insides that he'd have to worry about breaking, but feel free to keep going for the absolute worst interpretation of whatever I say, if that does it for you.

re: "Look, here's the thing, you really want to be placing the two together based on their physical characteristics? That's like, the epitome of shallow."

*sigh*

Not really because, as we all know, these aren't real people and they certainly don't have complex, well-defined, and high-restrictive personality traits.

That means that we can put ANY two people into a relationship just like we can put ANY two people into a fight. Even the best of friends kick each others' asses once in a while in comic book universes.

But all that aside, it'd only *approach* shallowness if people were together *solely* based on their physical characteristics.

Pretending that physicality is *completely* irrelevant is just as extreme as pretending that it's all that matters.

re: "One of the great things about Superman was he fell for a pushy, aggressive, not traditionally attractive career woman because she excited him. You want to chunk that relationship in favor of a surface commonality?"

Actually, for me (and apparently others), one of the worst things about Superman was that he inexplicably fell for a pushy, rude, and too often inconsiderate woman.

In most Superman iterations I've ever seen, there was no good reason given for why in the world Superman would go for someone whom TN, whose opinion you and I respect so much, refers to as a "b*tch."

And I don't know where you got the "not traditionally attractive" part from. Besides being a brunette female, she usually looks however an artist wants to draw her.

She may not be defying the laws of physics with Power-breasts, but "non-traditional" applies to Margot Kidder much more than it does to Lois Lane, in my estimation.

re: "And Diana, do you really want the world's preeminant superheroine paired with the only guy who's physcially more powrful than her? What the hell kind of message does that send?"

You're right, ragnell. We're all horrible, horrible people for wanting iconic, physically god-like fictional characters to be in a relationship because we think it might be fun to read about.

I'm all for considering messages, ragnell, like why the hell Storm was almost *never* in a relationship with another Black person, but I'm also all for keeping comics in perspective.

There's nothing about Diana's personality that makes her completely unsuitable for Superman, so people wanting to see them together isn't the worst thing in the world.


Besides, you want to talk about messages? What the hell kind of message does it send to always have Superman paired up with a woman he's always got to save AND whom he could kill with a poorly-timed sneeze?

We can go back and forth all day, but when you really get down to it, I think it's cool that other folks disagree on this harmless topic; it's the more venomous responses that give me pause.

doug said...

Superman should not be with either one of them. Part of the superman comics legacy is, i mean, was, the ongoing triangle of Lois-Clark-Superman.

That's really all I have to say.

West said...

Interesting point, doug.

I'm okay with the fact that it's moved beyond that - in fact, I'm pretty pleased about that.

But I could see folks still feeling a connection to the more classic version of the character dynamics.

I was just tired of see his sad, sorry interest in Lois, when he's Clark, while Lois ignores him in favor of Superman... which he pretty much encouraged.

Ragnell said...

West -- I'm taking this personally because I grew up with books about the guy saving the damsel in distress but it wasn't until Buffy the Vampire Slayer that I ever got to see the genders reversed. Even when I first picked up WW, they had Steve aged and most of the supporting cast female. I had to get ba ck issues to see a Dude in Distress.

I'm sorry, I love the gender reversal where the girl saves the guy, and as long as I have it I don't mind in the slightest the other stories where the guy saves the girl.

Putting Superman and Wonder Woman together destroys that.

And the Man of Steel paper is silly because it assumes that they've been married for this long and haven't touched each other. That's ridiculous, obviously Superman's physiology does not work as the writer suggests.

West said...

Well, I think it's entirely possible to have those preferences and not make this personal.

As far as the "Woman of Kleenex" thing, you're the one who seems obsessed with that - to the point that you've ignored just about every other point I've made.

I just think that's unfortunate because I look forward to your perspective on these things.

Ragnell said...

West -- Well, that's my perspective, and I find it very frustrating when so few people understand it.

West said...

I understand it. I just disagree with you that it precludes discussions such as this one.

Is there any other super-strong female out there (I can't even think of one in DC, at the moment) that you'd give the ragnell stamp of Kryptonian mating approval? ;-p

Ragnell said...

Well, most of them are related to him, aren't they?

Maxima's a villainess, so is obsession.

To be honest, I like Lois too, an awful lot. She's one of my favorites at DC. I'd hate to see her shunted aside because people think a mortal woman isn't good enoguh for a godlike man just like I hated to see Steve shutnnd aside because a mortal man wasn't good enough for a goddess.

Ragnell said...

ACK! Now I'm mistyping! Sorry!

West said...

re: " Well, most of them are related to him, aren't they?"

Ha!

re: "Maxima's a villainess, so is obsession."

Not sure what you mean, but one of my favorite stories was one where Supes and Maxima got together.

It was beautifully drawn and, besides addressing the value of having someone you don't have to hold back with (a real-world concern mentally, if not emotionally), and it kinda made sense why Supes would give her a shot... (because of what she did, not just because of her physicality).

re: "To be honest, I like Lois too, an awful lot. She's one of my favorites at DC."

Sure, she's a smart-mouthed hot-head. :-p

re: "I'd hate to see her shunted aside because people think a mortal woman isn't good enoguh for a godlike man"

One of the best signs of the fruitlessness of a conversation is when either side cannot competently rephrase and express the other side's position.

Who said anything about mortal women not being "good enough?"

re: "just like I hated to see Steve shutnnd aside because a mortal man wasn't good enough for a goddess."

I didn't know they did that.

(By the way, I have the dvd's of the first season of the WW series. Wonderful, despite its lame elements.)

Ragnell said...

Ha!

Good point, that's not stopping them in Supergirl, is it?

Sure, she's a smart-mouthed hot-head. :-p

:-p

Not sure what you mean, but one of my favorite stories was one where Supes and Maxima got together.

I've only ever read Maxima as a bad guy, stories actually. Missed her Justice League time. It'd be an interesting story, yes.

Who said anything about mortal women not being "good enough?"

Well, that's much the point of the original quote, isn't it? That the character deserves a woman as powerful as he is.

I didn't know they did that.

They did, they aged him and married him off to Etta Candy (after she'd dropped 50 pounds by being obsessed with dieting). See why I get upset? :(

(By the way, I have the dvd's of the first season of the WW series. Wonderful, despite its lame elements.)

I'm jealous.

West said...

re: "Well, that's much the point of the original quote, isn't it? That the character deserves a woman as powerful as he is."

Well, Hudlin never went much detail about his reasons, but, for me, it's a combination of physical (potential) compatibility and the fact that I have a positive association with Wonder Woman's character... while Lois has often been portrayed as someone unworthy of a nice person like Clark/Superman.

re: "They did, they aged him and married him off to Etta Candy (after she'd dropped 50 pounds by being obsessed with dieting). See why I get upset? :("

Blech.

Can't say I'm too fond of that creative decision, myself.


Overall, I prefer the more competent, not-always-needing-to-be-saved love interests - whether they're male, female, super-powered, or mortal.

I don't have a lot of tolerance for incompetents and idiots (as I've often ranted, I'd have throttled Gilligan t'death).

Ragnell said...

You'd hurt Gilligan? *Shocked* Everybody's little buddy? *Sniff*