Wednesday, June 30, 2010

DC Unleashes The New "Wonder Woman"

According to reports, DC Comics has 'updated' their female superhero character "Wonder Woman", with DC Comics co-publisher, illustrator Jim Lee re-designing her costume for 'the modern era' in collaboration with writer J. Michael Straczynski and artists Don Kramer/Michael Babinski.

"Wonder Woman" # 600, now available
"...begins a run that is both forward-looking and true to the legendary character, planting her firmly in the modern era..."

The character was created by pyschologist William Moulton Marston, ('Charles Moulton') who saw the “great educational potential of comic books”, and was subsequently hired as an ‘educational consultant’ for National Periodicals/All-Winner Comics (forerunners of DC Comics) in 1941, before creating a female comic book superhero, in a field dominated by male characters.

Marston was inspired by his lover Olive Byrne, who lived him and his wife in a ‘polygamous, polyamorous’ relationship. Having 2 children with both women, Marston said that both women served as exemplars for his character, subsequently illustrated by artist ‘Harry Peter’.

“Wonder Woman is psychological propaganda for the new type of woman who should, I believe, rule the world,” Marston wrote at the time, defending his character’s look and sado-masochism, with every story highlighting women tied up either by a ‘magic lasso’ (of truth), chains, ropes, etc, in order to 'force obedience'.

“Not even girls want to be girls so long as our feminine archetype lacks force, strength, and power”, said Marston. "Wonder Woman satisfies the subconscious, elaborately disguised desire of males to be mastered by a woman who loves them.”

For Marston, Wonder Woman was not primarily a role model for girls, but the vehicle through which he could get young boys familiar with the idea of ‘dominating’ women.

“Women are exciting for this one reason — it is the secret of women’s allure — women enjoy submission, being bound”, Marston said.

“This I bring out in the ‘Paradise Island’ sequences where the girls beg for chains and enjoy wearing them”.

Virtually all th early “Wonder Woman” stories included a full-length WW in an oversized bondage panel. In one 1948 story, there were no fewer than 75 panels depicting bondage.

“The only hope for peace is to teach people who are full of pep and unbound force to enjoy being bound, ” said Marston.

“Only when the control of self by others is more pleasant than the unbound assertion of self in human relationships can we hope for a stable, peaceful human society.

"Giving to others, being controlled by them, submitting to other people cannot possibly be enjoyable without a strong erotic element…”

Click the images to enlarge...