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  1. #1
    Extraordinary Member Lightning Rider's Avatar
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    Default How do Lois Lane, Iris West, and Linda Park compare?

    The journalist love interest is a long-used archetype that extends beyond just these examples. I feel like these are the strongest and most consistent, and are worth a closer look. I always liked these characters and appreciated the fact that they had interesting careers that gave them some dimension. However they've had varying levels of development, and some of their nuances may be hard to quantify at first glance. I wanna explore em!

    How do they differ in overall personality? Lois and Iris were both portrayed as kind of go-getters constantly rolling their eyes at Clark and Barry. What's something notable they've done or said that the others wouldn't?

    How do they differ as romantic partners? Do their attitudes towards the hero business vary?

    How do they compare as journalists? Lois and Iris work in print (or online) news, but Linda appears to be more of a media presenter.


    I have some answers and ideas myself, but I want to hear from YOU first. Discuss!

  2. #2
    Three Legged Member married guy's Avatar
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    Linda was always a TV presenter/reporter. Her career was also never as tightly linked to the hero as either Lois or Iris were. Particularly back in the day.
    In more recent times writers have made an effort to show Lois in particular, was a very capable and talented reporter well before Supes ever showed up.
    Iris hasn't had a great deal of attention placed upon her in a LOOOONG time. Ever since the reboot, Iris is shown to be a reporter, but that's the extent of it.
    "My name is Wally West. I'm the fastest man alive!"
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  3. #3
    Astonishing Member manwhohaseverything's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by married guy View Post
    Linda was always a TV presenter/reporter. Her career was also never as tightly linked to the hero as either Lois or Iris were. Particularly back in the day.
    In more recent times writers have made an effort to show Lois in particular, was a very capable and talented reporter well before Supes ever showed up.
    Iris hasn't had a great deal of attention placed upon her in a LOOOONG time. Ever since the reboot, Iris is shown to be a reporter, but that's the extent of it.
    Yeah! Lois was capable and talented reporter before superman in goldenage. Her becoming superman centered only happened in silverage stories. This is how it happens lois gets into trouble. Kicks some ass(action comics duh!) . Gets overwhelmed. Gets captured. Superman comes in saves her. She writes the story only to realise, clark kent scooped her many a times. Rinse and repeat.

  4. #4
    Invincible Member Digifiend's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by married guy View Post
    Linda was always a TV presenter/reporter. Her career was also never as tightly linked to the hero as either Lois or Iris were. Particularly back in the day.
    In more recent times writers have made an effort to show Lois in particular, was a very capable and talented reporter well before Supes ever showed up.
    Iris hasn't had a great deal of attention placed upon her in a LOOOONG time. Ever since the reboot, Iris is shown to be a reporter, but that's the extent of it.
    Yeah, who does Iris even work for? The TV series adapted it as her having a blog.
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  5. #5
    Mighty Member Waterfall's Avatar
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    I like the idea of Linda being a scientist more. It evens out Wally being short on science. The other two women don't need that because their love interests are smart.

    In this age forcing "reporter" love interest is a dumb idea, save for Lois since she set the trope. Back in the day women had to be reporters because they couldn't be in the police force, so press was the only way to involve them in the action.

    Iris no longer properly does work anyway. I would either give Linda a modern twirl, like being a social media influencer of sorts, having a Youtube account on superheroes etc. or drop the concept entirely.

  6. #6
    Savior of the Universe Flash Gordon's Avatar
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    The reporter love interest is getting kinda tired isn't it? About time to diversify some of these jobs in older comics characters.

  7. #7

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    It was established in the comics that Lois holds multiple journalistic awards, something I don't remember being mentioned with the other two, so I think that would place her at the top. Between the other two, it's a bit of a toss up as they were in different news mediums.
    Last Read: Zatanna and the House of Secrets
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  8. #8
    Invincible Member Digifiend's Avatar
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    There's plenty of non-reporter love interests in comics though. Yeah, Vicki Vale in Batman was also a reporter, and Superboy's deceased girlfriend Tana Moon was one as well, but consider the others...

    Wonder Woman's boyfriend Steve Trevor is military.
    Green Lantern Hal Jordan's girlfriend Carol Ferris (who later became Star Sapphire) was a businesswoman (CEO of Ferris Air, Hal's employer).
    Aquaman's love interest Mera is monarchy.
    Nightwing and Tim Drake both dated fellow superheroes (Starfire and Batgirl, and Spoiler).
    Same goes for Hawkgirl (Shayera is always with Hawkman, Kendra was recently with Martian Manhunter in the Justice League comic and dated Green Lantern John Stewart in a cartoon).
    Green Arrow's girlfriend is a singer (and superhero of course - Black Canary).
    Donna Troy's ex-husband was a teacher.

    Iron Man's love interests have included a secretary (Pepper Potts, who decades later became a CEO and a superhero, Rescue), a bodyguard (Bethany Cabe), and most recently, a businesswoman and superhero (Janet van Dyne aka Wasp).
    Spider-Man's wife Mary Jane Watson has been an actress, model, and business owner (she ran a nightclub). For some reason the recent video game does make her a reporter, but she isn't one in the comics.
    Captain America's girlfriend Sharon Carter is a secret agent.
    Thor's love interest Jane Foster was a nurse (now a doctor and a superhero, Valkyrie).
    Captain Mar-Vell's love interest Carol Danvers, now Captain Marvel herself of course, was also military.
    And the same goes for Carol, whose current boyfriend Jim Rhodes is a soldier and a superhero (War Machine).
    Nova's main girlfriends have been fellow superheroes Namorita and Gamora.

    Note how many are dating or have dated other superheroes. That's even more common than reporter partners!
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  9. #9
    FF purist/snob CaptCleghorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noodle View Post
    It was established in the comics that Lois holds multiple journalistic awards, something I don't remember being mentioned with the other two, so I think that would place her at the top. Between the other two, it's a bit of a toss up as they were in different news mediums.
    Lois' latest series is doing a great job of dealing with her job, what she thinks of it, and how it affects her friends and family. She's been hampered by decades of shifting focuses on who she is, but a world-class journalist with her priorities in place fits her best and frankly makes her a better recipient of Clark's affections. I can not wait to read the last few issues of the story. It's probably the series I most miss with the COVID-inspired break from comic books.

  10. #10
    Extraordinary Member Lightning Rider's Avatar
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    In terms of their careers, Lois is definitely the powerhouse award-winning journalist, and primarily an investigative one. Iris also seems to be an investigative reporter as she's always going to events (often with Barry), and seems to write for a Central City news outlet Picture News. Linda Park could definitely use a twist, though being a media presenter is fairly different in itself. I think all of them could keep their jobs as long as the details are updated.

    How about the other questions? How do they differ in personality, their relationships, their attitudes towards heroing?

    I don't recall the Silver Age reveal of Barry's powers (though I imagine they're in one of my collected editions), but New Frontier did it nicely, especially in the context of superheroes being outlawed.




    Now Iris always struck me as being slightly more vain and conventionally feminine that Lois. Not that Lois doesn't have her own charm, but I always felt there was an extra layer of cockiness stemming from her good looks. Her impatience with Barry seemed to suggest he didn't know what he was missing, that she could be doing better, whereas Lois was constantly chiding Clark for being a coward in situations with confrontation.


  11. #11
    Astonishing Member manwhohaseverything's Avatar
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    Lois was chiding clark because he deserves everybit of it. Sure, after silverage it got to "poor clark, lois is bitch" interpretation. But, originally clark is entirely to blame for lois's behaviour. But, i agree lois is more masculine. She was treated as a boy in modern interpretation by her father in military. She had grew up like that and had to accept that feminine side. She was always very blunt and sassy with criticism,though.

  12. #12

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    I like that Lois keeps Clark in check. The fact that he has the powers of a god but loves this woman so much that he trusts her to keep him in line is a fantastic dynamic that really shows how deep that relationship is.
    Last Read: Zatanna and the House of Secrets
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  13. #13
    Astonishing Member manwhohaseverything's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noodle View Post
    I like that Lois keeps Clark in check. The fact that he has the powers of a god but loves this woman so much that he trusts her to keep him in line is a fantastic dynamic that really shows how deep that relationship is.
    That's a very wrong interpretation. Superman doesn't need someone to keep him in check.if you want to keep him in check. Just go to him, he would give you some kryptonite, if it's hard to come by. He doesn't like to control things. He is chainbreaker, not creator. His power is designed to make power irrelevant, not enforce the notion of power corrupts. He is the ultimate antidote to power based violence. He likes lois cause he will give him an honest blunt opinion. (which some interpretation lost. She would too busy being biased).

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by manwhohaseverything View Post
    He likes lois cause he will give him an honest blunt opinion. (which some interpretation lost. She would too busy being biased).
    That's what I mean by "keep him in check." Not physically, but being blunt with him. Obviously she can't stop him, but he loves and trusts her so much that her opinion holds weight and is taken seriously with him.
    Last Read: Zatanna and the House of Secrets
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  15. #15
    Astonishing Member manwhohaseverything's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noodle View Post
    That's what I mean by "keep him in check." Not physically, but being blunt with him. Obviously she can't stop him, but he loves and trusts her so much that her opinion holds weight and is taken seriously with him.
    He would take opinion from bibbo or perry or jimmy or dan turpin..... Etc(list is pretty long) as well. Heck! He has taken advice and heard opinions from a hitman named tommy who is hired gun and kills people. Superman when written right, not only doesn't judge. but also, talks to everyone as one of them. That doesn't mean they keep him in check.Which is my only issue with your interpretation.

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