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  1. #1
    Mighty Member LordUltimus's Avatar
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    Default Does Wonder Woman play second fiddle to Superman?

    Because to me it sure feels like she does. I brought up before that Superman's role in Doomsday Clock feels like it should be more Diana's thing (apparently she's disappeared?), and generally it seems that whenever theirs a Justice League story featuring them, Superman is placed on a pedestal compared to her. Is it just me? Or is it a case of writers not knowing much about her?

  2. #2

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    Despite lip service to "The Trinity," and the great success of the Wonder Woman movie, Diana absolutely and definitely plays second fiddle to Superman and Batman. My belief is that, for too many years decades in the past, TPTB just didn't know what to do with a powerful, independent female character who was in no way a spin-off from a male character, and whose origin and backstory did not depend on a man, or on men.

    I don't necessarily blame them. It was a sexist time, almost all the comics creators were men, she was a non-standard character who they sometimes tried to squeeze into gender stereotypes that didn't suit her. (Superhero stories were mainly considered "stories for boys" at the time, and it may be that many readers didn't quite know what she should be either.)

    But whether I blame them or not, I think the consequence is that she didn't really build up a long body of solid work of the kind that defined Superman and Batman. She rarely had two monthly comics, while Batman did and Superman had even more, if you count Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen. She didn't get the boost that Superman and Batman got from World's Finest. They developed supporting casts for Superman and Batman, including additional super-characters, who could support their own stories and even series: Robin, Supergirl, Lois and Jimmy, Batgirl. (I'm mainly looking at the Golden Age through the early Bronze Age, here.) In comparison, Wonder Girl was thrown into the Teen Titans without the long publication histories that the other original members had, it was only decided later who she was, and she rarely if ever showed up in a Wonder Woman story.

    Superman and Batman got multiple movies, TV shows. Wonder Woman got very little of that. It may be that she just "wasn't successful." Or it may be that they had no idea how to make her successful.

    Now, times have changed, attitudes towards women have changed, more woman are involved in the industry. But, from a marketing point of view, the industry is still very much driven by nostalgia and "iconic characters." And, because of her lower-visibility history, it's hard for Diana to catch up to Bruce and Clark. This mainly has to do with marketing, publishing, assumptions (true or false) about who is "iconic," and so on. But naturally it gets reflected in the stories themselves.

    Superman is considered The World's Greatest Superhero. Wonder Woman is considered, at best, The World's Greatest Female Superhero. And Batman is Batman, the greatest money-maker DC has. So of course Wonder Woman plays second fiddle.

    At least, that's the way it seems to me. As it happens, she's my favorite of the three.
    Last edited by Doctor Bifrost; 12-21-2018 at 07:19 PM.
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  3. #3
    Extraordinary Member AmiMizuno's Avatar
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    I agree. She always plays second fiddle. Despite situations where she has won in her comics, she always is weaker when Superman is around.
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  4. #4
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    If Superman is a first fiddle and Wonder Woman is a second fiddle--or first violin and second violin--in an orchestra set up, where do the other DC heroes fit?



    Batman is probably in the cello section, because they are just as important, I'd say, but they play in a lower register for the most part.
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  5. #5
    Extraordinary Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Historically, probably. She's the member of the Trinity who almost always gets the shortest end of the stick. Her being a woman in an industry that rarely knows what to do with that is the major source of the problem.

    Currently? The Trinity is not balanced because both Wonder Woman and Superman play second fiddle to Batman along with everyone else.

  6. #6
    Just crumbs...... BiteTheBullet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LordUltimus View Post
    Because to me it sure feels like she does. I brought up before that Superman's role in Doomsday Clock feels like it should be more Diana's thing (apparently she's disappeared?), and generally it seems that whenever theirs a Justice League story featuring them, Superman is placed on a pedestal compared to her. Is it just me? Or is it a case of writers not knowing much about her?
    Is this even a debate? Just watch the Justice League movie to understand how DC thinks about their boy scout. Wonder Woman was curbstomped by Superman and didn't do well against Steppenwolf.

    At the very worst I thought she should be the equal of Steppenwolf, one versus one, but after that movie there should be no debate that she plays second fiddle to Supes, among other hero's.

    They depowered her with respect to the comics and i seriously doubt her feats of strength versus what Aquaman did or what Shazam does in their respective movies.

    Will she ever fly in the movies under the current iteration? Is she didn't fly in BvS or Justice League, what would make one think she will in a movie that takes place about 40 years prior to these movies?

    Sadly, she will always play 2nd fiddle to Superman, and probably more of the heroes that we will see on the silver screen.
    Last edited by BiteTheBullet; 12-22-2018 at 08:13 PM.

  7. #7
    Extraordinary Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Yeah her two solo movies and him getting shelved for likely the next decade or so means she is second fiddle to him. Gimme a break.

    Should we just have a general thread to complain about Superman? I feel like we get a new one every week.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by LordUltimus View Post
    Because to me it sure feels like she does. I brought up before that Superman's role in Doomsday Clock feels like it should be more Diana's thing (apparently she's disappeared?), and generally it seems that whenever theirs a Justice League story featuring them, Superman is placed on a pedestal compared to her. Is it just me? Or is it a case of writers not knowing much about her?
    The potential for her not to and to realize her deal is greater today than say the 60s but the character's design is still ahead of the times. And with duller minds in charge at DC she's still actively limited and resisted.

  9. #9
    Mighty Member My Two Cents's Avatar
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    First I think D C raised the levels of far too many of there characters with regards to the powers and that has resulted in Superman
    becoming just another Waldo in the crowd.
    Second George Perez raised the powers and abilities of Diana back in 1987 and since Dan Didio took over have diligently focused on
    taking her down a peg more and more to the point now the movies and comics have no clue if he is allowed to fly or (frankly) if she can.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by My Two Cents View Post
    First I think D C raised the levels of far too many of there characters with regards to the powers and that has resulted in Superman
    becoming just another Waldo in the crowd.
    Second George Perez raised the powers and abilities of Diana back in 1987 and since Dan Didio took over have diligently focused on
    taking her down a peg more and more to the point now the movies and comics have no clue if he is allowed to fly or (frankly) if she can.
    Check out WW THE COMPLETE HISTORY, THE GREAT WOMEN SUPERHEROES, or any of the comics history tomes out there and you will learn that Perez did not raise her levels. He moved closer to giving them their due.

  11. #11
    Amazing Member RudHao's Avatar
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    The Trinity is kind of a dumb concept anyway. I get WonderWoman/Superman and or Superman/Batman, but any relationship at all between Batman and WonderWoman has always felt forced and or nonexistant.

    Trinity as a concept I just cant really accept as anything other than a Superman makes his two close friends hang out together because hes there type scenario

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by RudHao View Post
    The Trinity is kind of a dumb concept anyway. I get WonderWoman/Superman and or Superman/Batman, but any relationship at all between Batman and WonderWoman has always felt forced and or nonexistant.

    Trinity as a concept I just cant really accept as anything other than a Superman makes his two close friends hang out together because hes there type scenario
    I see it as more of an out-of-story marketing/publishing ploy, imposed onto the stories themselves. But few of the stories have actually justified it in any way.
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  13. #13
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    The whole DCU plays second fiddle to Batgod.
    If ten years of recording The Young and the Restless for my mother have taught me anything, it's that characters in serial dramas are always happily in love...until they're not

    “The very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common. Instead of altering their views to fit the facts, they alter the facts to fit their views...which can be very uncomfortable if you happen to be one of the facts that needs altering.” - the 4th Doctor

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by SiegePerilous02 View Post
    Yeah her two solo movies and him getting shelved for likely the next decade or so means she is second fiddle to him. Gimme a break.

    Should we just have a general thread to complain about Superman? I feel like we get a new one every week.
    I am happy for all the threads to be consolidated.
    If ten years of recording The Young and the Restless for my mother have taught me anything, it's that characters in serial dramas are always happily in love...until they're not

    “The very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common. Instead of altering their views to fit the facts, they alter the facts to fit their views...which can be very uncomfortable if you happen to be one of the facts that needs altering.” - the 4th Doctor

  15. #15
    Astonishing Member WonderScott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brettc1 View Post
    The whole DCU plays second fiddle to Batgod.
    Pretty much THIS.

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