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  1. #31
    Post Editing OCD Confuzzled's Avatar
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    I think it's due to how environmentalism has become such a sensitive topic and with even child activists like Greta Thunberg being attacked online, there is a danger of seeming anti-conservation by making Ivy a straight villain.

  2. #32
    Astonishing Member kjn's Avatar
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    DC may attempt to make Poison Ivy into a straight villain, but I'm not sure they can. The straight villain Poison Ivy was nothing like a plant-themed sexy villainess, who was bad because she was sexy and sexy because she was bad. A lot of people try to push her back into that bottle, but she's too large for it nowadays.

    I'd say modern Ivy defies any form of hero-villain dichotomy. I see modern Poison Ivy as a Demeter-like character. She is both feast and famine. Both poison and antidote. Both disease and medicine. The more she is punished and constrained, the more dangerous and violent she gets. A lot of her character has been defined by violence against her by men, and caring for and protecting the innocent, often women and children.

    That's part of why I found the ending for her in Heroes in Crisis to be so profoundly wrong: she was supposedly made clean and innocent through violence by a man. Inadvertent violence, but still violence.
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  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Confuzzled View Post
    I think it's due to how environmentalism has become such a sensitive topic and with even child activists like Greta Thunberg being attacked online, there is a danger of seeming anti-conservation by making Ivy a straight villain.
    A bit off topic but I wonder if this might be why the League of Assassins went from ecoterrorists to an organization of evil ninjas not unlike the Hand.

  4. #34
    Mighty Member Katana500's Avatar
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    I always thought Ivy should have more supporters in universe. Groups like the Earth Liberation Front or Earth First would probably view her as a natural leader and rally behind her.

    Could be kinda cool if she was the leader of a eco terrorist group, and had people she could command. Heck could have some of her supporters be shown in a good light while others would be more extreme.

    Has Ivy ever worked with Ra's? Surely there goals would be pretty compatible.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Katana500 View Post
    I always thought Ivy should have more supporters in universe. Groups like the Earth Liberation Front or Earth First would probably view her as a natural leader and rally behind her.

    Could be kinda cool if she was the leader of a eco terrorist group, and had people she could command. Heck could have some of her supporters be shown in a good light while others would be more extreme.

    Has Ivy ever worked with Ra's? Surely there goals would be pretty compatible.
    In the early 00s, it seemed like Ivy was headed towards being the leader/maternal figure of an eco-conscious community she fostered (the Robinson Park orphans from No Man's Land), but most of them were killed off in a Batman: Gotham Knight arc.

    I don't think she ever teamed up with Ra's or the League of Shadows, but then again, Ra's would view Ivy as yet another product of Gotham's degradation (in the comics set in the animated verse, the League stabbed her* during their destruction of Arkham), while current Ivy wouldn't really want human civilization in its entirety to be razed to the ground.

    *though later it was revealed the real Ivy had reformed and retired and the League had stabbed a plant clone she left behind to keep Harley company.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Confuzzled View Post
    I think it's due to how environmentalism has become such a sensitive topic and with even child activists like Greta Thunberg being attacked online, there is a danger of seeming anti-conservation by making Ivy a straight villain.
    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    A bit off topic but I wonder if this might be why the League of Assassins went from ecoterrorists to an organization of evil ninjas not unlike the Hand.
    I think hyper-environmentalism worked better decades ago for villains because people generally assumed that everyone recognized the issue enough that the status quo would be “save the Earth!,” and thus the extremist view would of course be violent revolution, with the opposing viewpoint being the kind of lazy or hilariously malevolent polluters you see on Captain Planet.

    When you throw in how modern times have shown the status quo becoming binary between “save the Earth!” and “I reject your reality and substitute my own so I don’t have to do anything, screw Mother Earth!”... well, it kind of hurts the clarity that the extremism is the problem: people on one side think “Of course this is gonna happen with idiots denying it exists!” and people on the other side saying “Now you see, the issue is really this whole ‘save Mother Earth’ delusion!”

    Ra’s and co. benefit from getting a more nebulous and vigilalante-esque motivation because it both sidesteps that issue and allows them to have a greater similarity to Batman’s vigilante methods.

    Poison iVy arguably hits a problem where being a literal plant lady and an environmentalist makes it hard to have her be totally, 100% evil without making environmentalism seem evil, and if there’s any nuance added to the portrayal, she starts looking more like Gaia’s vengeance than anything else, which is a very ambivalent interpretation.
    Last edited by godisawesome; 01-26-2020 at 04:58 PM.
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  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by godisawesome View Post
    I think hyper-environmentalism worked better decades ago for villains because people generally assumed that everyone recognized the issue enough that the status quo would be “save the Earth!,” and thus the extremist view would of course be violent revolution, with the opposing viewpoint being the kind of lazy or hilariously malevolent polluters you see on Captain Planet.

    When you throw in how modern times have shown the status quo becoming binary between “save the Earth!” and “I reject your reality and substitute my own so I don’t have to do anything, screw Mother Earth!”... well, it kind of hurts the clarity that the extremism is the problem: people on one side think “Of course this is gonna happen with idiots denying it exists!” and people on the other side saying “Now you see, the issue is really this whole ‘save Mother Earth’ delusion!”

    Ra’s and co. benefit from getting a more nebulous and vigilalante-esque motivation because it both sidesteps that issue and allows them to have a greater similarity to Batman’s vigilante methods.

    Poison iVy arguably hits a problem where being a literal plant lady and an environmentalist makes it hard to have her be totally, 100% evil without making environmentalism seem evil, and if there’s any nuance added to the portrayal, she starts looking more like Gaia’s vengeance than anything else, which is a very ambivalent interpretation.
    She is probably better as an anti-villain or a well-intentioned extremist, rather than a straight-up villain at this point. I think the idea suggested earlier in the thread that she should be a ''straight villain'' in other guest spots in other books, reduces her from character to plot device, rather than having an actual point, she gets reduced from a character with a legitimate point to ''sexy bad girl'' who steals things or kills people.

    Magneto from X-Men has a legitimate point to, that mutants on Marvel Earth are discriminated against and persecuted by humanity, but he can still be presented as an antagonist.

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by godisawesome View Post
    I think hyper-environmentalism worked better decades ago for villains because people generally assumed that everyone recognized the issue enough that the status quo would be “save the Earth!,” and thus the extremist view would of course be violent revolution, with the opposing viewpoint being the kind of lazy or hilariously malevolent polluters you see on Captain Planet.

    When you throw in how modern times have shown the status quo becoming binary between “save the Earth!” and “I reject your reality and substitute my own so I don’t have to do anything, screw Mother Earth!”... well, it kind of hurts the clarity that the extremism is the problem: people on one side think “Of course this is gonna happen with idiots denying it exists!” and people on the other side saying “Now you see, the issue is really this whole ‘save Mother Earth’ delusion!”

    Ra’s and co. benefit from getting a more nebulous and vigilalante-esque motivation because it both sidesteps that issue and allows them to have a greater similarity to Batman’s vigilante methods.

    Poison iVy arguably hits a problem where being a literal plant lady and an environmentalist makes it hard to have her be totally, 100% evil without making environmentalism seem evil, and if there’s any nuance added to the portrayal, she starts looking more like Gaia’s vengeance than anything else, which is a very ambivalent interpretation.
    Well put. Add in the fact that in real life, the rich industrialists who are often shown to be Ivy's targets aren't even necessarily deluded or accidentally rejecting science, but are deliberately exploiting the planet, its resources and every life that gets affected by said exploitation, simply due to greed and shortsightedness. It would have to be a stretch to feel any kind of sympathy for them and while Batman can preach all he wants about "Ivy's intentions being good but methods being wrong", there is no actual alternate method proven to put an end to the harm these people cause.

    I mean, I am not advocating murder LOL. But in a fictional universe like DC, I think people are more invested in seeing Ivy doing what she needs to do and not getting punished for it. It's only cathartic and a healthy means of escapism.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Overlord View Post
    Magneto from X-Men has a legitimate point to, that mutants on Marvel Earth are discriminated against and persecuted by humanity, but he can still be presented as an antagonist.
    Interestingly though, the new Dawn of X (easily the best direction the X-Men line has taken in years), essentially claims that the mutants couldn't survive by Xavier's idealism alone and NEED to rope in more extremists like Magneto and Apocalypse in order to thrive, as long as the latter dial back their penchant for violence.

    It brings to mind an argument many Ivy fans have proposed online. Wouldn't the Batfamily be more successful at what they do if they just convinced Ivy that they are truly on the same side (in return for Ivy helping them, they could bring her enemies to justice with all the godly detective work instead of Ivy needing to kill them).

    Only flip side is with Ivy being on the side of the angels, the devils would have to get overpowered too, and then the street aspect of Gotham would be all but lost.

  9. #39
    Astonishing Member PwrdOn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Confuzzled View Post
    Well put. Add in the fact that in real life, the rich industrialists who are often shown to be Ivy's targets aren't even necessarily deluded or accidentally rejecting science, but are deliberately exploiting the planet, its resources and every life that gets affected by said exploitation, simply due to greed and shortsightedness. It would have to be a stretch to feel any kind of sympathy for them and while Batman can preach all he wants about "Ivy's intentions being good but methods being wrong", there is no actual alternate method proven to put an end to the harm these people cause.

    I mean, I am not advocating murder LOL. But in a fictional universe like DC, I think people are more invested in seeing Ivy doing what she needs to do and not getting punished for it. It's only cathartic and a healthy means of escapism.



    Interestingly though, the new Dawn of X (easily the best direction the X-Men line has taken in years), essentially claims that the mutants couldn't survive by Xavier's idealism alone and NEED to rope in more extremists like Magneto and Apocalypse in order to thrive, as long as the latter dial back their penchant for violence.

    It brings to mind an argument many Ivy fans have proposed online. Wouldn't the Batfamily be more successful at what they do if they just convinced Ivy that they are truly on the same side (in return for Ivy helping them, they could bring her enemies to justice with all the godly detective work instead of Ivy needing to kill them).

    Only flip side is with Ivy being on the side of the angels, the devils would have to get overpowered too, and then the street aspect of Gotham would be all but lost.


    It's actually pretty fun to see Batman and Ivy team up, the 1997 one-shot really gave them a fun dynamic that I wish we got to see more often. That being said though, Batman sort of represents everything that Ivy hates. Besides being a wealthy industrialist, he also stands for law and order and preservation of the status quo in the face of systemic injustice, a point that the Nolan films really hammered home. On top of that, he's always had a pretty severe chauvinistic streak and it's always implied that the only thing stopping him from going full prep time god on Ivy is that she's a woman, though as that page points out, he has hit her plenty of times.

  10. #40
    Post Editing OCD Confuzzled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PwrdOn View Post


    It's actually pretty fun to see Batman and Ivy team up, the 1997 one-shot really gave them a fun dynamic that I wish we got to see more often. That being said though, Batman sort of represents everything that Ivy hates. Besides being a wealthy industrialist, he also stands for law and order and preservation of the status quo in the face of systemic injustice, a point that the Nolan films really hammered home. On top of that, he's always had a pretty severe chauvinistic streak and it's always implied that the only thing stopping him from going full prep time god on Ivy is that she's a woman, though as that page points out, he has hit her plenty of times.
    Loved the 1997 one-shot. Incredibly influential on Ivy's characterization and you can see its impressions on later Poison Ivy stories like Ann Nocenti's Cast Shadows, Greg Rucka's Fruit of the Earth No Man's Land arc, Gail Simone's Batgirl Annual #2 and recent ones like Scott Snyder's All-Star Batman #7, Hope Larson's Batgirl #4 and even Tom King's Everyone Loves Ivy arc. And Apthorp Ivy is still my favourite Ivy.

  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Confuzzled View Post
    I mean, I am not advocating murder LOL. But in a fictional universe like DC, I think people are more invested in seeing Ivy doing what she needs to do and not getting punished for it. It's only cathartic and a healthy means of escapism.
    Poison Ivy for eco-Punisher?
    It brings to mind an argument many Ivy fans have proposed online. Wouldn't the Batfamily be more successful at what they do if they just convinced Ivy that they are truly on the same side (in return for Ivy helping them, they could bring her enemies to justice with all the godly detective work instead of Ivy needing to kill them).

    Only flip side is with Ivy being on the side of the angels, the devils would have to get overpowered too, and then the street aspect of Gotham would be all but lost.
    I also just find Ivy on the side of the angels to be a tad boring, which is why I didn't really enjoy her in stuff like the recent Birds of Prey or her guest appearance in Batgirl.
    Quote Originally Posted by PwrdOn View Post


    It's actually pretty fun to see Batman and Ivy team up, the 1997 one-shot really gave them a fun dynamic that I wish we got to see more often. That being said though, Batman sort of represents everything that Ivy hates. Besides being a wealthy industrialist, he also stands for law and order and preservation of the status quo in the face of systemic injustice, a point that the Nolan films really hammered home. On top of that, he's always had a pretty severe chauvinistic streak and it's always implied that the only thing stopping him from going full prep time god on Ivy is that she's a woman, though as that page points out, he has hit her plenty of times.
    I liked the take on their dynamic in this one-shot. Although I think Batman is more about trying to work with the system to root out injustice, rather then protecting the status quo, because the "status quo" of Gotham is what got his parents killed. He's an agent of change, just with different methods then Ivy has.

    For Batman, I subscribe to "The Hammers of Justice are Unisex" but I think he goes easier on villains when he feels like he has to or he sympathizes with them.

    I also really miss this Ivy costume. I'm not sure why they keep going back to the New 52 look or more uninspired looks for Ivy in the comics.

  12. #42
    Astonishing Member PwrdOn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frontier View Post
    For Batman, I subscribe to "The Hammers of Justice are Unisex" but I think he goes easier on villains when he feels like he has to or he sympathizes with them.

    I also really miss this Ivy costume. I'm not sure why they keep going back to the New 52 look or more uninspired looks for Ivy in the comics.
    Especially the way she's drawn here, Ivy looks quite delicate and vulnerable, in contrast to her usual sassy, swaggering self. Not quite a damsel in distress, but something like a Bond girl who fell in with the wrong crowd and needs help, even if she can never fully be trusted, which is the same kind of dynamic he has with Catwoman. I like to think that this is just another mode that Ivy can adopt when she needs to control someone emotionally and direct seduction isn't working, and I wouldn't want her being a hero to take away from her ability to be deceitful and manipulative. I also just love the art in this issue, since I first really started exploring the comic Ivy when the movie came out, and it was the 1997 one shot along with the Shadow of the Bat Annual 3 which was also drawn by Apthorp that really defined her look and personality for me. Even though the two issues are very different in tone, they both seem to be getting at different sides of the same person, and made me wish there was more material out there that explored this version of Ivy.

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by PwrdOn View Post
    Especially the way she's drawn here, Ivy looks quite delicate and vulnerable, in contrast to her usual sassy, swaggering self. Not quite a damsel in distress, but something like a Bond girl who fell in with the wrong crowd and needs help, even if she can never fully be trusted, which is the same kind of dynamic he has with Catwoman. I like to think that this is just another mode that Ivy can adopt when she needs to control someone emotionally and direct seduction isn't working, and I wouldn't want her being a hero to take away from her ability to be deceitful and manipulative. I also just love the art in this issue, since I first really started exploring the comic Ivy when the movie came out, and it was the 1997 one shot along with the Shadow of the Bat Annual 3 which was also drawn by Apthorp that really defined her look and personality for me. Even though the two issues are very different in tone, they both seem to be getting at different sides of the same person, and made me wish there was more material out there that explored this version of Ivy.
    Ann Nocenti's Batman/Poison Ivy: Cast Shadows is pretty much a direct follow-up to the 1997 one-shot, running away with Ivy's line about hoping for a window in her Arkham cell at the end and making it the whole central crux of the story.

    It's also obvious that this Ivy directly influenced Rucka's take on her in No Man's Land. John Francis Moore's characterization of Ivy in this one-shot was beginning to transform into the norm for her until Paul Dini stepped into writing comics and tried to make her more traditionally villainous. The status quo started returning back to this once he left writing and the New 52 came along.

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by PwrdOn View Post
    Especially the way she's drawn here, Ivy looks quite delicate and vulnerable, in contrast to her usual sassy, swaggering self. Not quite a damsel in distress, but something like a Bond girl who fell in with the wrong crowd and needs help, even if she can never fully be trusted, which is the same kind of dynamic he has with Catwoman. I like to think that this is just another mode that Ivy can adopt when she needs to control someone emotionally and direct seduction isn't working, and I wouldn't want her being a hero to take away from her ability to be deceitful and manipulative. I also just love the art in this issue, since I first really started exploring the comic Ivy when the movie came out, and it was the 1997 one shot along with the Shadow of the Bat Annual 3 which was also drawn by Apthorp that really defined her look and personality for me. Even though the two issues are very different in tone, they both seem to be getting at different sides of the same person, and made me wish there was more material out there that explored this version of Ivy.
    I think partially her demeanor was fueled by the events of the issue, where she ranged from being a more peaceful, vulnerable, state to a more vengeful, wrathful, one to those she feels deserved it, which I think kind of speaks to the characterization of Ivy of that era.

  15. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frontier View Post
    Poison Ivy for eco-Punisher?
    Ecofeminist-Punisher.

    I also just find Ivy on the side of the angels to be a tad boring, which is why I didn't really enjoy her in stuff like the recent Birds of Prey or her guest appearance in Batgirl.
    Hope Larson's Batgirl you mean? I think Gail Simone had a much stronger grasp on Ivy in her version of Batgirl.

    Although I think Batman is more about trying to work with the system to root out injustice, rather then protecting the status quo, because the "status quo" of Gotham is what got his parents killed. He's an agent of change, just with different methods then Ivy has.
    Except he is not very effective at it by mostly targeting the underprivileged and/or desperate. Otherwise he could directly shake up the status quo with his billions.

    Of course though, Bruce Wayne is directly inspired by Zorro, which in turn was inspired by The Scarlet Pimpernel, written by an aristocratic woman as a fantasy hero for the 1% facing the dangers of peasant uprisings in post-French Revolution Europe. So maintaining the status quo is inadvertently baked into his DNA.

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