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  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Sounds like it would be a good way to give Diana organic storytelling drama, when her ideals are ridiculed as “naive and out of touch” how does she respond? In a post-9/11 world where America wages total war abroad while the majority of its citizens shrug their shoulders and carry on with their day, I think you could have a lot of interesting stories about how Diana views the way America kills and it’s reasons for doing so, as well as the cultural attitudes toward killing. I mean that sure sounds more interesting to me than daddy issues and crying over her boyfriend.
    It would have to be a lot smarter and nuanced than the typical superhero story about lethal force.

  2. #32
    Extraordinary Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    This feels like taking Marston's "symbolism" way too seriously. Most people aren't thinking of a penis when they see a sword and they certainly don't think a woman is less feminist for using one, unless they have some very troubling views about gender.
    Wonder Woman is not just a character though, she is a walking symbol/archetype, so the symbolism should at least be considered. Man's world weapons and war are associated in WW strips with Mars, the walking embodiment of extreme patriarchy run amok who is throwing the world into chaos. Her being a flying brick who utilizes less conventional and violent tools/weapons, and coming out victorious, is a powerful statement of her opposing him.

    This isn't to say we should apply this kind of thought to other female heroes. Nobody is asking for She-Ra, Xena, Buffy or others to lose their swords or that they are less feminist for using them. The Amazons use swords in the Golden Age comics as well on occasion. But Wonder Woman is not those characters, and she has ideas put into her that other characters don't. It's good to have variety. She is more along the lines of someone like Sailor Moon, whose success is in part due to embodying stereotypical "feminine/girly" things and making them cool. The Sailor Soldiers used crystals, scepters, are decked out in cool outfits/jewelry/make up, and are the ultimate representation of powerful good in their series. Sailor Moon's primary colors are pink and white and she's in charge, the opposite of most Sentai setups it partially borrowers from. Barring Sailor Uranus, and Sailor Venus in the first manga arc, none of them use swords and their mythos doesn't bring up the fact that it isn't practical to do so. Why should Wonder Woman's?

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by SiegePerilous02 View Post
    Wonder Woman is not just a character though, she is a walking symbol/archetype, so the symbolism should at least be considered. Man's world weapons and war are associated in WW strips with Mars, the walking embodiment of extreme patriarchy run amok who is throwing the world into chaos. Her being a flying brick who utilizes less conventional and violent tools/weapons, and coming out victorious, is a powerful statement of her opposing him.
    While I understand that, symbolism based storytelling works up to a point. The issue with treating these weapons as symbols instead of tools is that it can sometimes come across like the story doesn't truly understand the actual reasons why wars happen. It's a very simplistic take.

    Barring Sailor Uranus, and Sailor Venus in the first manga arc, none of them use swords and their mythos doesn't bring up the fact that it isn't practical to do so. Why should Wonder Woman's?
    I don't think I mentioned practicality as a reason. I just felt the sword was an addition to her arsenal and every other superhero gets weapons and powers added to them that they didn't have originally.

  4. #34
    Moderator Frontier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    I don't think I mentioned practicality as a reason. I just felt the sword was an addition to her arsenal and every other superhero gets weapons and powers added to them that they didn't have originally.
    Are they treated like fixtures like they seem to be making with the sword and shield for Wonder Woman? Other then Batman's gadgets I can't really think of another example.

  5. #35
    Extraordinary Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    While I understand that, symbolism based storytelling works up to a point. The issue with treating these weapons as symbols instead of tools is that it can sometimes come across like the story doesn't truly understand the actual reasons why wars happen. It's a very simplistic take.
    IDK, stories by authors like Perez, Jimenez and Rucka at least seem to touch upon the bigger reasons why wars happen, while largely avoiding Diana using a sword (or using it very sparingly). She also used to have enemies embodying Deception, Greed and Conquest/Colonialism, among other things, fanning the flames. I think there is enough material to show Wonder Woman herself not utilizing the weapons that much without simplifying the reasons behind wars.

    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    I don't think I mentioned practicality as a reason. I just felt the sword was an addition to her arsenal and every other superhero gets weapons and powers added to them that they didn't have originally.
    But it's just a standard sword, not anything special like She-Ra's or her own iconic tools. She gained some other powers she didn't have originally (light flight and communion with beasts) which puts her roughly at odds with everyone else. Like Frontier said, I don't think the other major heroes gained permanent fixtures. Batman sometimes gets ridiculously advanced tech and mecha suits, and I can't say I'm wild about any of that, but they aren't regular features in his iconography.

  6. #36
    The Last Dragon masterwitcher88's Avatar
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    I think its more of writers trying to make the sword Diana's "Mjolnir", problem is she has a "Mjolnir" and its the lasso. I don't mind her carrying a sword or shield into battle. I agree with Agent Z in that symbolism only goes so far from a creative stand point, at some point the gear is just what it is gear. It just so happens to be something that makes sense for someone from Diana's culture to use. She is a master of ALL forms of combat both armed and unarmed. She fights immortal deities on a weekly basis who use the same weapons.

    The sword is unique though. Forged by Hephaestus, indestructible, can be summoned/resummoned from her bracelets, cuts through atoms. Its a nice sword. People (writers) just need to realize that it doesn't need to be everywhere. I don't need to see Diana swing a sword at civilians or street level crooks. She doesn't intimidate with it. She uses it against people like Doomsday or Darksied or Ares or any mythical/cosmic entity that will simply come back.
    Zaldrīzes Buzdari Iksos Daor

  7. #37
    Incredible Member Gaius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post

    2. Batman and Superman don’t kill (I know, I know, yes there are exceptions but in general no they don’t) and DC is never going to pick Diana’s side over theirs, so when she kills she frequently is made to look bad to demonstrate how wrong her actions are. So it’s just more dumping on her to prop them up, because if DC says “well killing is ok sometimes”, the flimsiest shred of storytelling logic holding together Batman’s world breaks. Joker should be dead and the real reason he isn’t is DC wants to keep making Joker stories. If you say killing is ok sometimes, there’s no reason for DC to not let Batman kill the Joker, so that won’t ever happen.
    Yeah, this is the reasoning for me on why Diana shouldn't kill. Personally I can see situations where she would (Superman also, honestly) against the likes of beings you can't negotiate with like Doomsday or something but DC Editorial will just default to "Wonder Woman kills" as a way for other characters to wag their fingers at her (and usually the rest of the Amazons by extension).

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gaius View Post
    Yeah, this is the reasoning for me on why Diana shouldn't kill. Personally I can see situations where she would (Superman also, honestly) against the likes of beings you can't negotiate with like Doomsday or something but DC Editorial will just default to "Wonder Woman kills" as a way for other characters to wag their fingers at her (and usually the rest of the Amazons by extension).
    Or they could just not have other characters wag their finger at Diana and focus on what is relevant to her character as opposed to worrying about Batman and Superman looking bad. If they're deliberately throwing her under the bus because they want to make the flimsy no killing rule look more reasonable than it is, then they are failing at writing all three of these characters.

  9. #39
    Astonishing Member kjn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by masterwitcher88 View Post
    The sword is unique though. Forged by Hephaestus, indestructible, can be summoned/resummoned from her bracelets, cuts through atoms. Its a nice sword. People (writers) just need to realize that it doesn't need to be everywhere. I don't need to see Diana swing a sword at civilians or street level crooks. She doesn't intimidate with it. She uses it against people like Doomsday or Darksied or Ares or any mythical/cosmic entity that will simply come back.
    But she already had her unique weapon, in the lasso. Also forged by Hephaestus (at least in the Pérez version), also indestructible.

    Can Diana use a sword? Yes. But from a view of how weapons are used, when going after the super-heavy hitters in melee combat, a shield combined with a spear or an axe would be much more fitting. Swords historically are sidearms and backup weapons.
    «Speaking generally, it is because of the desire of the tragic poets for the marvellous that so varied and inconsistent an account of Medea has been given out» (Diodorus Siculus, The Library of History [4.56.1])

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by kjn View Post
    But she already had her unique weapon, in the lasso. Also forged by Hephaestus (at least in the Pérez version), also indestructible.

    Can Diana use a sword? Yes. But from a view of how weapons are used, when going after the super-heavy hitters in melee combat, a shield combined with a spear or an axe would be much more fitting. Swords historically are sidearms and backup weapons.
    Right, that's what I meant in the first paragraph. DC writers/editorials/higher ups whoever, is basically sitting there saying that she needs the sword to sell and for it to be her main weapon when she already has one. The lasso. The lasso should be number one, like you said; forged by Hephaestus, indestructible, infinitely elastic, infinitely long, contains the Flames of Truth, etc... Its more than rope and even then there is a lot you could do with rope.

    Depends on the historical period I think. Medieval times had all sorts of weapons but primary, a sword. Greco-Roman times was shield and spear, until your spear gave out and you'd switch to your short sword. Its also the size a shape of the sword too; how long is it? what's its blade? what's its handle length? etc...

    Her arsenal is fine as is personally. Sword, shield, sometimes a spear, sometimes an axe. (I'm excluding the bracelets, tiara, and lasso as those are her main weapons and have more symbolic meanings behind them which is why I 100% agree that they should be the main focus.)

    Didn't she use to use a axe back in post-crisis? that was her main weapon against Medusa and Barios in Rucka 1.0. Simone had her "kill" Ares with it in her run.
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  11. #41
    The Last Dragon masterwitcher88's Avatar
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    I wrote my thoughts about this in a letter I was planning to send to DC before the Virus and the Protests and just 2020 in general happened. Figure I post it here...

    On the Weapons and Armor

    Not only does Diana have an awesome list of powers for her to show off in epic action sequences, she also has a wide variety of unique gear for her to use as well. The Lasso of Truth, the Gauntlets of Submission or Bracelets of Victory (take you pick on the name), her royal tiara, and her armor. All forged by Hephaestus on Olympus on the order of Athena and Aphrodite. Cool origin for her stuff, like right out of a fantasy book. But these aren’t just stuff, you can’t replace any of these things. They are iconic symbols of the character, when you see the silhouette of a female character with gauntlets on or a golden lasso your mind jumps to Wonder Woman. Diana’s gear actually does define her character, they mean something. The tiara symbolizes her royal status. The Lasso of Truth isn’t just a magic lasso, it is truth, Diana literally holds truth with her all the time. She sees truth in all its forms every hour of every day.

    Wonder Woman believe it or not didn’t use a sword and shield all the time. It was rare and there was an impact when she did resort to lethal weaponry. That’s an important distinction between her iconic gear and needless additions. The sword is a weapon designed to kill, when a character uses one you expect them to kill something. Diana in the Nu52 and rebirth uses a sword whenever she feels like it and against anyone. She has used it against an ice cream maker and against allies. She seems to always have one in her hands or simply on her at any time. What purpose does this serve? Why have Diana with a sword all the time if she never uses it? I’m not saying to have Diana start killing people left and right, it’s the opposite actually, stop drawing her with a sword and shield all the time. These do more harm than good. Think about it, why show off Diana’s hand to hand skills when you can just have her swing a sword. Why show off Diana’s insane combat speed when you can just have her lift a shield. You lose the wonder in Wonder Woman; she becomes dull and generic. Another warrior woman in a long list of warrior women. There is a serious lack of fun and creativity with this sword and shield combo. Where we once saw a badass action sequence involving Diana’s martial arts and her lasso while simultaneously having her block projectiles with her gauntlets, now is just scan after scan of Diana swinging a sword at something. It was cool and intense back in the day when Diana would pull out weapons designed to kill and she would do just that, kill. Medusa, Ares, Barieos, etc... We do not have that anymore. Diana using a sword is part of the course, you can't not see her without a weapon these days.

    On top of all that the sword and shield make Diana inconsistent. You would think that Wonder Woman “greatest warrior in DC comics” would be 10 times deadlier with weapons. She is in fact not. She is sloppy, attacks her own teammates, gets slower reflexes, and is blind/unaware of enemies around her. I do not know why people insist on having her use these weapons, which she really does not need, only for them to be worthless. The sword and shield seem to always be ineffective when they should be necessary.

    Now, in recent events Diana has had her indestructible bracelets shattered. The bracelets that withstood infinite power, energy capable of cutting anything, and a whole host of other inexplainable wonders have now been shattered by a sword. This sword is nothing, it means nothing, it offers nothing of value, and hold no meaning. So, the gauntlets that symbolized the vow an Amazon takes gets broken by a nothing sword and its written off as just Diana losing a piece of gear. The bracelets are a vow that no man, woman, or God will ever hold an amazon. The bracelets are literally the cuffs connecting to a ball and chain without the ball and chain. These items are not like the sword and shield that can be easily replaced, these are iconic symbols of the character. That is my problem with this whole thing. The tiara, the lasso, and the gauntlets are all important aspects of the wonder mythos that have meaning and purpose. The sword and shield are the needless additions that do not offer anything.
    Zaldrīzes Buzdari Iksos Daor

  12. #42
    Fantastic Member wonder39's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    This feels like taking Marston's "symbolism" way too seriously. Most people aren't thinking of a penis when they see a sword and they certainly don't think a woman is less feminist for using one, unless they have some very troubling views about gender.
    It's just that swords tend to symbolize such things. Even take the phallic etc symbolism away, a sword represents war, death and aggression. That's one thing Marston wanted to counterpoint. She he specifically gave her tools that deflected, bound, etc to stop without killing, representing what he felt was a more feminine perspective of cherishing and preserving life when possible.

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by wonder39 View Post
    It's just that swords tend to symbolize such things. Even take the phallic etc symbolism away, a sword represents war, death and aggression. That's one thing Marston wanted to counterpoint. She he specifically gave her tools that deflected, bound, etc to stop without killing, representing what he felt was a more feminine perspective of cherishing and preserving life when possible.
    Every character has moved on to some degree from what their creator has intended. Not everything Marston made was worth keeping and his views on gender have aged somewhat poorly in the modern day. Marston's views don't challenge gender norms, if anything they reinforce them.

    This argument is little different from how people accuse game companies of "demonizing femininity" every time they give their female characters more modest designs.
    Last edited by Agent Z; 06-06-2020 at 01:01 AM.

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    Every character has moved on to some degree from what their creator has intended. Not everything Marston made was worth keeping and his views on gender have aged somewhat poorly in the modern day. Marston's views don't challenge gender norms, if anything they reinforce them.

    This argument is little different from how people accuse game companies of "demonizing femininity" every time they give their female characters more modest designs.
    Sadly in Diana's case, it seems she goes backwards. The more that the sword and shield stay around, the more screentime her actual powers lose. She looks more and more like a glorified red sonja than an actual powerhouse. She is less and less unique, and seems to get weaker and more dependent on gear as time passes by. That's not a good look in my opinion.

  15. #45
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    Do people seriously think getting rid of the sword will stop writers from lowballing Diana's feats and powers? They were doing this long before the sword was a regular part of her arsenal.

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