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  1. #16
    Astonishing Member John Venus's Avatar
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    I like Cheetah in JL: Doom. It barely scratched the surface of her motives but at least she was British and it was close to what her personality is supposed to be.

    It's a shame that the 2009 movie didn't get a sequel, they teased us so hard with Cheetah leaping across police cars and snapping necks with her feet. The movie had a lot of problems but a sequel was a chance to improve upon stuff that didn't land right.

  2. #17
    Incredible Member I'm a Fish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gaius View Post
    Going off his run and comments elsewhere, I think Jimenez is also another writer who considers Circe Diana's arch and that he doesn't think Cheetah is Diana's most important foe.
    I wouldn't be surprised considering Jimenez had Sebastian Ballesteros come out of nowhere and somehow off-screen convince Urzkartaga to pick a man to host the Cheetah, despite Urzkartaga being a particularly suborn God who almost killed himself just to punish Barbara and make her renew her wedding vows because she wanted the Golden Girdle.

    And again had Ballesteros supposedly killed Barbara off-screen...while she had the power of the Cheetah 24/7...and then later showed that the power of the Cheetah is strong enough to take out Superman...and Ballesteros never explains how he accomplished this.

    Obviously Barbara wasn't killed and she came back in a pretty cool way, but she never got the Cheetah mantle back under Jimenez penmanship. Rucka cleaned that up fast and then had Barbara return the favor by killing Ballesteros off screen, showing his dead body for good measure and then blowing up his dead body for extra good measure.

    I don't dislike Ballesteros as a villain, I just dislike him as Cheetah.

    I think Circe was also the most re-occurring villain in Jimenez's run, he clearly enjoyed writing her and even centered a whole event around her.

  3. #18
    Ultimate Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    It's a shame about Ballesteros, because Jimenez actually wrote the best post-COIE Barbara outside of Perez.

    Quote Originally Posted by John Venus View Post
    I like Cheetah in JL: Doom. It barely scratched the surface of her motives but at least she was British and it was close to what her personality is supposed to be.

    It's a shame that the 2009 movie didn't get a sequel, they teased us so hard with Cheetah leaping across police cars and snapping necks with her feet. The movie had a lot of problems but a sequel was a chance to improve upon stuff that didn't land right.
    Bloodlines was also originally going to be about her and Diana, but focus was shifted to Vanessa instead. The reasoning was Cheetah gets to appear in all the adaptations and was going to be in WW84. But that doesn't change the fact that most of the adaptations aren't good and don't focus on her character at all. So this was another opportunity wasted.

  4. #19
    Astonishing Member Gaius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I'm a Fish View Post
    I wouldn't be surprised considering Jimenez had Sebastian Ballesteros come out of nowhere and somehow off-screen convince Urzkartaga to pick a man to host the Cheetah, despite Urzkartaga being a particularly suborn God who almost killed himself just to punish Barbara and make her renew her wedding vows because she wanted the Golden Girdle.

    And again had Ballesteros supposedly killed Barbara off-screen...while she had the power of the Cheetah 24/7...and then later showed that the power of the Cheetah is strong enough to take out Superman...and Ballesteros never explains how he accomplished this.

    Obviously Barbara wasn't killed and she came back in a pretty cool way, but she never got the Cheetah mantle back under Jimenez penmanship. Rucka cleaned that up fast and then had Barbara return the favor by killing Ballesteros off screen, showing his dead body for good measure and then blowing up his dead body for extra good measure.

    I don't dislike Ballesteros as a villain, I just dislike him as Cheetah.

    I think Circe was also the most re-occurring villain in Jimenez's run, he clearly enjoyed writing her and even centered a whole event around her.
    Yeah, he said in the introductory essay to the omnibus collection of his run that one of the main goals of his run was to re-establish Circe's, Ares', and Cheetah's roles in Diana's rogues gallery and you can see that with the former two but I guess we have different ideas of what the meant by Cheetah, even though he wrote a pretty good Barbara.

    I think Ballesteros could have made an interesting villain on his own with manipulating Vanessa but I agree, "male Cheetah" is largely a misstep in a run I otherwise I like.

  5. #20
    Moderator Nyssane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I'm a Fish View Post
    Marston did seem to have a soft spot for Pricilla. I wish he went into more detail about what his thought process was went making her. I mean, I get that she's supposed to represent jealously, but I just want to know, why a Cheetah? I wish he wrote that somewhere, it's just such an interesting choice of animal.
    My guess is he used cheetahs because they're known for their speed. Priscilla was too fast and elusive for Diana to ever truly redeem despite her many efforts to do so.

    I see Cheetah as Wonder Woman's archnemesis and I don't think it will ever change. She's the one who stands with Lex and Joker - I can't see Circe or Ares ever doing that. But I do think there's something to be said about the distinguishing between archenemy and "big bad". Cheetah is Diana's archenemy but I'd say Circe is her big bad in the way that Darkseid is Superman's and Ra's al Ghul is Batman's.

  6. #21
    Incredible Member I'm a Fish's Avatar
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    I'm seeing a lot of interesting points for why Cheetah should be Diana's arch and why Circe should be Diana's arch. I'd like to make a list analyzing both characters (for fun, not to bash on characters).

    In favor of Cheetah:

    -She's a Marston original and directly tied to DC comics. Circe is from actual Greek mythology and elements of her origin will be forever linked to that, that's something no other archenemy in DC comics has to worry about. Circe is public domain, no one is ever going to say "well I like how Cheetah was written in Marvel comics" Cheetah and Wonder Woman belong to DC, Circe does not.

    -She's got that star power. Cheetah is, without a doubt, the most popular Wonder Woman villain in media. Even in the comics, Cheetah is the juggernaut, appearing in 160 issues compared to Circe's 101 in the post-crisis continuity. She's only gotten more popular in comics too, appearing in 136 issues since the New 52 reboot started in 2011, compared to Circes 32 appearances. In 10 years, Cheetah has almost caught up with her post-crisis self while Circe drags further and further behind. Circe rarely appears in any DC events, she didn't even appear in Death Metal which had Wonder Woman as the main character. Superman and Batman wouldn't have that problem with Lex and Joker, and Diana doesn't have that problem with Cheetah.

    -Cheetah herself is more exciting as a physical fight for Diana. Circe is never going to physically fight Diana. Both Joker and Lex will fight Batman and Superman on their own terms (It's not uncommon for depictions of Joker to be a good physical combatant, and Lex has is super suit), but Circe will never grapple with Diana. There is very clearly a draw between Diana and Cheetah fighting that Diana fighting Circe doesn't have, hence why she's chosen to fight Diana a lot, (whether that's always done correctly isn't what's important, Circe is a known Wonder Woman villain, but it's Cheetah that gets picked).

    -Cheetah is violent were Diana is peaceful. Cheetah is selfish were Diana is giving. Cheetah is angry were Diana is calm. Cheetah is never happy, never satisfied with anything she has and always wants more, often at the detriment of others.
    Cheetah's own selfishness is the driving motive behind her character and in a lot of ways this makes herself her own worst enemy, much like Lex. Circe's original driving force to create eternal conflict, between men and women specifically, has been change to more of a resentment against Diana herself, and then later changed again to just wanting more power (Justice League Dark). Circe even died a the end of Perez's run, and DC heroes don't really kill their arch in the main continuity.


    In favor of Circe:

    -Circe is a consistent threat to Diana. Cheetah might be the superstar, but that has arguably been to her detriment with her power scaling being all over the place. Circe's power levels are kept fairly consistent by comic book standards. She also rarely goes after Diana the same way twice. Whether it's shooting Diana with magic, brain washing Hippolyta into attacking her own daughter, giving Diana terrible nightmares or even mindwiping herself to become Diana's friend so she can stab her in the back, Circe always finds a new way to hurt Diana. Cheetah maims Diana, but Circe wants to destroy Diana physically and mentally.

    -Circe herself is the driving force behind several events. War of the Gods, The Witching War, The Witch and the Warrior, those are all Circe. While Cheetah has been in a lot of evens, she doesn't really have any centered around her.

    -Circe is manipulative were Diana is honest. Circe is cruel were Diana is kind. Circe is hatful were Diana is loving. Circe's motivation often runs into direct conflict with Diana's. Under Perez, Circe wanted to divide while wonder woman wanted to unite. Cheetah has had a lot of different motivations over the decades, varying from character to character. Pricilla wanted petty revenge, Debbie was an ecoterrorist, Barbara wanted more power and later through Rebirth, wanted to kill all of Wonder Woman's pantheon, (but she might not want that anymore?). Under Perez Circe was Diana's thematic opposite, Cheetah is never depicted as Diana's true opposite but more of a caution to Diana to lot let her anger get the better of her.
    Last edited by I'm a Fish; 03-05-2021 at 10:35 AM.

  7. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Then there’s the problems thematically. A good archnemsis doesn’t just challenge a heroes physical strength, but their mental and moral codes as well. As groanworthy a cliche as it is to repeat, Joker being an agent of chaos and Lex believing himself to be a hero does that to Batman and Superman. Batman believes that people can use their pain to improve themselves, and acts as a symbol of inspiration. Joker believes that anyone can break given enough pain and is a symbol of horror. Superman believes that we all have a collective responsibility to one another, and that caring about each other is how humanity achieves greatness. Lex believes that we must all ultimately stand alone, and coddling the weak only hurts humanity in the long run. I’m simplifying with both, but that’s what I see as the core.

    What’s Diana’s core belief/role and how does Cheetah challenge that like an arch should? There’s some great personal drama between the two, but there’s no real deeper moral underplay yet. You could do something interesting with religion given Diana is blessed by gods while Cheetah is cursed by them. But as of right now there’s nothing.
    You know, this is definitely a problem with Cheetah. Lex and Joker normally aren't physical matches for their respective heroes (granted Lex dons a super suit every now and then, and sometimes Joker can actually be a decent street fighter over using his usual tricks and the like). Even the Cheetah themed topics on this board seem more concerned with her power levels than actually being a foil to Wonder Woman...

    Heck I'd almost say that Cheetah's poor track record in things like animation is mainly because she's only included out of obligation than anything. They don't job characters like Blue Snowman, Zara, Clea and the like (they never use them). Even Giganta who also got some of that Superfriends action doesn't get thrown into something just because.

    As much as I usually prefer characters that originated from Wonder Woman over her public domain baddies, I definitely believe that Circe fits the arch role better than Cheetah ever did.

  8. #23
    Ultimate Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    I think one of the issues with Circe as an arch nemesis is that the thought processes behind picking her seem to begin and end with "she's also from Greek myth" and "she can be molded into a wicked witch archetype."

    Whereas she doesn't have anything to do with the Amazons in Greek myth (unlike Loki over in Thor) and as Kjn has pointed out in the past, she was created as a cautionary tale against liberated female sexuality among other things. So reinforcing that by making her vampy evil diva (as fun as that can be, I'm all for it) does seem to go against the feminist subversions of Greek myth the Wonder Woman comics strive for.

  9. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by SiegePerilous02 View Post
    I think one of the issues with Circe as an arch nemesis is that the thought processes behind picking her seem to begin and end with "she's also from Greek myth" and "she can be molded into a wicked witch archetype."

    Whereas she doesn't have anything to do with the Amazons in Greek myth (unlike Loki over in Thor) and as Kjn has pointed out in the past, she was created as a cautionary tale against liberated female sexuality among other things. So reinforcing that by making her vampy evil diva (as fun as that can be, I'm all for it) does seem to go against the feminist subversions of Greek myth the Wonder Woman comics strive for.
    So don't write her as a vampi evil diva. Just downplay or ignore the sexual aspects of the character and focus on her cunning and magical knowledge. We could use less female villains with a focus on their sexuality anyway.

  10. #25
    Astonishing Member marhawkman's Avatar
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    I see the top three suggestions as 3 different ways of defining a villain.

    Cheetah: someone who's a primarily physical threat to the hero and their allies. Cheetah is also often in villain teams because she's a free agent. She sometimes works with others, but doesn't generally have long term commitments.

    Circe: powerful, has a personal grudge. A mastermind who doesn't usually fight directly, and more often has minions do it for her. She's not known for brute force, but is more than capable in a fight.

    Ares: the UBER big-bad who's almost never physically present because why would they get involved in the affairs of lesser beings? Any time he deigns to be there in person you have to wonder WHY he's even showing up. Sometimes it's obvious, but only sometimes....

    Cheetah I'd say is a classic opponent, but not really the "one true archnemesis". Mainly because she just doesn't have the "arch" part.
    Ares is too much of a setting-wide opponent and not someone who specifically cares about WW.
    So Circe it is. She's powerful in more ways than one, and has a personal reason to want to do things to WW.
    Quote Originally Posted by SiegePerilous02 View Post
    I think one of the issues with Circe as an arch nemesis is that the thought processes behind picking her seem to begin and end with "she's also from Greek myth" and "she can be molded into a wicked witch archetype."

    Whereas she doesn't have anything to do with the Amazons in Greek myth (unlike Loki over in Thor) and as Kjn has pointed out in the past, she was created as a cautionary tale against liberated female sexuality among other things. So reinforcing that by making her vampy evil diva (as fun as that can be, I'm all for it) does seem to go against the feminist subversions of Greek myth the Wonder Woman comics strive for.
    Heh, the Greeks subverted that themselves though with the way Circe's story ENDED. In the end... Circe wasn't "just" an evil witch. Sure, fantastically powerful witch, but there was more than that.

    Honestly the over the top narcissism of the comic book version is a NEW aspect to the character. Mythic Circe isn't quite as much of a lone diva. She's a bit more of a rogue monarch with actual subjects. Which would be an interesting twist you could add to the comics. Give Circe a supporting cast! Even if some of them are just lesser villains it'd make her more on the scale of mythic Circe.

  11. #26
    Ultimate Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Circe doesn't really have a consistent personal grudge. I don't think any of the arch villains have since Priscilla.

    As simplistic as it was, at least we knew what her deal was.

    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    So don't write her as a vampi evil diva. Just downplay or ignore the sexual aspects of the character and focus on her cunning and magical knowledge. We could use less female villains with a focus on their sexuality anyway.
    Should she even be a straight up villain period though?
    Last edited by SiegePerilous02; 03-06-2021 at 07:16 AM.

  12. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by SiegePerilous02 View Post



    Should she even be a straight up villain period though?
    I suppose that is a fair argument. She has occasionally been an ally to Diana. Her personality is certainly in need of examining in this regard.

  13. #28
    Extraordinary Member Vordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    I suppose that is a fair argument. She has occasionally been an ally to Diana. Her personality is certainly in need of examining in this regard.
    Even Lex and Joker have teamed up with Supes and Bats at points in time. I’d prefer not to lose any more female villains to anti-heroism, especially any Wonder Rogues.

    But yeah I’d also echo Agent Z and say there needs to be more exploration of the motives of Circe, Cheetah, and most of Diana’s Rogues. Someone needs to try to do a story told from one of her villain’s point of view.
    For when my rants on the forums just arent enough: https://thevindicativevordan.tumblr.com/

  14. #29
    Astonishing Member Gaius's Avatar
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    I didn't care at all for the Circe episode in the DCAU JL show but one thing I liked was they made it Circe's real grudge was with Hippolyta but went after Diana as a form of revenge as external reasons prevented her from going after Hippolyta.

    I think that'd be an interesting basis to work off of.

  15. #30
    Ultimate Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gaius View Post
    I didn't care at all for the Circe episode in the DCAU JL show but one thing I liked was they made it Circe's real grudge was with Hippolyta but went after Diana as a form of revenge as external reasons prevented her from going after Hippolyta.

    I think that'd be an interesting basis to work off of.
    Yeah, it's concise. The prophecy stuff is all kind of convoluted and pretty boring.

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