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  1. #1
    Mighty Member Samm's Avatar
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    Default DCís Lack of Female Led Franchises!?

    I want to start off by saying that I fully acknowledge DC has a very strong roster of female characters, especially since they are the home of the most iconic one (Wonder Woman), but something Iíve noticed recently is that very few of them are the alpha or torch bearer of a franchise. Wonder Woman is basically the only one! Letís take a look:

    The most successful females when it comes to leading a solo comic series, outside of Diana, are Catwoman, Supergirl, Harley Quinn, Batgirl (both Barbara and Cassandra), and Power Girl. What do they all have in common? Theyíre all spin-offs of a far more popular male character and not the lead of their own franchise, merely supporting characters to a male led franchise. In other words, they wouldnít exist without Batman and Superman and their stories depend on the world already established by Bruce and Clark. I wouldnít consider any of these female characters their own franchise!

    Next we have the females who gained popularity on teams: Hawkgirl, Black Canary, Zatanna, Vixen, Jessica Cruz, Starfire and Raven. Shayera and Jessica are extremely popular but they arenít the leads of their respective franchise as their male counterparts tend to take center stage (Hawkman, Hal Jordan, John Stewart). I guess a case can be made that Hawkgirl is a co-lead of the Hawk franchise, but even then the titles are named Hawkman not the Hawks. In recent times Black Canary has been turned into a supporting character of the Arrow franchise instead of her own franchises, likewise with Zatanna and her being paired off with the Hellblazer and JLD franchises respectively, rather than building up her own world. Vixen has tremendous amounts of potential but DC refuses to build her up as a strong franchise. Then you have the most popular Lady Titans, Starfire and Raven, both have strong mythos but suffer from the same treatment as the X-Women... fans are conditioned to see them as team characters strictly.

    Outside of Wonder Woman, the only other women who arenít spin-offs/derivatives or who havenít become supporting characters to a bigger franchise, to hold their own titles and lead their own franchise are Amethyst, Huntress, and Dove. None of them get very much attention sadly So my question is, how would you change this? Which female characters would you push and build up and how? My choices would be:

    Amethyst Gemworld is a strong concept that deserves development
    Black Orchid (Alba Garcia) with her connection to the Red, Green, and Rot plus Argus
    Zatanna Expand on Mystic University, sheís more than Constantine love interest
    Vixen Easy choice. Make her a princess of Zambesi and really expand on the Anazi mythology
    Huntress Her darker vigilante way of thinking would be a good series. Take on mob bosses and cartels, take her out of Gotham too

  2. #2
    Moderator Frontier's Avatar
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    Is Birds of Prey seen as its own franchise or as part of the overall Batman franchise?

  3. #3
    Incredible Member prepmaster's Avatar
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    DC's way of thinking: nah, more Batman.

    All these talks about pushing charaters sound great but can their books be sustainable?

    The only choice that i think DC would consider is Zatanna. She is gonna have a TV show, right? Also an appearance in the first Injustice game.
    Last edited by prepmaster; 04-04-2021 at 12:33 PM.

  4. #4
    Incredible Member Eto's Avatar
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    They should give Zatanna her own solo comic.
    I loved her 16-issue run just before the N52.

  5. #5
    Incredible Member Primal Slayer's Avatar
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    They rarely give their female characters the proper time to shine. Start them out with a good creative team that can attract eyes to the character.

  6. #6
    A Wearied Madness Vakanai's Avatar
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    Stargirl had a great season one, they should push Courtney more. She could be big.

  7. #7
    A Wearied Madness Vakanai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prepmaster View Post
    The only choice that i think DC would consider is Zatanna. She is gonna have a TV show, right?
    They said it's a movie actually.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Samm View Post
    Outside of Wonder Woman, the only other women who aren’t spin-offs/derivatives or who haven’t become supporting characters to a bigger franchise, to hold their own titles and lead their own franchise are Amethyst, Huntress, and Dove.
    Huntress is also part of the Batman franchise, and the original Dove (Don Hall) was a man, and she is typically part of a team (Hawk and Dove) and not a solo character.

    Quote Originally Posted by Frontier View Post
    Is Birds of Prey seen as its own franchise or as part of the overall Batman franchise?
    It's kind of part of the Batman franchise, the team is typically based in Gotham, has often a lot of Batman related characters on the roaster, and has also a history of crossovers and tie ins with Batman storylines and Batfamily books.
    Last edited by Aahz; 04-04-2021 at 12:52 PM.

  9. #9
    Mighty Member Avi's Avatar
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    I too don't see how Huntress and Dove are the leaders of a female-driven franchise.

    Quote Originally Posted by Samm View Post
    Amethyst Gemworld is a strong concept that deserves development
    I will never understand why DC didn't make an animated show or even just a movie out of it. The DC Nation shorts were great. DC could adapt the last two runs and then add to the comics side from there. Keep it a Kids/YA title and use the Season approach to keep the quality high.

    Starfire - Had a chance as a "fish-out-of-water"-story with actual talent during DCYou, which might have fared better if DC hadn't misjudged what readers want from a Starfire book. So, I'd try the opposite and add Starfire to the cosmic side and flesh out Tamaran. Guest Appearances include but aren't limited to Jessica Cruz and Cyborg.

    Vixen - I would like to see the premise of Truth & Justice come to fruition. Vixen & The Global Guardians + exploration of the Anansi connection.

  10. #10
    Astonishing Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Samm View Post
    I want to start off by saying that I fully acknowledge DC has a very strong roster of female characters, especially since they are the home of the most iconic one (Wonder Woman), but something I’ve noticed recently is that very few of them are the alpha or torch bearer of a franchise. Wonder Woman is basically the only one! Let’s take a look:

    The most successful females when it comes to leading a solo comic series, outside of Diana, are Catwoman, Supergirl, Harley Quinn, Batgirl (both Barbara and Cassandra), and Power Girl. What do they all have in common? They’re all spin-offs of a far more popular male character and not the lead of their own franchise, merely supporting characters to a male led franchise. In other words, they wouldn’t exist without Batman and Superman and their stories depend on the world already established by Bruce and Clark. I wouldn’t consider any of these female characters their own franchise!

    Next we have the females who gained popularity on teams: Hawkgirl, Black Canary, Zatanna, Vixen, Jessica Cruz, Starfire and Raven. Shayera and Jessica are extremely popular but they aren’t the leads of their respective franchise as their male counterparts tend to take center stage (Hawkman, Hal Jordan, John Stewart). I guess a case can be made that Hawkgirl is a co-lead of the Hawk franchise, but even then the titles are named Hawkman not the Hawks. In recent times Black Canary has been turned into a supporting character of the Arrow franchise instead of her own franchises, likewise with Zatanna and her being paired off with the Hellblazer and JLD franchises respectively, rather than building up her own world. Vixen has tremendous amounts of potential but DC refuses to build her up as a strong franchise. Then you have the most popular Lady Titans, Starfire and Raven, both have strong mythos but suffer from the same treatment as the X-Women... fans are conditioned to see them as team characters strictly.

    Outside of Wonder Woman, the only other women who aren’t spin-offs/derivatives or who haven’t become supporting characters to a bigger franchise, to hold their own titles and lead their own franchise are Amethyst, Huntress, and Dove. None of them get very much attention sadly So my question is, how would you change this? Which female characters would you push and build up and how? My choices would be:

    Amethyst Gemworld is a strong concept that deserves development
    Black Orchid (Alba Garcia) with her connection to the Red, Green, and Rot plus Argus
    Zatanna Expand on Mystic University, she’s more than Constantine love interest
    Vixen Easy choice. Make her a princess of Zambesi and really expand on the Anazi mythology
    Huntress Her darker vigilante way of thinking would be a good series. Take on mob bosses and cartels, take her out of Gotham too
    Surely you must realize most of DC’s silver age male heroes were spin off ideas from the golden age anyway.

    Sure there are original characters very now and then like Firestorm, Metamorpho and Black Lightning.


    Stargirl has a show where she is the, pun intended, Star. And is more relevant than her predecessor.

    You judge Zatanna based on Constantine, but you should instead judge her based on her father and predecessor Zatara, who she has far surpassed in pop culture and media.

  11. #11
    Mighty Member Samm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Will Evans View Post
    Surely you must realize most of DC’s silver age male heroes were spin off ideas from the golden age anyway.

    Sure there are original characters very now and then like Firestorm, Metamorpho and Black Lightning.


    Stargirl has a show where she is the, pun intended, Star. And is more relevant than her predecessor.

    You judge Zatanna based on Constantine, but you should instead judge her based on her father and predecessor Zatara, who she has far surpassed in pop culture and media.
    Zatanna is someone DC should be building up as a franchise lead but unfortunately they’ve shackled her off with Constantine and made her an extension of his. Yeah she’s surpassed her father, like Stargirl surpassing Starman, Hawkgirl surpassing Hawkman or female Dove surpassing male Dove, but DC hasn’t made her a solo star...yet.

    So I guess Huntress and Dove don’t count since one is connected to Batman and the other originated as a males mantle. That just makes DC look worse, as now it’s just Amethyst!

  12. #12
    Mighty Member MoneySpider's Avatar
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    It really makes you wonder why DC was so willing to try and give Vixen her own solo ongoing series in 1978, but 43 years later, STILL has not tried to give her ANOTHER solo ongoing series, ESPECIALLY with seemingly more calls for diversity and diverse characters and titles these days.
    Black Panther - Champion of Bast
    Vixen - Champion of Anansi

  13. #13
    Mighty Member MoneySpider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prepmaster View Post
    DC's way of thinking: nah, more Batman.

    All these talks about pushing charaters sound great but can their books be sustainable?

    The only choice that i think DC would consider is Zatanna. She is gonna have a TV show, right? Also an appearance in the first Injustice game.
    Zatanna's had a solo series before, so DC was willing to try with her. I'm not sure how long her book lasted, but they can easily try with her again.

    As for the other female characters mentioned in this thread, DC hasn't even TRIED with them or hasn't tried with them in DECADES.
    Black Panther - Champion of Bast
    Vixen - Champion of Anansi

  14. #14
    Mighty Member MoneySpider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Avi View Post
    I too don't see how Huntress and Dove are the leaders of a female-driven franchise.



    I will never understand why DC didn't make an animated show or even just a movie out of it. The DC Nation shorts were great. DC could adapt the last two runs and then add to the comics side from there. Keep it a Kids/YA title and use the Season approach to keep the quality high.

    Starfire - Had a chance as a "fish-out-of-water"-story with actual talent during DCYou, which might have fared better if DC hadn't misjudged what readers want from a Starfire book. So, I'd try the opposite and add Starfire to the cosmic side and flesh out Tamaran. Guest Appearances include but aren't limited to Jessica Cruz and Cyborg.

    Vixen - I would like to see the premise of Truth & Justice come to fruition. Vixen & The Global Guardians + exploration of the Anansi connection.
    To be honest, that sounds more like a team book than a solo ongoing series for Vixen.
    Black Panther - Champion of Bast
    Vixen - Champion of Anansi

  15. #15
    Mighty Member Avi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Samm View Post
    Zatanna is someone DC should be building up as a franchise lead but unfortunately they’ve shackled her off with Constantine and made her an extension of his. Yeah she’s surpassed her father, like Stargirl surpassing Starman, Hawkgirl surpassing Hawkman or female Dove surpassing male Dove, but DC hasn’t made her a solo star...yet.

    So I guess Huntress and Dove don’t count since one is connected to Batman and the other originated as a males mantle. That just makes DC look worse, as now it’s just Amethyst!
    I wouldn't say Dove doesn't count because the first Dove was male, it's because she is part of a duo. It's more like she has the same problem Hawgirl/woman has.

    Quote Originally Posted by MoneySpider View Post
    To be honest, that sounds more like a team book than a solo ongoing series for Vixen.
    Global Guardians would be build up slowly. One thing the female lead books suffer from (and in general a lot of "newer" leads) are their missing supporting cast. The GG have been left untouched for so long that they can get connected to Vixen, not all of them but some. Especially the successors to old identities. Think how The Question is its own franchise but Rene Montoya will always be tied to Batman.

    Vixen should of course still have supporting cast unconnected to heroics or the GG.

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