Wednesday morning, the comic book industry reacted to the news that Superman and Wonder Woman are beginning a relationship with next week's Justice League #12. And while the reaction wasn't always pretty, it was quite often... funny.
When DC Entertainment announced the two heroes were hooking up, Co-Publisher and Justice League artist Jim Lee indicated the publisher is expecting some backlash for exploring the relationship. "Hopefully this will raise a lot of eyebrows,” Lee said. “We welcome the watercooler chatter.”
Yet the controversy seems limited. While some fans questioned the decision on Newsarama's Facebook page, much of the press coverage has been mixed with giggles. The Good Morning America met the report with laughs this Wednesday morning, and the normally serious NPR imagined hilarious texts between the two. Even the folks at the Tumblr site for "Hell Yeah Superman-n-Wonder Woman" erupted in some good-hearted "squees" from "shippers" when the news was made public.
Among comic creators, the public flogging of DC was even more minimal.
On Twitter, Kurt Busiek said: "I got no problem with a Superman/Wonder Woman romance. I don't think it works long-term, but it's an interesting relationship to explore."
Ron Marz added: "There are people actually upset over the Superman-Wonder Woman thing? Because things that happen in comics are so permanent?"
To follow up on the chatter, we approached a few other folks for their reaction in our latest "The Q."
Tom Brevoort, Marvel editor/senior VP of Publishing
I think it's a pairing that's long been the subject of fan speculation, at least as far back as Larry Niven's famous piece about the problems with Superman and Lois Lane getting together. And if they have the stories to support it, then it'll work fine. It doesn't do much for me personally, though, in that it takes Superman one more step away from being relatable as a human being. Now he's a super hero with a super hero girlfriend--why does he bother with the Clark Kent glasses at all?
Mike Deodato Jr., artist (New Avengers)
Nothing is permanent in comics, except maybe the death of Uncle Ben. But as far as Superman and Wonder Woman being lovers, that's always made sense. DC's Alan Moore even acknowledged it in the '80s in his amazing story, "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?" when Wonder Woman battled a barrier around the Fortress of Solitude alongside other heroes in their last stand, and a caption read, "...those that might have been his lovers." Who else, quite frankly, is physically strong enough to make love to the most powerful being on the planet?
You may recall when no less than SF author Larry Niven wrote about the impossibility of Superman making it with a human being in an essay called "Man of Steel, Woman of Kleenex." It's amusing but pretty accurate and can be found on http://www.rawbw.com/~svw/superman.html
Wonder Woman -- physically his equal, gorgeous, in the same line of work, created from clay to be perfect by the gods themselves? The question isn't "Would this happen?" but, rather, "Why the hell did it take them so long?"
Jimmy Palmiotti, writer/artist (All-Star Western, G.I. Combat)
This not only makes sense but it is overdue if you think about. What a fun couple to double date with!
I pity the hotel that has them staying there for a romantic weekend and I hate to be around when one starts cheating on the other ... That's going to get messy.
I can't wait !
Vince Hernandez, editor-in-chief at Aspen Comics
I don't think you can ever say for certainty that a move like this will be permanent--that's the fun part of comics! But, I do think it would be an interesting direction to take the characters in.
I'm sure there are a lot of devoted fans of the characters that will be up in arms, but it's not something that seems too extreme, in my opinion. It's two of the most iconic representations of both genders in the DC Universe, it seems like something that could happen and probably should have before.
Plus, they're already wearing their underwear on the outside so they've made it past first base, in my book.
It also makes me wonder who would be Superman's best man if the relationship gets serious. My first thought would be Batman -- but he's moody and his bachelor party would probably suck and get crashed by rogues. Maybe Green Lantern? Superman would certainly save money on a ring. These are the serious questions people should be asking.
Ron Marz (this time in response to our questions).
Superhero comics are half soap opera, so a Wonder Woman-Superman relationship, or better yet, a Wonder Woman-Superman-Lois Lane love triangle, is a natural story to tell. Obviously everything is in the execution, but conceptually it's enticing. Despite appearances, Superman and Wonder Woman aren't human, strictly speaking, so there's a certain logic to them clinging together. They're both among us, but neither is one of us. I think something like this can help you get to the heart of each character. Historically, Superman chooses Lois, he chooses to be one of us. It humanizes him. That's less true of Wonder Woman, who seems to keep humanity at arm's length. Should be interesting to watch this take unfold.
Keith Giffen, writer/artist (He-Man and The Masters of the Universe)
She had to tie him up to get a kiss? Sounds doomed from the start to me.
Jerry Ordway, writer/artist (DC Universe Presents)a scan of original art
OF SUPERMAN #440When I was working on Superman during the time John Byrne was writing the books, we did a storyline that tied into George Perez's run, to address this fan request -- that Superman and Wonder Woman become a couple. What we tried to show was that it sounded great on paper, but they are two very different individuals, not really suited for each other. Some small town kid from Kansas doesn't get to marry the queen, basically.
As this is a story you can do only with Lois Lane out of the romantic picture, I wish them luck, and look forward to reading the results. But I'm still pulling for Lois Lane.
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