Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Who's the Best... Female Character at DC Comics?

33 comments:

david_b said...

Just writing briefly from my blackberry here, hands down one of the best stories DC did was..

"Who is Donna Troy..?"

WG never had a better friend in the '80s than Wolfgang and George Perez. All the NTT team was served well, but special shout-out to pre-married Wonder Girl.

Edo Bosnar said...

For me, it's a toss-up between Black Canary and Barda - both characters were generally handled well by a variety of different creative teams. BC in particular is easily the best character (when she appears) in the O'Neil/Adams run on Green Lantern/Green Arrow.

Otherwise, I totally agree with David here: Wonder Girl as presented by 'Wolfgang' (*snort*) and Perez is truly one of the best female characters at DC. Other personal favorites are the pre-Crisis Huntress and Power Girl.

david_b said...

LOL, yes, yes, Marv Wolfman everyone.

Sorry, early pre-caffeinated moment, not sufficient amount of brain-cells rubbin' together yet..

Matt Celis said...

Wonder Woman as portrayed by Lynda Carter.

For comics, just off the top of my head, Wolfgang & Perez made Starfire a complex, enjoyable character despite her ludicrous costume.

Katana from Batman & His Outliers (or whatever) was interesting at least in the few stories I read. Always nice to see an Asian hero even if she was still somewhat of a cliche. Must all Asian heroes practice martial arts, be samurai, have sun powers if Japanese, or have powers derived from the few Japanese words common to English speakers (Tsunami, Kamikaze, Samurai, etc.)?


Matt Celis said...

Oh dang, I forgot Vixen. She was the only character in Justice League of Detroit who came across as interesting and complex and viable. I think they still use her.

I admit I liked Vibe even though he was a little annoying. I just wish they had better writing on that comic, or had preserved the real JLA and used these characters for a new team.

david_b said...

Someone commented here (Karen, I believe..) a few days back on Marvel women that DC always treated their female characters a bit more generously with care than Marvel, and that's very true.

You saw that early in the Silver Age with Mera, Lois Lane, Hawkgirl, Supergirl, WW, Canary, the list goes on. They were more 'teammates' and equals than the Marvel counterparts, even the seemingly more cardboardish characters like Batgirl.

I thought Black Orchid's Bronze phase were quite different, and wished she had a longer life.

Karen said...

David, I think that might have been Teresa who said that about DC's women.

I don't have much to say here except it surely must be Wonder Woman. She's the most prominent female super-hero and can hold her own with the best of them, from an origin and powers stand-point. And unlike so many others, she is her own woman -not derivative of any other character.

On an unconnected note, I saw that John Buscema was born this day in 1927. He may be gone but his work lives on forever.

MattComix said...

For me it's kind of a title held by both Wonder Woman and Lois Lane.

Not to say that they both haven't gone through some bad eras (or continue to). In the modern era Wonder Woman gets very often written as though she were a glamorous looking Klingon or brunette Red Sonja. Honestly, I enjoyed the character more before she was brandishing a sword all the time. Even as a kid I thought it was cool she was strong enough to take down bad guys with her bare hands and a rope.

Lois has had stuff like the 50's where her motivation in life was to trap Superman into marriage.

For all that she might be a damsel in distress Lois is also a fiercely determined reporter and that is something put in her DNA from day one. Big Blue's 75th is as much hers as it is since she's been in his book since Action Comics no.1

Some might point to Clark's glasses as the strike against her but that is a story conceit that works on everyone else to.

Besides if you're gonna pick on the glasses thing you might as well stop reading superhero comics all together. Because it pretty goes along with radioactive spider bites not killing a person and unstable molecules.

Anonymous said...

There was a Justice League of "Detroit"? Learn so much around here.

Tom

Anonymous said...

Crazy Jane!

Matt Celis said...

Let's leave the Fondas out of this.

Anonymous said...

Dammit, Celis.
Crazy Jane from the Doom Patrol.
Sheesh.

William said...

I like Oracle. I thought Barbara Gordon was much more interesting in that incarnation than she ever was as a female Batman knockoff.

david_b said...

Oh, that's right Karen, we DO let another female in the BAB clubhouse here once in a while, don't we..?

How can I forget..?





Anonymous said...

Probably Wonder Woman, with Lois Lane a close second, and Supergirl third. Each starred in her own solo series, and the first two are even familiar to the general (i.e., not-into-comics) public. Wonder Woman was also treated as a teammate, not just a sidekick, in the Justice League. For that matter, DC teams (JLA, Teen Titans, Doom Patrol) usually seemed to treat female members as equal partners, and even the heroes' civilian girlfriends (Lois, Iris West, Jean Loring) were usually portrayed as competent adults with responsible (and often non-traditional) jobs. My memory may be playing tricks, but, as I recall, Marvel's women were often in traditional women's jobs, as some man's assistant (Pepper Potts, Karen Page, Jane Foster). (Not that there is anything wrong with being a secretary or nurse, but my point is that those are traditional jobs for women, so Marvel was not exactly pushing the envelope in its portrayals of women.) And even Marvel's super-heroines seemed more like helpless damsels than helpful teammates. Again, my memories may be fuzzy, but it seems like Sue Storm and Scarlet Witch were constantly getting kidnapped or taken hostage, or losing power (or fainting from the strain of using their powers) at critical times.

J.A. Morris said...

I'd probably go with Black Canary, liked her in the O'Neil/Adams stories, but also in the early 80s JLA stories.

Teresa said...

The best female DC character nobody heard of is Saturn Girl. She has remained consistently strong from the beginning, back in the Silver Age.
She is one of the three founding members of the LSH.
She has bravely faced Darkseid, Universo and the Time Trapper in one on one mental combat.

Chris said...

I hold up my hand and say that I'm not very qualified to answer this question as my DC knowledge is limited.

I enjoyed the Perez WW and Byrne's take on Lois. Black Canary was used all-too-briefly in Giffin/ DeMatteis Justice League. They are the three Bronze-age females I thought of first and I guess you'd have to say WW was the best. Just because...

I confess I do enjoy Power Girl by Palmoitti and Conner. They were some fun comics from a more modern era!

Garett said...

I like Black Canary and Starfire--sexy and with personality, and interesting powers. Also Lois Lane in the first Superman movies--Margot Kidder was very good. Plus Catwoman--great foe for Batman, and also good in her own comic by Darwyn Cooke.

From the comic convention I went to this fall, Harley Quinn has taken over as a favorite for female fans to dress up as.

Matt Celis said...

Now that I think about it, all the distaff New Teen Titans were pretty good in their own way as long as Wolfgang & Perez were on board. Even Terra who turned traitor was a strong character I love to hate. And Raven, with her annoying pacifism, was always interesting. Wonder Girl was relatively bland compared to the others but I liked how they portrayed her as confident and in charge. Never understood that awful Terry Long subplot...always found it creepy that he was dating/engaged to/marrying someone 18-19 while he was a college professor.

Anonymous said...

Dorothy Spinner.

Anonymous said...

To me, this isn't even close - it's our favourite Amazon Wonder Woman in all her various incarnations.

- Mike 'would like to see a standalone WW movie instead of Batman & Superman' from Trinidad & Tobago.

MattComix said...

Well, that's the silly thing isn't it? WB/DC was in perfect position for **YEARS** to hop on that train before any one else did.

Now we're in Bizzaro world where they're shoe-horning in extra characters into their Superman sequel in a painfully obvious an desperate attempt to play catch up with Marvel. (Remember when the only good thing Marvel had going for it in other media was Bixby's Incredible Hulk series and Spidey's Amazing Friends?)

So Superman doesn't really get his own sequel and poor Wonder Woman doesn't even get her own first film. ..and they're both probably going to end up playing second fiddle to Batman to again, over compensate his being the one with no powers. And if they're taking any cues from DKR..ugh.

Rip Jagger said...

Someone said Black Canary and Big Barda! I'd go with that.

Rip Off

Matt Celis said...

I'm partial to Dumb Bunny. When are we getting a color TPB Inferior Five reprint? I'd settle for a slim volume of Showcase Presents.

david_b said...

Matt, many agreements here..

Would LOVE to see an Inferior Five release and certainly detested that Terry Long as a fuzzy-haired, wishy-washy character.

Perhaps our 'Wolfgang' was trying to be edgy or something, but it just came off creepy.

Similiarly to me, NTT shark-jumped when Jericho first appeared (around the same time as Long coming on-board..). Couldn't stand his outfit or anything about him for some reason.

To me, NTT was basically over after 'Judas Project'. The stories just seemed to be retreds after that.

Matt Celis said...

I actually didn't mind Jericho inasmuch as it was cool to see a mute character and how Perez manages to convey so much via expression and gesture alone, as they declined to give him thought bubbles. I enjoyed the comic up until Perez left to work on that damned Crisis...I bought a few more but the magic had dissipated.

Ah, Wolfgang and his Judas Project is almost as good as Wolfman's Judas Contract!

themiddlespaces said...

Wonder Woman and/or Lois Lane and/or Supergirl.

Anonymous said...

Starfire!

Probably for the same reason I voted for Tigra---I guess as a kid I was a sucker for bikinis (still am).

starfoxxx

Edo Bosnar said...

starfoxxx, for a split second there, I thought you might have meant this Starfire, which would have meant there's someone around here besides me and the Groovy Agent who remember and have some fondness for the character.

Anonymous said...

No, but I like that Starfire's "costume", very Barbarella.

I grew up with George Perez' version of the Teen Titan's Starfire.....hubba-hubba.

starfoxxx

david_b said...

Starfoxxx.., TOTALLY agreed on Starfire.

So sue me, I also like a bit of cheesecake in comics. Not so much the extreme I see drawn these days (or the McFarlane-drawn Mary Jane Parker extremes in those late '80s ASM issues...), that always turned me off.

But Perez certainly had his wonderful drawing style at DC. Not so in your face, but tasteful.

Actually, in all honesty I preferred Starfire's midsection covered like in the Keebler Anti-Drug issues because it looked a bit more conventional/functional than titillating, but...hey, who am I to complain..?

Anonymous said...

"And unlike so many others, she is her own woman -not derivative of any other character."

In fact, she is a derivative of Superman and Captain Marvel. After all, Marston wanted to create a hero like Superman, but female.

My favorite is definitely Supergirl, with Batgirl taking the second post.

I don't get why some people dismisses some characters right away only because they are the female counterparts of previously existing characters. They being distaff counterparts doesn't preclude them from being good or interesting characters.

And honestly, Supergirl is pretty different from her male cousin. She is more impatient, more short-tempered and hot-headed, more inexperienced, fiercer, snarkier and more flawed.

And Barbara always rocked.

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