It’s been 40 years since the last time a female costumed superhero premiered in her own show on network television – Wonder Woman in 1975.
That’s right, Wonder Woman. Yes, we have the trio of Huntress, Batgirl and the Black Canary saving the city of Gotham due to an absent Batman in “Birds of Prey” for fourteen episodes run from 2002-2003. However, those episodes were easily forgettable and no television show with the tagline “Batman’s daughter goes bad – and it feels so good.” was not trying to change the stereotypes of Comic Book Heroines.
You know – The one where women in comic books are supposed to save the day in an itsy bitsy teeny weenie superhero custom while being so stacked like brick house created by Kardashian booty that the reader assumes that the character’s power is derived from her huge bosoms.
Even teenage girls in comic book lore will be diagnosed with back problems due to their powerful breasts. Maybe that’s why most of them have their midriffs showing. It’s really a regular superhero costume, but the monstrous peaks in the front raises the shirt above the belly button.
According to a Slate survey in October of 2013, Women in the United States are reading circles around men. 64 percent of ladies read at least one book in 2012 (and 56 percent read at least one literary book), compared to only 45 percent of men (only 37 percent read at least one literary book).
Those are huge circles the size of Dr. Harleen Quinzel’s eyes when she is ogling over The Joker.
Those statistics, coupled with the fact that there are slightly more women than men in the United States, women should have been allotted a more positive and less sexualized role by now.
However, women hold less than ten percent of the leading roles in comic books even though they represent 52 percent of the population.
During the airing of Supergirl pilot, she tried on various outfits that her friend made before she settled on one similar to that of her cousin Kal of the house of El. One of the outfits was a short skirt with a mid-drift showing, a Britney Spears’ school girl, pig tail days. Kara immediately asks how she’s supposed to save people wearing such an outfit.
Women are slowly but surely working their way into comics though – on and behind the glossy papers. Becky Cloonan created the hit Gotham Academy, Amanda Conner is authoring the new Harley Quinn adventures and Lauren Beukes is scribing non-female lead Constantine.
Women characters are moving away from being busty bombshells with little to no direction in life to being used more and more as characters that showcase a diversity of ethnic, socio-economical and emotional backgrounds.
As women garner more depth in the pages, they will also garner more respect from those reading them. Stronger women and complex heroines create better women and better respect for women. Would this make the world be a better place? Does Powergirl have huge….Yes….Yes she does.