Hi. I'm Greg Hauenstein. I'm a politico, writer, photographer, comic book enthusiast, web geek and amateur backyard green thumb living in Des Moines, Iowa.
I write about politics and the art of political campaigning on GregHauenstein.com
These are pictures of Barbara Gordon’s new costume, after being redesigned by DC. I do not like it.
Barbara Gordon is an established character who has been exposed to the horrors of Gotham city by seeing the toll they took on her father. She watched as her own brother became a serial killer. She was crippled by the Joker and, instead of retiring, became the best computer analyst on the planet, became the intellectual equal of Batman, adopted the identity of Oracle, and founded, and led the Birds of Prey, all while dealing with PTSD and being confined to a wheelchair. She eventually had her spine repaired and continued her adventures as Batgirl, continuously putting her life on the line and standing up against the worst monsters the world had to offer.
She wore advanced body armor, and used state-of-the-art computers. She is one of the most serious superheroes in the DC universe and rivals Batman in he determination on grit. Her story was dark and gritty because her life was dark and gritty, and she was an inspiration because of how she used that pain to push through.
Now, they are redesigning the Batgirl comics to make her a lighthearted and fun character with a crime-fighting costume that has been cobbled together from clothes found at boutiques and thrift stores. She is moving to an upscale, trendy neighborhood and is going to live life just like any other young woman would. My problem with this is that she is not like other young women, and you will never be able to convince me that an intelligent person who has seen death and murder and pain, and has been shot through the torso, would choose to trade in their body armor for a leather jacket.
Barbara Gordon is one of my favorite characters in all of fiction, and it is not because of her youth, looks, or fun-loving nature. It is because of her determination, practicality, and serious nature. I liked that there was a woman who could keep pace with Batman in almost every respect because of how hard she pushed herself and how seriously she took her job. I have no idea how these two characters could be the same person. It is beyond me.
This echoes my concerns perfectly. I will keep an open mind and give it an honest shot but I am very concerned about this new direction for my favorite DC character.
The arrival of the new Ms. Marvel, Kamala Khan resonated with many readers who were happy to have a character in comics that resembled themselves. One of those of a long time reader MayaK. I asked Maya who has been reading comics for four decades the impact that having a character like Kamala means to her and how much it would have meant when she was a young reader. Her thoughts follow.
When Sue approached me about this piece I envisioned a review of Ms. Marvel and how it resonated with me as a woman of South Asian descent. My parents emigrated from India to the United States in the late 1950s and I was born a day before the Civil Rights Act was enacted. However, the more I tried to write the review the more the larger issue of diversity in general in the genre nagged at me. Why does diversity matter? What does diversity mean? Why are some in the community so resistant to the idea? Why is diversity in comics, really media, such a divisive issue?
My favorite paragraph: “When we (society) viscerally feel race makes us different from each other, changing the skin color of a beloved character feels as if one is robbed of their own experience, which brings me back to why I think diversity matters for all of us. If the person-of-color’s experience does not resonate for the white person, then pigment matters. On the flip side, if we understand there are common experiences we all face then Johnny Storm being black and his sister Sue white won’t even raise an eyebrow and this, I strongly hope, will be my grandchildren’s experiences.”
I want to see how much money WB is losing out on by being lukewarm about this
I would see it in theaters multiple times, take all my friends, buy merch, and buy the dvd more than once.
and I do not buy media
i would literally live at the theatre for as long as that movie is there
WONDER WONEN AND MEN UNITE!!!
That’s Matt Zoller Seitz’s advice to young people entering the field of TV and film criticism: I believe that ninety percent of writer’s block is not the fault of the writer. It’s the fault of the …
This works. Even if what you write never ends up in your final product, get the act of getting the idea on paper/screen/stone tablet does wonders for my creativity.