Robot 6

When male Justice Leaguers strike a (Wonder Woman) pose

Illustration by Kelly Turnbull

Cartoonist Kelly Turnbull, creator of the webcomic Manly Guys Doing Manly Things, turns to illustration to make a hilarious and biting point about the depiction of women in superhero comics, selecting David Finch’s variant cover for Justice League #1 (below) as her target.

In response to a comment that “we’re reaching a point of just complaining about any and every little thing,” Turnbull replied: “The point of contention still is, as it always was, that people are getting tired of seeing all of the female leads drawn with body language and uniforms that make them appear less heroic, powerful, legitimate, and all-around able to be taken seriously than their male counterparts.” To underscore her point, she offered a look at Wonder Woman’s male teammates might look like in similar costumes, striking a similar pose. Aquaman’s flaccid trident may be particularly cruel commentary about a lack of power

Visit Turnbull’s blog to see the full illustration, with Green Lantern, Batman and Superman.

David Finch's variant cover for "Justice League" #1

(via Phil Jimenez)

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32 Comments

Given the positioning of the cover, why is Wonder Woman so short? (Or why are the figures not to scale?)
Also, her face is too young, like that of a teenager…which makes the illustration creepier.
Hey, Sorcerer Superman is casting a spell!

And why so glum, chums? This is your first issue! Geez, lighten up! This isn’t Flashpoint!

I don’t know which is more *GROSS* — the drawing of the gay Justice Leaguers or Finch’s “grim and gritty” Justice leaguers. Both make me wanna barf.

Kelly Turnbull proved her point. But I don’t know what Finch’s point is.

Hasn’t a new style come along yet to replace the Jim Lee clones of the nineties?

The difference between silver age comics and todays comics can be broken down to two simple things. In the silver age all stories weren’t milked to be a minimum 5 issue story (whoa, that is perfect for a trade paper back) and heroes were happy to be heroes. They smiled. Even joked abit. I mean I don’t know that Batman has to be a joke a minute spidey like character, but for him to to be so brooding and dark is getting just a little (maybe 10 years) old.
I see Batman as kind of a Sherlock Holmes, I am three steps ahead of all of you so I guess I will entertain myself while waiting for you all to catch up. Possibly abit like House. As he is portrayed lately he’s just an emo dick with a stick in his ass. And he’s popular so let’s make the whole gang brooding.
You know for 3-4 bucks a book I can get some great comics that are a few decades old. I might stick with that.

I agree; why is Wonder Woman so small? Not just in height, but everything about her, from her face to her musculature and body structure, just read… small. In this cover, she doesn’t look like she can go toe-to-toe with the other heroes beside her, which we all know she totally can. And I don’t exactly get why her lasso is threaded through her legs…

However, I think the main problem I have with this cover is that everybody is just so scowly. You guys can’t ALL be Batman. Superman, especially. To me, he looks like a weird beardless Vandal Savage, and that is NOT AWESOME. Speaking of Superman, just how gigantic is his cape?

And if things weren’t bad enough, it looks like someone forgot to tell Finch that Aquaman now has those sweet mutton chops.

I don’t like this cover.

at our club, the International Comics Society, we discussed this yesterday. There’s something I called implied sexism with many comic artists, especially in how the BODY LANGUAGE is crafted for female characters. Finch is guilty of it, as is Ed Benes, Jim Lee, and a thousand other jackass artists. It’s subtle, but you can tell this came naturally to them, it’s simply how they automatically think to draw a woman. Not only is it immoral- it’s *lame*.

I also believe the Editor who approved this should be questioned, but we are in an era of “Superstar” creator, whose name alone will enable them to get by with sub-par nonsense like this. Wonder Woman does not look like a woman at all, which is also especially creepy. Noone is going to take superheroes more seriously by making it dark like this. Go look at any gothic, woe-is-me teenager for proof of that. How serious do you take something dour and clearly trying too hard? If anything, the elusive “mainstream audience” is going to have even more reasons to find comic books childish.

God forbid someone draw Wonder Woman Sexy.

It’s certainly a cover worthy of mocking. The problem with the depiction of Wonder Woman has already been addressed, but there are other puzzling elements. Why is Batman holding his cape like that? Yes, we all know you have a cape. It’s very nice. Why are the men so angry looking? Hey, boys, you keep making those frowny faces and they’ll freeze that way. And Superman looks like an evil puppet master.

Wm is right. Wonder Woman is drawn like a 15 year old who is posed “sexily” while surrounded by grown men.

Simply gross.

It’s fine for Wonder Woman to be “sexy” but she is supposed to be a heroine: a role model so that a.) girls see themselves as having the potential to be not only grow up to be the equal to men, but equal to the very best of men; and b.) That boys grow up seeing girls as equals deserving respect.

Same outfit with a confidant, athletic adult woman in her prime, and we’re cool, but Finch’s illustration is simply disgusting.

I’m a little shocked that anyone at DC actually cleared this, not only for that horrible Wonder Woman, but for leaving out Cyborg entirely. DC’s been mismanaging this stunt since day one. Even beyond not being able to get their solicitations into shape, they still don’t seem to have any idea what they’re doing and it starts in a few weeks.

And presenting women with respect and dignity only works if you don’t turn around and blatantly whore them up with the very next press release (*cough*Harley Quinn*cough*).

oh, geez, here we go again…….

Er, Jake, where in the picture are these guys shown as being “gay”? They’re striking a pose, not smoochin’ on each other. :[_]

The REAL issue here is that David Finch is a published artist.

How dare a woman look sexy! This is lame. The problem with Wonder Woman isn’t the iconic costume but the terrible writing.

For once the regular cover will be sought after more than the variant. I thought this was from someone’s deviantart page or something. Why is everyone so angry and out of proprtion?

Also, there’s no problem with WW looking sexy. The problem is she looks like she should be called Wonder GIRL in that picture.

David Finch shall inherit the throne of Rob Liefield. It is written.

What’s wrong with being sexy?

I agree with pretty much everyone and their comments, but I also want to add that I think it’s funny how the women in comics are always overly sexualized and yet the men rarely are. For example, in this picture Wonder Woman is meant to be sexy and I think there’s a subliminal like message here with her lasso through her legs like that, but do you notice how not only do none of the men have a bulge, but the whole picture is drawn in a way so as to cover the bulges in their pants? Batman is holding up his cape so you can’t see his crotch, part of Batman’s cape is covering Flash’s, Wonder Womans head is covering Superman’s, and Green Lanterns hand is covering Aquaman’s. The only one that isn’t covered is Green Lantern, but he’s drawn as if he’s got nothing there, as men in comics often are.

I get that most comics are geared towards heterosexual men, but there are more and more women and gay men reading comics these days and I think if they’re going to overly sexualize women, they might as well do it to the men, too.

This is hilarious…. Most of the posters were very right. Finch likely phoned this variant in to get his $5,000 commision really quick before the summer was over. Plus, he’s so busy trying to keep the Dark Knight 5 months behind schedule that he didn’t have time to draw the extra 6 inches of height into Wonder Woman’s legs & torso.

Also, regardless of the fact that the male characters look ridiculous quite so grim, Superman just looks sloppy. As if he wasn’t meant to be in the original & was just kinda added as surplus art like something the Marvel Bullpen would add right before it goes to press. Pretty awful.

All of this doesn’t even address the fact that this whole relaunch started with an idea of making these characters more serious, & crafting them to be TAKEN more seriously… well 16 year old pedophilia Wonder Woman isn’t going to win that battle anytime soon. As soon as the under-sexed, over-sexualized, hardcore fanboys complained about Wonder Woman wearing pants, DC balked & went right back to continuing to trivialize women in their publishing. It makes no sense that a bulletproof man would wear armor to fight crime, while a bulletproof goddess wears a metal bathing suit?!?! We finally get rid of the man-panties on the outside & were Soooooooo close to getting Wonder Woman outta her panties, thus helping our credibility to the outside world as a legitimate, *not always for 12 year old boys* medium…. just to F* it all up at the last minute. I’m sure Power Girl will still have her bodacious Boob Window as well.
Yeah, DC realistic indeed.
1 step forward, 3 steps back.

Sigh

I thought David Finch was a decent artist.I was wrong.Jim Lee has worn out his welcome also.Give me Darwyn Cooke on a ongoing JLA series and I would start buying new comics again.New Frontier is a classic that will not be bested any tiime soon.

Seriously? We’re complaining about the depictions of people’s crotches now? I hope that was TIC.

Jeez you people need to lighten up, maybe you see these things because of YOU and not the artist. I’m with JohnnyHorror, god forbid Wonder Woman looks sexy. It’s not Batman who needs to pull the sitck out, it’s you folks.

Problem is, she doesn’t actually look sexy. She looks like a teenage girl trying demonstrate what she thinks a man’s idea of sexy is.

This look worked for Cosmic Boy back in the day. And if this was Cyborg’s costume you would hear not one complaint from me.

You know, this is why we need more gay male artists…

The problem isn’t that Wonder Woman is being sexy, it’s that she’s being sexy and /no one else/ on that cover is.

It looks like a supermodel walked in on a casting call for the next Rambo movie. ‘sweird.

Sometimes the idea some people have of what “sexy” is baffles me. Then I remember that Megan Fox in Transformers is considered to be the sexiest thing ever, and then I understand….

“God forbid someone draw Wonder Woman Sexy.”

Judging by this image, He has.

There’s a difference between “looking sexy” and “looking like an under-the-age-of-consent sex-worker.”

I think this complaint betrays something worse about the complainer: The assumption that someone who carries them-self that way shouldn’t or can’t be considered “heroic.”

Or that “heroic” means standing exactly like all the other guys in the image in a traditionally masculine pose.

I’m not saying it’s the best cover in the world, but the reasoning for hating it is more problematic than the image itself.

On the Finch cover her face is totally wrong and out of proportion. This is why I hate DC now. They want to stick with this crappy 90’s idea of pin up art for their superhero comics. Glad I returned to Marvel

for crying out loud. maybe they are 6’2″ and she is 5’6″

Guess what, your average dude it taller than your average woman.

You average dude gets all muscled up from pummeling people. Women do not, unless they roid up.

I welcome that she doesn’t look like she is a 36 FFF

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