A More Reasonable Portrayal of Women - New 52 week four

I realize at this point that I am not in the best position to raise this issue of the depiction of females this week, after being one of the most vocal proponents of too much DC female skin last week.  From what I read of DC this week though (four issues) it appears that the third week of the month will be the sex week, and this week will be the respectable women week.  Similar to my format for last week I will break this down on a female by female basis but be forewarned this will give away some plot elements 
 
Mera in Aquaman  
she did not play a very big role in this issue, though it did establish her and Arthur as being together.  As opposed to last week where anything seemed to be used as an excuse to get a woman halfway naked, the artist here took a different approach (and this is generally of a character that shows a lot of cleavage).  Instead despite given all the opportunity as she is wearing only a nightgown, the character shows almost nothing except a little leg

 
 This also occurs soon after Arthur has given a working class mother enough money to get her kids through college.  Well handled I thought.  
  

Zatanna in Justice League Dark 
The character redesigns didn't take long to role out, pretty much every major character in DC universe got somewhat of a new look this month (though there are some notable exceptions).  Although some characters went the "less is more route", the redesign of Zatanna went the other way, still with the embellishments of fishnets though this time on her arms, and an otherwise very practical looking costume (except for maybe the heels, but she can fly)
 
  

Shade the Changing Man in Justice League Dark 
This is almost a fourth wall breaking instance of how different this week is from last.  Last week Starfire gets written as a vicarious and gratuitous female for readers, this week a character (Shade)creates his own vicarious and gratuitous female.  There is no way that the writer was cognizant enough of the furour that Starfire would create last week but here it almost seems to be making fun of it:  
 
 

Does this week therefore take any of the bitterness off of the depictions from last week?  Especially in the opinion of a female fan?  Not really, but it is still important to remember that the new 52 is a huge venture and not everything involved is an exercise in portraying women badly.  
37 Comments
37 Comments
Posted by slick23

I like it, this week was pretty good for women all around!

Posted by MrUnknown

I felt that Batman kind of thought that Zatanna was incompetent and didn't quite trust her. But overall the new Zatanna seems pretty confident and capable; my only complaint is that her previous costume was a bit better. I haven't read Aquaman yet, but I am holding it in my hand right now so it should be fun to see the contrasts from last week ;p

Posted by Mercy_

LOVE Z's new look.

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Posted by SC

Great blog. I really like Zee's new look. I am a big Mera fan as well, so I am glad that she looks set to appear to not be going anywhere near limbo. 

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Posted by JediXMan
@The Dark Huntress said:

LOVE Z's new look.

It's not bad. Overall, I rather like everybody's new look. Although I don't like Cyborg. Too bulky. There needs to be a balance between bulky tank and spandex. 
 
@MrUnknown said:

I felt that Batman kind of thought that Zatanna was incompetent and didn't quite trust her. But overall the new Zatanna seems pretty confident and capable; my only complaint is that her previous costume was a bit better. I haven't read Aquaman yet, but I am holding it in my hand right now so it should be fun to see the contrasts from last week ;p


Isn't he always distrustful and skeptical of all things magic? Makes sense that he wouldn't trust her and think she's incapable of doing the job - especially after watching Superman go down.
Posted by daredevil21134

Miss the fishnets

Posted by GraveSp

I think you forgot Voodoo is a stripper. Not that I minded it made sense for her character and actually reminded me of Stranger in a Strange Land where the man character learns to understand human men after going into their minds in strip clubs.

Posted by MrUnknown

@JediXMan: Yes of course but it felt like he was trying to keep her from the battlefield and instead sent Supes, WW and Cyborg. Pre-reboot, although they didn't see eye-to-eye, they were pretty close friends for most of their life. In this scene, it seems that Batman considers Zatanna to be half as crazy as the villains involved and was sort of keeping her under quarantine at the watchtower or whatever that was. But at least Zatanna proved to be a strong and capable character in that she could've escaped whenever she had wanted but Zatanna and her relationship towards other characters felt a bit different from the previous one established under the helm of Dini.

Posted by JediXMan
@MrUnknown said:

@JediXMan: Yes of course but it felt like he was trying to keep her from the battlefield and instead sent Supes, WW and Cyborg. Pre-reboot, although they didn't see eye-to-eye, they were pretty close friends for most of their life. In this scene, it seems that Batman considers Zatanna to be half as crazy as the villains involved and was sort of keeping her under quarantine at the watchtower or whatever that was. But at least Zatanna proved to be a strong and capable character in that she could've escaped whenever she had wanted but Zatanna and her relationship towards other characters felt a bit different from the previous one established under the helm of Dini.

I didn't think he was keeping her prisoner. Just that he didn't want her involved, probably thinking she might make things worse (again, the "distrustful of mystics" thing).
 
Must say: JL Dark is actually really good. And I love that Constantine is on the roster. Would it be too much to hope for the Corinthian popping up on the roster? Though I doubt anyone but Gaiman can write him correctly.
Posted by Saren

I like the top, but I miss the fishnets.

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Posted by entropy_aegis

Zatanna and Mera were awesome.

Posted by Aiden Cross

I suppose you have not read the Batman: The Dark Knight 01 and Voodoo 01 this week?

Because in Batman was the White Rabbit (only one panel, but even that looked ridiculous..). And Voodoo took place in a strip club, the entire comic.

Posted by .Mistress Redhead.

@Aiden Cross said:

I suppose you have not read the Batman: The Dark Knight 01 and Voodoo 01 this week?

Because in Batman was the White Rabbit (only one panel, but even that looked ridiculous..). And Voodoo took place in a strip club, the entire comic.

The White Rabbit is rather a step backwards for women in comics..

Posted by RazzaTazz
@Aiden Cross said:

I suppose you have not read the Batman: The Dark Knight 01 and Voodoo 01 this week?

Because in Batman was the White Rabbit (only one panel, but even that looked ridiculous..). And Voodoo took place in a strip club, the entire comic.

No I didnt read either, I guess in order to not appear hypocritical I should now
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Posted by Aiden Cross

@.Mistress Redhead.: Quite a big step.

@RazzaTazz: Well, Voodoo is definitely one you'll have plenty to talk about..

Posted by .Mistress Redhead.

@RazzaTazz said:

@Aiden Cross said:

I suppose you have not read the Batman: The Dark Knight 01 and Voodoo 01 this week?

Because in Batman was the White Rabbit (only one panel, but even that looked ridiculous..). And Voodoo took place in a strip club, the entire comic.

No I didnt read either, I guess in order to not appear hypocritical I should now

It seems they are trying to appeal to both the boys and the girls. We will never have comics where men are not screaming to be titillated! :(

@Aiden Cross: mmhhhm

Got to say as well, this is the kind of article I would love to see from a staff member, really showing what is going on in the new world of DC.

Posted by RazzaTazz
@Aiden Cross
OK I read it, blog to follow (in like 8 hours), though still havent read BDK
 
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Posted by SC
@.Mistress Redhead. said:

Got to say as well, this is the kind of article I would love to see from a staff member, really showing what is going on in the new world of DC.

 
That's a brilliant idea if you are suggesting Comicvine should hire RazzaTazz MR *smile*  
 
I agree about trying to appeal to boys and girls, I do wish they could get that special quality which could mean appealing to both without detracting for one or the other, since invariably they are going to generally go with what is safer and then industry won't grow.  
 
@Aiden Cross said:

Because in Batman was the White Rabbit (only one panel, but even that looked ridiculous..). And Voodoo took place in a strip club, the entire comic.

 
Oh, noes, I was hoping White Rabbit was a parody of a satire hiding behind a joke. Ooh, you should review Voodoo?!?! Your reviews are good. Did the context manage to balance the content? One of the most.. one time I read this comic about prostitution, and there was like, no cheesecake or nudity or even anything really gratuitous about it at all. I think if the writer is good context can balance setting and so on. 
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Posted by .Mistress Redhead.

@SC: I definitely think she would make for a brilliant edition to their team, I have been pushing her to go for modship <3

Posted by aztek_the_lost

@.Mistress Redhead. said:

@SC: I definitely think she would make for a brilliant edition to their team, I have been pushing her to go for modship <3

pfft, what do you know about being a mod?

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Posted by aztek_the_lost

also...I wanted to read this and then I started see stuff about Shade and I started holding my head and screaming...now I may have just spoiled myself and it's not a pleasant spoiler :(

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Posted by darth_brendroid

I just like quirky characters. Not necessarily full out quirky, but with little quirks to them. So I'd rather read a comic about a young woman fighting zombies or something and then on the side listening to the Beatles and having biscuits than the Starfire shenanigans of last week. I also like crazy stuff, and Batwoman looks like it might have that (plus beautiful art), so I'll try get my hands on that when I can.

Posted by .Mistress Redhead.

@aztek_the_lost said:

@.Mistress Redhead. said:

@SC: I definitely think she would make for a brilliant edition to their team, I have been pushing her to go for modship <3

pfft, what do you know about being a mod?

Posted by RazzaTazz
@aztek_the_lost
I wrote that there are spoilers and I am therefore I am completely absolved of any responsibility  
 
@.Mistress Redhead.: 
I miss Eliza, I wish she had had a more successful acting career. 
 
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Posted by Jake Fury

Wonder Girl kept it classy too.  
 
 
Posted by aztek_the_lost

@RazzaTazz: yeah but usually spoilers aren't about things that make me want to curl up into a ball and cry, there should have been a spoiler warning in big letters specifically singling me out, that's all I'm saying

@.Mistress Redhead.:

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Posted by .Mistress Redhead.

@aztek_the_lost:

Posted by .Mistress Redhead.

@Jake Fury said:

Wonder Girl kept it classy too.

I do love this look.

Posted by Vortex13

@Jake Fury said:

Wonder Girl kept it classy too.

I female superhero drawn with real muscle and not looking like a twig. Sweet!

Posted by Aiden Cross

@SC: I would, but ObscureFan pretty much captured my feelings perfectly with his review already =)

@RazzaTazz: Well, i didn't really like it. There were some aspects that were good but for me the bad outweighed the good. I know i won't be reading the next issue.

Posted by RazzaTazz
@Aiden Cross
I think I agree with Babs on this one.  Here review gave 4 out of 5.  I will review it later and blog on it too probably
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Edited by Adnan

I noticed whenever someone mentions Voodoo, it's usually about the focus on the strip-club. It's weird how no one mentions Jessica Fallon, she seems like the sorta character a lot of critics have been demanding more of...

Posted by ARMIV2

Zatanna's got a real good look. It suits her well and it isn't over the top on skin and sex appeal.

Lovin' it!

Posted by No_Name_

@Adnan said:

I noticed whenever someone mentions Voodoo, it's usually about the focus on the strip-club. It's weird how no one mentions Jessica Fallon, she seems like the sorta character a lot of critics have been demanding more of...

THIS.

Posted by The Lobster

I gotta admit I find it funny how people complain about how DC is over-sexyfying their female heroes, then when they de-sexyfy Zatanna by taking away the fishnets people complain about that. People are never happy.

Posted by Leliel

@The Lobster said:

I gotta admit I find it funny how people complain about how DC is over-sexyfying their female heroes, then when they de-sexyfy Zatanna by taking away the fishnets people complain about that. People are never happy.

I take the approach that we are human, we are all different if you please everyone then your somehow brainwashing or there single person out there. And as far as Zatanna goes I'm more worry if her stories touch a personal level than what she wears, yes her old costumes was bit well not all that costume but what not going to bark at the artist for it

Posted by The Lobster

@Leliel said:

@The Lobster said:

I gotta admit I find it funny how people complain about how DC is over-sexyfying their female heroes, then when they de-sexyfy Zatanna by taking away the fishnets people complain about that. People are never happy.

I take the approach that we are human, we are all different if you please everyone then your somehow brainwashing or there single person out there. And as far as Zatanna goes I'm more worry if her stories touch a personal level than what she wears, yes her old costumes was bit well not all that costume but what not going to bark at the artist for it

Judging by how Justice League Dark looks, you won't have to worry about Zatanna's character being screwed up.