Amazons and TV

#1 Edited by Akindoodle (1021 posts) - - Show Bio

Don't worry, this isn't about the TV show. This is about me trying to sort out discrepancies with the facts we've been given or have been implied about Amazons and their subsequent portrayal. It's not a writer bashing fest either (though it may devolve into that). This is about the technological and societal evolution of the Amazons (trying to sound smart here). Okay, here we go;

Diana's first appearance, Johns' JL #3... the soldiers say she's arguing with the TV as if the channels could hear her. She doesn't know what ice cream is either

In the WW solo series, Azzarello has the Amazons go out "every generation" i.e. 20-30 years to... get sailors (let's ignore the more controversial aspects of this); sailors who'd be carrying relevant technology of the time. Venditti's Demon Knights show Amazons salvaging books, raw materials and technology from said sailors circa 1000 or so. We can assume that they do this every time they go on raids, right?

Now let's calculate something. Diana is at the moment, 23 years old. This means she was born in the late 80s or early 90s. That's a safe enough period for us to use. The timing of the Amazons raids imply that when they have kids, they all do it at the same time, so Diana's got age mates on the island. (Realise that because of the nature of Hippolyta's affair with Zeus and the lack of detail given, we can't be completely sure that Diana was conceived at the same time the Amazons go on their perennial rampage)

Sailors of the last half century (mostly fishing trawlers and explorers since we're talking the Aegean sea. Maybe the occasional Navy) didn't have nukes and particle accelerators lying around their boats. However, we can safely assume that the average boat had radar, sonar, telephones, radios, a gun or two and TV (my entire analysis rests on that so correct me if I'm wrong). That's excluding the most turbulent time in the history of the world; WW2 where ships did have torpedoes and sub-machine guns in excessive amounts.

Here's my gripe.... Didn't the Amazons go pillaging in the 40s? And when they did in the 80s or 90s as we can safely assume, didn't they encounter TVs, firearms and the like?

If we follow this line of reasoning then Diana and the other Amazons really should know not to argue with TVs unless one is practicing rhetoric (and I have a feeling fishermen carry ice cream too)

Why doesn't Diana know what a TV is? Why don't the Amazons have guns even if they don't use them? Are there phones on Themyscira? Is it just a case of bad writing? If not, is there a good reason that they didn't go in the last 30 years or that they refused to advance with the rest of the world technology-wise?

What do you guys think?

(Also, anyone else think that Robert Venditti would make a great Wonder Woman writer considering how well he wrote Exoristos and the Amazons in Demon Knights? I loved that. The banter between Vandal Savage and Hippolyta was great too)

EDIT: I forgot to add how we know that Amazons don't use guns. In an issue of the WW series, Diana was suiting up to go beat up her uncle Hades for reasons not relevant to this thread. She was picking out weapons from Hephaestus's inventory when he remarks that he finds her choices are "outdated". She replies "That's the way I was trained" in reference to her swords and daggers. Just thought I should put it out there to bolster my ramblings

#2 Posted by jphulk26 (1332 posts) - - Show Bio

Don't worry, this isn't about the TV show. This is about me trying to sort out discrepancies with the facts we've been given or have been implied about Amazons and their subsequent portrayal. It's not a writer bashing fest either (though it may devolve into that). This is about the technological and societal evolution of the Amazons (trying to sound smart here). Okay, here we go;

Diana's first appearance, Johns' JL #3... the soldiers say she's arguing with the TV as if the channels could hear her. She doesn't know what ice cream is either

In the WW solo series, Azzarello has the Amazons go out "every generation" i.e. 20-30 years to... get sailors (let's ignore the more controversial aspects of this); sailors who'd be carrying relevant technology of the time. Venditti's Demon Knights show Amazons salvaging books, raw materials and technology from said sailors circa 1000 or so. We can assume that they do this every time they go on raids, right?

Now let's calculate something. Diana is at the moment, 23 years old. This means she was born in the late 80s or early 90s. That's a safe enough period for us to use. The timing of the Amazons raids imply that when they have kids, they all do it at the same time, so Diana's got age mates on the island. (Realise that because of the nature of Hippolyta's affair with Zeus and the lack of detail given, we can't be completely sure that Diana was conceived at the same time the Amazons go on their perennial rampage)

Sailors of the last half century (mostly fishing trawlers and explorers since we're talking the Aegean sea. Maybe the occasional Navy) didn't have nukes and particle accelerators lying around their boats. However, we can safely assume that the average boat had radar, sonar, telephones, radios, a gun or two and TV (my entire analysis rests on that so correct me if I'm wrong). That's excluding the most turbulent time in the history of the world; WW2 where ships did have torpedoes and sub-machine guns in excessive amounts.

Here's my gripe.... Didn't the Amazons go pillaging in the 40s? And when they did in the 80s or 90s as we can safely assume, didn't they encounter TVs, firearms and the like?

If we follow this line of reasoning then Diana and the other Amazons really should know not to argue with TVs unless one is practicing rhetoric (and I have a feeling fishermen carry ice cream too)

Why doesn't Diana know what a TV is? Why don't the Amazons have guns even if they don't use them? Are there phones on Themyscira? Is it just a case of bad writing? If not, is there a good reason that they didn't go in the last 30 years or that they refused to advance with the rest of the world technology-wise?

What do you guys think?

(Also, anyone else think that Robert Venditti would make a great Wonder Woman writer considering how well he wrote Exoristos and the Amazons in Demon Knights? I loved that. The banter between Vandal Savage and Hippolyta was great too)

EDIT: I forgot to add how we know that Amazons don't use guns. In an issue of the WW series, Diana was suiting up to go beat up her uncle Hades for reasons not relevant to this thread. She was picking out weapons from Hephaestus's inventory when he remarks that he finds her choices are "outdated". She replies "That's the way I was trained" in reference to her swords and daggers. Just thought I should put it out there to bolster my ramblings

Absolutely right, that and more doesn´t make any sense.

#3 Posted by lilben42 (2543 posts) - - Show Bio

@akindoodle: I wouldn't really pay attention to Johns Wonder Woman. But if I'm understanding your post correctly, I don't think Diana knew they were raiding so Hippolyta probably hid all the stuff from her. I don't think the amazons ever liked to use guns.

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#4 Posted by Akindoodle (1021 posts) - - Show Bio
@lilben42 said:

@akindoodle: I wouldn't really pay attention to Johns Wonder Woman. But if I'm understanding your post correctly, I don't think Diana knew they were raiding so Hippolyta probably hid all the stuff from her. I don't think the amazons ever liked to use guns.

I know that but I was just wondering why they never even mention guns. I don't give any heed to Johns' Wonder Woman either. I also wonder how it's possible to hide such a big secret from an entire generation of hormonal girls as I assume that if they didn't tell Diana, they didn't tell the other girls her age and probably wouldn't until they went raiding again. But what about the birds and bees talk, when they had their first periods or whatever? On that note, how do Amazons deal with periods? Hmm.... Sorry, went rambling for a second there

#5 Posted by lilben42 (2543 posts) - - Show Bio

@akindoodle: Yeah, haha maybe they will make a book about amazon daily life.

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#6 Posted by dmessmer (365 posts) - - Show Bio

I hope this doesn't turn into an Azzarello bashing-fest (those threads already exist), but everything you've raised is an argument against his retcon of Wonder Woman's origin. The whole premise of the Amazons and of Diana only work if they are completely isolated.

Ironically, it would also lend greater strength to his other controversial retcon - it makes a lot more sense that Hippolyta would tell the lie that Diana was made from clay if none of the Amazons ever got pregnant. Just imagine - an island full of women who have no children and suddenly their queen is pregnant. I can imagine her panicking and making up a story rather than admit that she'd slept with Zeus. But if the Amazons go on periodic raids, why doesn't she just claim she got pregnant on one of them? That's way more believable than the lie she told.

And, yeah, I don't put ANY stock in Johns' version of the character. I don't mind him as a writer overall, but his portrayal of the character shows that he knows very little about her, her origins, or what makes her a good character. I suppose that's inevitable in a team book - it would be difficult for a writer to both know and execute all of the nuances of every character, but it's too bad that Wonder Woman is getting the short end of the stick in this case.

#7 Posted by Akindoodle (1021 posts) - - Show Bio

@lilben42:

I put foward Robert Venditti to write it (The Demon Knights version of them was AWESOME!). In all seriousness though, it would be a book I would buy. It could have like their known and secret history and the structure of their society and all that, Hippolyta's back story and that of other queens if there were any. Other Amazons like Exoristos (Amenplz) and Atla who was pretty cool too. People complaining about Azzarello refusing to use the Amazons would have something to read and it could potentially be the second WW title people want

@dmessmer: I quite like Azzarello's run; that's not to say there aren't some faults or things that could have been better executed. I hope this thread stays logical and coherent and no fights break out. Clear and precise argument is welcome. Fighting other users is not. That's not directed at you but at other people who will read this post. And don't even get me started on Johns.... let's not even go there. It would have indeed been better if the Amazons had remained completely isolated. OR if they interacted discretely with the rest of the world without the rape part; they could just as easily sleep with these men and let them go; all consensual like. No paternal responsibility or child support (hell, that would make a great story for the one odd Amazon curious about her dad and enlisting Diana's help to find him). It would be better with one or the other and not a mix of both; it'd make Diana's story more cohesive. Thank you for posting about the effect the retcons have on origins. I completely forgot to do that and now I won't have to. Yay!

#8 Posted by Akindoodle (1021 posts) - - Show Bio

Bump in reference to original post and not the above fangirly one

#9 Posted by WhineHaus (83 posts) - - Show Bio

As a culture, the Amazons seem value self-preservation above all else. While they may have knowledge of the outside world (technology, weapons, historical events, etc.), they might purposefully not use such items. To the Amazons, the choice to use guns or technology could reflect a choice to abandon part of their culture. They're a proud race, and having existed for thousands of years, believe in their own cultural sanctity.

Also, I think it's noteworthy to examine Hippolyta as a character. She's proven herself to be deceptive, especially toward Diana. Hippolyta has a lot more knowledge than she leads on, and she could be hiding a lot information. Since our knowledge of the Amazons mostly comes from Diana's perspective, it makes sense there's unanswered questions. Hippolyta has seen to that.

That's my interpretation :P

#10 Posted by Akindoodle (1021 posts) - - Show Bio

@whinehaus: Good point about Hippolyta. Very good; it's probably how she's managed to stay queen for so long. She seems like a very adept politician. Thanks for the answer

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