Wonder Woman and The Joker

Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio

           

 Comics depend on various elements for a successful story, but one of the easiest ways to create a good plot is to have a good villain.  In terms of Wonder Woman though, her relatively weak rogue’s gallery often times does not provide as much to draw upon.  Either Circe or Cheetah would be considered Diana’s archenemy, Circe in terms of power, Cheetah in terms of longevity (having appeared back in the 1940s in Wonder Woman #6).  The general lack of engaging rogues to do battle with means that generally Wonder Woman stories are mostly based on their plots, and so they either succeed or fail based on the ability of the writer.  Occasionally a writer will produce both a good story and a good villain to go along with it, for instance in the cases of Devastation or Genocide, both of whom were mostly forgotten afterwards. 

            Another relatively easy way to circumvent this problem though is to simply lift a villain from another hero to provide an easy antagonist.  Generally speaking this will be the case that the character is of a relative power level to the hero, for instance Lex Luthor makes a decent villain for Batman as they are both without superpowers.  Interestingly enough in volume 2 of Wonder Woman though, one of the characters who was borrowed the most was the Joker.  In comparison he is really not there that many times, he only shows up in four stories out of 226 issues, but by comparison Cheetah showed up in seven, and Circe about the same (though to be fair one of the Joker appearances was during Last Laugh where he appeared everywhere in the DC Universe and another was a lifelike dream sequence.)  Still in terms of borrowing a character the Joker does not really fit the mold of one that would be a good villain for Diana.  Obviously his power level is nowhere near hers, and the only thing he can really challenge her with is his craziness.  One of the interesting aspects of the portrayal of the Joker is that in two of the cases his gender is at least partially reversed, either morphed partially with Diana or with Circe.  Still in terms of the character seeing as he does add some interesting challenges as a foe of Diana, it might be interesting to see a villain for Diana with similar characteristics.  It has been done before (Veronica Cale was similar enough to Lex Luthor) so maybe this could be a change to Diana’s rogues gallery which could be successful. 

Moderator
#1 Posted by Delphic (1343 posts) - - Show Bio

The reason the batman rouge gallery is so memorable is because they each in some way reflect Batman's nature. A good villain for Diana must do the same, and to some extent Circe and Cheetah does that. For Diana, Penthesilea was pretty good for that, but her only representation was from some of the weaker books of Flashpoint which hurt her. Penthesilea's plan was actually pretty maniacal when you think about it.

#2 Posted by PowerHerc (78172 posts) - - Show Bio

The Joker isn't a good WW villain/rogue, imo.

#3 Posted by Daveyo520 (2447 posts) - - Show Bio
#4 Posted by Hawkeye446 (3940 posts) - - Show Bio

Good points Razza. Although, having the Joker appear with Diana is kind of cool. The best part would be Diana's portrayal I think. How she dealt with him...

Nice Blog.

#5 Posted by dondasch (925 posts) - - Show Bio

Joker is not a good opponent, real or imagined for Diana. His "craziness" would merely annoy her and she would most likely make the executive decision to simply remove him entirely from the scene.

#6 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@dondasch: Could be, I like to think she doesnt come to that conclusion very easily though
Moderator
#7 Posted by dondasch (925 posts) - - Show Bio

The precedent is there with Maxwell Lord. She will eliminate any threat to innocents

#8 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@dondasch: That was kind of an absolute case though.  
Moderator
#9 Posted by KingofMadCows (345 posts) - - Show Bio

There's plenty of things in Greek mythology that already overlap with the Joker. There's Apate, the personification of deceit, and Eris, the personification of discord. Madness is also a pretty big theme in Greek tragedies.

#10 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@KingofMadCows: Interesting point, thanks for sharing that
Moderator
#11 Posted by Pokeysteve (7031 posts) - - Show Bio

In Vol. 2 she was supposed to be spreading the Amazon message of peace. I'd have liked to see her tackle more real world stuff which would have made regular people the villains. Not every arc obviously but it would have made sense. Her real arch villain in a way would have been the chaos and hate that exists outside Paradise Island. It's always great to see her beat $hit up though =D

#12 Posted by difficlus (10678 posts) - - Show Bio

@RazzaTazz: didn't she fight a clone of herself once? that made a good villian IMO while it lasted...

#13 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@difficlus: Do you mean Genocide?  She fights clones of herself often enough actually, it happened at the end of Odyssey as well. 
Moderator
#14 Posted by difficlus (10678 posts) - - Show Bio

@RazzaTazz said:

@difficlus: Do you mean Genocide? She fights clones of herself often enough actually, it happened at the end of Odyssey as well.

aha Genocide. the way her character is built it should be easy enough to make clones of her. Clone arcs can be really good is done well and short and sweet. Apart from that, like Flash she generally suffers from lackluster villains. Also what does she do when not sleeping in London hotels and setting snuck up on my teleported women or fighting her rogue gallery. does WW actually go out on hero patrol?

AN aside: i think it would be interesting for her and Captain Marvel to be partnered together for a short while and fight some rouge given their similar powerset and heritage of powers. I would have thought writers would have caught on with this and given it a go before.

#15 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@difficlus: Flash has a pretty deep rogues gallery, the strange thing about them is that he has this amazing power and 90% of them rely on tech.  I think she sort of patrols, but  various writers have said she spends a lot of time off panel flying aid packages to Africa or wherever.   
 
Would be good, but pretty powerful matchup, might be hard to find a villain that would be a good match
Moderator
#16 Posted by RainEffect (3240 posts) - - Show Bio

It would be very interesting to have the Joker screw around with Wonder Woman.
 
No ... I didn't mean it like that. Get your head out of the gutter. xD

#17 Posted by KingofMadCows (345 posts) - - Show Bio

They could just reimagine some characters and creatures in Greek mythology. There are quite a few people, monsters, gods, and titans suffering eternally in Tartarus. The Greek gods smote/punished a lot of people, many of whom did not really deserve their fates. Not to mention how plenty of good people suffered horrible fates in Greek myth. All they need to do is rework some of these characters a bit and they can be great villains.

#18 Posted by difficlus (10678 posts) - - Show Bio

@KingofMadCows said:

They could just reimagine some characters and creatures in Greek mythology. There are quite a few people, monsters, gods, and titans suffering eternally in Tartarus. The Greek gods smote/punished a lot of people, many of whom did not really deserve their fates. Not to mention how plenty of good people suffered horrible fates in Greek myth. All they need to do is rework some of these characters a bit and they can be great villains.

interesting concept, sounds good. One of my peeves about reading WW is it diverts too much form classical Greek mythology and idk whenever i see that (like in the new Immortals film) it really puts me off.

@RazzaTazz: He needs to have more people like Grodd. Also the good thing about this in one sense if that he has to rely on his wits more than just bltizing them since most of their plans are extremely elaborate and actually require thinking to take them down.

Damn they need to develop that aspect of her, all that power and what does Diana prince do in her spare time? doesn't one wonder? I mean with no real civil identity she could be doing loads of hero work...

#19 Posted by SC (11968 posts) - - Show Bio
@dondasch said:

Joker is not a good opponent, real or imagined for Diana. His "craziness" would merely annoy her and she would most likely make the executive decision to simply remove him entirely from the scene.

 
I think therein lies the interest in story possibilities with a clash? You know, just need the right writer to pit each characters strengths and weaknesses against each other? (not directly, but in ways that are even)  
 
Like include other characters into the scenario for Joker to manipulate. He could bring out a really nice philosophical side to Wondy as a character. One on one I agree with you, but putting any character up against a situation where their fists aren't adequate solutions? Where the enemy is faceless or worse the enemy is sort of humanity/peoples ignorance?  
 
 
 
Cool blog. I always wished Diana had a defined enemy that was so crazy they were almost sane were almost crazy were almost sane - but at her power level but with a twisted sense about them, and maybe an endearing sense about them? Like they were always kind to children and old people, but they also liked stealing buildings and leaving giant statues of themselves where the buildings were... uhm... 
Moderator
#20 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@KingofMadCows said:

They could just reimagine some characters and creatures in Greek mythology. There are quite a few people, monsters, gods, and titans suffering eternally in Tartarus. The Greek gods smote/punished a lot of people, many of whom did not really deserve their fates. Not to mention how plenty of good people suffered horrible fates in Greek myth. All they need to do is rework some of these characters a bit and they can be great villains.

That was the topic of a much older blog of mine ;)
Moderator
#21 Edited by difficlus (10678 posts) - - Show Bio

@SC said:

I think therein lies the interest in story possibilities with a clash? You know, just need the right writer to pit each characters strengths and weaknesses against each other? (not directly, but in ways that are even) Like include other characters into the scenario for Joker to manipulate. He could bring out a really nice philosophical side to Wondy as a character. One on one I agree with you, but putting any character up against a situation where their fists aren't adequate solutions? Where the enemy is faceless or worse the enemy is sort of humanity/peoples ignorance? Cool blog. I always wished Diana had a defined enemy that was so crazy they were almost sane were almost crazy were almost sane - but at her power level but with a twisted sense about them, and maybe an endearing sense about them? Like they were always kind to children and old people, but they also liked stealing buildings and leaving giant statues of themselves where the buildings were... uhm...

haha

#22 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@difficlus: Yes Grodd is a good one.  As for Diana I think it is implied that she does that, but an issue about her doing humanitarian work would not sell very well
Moderator
#23 Posted by difficlus (10678 posts) - - Show Bio

@RazzaTazz said:

@difficlus: Yes Grodd is a good one. As for Diana I think it is implied that she does that, but an issue about her doing humanitarian work would not sell very well

it doesn't even have to be a whole issue. Like superman comics *hero patrolling and saving the day when...oh no so so enemy has arrived or..." something like that lol. or it could take a Fathom approach and bring in suspense where we know the crime but can't fathom the perpetrator we we know the perpetrator but can't fathom the crime (no puns intended) . That way it won't always be about going up and hitting someone. i think the new WW series in going on that hunch from the issue 1 i read. We know the perpetrator but can't fathom the crime.

I'm seeing a problem if an arc about superman trying to solve world hunger or Green Lantern forcibly bringing peace to the universe can sell well but one with Diana won't. :(

#24 Posted by difficlus (10678 posts) - - Show Bio

@RazzaTazz: btw you already know i don't really read WW so if i'm talking rubbish just don't mind me lol.

#25 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@difficlus: Well that is where you are slightly wrong, I could track down as issue or two with Diana (but not with others) that actually shows her either doing that or thinking in her mind that she is on the way back from doing that.  In fact I think it might be WW vol 3 issue 5, 6, or 7.  So I guess for Diana she is one of the rare ones they show that for, but even for her they dont show it much.  Not all heroes have her same attitude either
Moderator
#26 Edited by difficlus (10678 posts) - - Show Bio

@RazzaTazz said:

@difficlus: Well that is where you are slightly wrong, I could track down as issue or two with Diana (but not with others) that actually shows her either doing that or thinking in her mind that she is on the way back from doing that. In fact I think it might be WW vol 3 issue 5, 6, or 7. So I guess for Diana she is one of the rare ones they show that for, but even for her they dont show it much. Not all heroes have her same attitude either

ok then you would know more =]

#27 Edited by FadeToBlackBolt (23334 posts) - - Show Bio

I think it has a lot to do with writer's hesitancy to give Diana weaknesses, which means that villains can only be a threat to her if they're of comparable power, thus leading to story problems down the road, because not every issue can be "Wonder Woman vs Genocide", the same way it can't always be "Superman vs Mongul".

#28 Posted by dondasch (925 posts) - - Show Bio

If it could be done perhaps in a two issue story arc, then maybe. I still retain my original position that Diana would not allow the Joker to simply run rampant as Batman has for all these years, and would certainly not tolerate the body count he has been able to accumulate. What if the Joker had discovered the location of Themyscira and plotted a devastating attack ? How's that for a scenario ?

#29 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@dondasch: I think ti is an interesting scenario, but might be applying too much real world logic to a comic book scenario.  She might better just put him one of those holding cells that they have on Themyscira where they kept those four royal guards for 1000 years.  Apparently they are hard to break out of
Moderator
#30 Posted by KingofMadCows (345 posts) - - Show Bio

That's really not the Joker's style. Unless it's an Emperor Joker type story where one of the Greek gods tried to use him for their own purposes or where he steals the powers of some ancient artifact.

#31 Posted by batkevin74 (9760 posts) - - Show Bio

Way back when Joker took on Wonder Woman. It's a great story and though WW could hurl Joker into space, it shows that Joker can toe to toe with anyone because his brain makes him dangerous combined with chemicals, buzzers & toys!

#32 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@batkevin74: Part of a great story arc
Moderator
#33 Posted by Evil Incarnate (3456 posts) - - Show Bio

Pretty sure Ares is her arch nemesis. She's all about peace and he's the freaking God of War. The problem with her villians is that they haven't really "crossed the line". Don't get me wrong they're evil, but they haven't cemented themselves as the bane of her existance. Look at Superman and Doomsday, the latter killed the former in what was one of the biggest comic plots of all time. Batman has Joker and Catwoman, Catwoman and him have this hate/love relationship and Joker has even gone so far as to kill one of the Robins. Besides that her villians need more face time. How often do you see large story arcs that encompass other characters (Batman, Superman. Flash, etc) that center around Diana? Look at all the major crossovers and tie-ins. Yes she maybe "featured", but that's it. DC wants to boosts her comic sales, but refuse to go the needed mile of actually making her seem like an important worthwhile character by putting her in the sidelines. Yeah she's the lone female in the group and there's the sexual tention that's always apparent and comical in every new incarnation and reboot of the JLA, but they need to probe deeper and make Di a more stand out character.

#34 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@Evil Incarnate: That could be but he has shown up so very rarely as a villain for her.  Even under Rucka he appeared as more of a trickster god than a god of war.  True about Diana though.  She could use the spotlight more.  When a crossover has focused on her (War of the Gods, Amazons Attack) it has not been the most engaging story line
Moderator
#35 Posted by Evil Incarnate (3456 posts) - - Show Bio

@RazzaTazz: I have a story idea about Diana, but it mght be too controversial to mention. I'm actually pretty excited about Diana's new origin (Being a child of Zues.) as it'll potentially give her something that I've thought she's always missed, which is a potential to grow when it comes to powers. Superman gets new powers, Batman upgrades his tech, Flash finds different ways to tap into and use the speedforce, Martian Manhunter even became Fernus for goodness sake, but Diana's powerset is stale and stagnant. She lacks vesatility and range. I'll be happy to see if she gets any other godly powers besides her standard setup.

#36 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@Evil Incarnate: Not o sure she has done this in the past, bonded with the earth to heal herself, communed with Pan to free herself from the Jokers laughing drugs
Moderator
#37 Posted by Evil Incarnate (3456 posts) - - Show Bio

@RazzaTazz: That might be useful, but let's be honest that's BORING! She needs better kickass weaponry or new powers. I really wanted the new power that the lasso showed during the Simone run to be further explained. Genocide used it and from what Diana said it seems she's always known it had this type of power, but refused to use it.

#38 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@Evil Incarnate: I think it fits in better with the character and her goal.  She is not generally concerned with how much damage she can do
Moderator
#39 Posted by Evil Incarnate (3456 posts) - - Show Bio

@RazzaTazz: This is a new age and a new Diana. It's time to make some changes in my book.

#40 Posted by RazzaTazz (9351 posts) - - Show Bio
@Evil Incarnate: fair enough and I think they are
Moderator

This edit will also create new pages on Comic Vine for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Comic Vine users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.