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Author Topic: The Return of Supergirl  (Read 6353 times)
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Michel Weisnor
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« Reply #8 on: December 13, 2006, 01:28:05 AM »

http://forum.newsarama.com/showthread.php?t=94019

Arrgghhh  Tongue
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JulianPerez
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« Reply #9 on: December 13, 2006, 03:45:40 AM »

Though her current writer has a more enthusiasm than talent, I enjoy the current Supergirl series a great deal at least in concept. This Supergirl certainly contains a great deal more of the spirit of "classic" Supergirl than my old pal Petey David's (never trust a man with two first names). When a future writer, perhaps with a greater gift for plotting and characterization takes over, look for the Loeb Supergirl character to flourish.

I can think of far more similarities between the Loeb character and "Classic" Supergirl than any other version - apart from the obvious stuff about a streamlined origin (which in and of itself is a breath of fresh air from "Supergirl as a matrix robot slash angel").

This Supergirl, like "classic" Supergirl was someone that was far more passionate (remember, when Super-Teacher tested Supergirl, she actually DID kill someone). Classic Supergirl was comfortable with being openly sexy: she had a modelling job for Christsakes (she didn't have immature Silverclaw-esque sex anxieties), she had her own career(s), her own home city, and her own aspirations - including the political.

Quote from: davidelliot
I kind of like the idea of the "hero-worsipping" aspect of Kara in her first decade.  It's like you've found your long lost cousin... seen him do great things and he's your ONLY connection to your family (yeah, I know Zor-El and all were in the Survival Zone, but Kara and Kal didn't know that).  You would have a real bond to that person and look up to him and emulate him.  It's natural.  I have an older cousin that I emulated til I became my own man.  My step-son has an uncle he emulates.  There's a bond.  Kara surely felt that bond with Kal-El.

I like Supergirl's Silver Age characterization too, but for the exact same reason I enjoy "doormat" Wanda from the early days of AVENGERS: because the character eventually grew out of it, and that made for a great story.

Here's the thing about Supergirl's "Super-fangirl" characterization:

1) If she's an appendage of Superman (and wouldn't have it any other way) she doesn't have her own unique identity.

2) Supergirl's hero-worship characterization is something that, by definition, is something you outgrow eventually - she's going to have to lose it at some point, just like she's going to have to stop being a teenager eventually. I admired my charismatic older brother and wanted to be a filmmaker just like him...but eventually that stopped and I wanted to pursue a different career.

In other words, Supergirl as a hero-worshipping character has a short shelf-life. I'm glad they built away from it...because otherwise that would leave the character fossilized in arrested development.

People diss Power Girl, but she is the template for how Supergirl OUGHT to have been brought back with, and I applaud the work of Loeb and Busiek and others as steps in the right direction. But if anything, I don't think they went far enough. There's no REASON to have Supergirl be a teenager again, for instance. She already stopped being one and it's getting repetitive and regressive. And Supergirl's ALWAYS been a character whose sexuality to men is a big part of her appeal, from Jim Mooney to Nick Cardy, so why be hypocritical and coy about it? Just give Supergirl big bazongas outright!

The biggest mistake TEEN TITANS ever made was calling the group "Teen Titans." It added to the untrue belief they have to remain teenagers forever, when what makes being a comics reader interesting - what the big payoff for reading comics in the long-term -  is that characters grow and change with time. Just about the only thing the X-Men movies did right was not have them be teenagers again.

BTW, wasn't there a Supergirl story a few years ago that was ANOTHER Kara who came to Earth and met the Matrix Supergirl?  What happened there?

There was.  I enjoyed it.

There are reviews (and a TPB collection for sale) here
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1401200850/theamalgamatronA/

I gotta disagree with you on that, Rao. Boy, was that thing awful. "Pink Kryptonite?" Supergirl living in Disneyland? Supergirl as cheery, "gee golly" and somewhat dimwitted?

This is the problem with stories that attempt to pastiche the Silver Age: they attempt to duplicate the absolute worst elements of the period instead of its high points like great plots and art, as well as grandeur, high stakes, and wild imagination.

The absolute worst book ever published by DC in the 1990s is THE SILVER AGE. Because their focus was on duplicating the stupid things about comics in the period, instead of the great things. Here's an example of what I'm talking about: there was a story where the Flash, in the body of Mr. Element, tried to convince everyone that the Flash was creating a whirlwind by sending up magnesium to create a red blur, and use helium to float the objects away.

First: as a boating enthusiast, I've seen lots of red flares in my time. None of them have EVER looked like a running guy to me.

Second: HELIUM DOES NOT WORK THAT WAY.

Here's the thing: If someone really DID try to pastiche the Silver Age and succeeded in the attempt, the subsequent work wouldn't be recognizable as a Silver Age pastiche. People forget that Paul Levitz's LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES run was very much in the spirit, if not style, of the Silver Age Legion: big cosmic battles, boy/girl love stories...hell, he even wrote sequels and built directly on sixties ADVENTURE stories, and his big Legion stories were a pastiche of the "big multi-issue Legion tales" done by Jim Shooter. But nobody points to Levitz's incredible achievement with LEGION as being in the spirit of the Silver Age, because he didn't use the Space Canine Patrol Agency.

It bothers me that people don't see "Veronica Mars" as being a direct lift of Nancy Drew, because she isn't given dialogue appropriate for the severely mentally retarded, like "Gee whillikers." Veronica Mars captures Nancy Drew's grit and resourcefulness and brains...but not her poodle skirt.

By that same token, I have no idea who this pastiche Silver Age character was in that David story, but she wasn't classic Supergirl.

Supergirl in the Silver Age had three dominant characteristics: 1) brainpower (Supergirl was arguably the smartest Legionnaire), 2) intuitive improvisation and wits (closely related to 1), and 3) she was pretty cute - strike that, she was pretty SEXY. By playing her as a dopey byproduct of the 1950s - which apart from stereotyping, it's also not accurate to how Supergirl was in the actual Silver Age comics. Supergirl was NEVER Gidget (well, except maybe in the Kupperberg stuff). Supergirl was "Veronica Mars."

By the way, when did "tongue and cheek" become another synonym for "immature and annoying?" Probably around the same time GEN-13 and other copycat groups like YOUNG JUSTICE were tearing up the comics world as pizza-eating slacker nitwits.

There'a an asenine type of "fun" that is a thousand times worse than darkness, which YJ and occasionally, David's SUPERGIRL exemplify. I'd rather have a thousand DARK KNIGHT RETURNS than a single Giffen JLA run or YOUNG JUSTICE. At least to be dark, you have to take characters seriously and play them straight.


Baby, what's the big deal?

Amanda Conner is a very talented artist and her coming to Supergirl is great news. In fact, I'd rank her with Alan Davis as being one of the greatest Marvel illustrators of the 1980s. The exact moment I fell in love with her pencils was her Yellowjacket vs. Fixer story in SOLO AVENGERS STARRING HAWKEYE - detailed machines, cute girls with button noses, action, laser beams...amazing stuff.

Supergirl spent an issue at a club having a good time. So the h-e-l-l what? Supergirl was always fun-loving and extroverted. That's perfectly in character behavior.

Quote from: SuperMonkey
Yes, and it was written by Peter David, who while he wrote it all rather tongue and cheek, came a lot closer to the real deal than the current Power Girl clone.

So she's not the "real" Supergirl because, of her many characterizations, they didn't go with the one that you like?

Can you spell A-R-B-I-T-R-A-R-Y?

This reminds me of a conversation I had with a friend of mine, where he started whining about how Dan Slott's portrayal of the villain in GREAT LAKES AVENGERS was out of character and inappropriate. I asked, "well, did you read his appearance in FANTASTIC FOUR QUARTERLY?" Of course he hadn't. And because he hadn't, that issue and what it did just didn't exist for him.

I don't know why I typed a response to all this, because to be honest, I don't seriously expect a direct, non-dodgy response to it all (just like I never got one for why the Gerber P-Z mini was "bad"), and like with the Gerber P-Z mini, the objections to the Loeb version of Supergirl are all turgid and emotional in nature. Applying concrete reasons against that attitude is like a psychologist trying to cure autism by spraying the kid with a fire extinguisher.
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« Reply #10 on: December 13, 2006, 04:57:43 AM »

what makes being a comics reader interesting - what the big payoff for reading comics in the long-term -  is that characters grow and change with time

Are you sure about that?
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« Reply #11 on: December 13, 2006, 05:05:49 AM »

Can you spell A-R-B-I-T-R-A-R-Y?

I can see it too...

Arbitrary is liking what you like, even if includes Super-Teacher stories that have continuity but no resemblence to the original stories, or even if it means a Phantom Zone series that dredges up lots of old names and a reference to a circular sun from a Superman/Flash race but otherwise totally stinks and removes everything that was good about the Phantom Zone.

I t-h-i-n-k it might all be arbitrary.
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Michel Weisnor
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« Reply #12 on: December 13, 2006, 05:13:03 AM »



Baby, what's the big deal?

Amanda Conner is a very talented artist and her coming to Supergirl is great news. In fact, I'd rank her with Alan Davis as being one of the greatest Marvel illustrators of the 1980s. The exact moment I fell in love with her pencils was her Yellowjacket vs. Fixer story in SOLO AVENGERS STARRING HAWKEYE - detailed machines, cute girls with button noses, action, laser beams...amazing stuff.

Supergirl spent an issue at a club having a good time. So the h-e-l-l what? Supergirl was always fun-loving and extroverted. That's perfectly in character behavior.


A year or two ago, Dan Didio was interviewed and gave his rational for bringing back the original Supergirl concept. He mentioned citing Six Flags' origin of Pocket Universe Matrix PAD earthbound angel Supergirl and realized how impractical it sounded. Then, Superman's cousin Supergirl returned in Superman/Batman and did the "World Tour". She gets her own title where I scratch my head every month....or two or three, whenever it's released....

You've got to admit creative team changes and delays damaged Supergirl. Not to mention, Turner and Benes cheeseycake pencils combined with PAD Supergirl fanbase wondering what happened to their girl set up this title as an easy target for criticism. Why I am upset? Not over the AC's pencils (first time viewer), just it seems this Kara was a missed opportunity, no fault in the character as in the implementation. I was expecting, at the very least, recent Superman Animated Supergirl and received Paris Hilton Supergirl.

Michel as in Michael Grin 
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JulianPerez
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« Reply #13 on: December 14, 2006, 07:58:09 AM »

Quote from: Michel Weisnor
A year or two ago, Dan Didio was interviewed and gave his rational for bringing back the original Supergirl concept. He mentioned citing Six Flags' origin of Pocket Universe Matrix PAD earthbound angel Supergirl and realized how impractical it sounded. Then, Superman's cousin Supergirl returned in Superman/Batman and did the "World Tour". She gets her own title where I scratch my head every month....or two or three, whenever it's released....

You've got to admit creative team changes and delays damaged Supergirl. Not to mention, Turner and Benes cheeseycake pencils combined with PAD Supergirl fanbase wondering what happened to their girl set up this title as an easy target for criticism. Why I am upset? Not over the AC's pencils (first time viewer), just it seems this Kara was a missed opportunity, no fault in the character as in the implementation. I was expecting, at the very least, recent Superman Animated Supergirl and received Paris Hilton Supergirl.

Yeah, I pretty much agree with everything you just said. That probably sounds like I'm backpedaling more than an "x-treme" unicyclist with an inner-ear infection, but I did say I was more a fan of the current Supergirl in CONCEPT and not EXECUTION.

The Loeb Supergirl's introduction could have been done much better. I'm no fan of Pete David or his SUPERGIRL, but saying someone "didn't exist" just never works.

Though as I said above...part of Supergirl's appeal to male readers from day one, under artists like Jim Mooney and Nick Cardy, Kara had sex appeal. I can't begrudge artists for playing that element of the character up. Though I'm sure it is jarring after the David version.

As for Amanda Conner as an artist...I've always felt she's the comics penciler version of Billy Zane or Oded Fehr: why isn't this person more famous than they are? Why aren't they superstar leading men? In a more just world, Amanda Conner would have the same position in comics that Alan Davis or Steve Rude has. Reading that interview was deeply depressing - she talks about how little work she's gotten. The idea of someone with her talent getting a job at a Dairy Queen Grill n' Chill to make ends meet makes me livid with wrath at the entire human race. Incidentally, Michel, I agree with you about Mike Turner. His stuff looks like the unpolished, bored scribblings of a moderately talented kid in a Junior High art class. He's the Rob Liefeld of the 2000s.

Quote from: Aldous
Are you sure about that?

I think so. TEEN TITANS only really got interesting when the characters stopped being teenagers, and their problems stopped being teenage problems. Dick Grayson's maturity - achieved over decades - was exilerating to watch, and it was great to see Wally West grow into the role of the Flash under Baron, Messner-Loebs and others. The Legion of Super-Heroes and X-Men became adults, got married, died, and so forth. And Hawkeye's relationship with Wanda was interesting because of how it was allowed to change. In the Lee/Thomas years, Clint pursued her out of machismo; under Englehart, when the Vision and Scarlet Witch got together, Hawkeye left the Avengers because he hated to lose; and under Busiek, Hawkeye and the Scarlet Witch are able to be friends. Steve Lombard gradually became a decent cat instead of a jerkish bully. Lois Lane "grew up" and no longer wanted to be Superman's girlfriend. And so on, and so forth.
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« Reply #14 on: December 14, 2006, 10:55:46 AM »

It seems that you are more of a fan of the 70's and 80's Pre-Crisis Supergirl rather than the female Mon-El replacement that this new one is. It's clear that he is pattern after the current crop of Hollywood er.. "party girls", rather than trying to create an actual strong independent female Superhero. That was the last thing in their minds.
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Michel Weisnor
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« Reply #15 on: December 14, 2006, 06:54:59 PM »

It seems that you are more of a fan of the 70's and 80's Pre-Crisis Supergirl rather than the female Mon-El replacement that this new one is. It's clear that he is pattern after the current crop of Hollywood er.. "party girls", rather than trying to create an actual strong independent female Superhero. That was the last thing in their minds.

That's a sad fact if this is the case.

Again, I enjoyed the way Kara was written in Superman TAS. She was fun, yet resourceful and heroic. If 70s/80s Supergirl is where TAS interpretation originated, I'll definitely track down some back issues.

Please, suggest some Supergirl related stories from the 70s/80s. Thanks in advance.  Smiley     
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