In Sensation Comics #11, Marston has held in his cabinet of curiosities long enough. They’re back and with full-force. And I also say, with a breath of relief, that even though his fetishes are on display, this is the least offensive tale I’ve read in a while. Yes, cabniet of curiosities is open, but the young girls and boys reading this aren’t going to get it. It’ll go right over their heads.
Most all of Wonder Woman’s tales have taken place in America (with brief trips to Paradise Island, Europe, and Mexico) and very much centered on the fact that Wonder Woman’s here to protect American interests. However, Sensation Comics #11 marks a departure from this. Notably, this is the first tale which mentions Wonder Woman’s membership to the JLA. Her missions with them is where she met Queen Desira of Venus. And in this tale, Queen Desira calls on Wonder Woman to help her friends over on Planet Eros.
There’s a funny moment where Wonder Woman reminds Desira that she does not possess a space ship. (Logic in comics?) But Desira has that solved. You see when people sleep, their astral bodies can go on any adventure, including one to the light-years away Eros. Wonder Woman brings both Etta and Steve along for the trip because Etta insists she come, and for some reason, Wonder Woman thinks the people of Eros will respect Steve’s position in the U.S. Army. Okay, Wonder Woman, I guess that’s a fine excuse to bring your crush. (Steve’s also treated like the “girl” in this scene as he goes to Eros only half-dressed in his uniform because he was being too slow.) To protect her secret identity, Wonder Woman falls asleep in Etta’s dorm room. Continue reading “Wonder Woman Wednesdays: Sensation Comics #11”
Here in Sensation Comics #6, Marston’s cabinet of curiosities seems to get the better of his storytelling. We see the first appearance of Wonder Woman’s famous lasso; the first time she’s allowed to return to Paradise Island; and the first time she rides a torpedo. I read this issue aloud to Jason, and he made the comment that Marston seemed to be inserting his fantasies every couple scenes.
The cover for issue #6 says it all really with Wonder Woman riding on a giant kangaroo and having lassoed a bad guy. Yes, this issue will be just as ridiculous.
At the beginning, Diana gets two weeks vacation as Darnell’s off to England, a newly promoted Major Steve Trevor’s in charge, and Diana and Lila get in yet another fight for Steve’s affections around the office. Hippolyta, like any empty-nester, demands her daughter return home. Diana’s thrilled given she was told she could never return. However, Athena and Aphrodite have decided she’s done such a wonderful job in the world of men that Diana deserves a reward for her efforts.
Wonder Woman comes home just in time for the athletic trials. Trials which involve the Amazons riding giant kangaroos, lassoing one another off them, and carrying their tied-up opponents off the field. Yeah, whatever Marston was smoking, where can I get some? Superhero comics are by nature on the ridiculous side, of course; but Marston pulls out all stops here. Continue reading “Wonder Woman Wednesdays: Sensation Comics #6”
This weekend, I attended the Seattle Erotic Arts Festival. It was a wonderful and delightful experience. A gorgeous painting of Wonder Woman tied up in her rope — strong and proud — was part of the collection. Always exciting for the fan geek within. The main stage performance that night was called Cabinet of Curiosities and featured a mixture of theater, burlesque, cabaret, and puppetry. It was beautiful, self-affirming, and grotesque.
I realized as I read Sensation Comics #3 that Wonder Woman’s story is both an affirming tale for young girls to read about a female superhero and a Cabinet of Curiosities. As a modern reader and an adult, I find a lot of the Cabinet of Curiosities-angle ridiculous. And I think I’m still rather on the fence about young girls venturing into Marston’s Cabinet of Curiosities. I understand the feeling that Wonder Woman’s adventures there are not so innocent, but at the same time, I was also a young girl reading Anne Rice’s Cabinet of Curiosities, which are far more explicit. Diana being tied up as a hostage is innocent compared to Rice’s Belinda and her lover, the pedophile children’s book author/illustrator she runs off to live with. I have a hard time pointing my finger at Marston for being inappropriate or thinking that children need to be protected because I remember myself at that age. But enough about my tween years.
Sensation Comics #3 feels like the first real Diana story. Yes, once again, Steve’s job and foiling Nazi’s plots fits into the narrative, but this adventure was about Diana, her fellow secretaries, Etta, and Etta’s schoolmates. Oh, I should note that Diana changes jobs as soon as Steve’s discharged from the hospital. She becomes the secretary for Steve’s boss, Colonel Darnell. Yes, the Amazons have their own form of shorthand. Continue reading “Wonder Woman Wednesdays: Sensation Comics #3”