Part 1 (sorry... ^_^;;;)

Date: 2006-10-19 01:07 am (UTC)
Gail Simone has replaced Devin Grayson as, like, the only woman writing in mainstream comics, and Devin Grayson replaced Louise Simonson (one of my favorite writers when I was a kid... the POWER PACK was BOMB)... there's never really more than one woman writing mainstream superhero comics at a time... and very few female artists as well, which saddens me (Amanda Conner is one of my favorite artists, and I had the pleasure of meeting Colleen Doran before she left mainstream comics behind completely to concentrate on A DISTANT SOIL). I really enjoy Gail Simone's stuff.

BIRD'S OF PREY is a book I like, but it's sort of hit or miss with me... I find that a lot of the storyarcs start off strong, and then end weak. I did enjoy the Lady Shiva/Chesire arc though... it just seemed like everyones motivations were in character, and it balanced all of the multiple plotlines and tied them together nicely.

I don't really have many Barbara Gordon Batgirl recommendations... THE KILLING JOKE is probably the best story involving Batgirl, but BATGIRL YEAR 1, which was recently collected in a TPB, is supposed to be a good update of her origin and first year on the job. I'm not really sure how she became Oracle...if that was actually in BATMAN, or if it's something Grant Morrison came up with in JLA, but she's mostly just in BIRD'S OF PREY.

Marvel doesn't have many non-superpowered characters... and any character that doesn't have superpowers, usually makes up for it by being ridiculously intelligent and well armed with sci-fi technology (RE: Iron Man). The Punisher is the only fully human vigilante type guy I can think of that just shots people, and doesn't have some kind of billion dollar exo-skeleton or ion painter hooked up to a fission powered particle cannon floating in space. Captain America technically doesn't have any powers... the Super Soildier serum just keeps him in peak human condition (ironically, it was the American's that created the perfect vision of Aryan man in WWII Marvel), and all his fighting ability is just through intense training, but his shield counts as a super weapon, and he wears the fucking flag, so I count him as more of a super powered guy.

DC has a lot of people that just got so psychologically screwed up and obsessive that they trained themselves to be able to mess people up as a hobby. A lot of the villians are all to human as well... such as Ra's Al Ghul (his immortality is through external means, and he possesses no extra human abilities), the entire League of Assassins, Lex Luthor, etc. This mostly cames about because of Batman... I guess they just thought it'd be to much of a handicap to have him fight guys with powers, so his villians were all mostly just normal dudes with gimmicks, and from that grew a host of just normal dudes wearing goofy costumes, learning some martial arts, and coming up with some kind of obsessive gimmick to follow. And from that also spawned a stable of other similar heroes modeled after Batman.

I think what Moore was trying to do with Gordon in THE KILLING JOKE was to show that the Joker hadn't won... it all comes back to the idea of "If I kill him... he's won." The Joker's whole twisted plot was to mess Gordon up so badly he'd become just as bad as him... it was to prove his point... that all it takes is one bad day to create a monster. If Gordon foresakes everything he's put his life into, the Joker wins, because Gordon has become him... even if no one will blame him, even if he'll be forgiven in the eyes of others and by the law, Gordon would have lost everything that makes him better than the Joker. Sure, he saves the world from a maniac, but if he kills him out of rage, with vengence as his only goal, without a hint of remorse... then he IS the Joker.

On the subject of Superhero Morality... I could go on quite a bit, really... it's a theme that fasinates me. Superheroes represent an ideal... they're the fictional representations of what we wish we could be, so they aren't subject to real world morality... the writer determines what their ethical beliefs are based on what their own beliefs are.
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