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Wonder Woman Wednesday: Wonder Woman and Representation

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Welcome to another Wonder Woman Wednesday.  Mainstream comics have gotten heat in recent years for lacking inclusiveness in their stories. It’s not to say that there hasn’t been any, but it has been seriously lacking to say the least.

In an effort to rectify the situation, publishers began including more diversity and switching up the race on certain characters. Brian Bendis did it well by introducing a mixed race Spider-Man in Miles Morales who became hugely popular. At the end of the day, I think it really doesn’t matter. I say a good story is a good story, and good characters are good characters.

In an effort to bring greater awareness to the characters of color in the world of Wonder Woman, let’s highlight some of the characters that have appeared throughout Wonder Woman’s history.

  • Nubia: Nubia, also known as “The Black Wonder Woman,” made her first appearance in Wonder Woman Volume 1 #204 back in January of 1973.  Touted as Wonder Woman’s long-lost sister, Nubia has made scant appearances over the years.  She made an appearance in the Wonder Woman television series and even had a doll made of her. I think DC is missing a grand opportunity to bring back “The Wonder Woman of Color.”
  • Phillipus: Phillupus was introduced during George Perez’s Wonder Woman run in 1987. She is the general of the Amazon warriors and Queen Hippolyta’s right-hand Amazon. She has been a fan favorite and appears semi-regularly over time.
  • Trevor Barnes: Trevor was a U.N. ambassador who briefly dated Wonder Woman. Fans weren’t too keen on the character who was unceremoniously killed off in the following story arc.
  • Steve Trevor: Grant Morrison recast Steve Trevor as a character of color in his Wonder Woman: Earth One alternate timeline original graphic novel with Yannick Paquette. Some fans were up in arms. I don’t think it makes a difference. If he turned him into Wooly Mammoth, that might be a problem.
  • Etta Candy: Similar to Steve Trevor, when writer Greg Rucka took over Wonder Woman with the Rebirth reboot, he had Etta as a take-no-prisoners woman of color. The only issue here is that I found her portrayal similar, if not identical, to that of Amanda Waller of Suicide Squad fame. If you’re going to innovate, at least be original about it.

I suppose things have come along way when it comes to inclusiveness and representation in comics, but we still have a ways to go. I’m glad that Wonder Woman has done its part along the way.

Art by: Marcus Williams


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