The massively popular '90s manga series is about to be re-released in a new English translation. Will it remind comics writers and movie-makers that girls like superheroes, too?
We are well into the age of the second-string superhero. In the past, to get star billing and a supersize promotional budget, heroes had to actually be iconic. Superman, Batman, Spider-Man, even X-Men—they're all marquee stars with decades of pop culture exposure. But Iron Man? Green Lantern? Thor? Unless you've spent the past few decades huffing the effluvia of mylar protective comic bags, you probably hadn't heard of any of those people before their big screen debuts. It makes you wonder who's next. Elongated Man? Ant Man? How long before Bouncing Boy gets his own feature film?
And yet, even as the mighty Man-Thing shuffles out of the swamp for his close-up, one of the best-known superhero properties languishes in development limbo. Thanks to what Dlisted memorably referred to as an "American Apparel latex hell" of a costume and a concomitant surge of internet guffawing, the Wonder Woman TV series followed every other Wonder Woman screen project of the last 30 years into oblivion. Male heroes, no matter how obscure and ridiculously be-tighted, are in with a chance, but the American public draws the line at red, white, and blue stripper-wear packaged as feminism.