Hello interweb, Nate here! So recent news broke out where Greg Rucka, the writer of the current Wonder Woman comics, has confirmed in an interview that Wonder Woman was…interested and had romantic relationships with women! Yeah, he really didn’t place an official label on her as being “gay” or “bisexual” but he pretty much confirmed that Wonder Woman is at least queer. So is this a win for LGBT peoples everywhere or another attempt at forced diversity?
So Greg Rucka is the current writer on the Wonder Woman: Rebirth title – which I really need to start reading – and he recently had an interview where he says the following:
“[W]hen you start to think about giving the concept of Themyscira its due, the answer is, ‘How can they not all be in same sex relationships?’ Right? It makes no logical sense otherwise.
“It’s supposed to be paradise. You’re supposed to be able to live happily. You’re supposed to be able — in a context where one can live happily, and part of what an individual needs for that happiness is to have a partner — to have a fulfilling, romantic and sexual relationship. And the only options are women.
“But an Amazon doesn’t look at another Amazon and say, ‘You’re gay.’ They don’t. The concept doesn’t exist.
“Now, are we saying Diana has been in love and had relationships with other women? As Nicola and I approach it, the answer is obviously yes.
“And it needs to be yes for a number of reasons. But perhaps foremost among them is, if no, then she leaves paradise only because of a potential romantic relationship with Steve [Trevor]. And that diminishes her character. It would hurt the character and take away her heroism.”
I have heard this argument before and I do have to agree that it makes sense. Wonder Woman grew up on an island of women with no men allowed. So logically if she ever developed romantic feelings towards other people (which is very likely) than they must have been women since that’s all that is available to her. Now whenever I tackle changing characters for representation purposes one thing that I always bring up is whether or not it makes sense to the character. Iceman is a big example I like to bring up for how to not make a previously straight character queer as Iceman had zero build up, zero reason to be gay, and it made no sense for him to be gay. Yet in issue #41 of All-New X-Men, Bendis basically goes “By the way guys, Iceman’s totally gay!”. However we don’t see that with Wonder Woman, there’s a very good reason for why she may be queer and it’s a rather obvious reason too! So personally this is one of the few times where I’m actually okay with the character change. And that’s JUST tackling the in-story reasons considering the interesting fellow that created the character in the first place (he was in a BDSM polygamous relationship) as well as her ties to feminism which – especially third wave/modern feminism – is very pro-LGBT acceptance (I don’t consider myself a feminist but you can’t really deny a character’s obvious feminist roots and it’s still ok to like a character despite political differences).
The only reason I can see for Wonder Woman not being straight up gay is the fact that she has had romances with several male characters over the years with the most famous being Steve Trevor, but Batman and Superman have both had their flings with Wonder Woman. Now Rucka did tackle Steve Trevor in his quote but honestly I disagree that going to America with a man makes Wonder Woman any less heroic and honestly all he needs to do is make her bisexual. That way her previous relationship with Steve Trevor is still valid in many fans’ eyes but we still get a queer Wonder Woman.
The funny thing I have noticed about this news incident is just how little coverage it’s actually getting. Like the news broke out a few days ago at the time of this writing and very few places have actually tackled it. You’d think that Wonder Woman would be a huge deal with the fact that she’s the most popular female superhero; unless Black Widow beat her thanks to the MCU (which btw if I live in a world where Black Widow is more popular than Wonder Woman than I’m living in some bizzaro alternate universe). When Iceman came out as gay I saw the news everywhere and everyone freaked out, and then when Captain America was revealed to be a Hydra agent (which I actually never read up on so I have no idea how that story played out) EVERYONE knew about it. So why is Wonder Woman’s coming out day being taken so insignificantly? Well, I kind of feel as if fans pretty much already knew she was bi! I mean comic book writers have been dropping hints on this for literal years and many fans have wanted them to just make it official. So now that they have its almost like that obviously gay friend of yours coming out to you, you’re not going to get emotional about it because you pretty much knew before it happened.
So is there any negative side effects to Wonder Woman being queer? Well I’d actually argue yes. Wonder Woman is the only female founding member of the Justice League and filled the role as female representation for that team (which is a common problem from teams formed back then). So we just took out our only straight female representation and replaced it with queer female representation (which is a smaller portion of the population). Granted, straight women have been represented in media far more than queer women and thus changing a straight character that many fans speculated being queer as queer it helps balance things out a bit. I think this just has to deal with comic book’s problem of diversity which is actually one of the few things I agree with feminists on. Not forced diversity, mind you, but many superhero teams only have one, maybe two, female characters and so in a situation like this we’re taking that one female character and making them queer. Granted these teams were made back in the 60’s so changing iconic superhero teams is extremely difficult as we each have out preferred roster and when writers deviate from that roster than fans get annoyed. Like my preferred for the Justice League is Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern (Hal Jordan), Flash (Barry Allen), Aquaman, and Martian Manhunter. However, the DCAU used a roster consisting of Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern (John Stewart), Flash (Wally West), Hawkgirl, and Martian Manhunter. Replacing Aquaman with Hawkgirl added another woman to the team and if DC would’ve done that from the beginning than they would still have a heterosexual female as a founding member of the Justice League.
I brought up the question of whether or not diversity actually matters when I was talking about Riri Williams as Iron Man a while back and I kinda thought that it really didn’t matter, bringing up the argument that I don’t just like Superman cause he’s a white dude. However, I’ve kinda reached the conclusion that diversity matters but the reason I don’t care that Superman’s a white dude is because of just how many white dudes there are in comics. However there aren’t as many queer characters so when they are well written than it’s nice to see. Now as most of you guys know, I don’t like Wolverine but I love X-23; however, I also like the character Daken and I’m not sure if I ever brought him up in one of these posts before. Daken himself is openly bisexual and I think I like that about him since I can identify with that and enjoy reading his stories. However outside his sexual orientation, is there any particular reason why I like Daken? Admittingly not really, maybe a few things but not much. His personality maybe but personality and sexual orientation kinda leans on each other.
So overall I do hope that they give her a definitive label soon so I don’t have to keep referring to her as “queer” (just call her bi and be done with it) but overall I’m actually not too disappointing with this revelation. It was kind of a long time coming to be honest and I think everyone is really just accepting it considering how we’re not hearing any big celebration or any harsh backlash.
So what do you guys think? Is Wonder Woman clearly queer or is she straight and will always be straight in your eyes?