Superheroes have often arrived without their cast of characters ever having to have had sex. Or if they had, they were punished. Superman, Batman, Spider-Man’s parents all killed off for the crime of carnality, replaced by sexless beings the Kents, May Parker and Alfred. Wonder Woman avoided the matter by being made out of clay.
Silver Age comics saw superheroes getting married and having children, though the sexual aspect was usually kept out of it, even when Reed Richards and Susan Storm had Franklin Richards. The eighties saw Nightwing and Starfire snuggling in bed, and the dams burst over into a flood of innuendo and giggling as comics didn’t quite grow up but hung around under the bleachers giggling a lot and looking at pornographic trading cards. The One, Marshal Law, Dark Knight Returns, Watchmen, Marvelman, V For Vendetta pushed enough, trying to overturn the edifice, instead whatever didn’t kill superhero comics only made them stronger and a nineties of excess hit. WildStorm and Image Comics made superhero sexuality the norm, as the likes of Vertigo did their best to do something important with their new found freedoms. And while Batman had sex with Batgirl and Catwoman on rooftops, of late he has decided that beds might sometimes be useful for that too. As long as he doesn’t sit on them. The beds, I mean.
So where are we today? Well, two comics out today seem to demonstrate the gap. We looked at Wonder Woman #25’s relatively tasteful version earlier.
Then there’s Occupy Avengers #8 by David F Walker, Martin Morazzo, Jorge Coelho and Mat Lopes following up from this scene in Secret Empire #4….
I mean ish. In that it’s not actually referred to. Occupy Avengers provides us with a Black Widow and Hawkeye getting back together in, basically, a stationary cupboard while the Nazi jackboot threatens the world, with very little acknowledgement of the slug he received previously.
For the amusement of the gathered superbros.
Hey, Thing, pots and kettles, right? I think it was established a few years ago that you didn’t have anything behind that barn door yourself, so have some sensitivity… or do a better joke, something about keeping arrows in quivers, that sort of thing, come on. I mean we have standards here…
Occupy Avengers #8 is published by Marvel Comics today.