Updated: Aug 20, 2022
As kid, I loved comic books. I remember my uncle Raymond gave me his priceless collection of over 100 comic books. I mean, he had some limited editions that would probably yield over $60,000 today. Unfortunately I lost them. Well, truthfully, I think my grandmother may have trashed them because she really didn't know their value. That's another blog article for another day. The real story here is the impression these comic books left on me. Like many young girls (and boys or non-binary peeps), I grew up reading comics about Wonder Woman and Superwoman. I remember watching Linda Carter portray Wonder Woman on her weekly series. These female superheroes were powerful. Strong. Capable. They rivaled any person and didn't need to be saved. I idolized what they represented-girl power. Plus, Wonder Woman had an ethnically ambiguous look, so I felt like she was very identifiable to me as a woman of color. As an adult my perception changed. I grew to see Wonder Woman (and Superwoman) with adult eyes, under a cis-male gaze, and discovered she was created with the undertone of SBDM--enough to make "Christian Grey" blush. I began to question my childhood worship of her as the ideal representation of feminine empowerment. Also, I saw the damage these images of fictional female figures did--and still do--to the psyche of women. I realized I didn't like my old perception.