Good Riddance, Fred Phelps: 5 Pivotal Moments For LGBTs In Comics
Here’s something I missed yesterday. (yeah, I’ve gone from posting Cracked links to posting Escapist links)
Sometimes, writing a sentence can be an absolute joy. For example, this sentence: It was announced yesterday that Fred Phelps, the founder of anti-gay hate group Westboro Baptist Church, died of natural causes at 84 years old. However, I come not to bury Fred Phelps, but to laugh about the fact that by any reasonable measure, his life was an astounding failure.
Harsh and disrespectful to the deceased, I know. But so was Fred and his whackaloon followers. But this ultimately isn’t about him.
Nope, Wonder Woman isn’t gay. But the story behind her creation proves that even as early as the 1940s, American culture was already undergoing vast social changes that would go on to make Fred Phelps’ pathetic hatemongering pointless.
(Wonder Woman creator William Moulton Marston), a vocal proponent of an early form of feminism that veered close to a belief in the superiority of women, created Wonder Woman as a contrast to the square-jawed brawlers that dominated (and still dominate) comics in that she would defeat her enemies with the power of (strong, authoritative) love. With input from Olive and Elizabeth, he notably based the character in part on the two of them. He also incorporated clear themes of bondage and submission, particularly of men submitting themselves to women. And true to his somewhat oddball ideas, his Wonder Woman stories are also notable for clear, though subtle moral lessons involving the power of love - especially erotic love - to conquer evil.
And that’s just a peek at page one.