Thursday, May 10, 2012
YEAR 1961: THE INVISIBLE GIRL
I suppose I might be fairly accused of unoriginality in using here the same illustration I used in an earlier post, but the scene captures a different set of associations here.
Of all Silver Age heroines, the Invisible Girl-- who in the 1980s would "become a woman," as in changing her name to "Invisible Woman"-- gets the least respect. The Lee-Kirby FANTASTIC FOUR did include scenarios that got a lot of mileage out of feminine stereotypes, whether it was making fun of her for feminine activities like shopping or expecting her to be the "den mother" of the supergroup. (Side-note: given how many fans think Kirby plotted everything in FF, it's surprising that he's rarely blamed for these politically incorrect lapses, though it's clear to me that Kirby's art sets up a number of comic bits, like Sue getting pissy with Reed because he doesn't notice her new hairdo).
Nevertheless, most of Sue's detractors pay no attention to scenes like the one above, where the gutsy heroine-- at a time before she acquired her force-field powers-- takes on Doctor Doom by herself, just to prove that she can do it. She does end up needing rescue from her male partners, but that's no stain on her escutcheon: it is Doctor Doom, after all.
Though she wasn't the first heroine created for the Silver Age of Comics, arguably she's better known that 1959's Supergirl, who seems to wax and wane with the times-- while the Invisible Girl/Woman remains, well-- highly visible.