Welcome to Give ‘Em Elle, a weekly column that hopes to bridge the gap between old school comics fandom and the progressive edge of comics culture. This week I'm thinking about queer subtext. Okay, full disclosure, I am literally always thinking about queer subtext. When I was in grad school, I taught a film class about queer subtext and how to find it. So that's where I'm coming from. But I'm especially thinking about it in comics.
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There are sidekicks out there that define their roles past their relationships to the name on the cover of the comic. Such is the case of one of the most iconic sidekicks in all of comic book history, the Boy Wonder, Robin.
With so many characters having taken up Robin’s mantle, there's a wealth of variety to choose from in the cosplay community. Whether the character is paired up with the Bat-family, taking charge of the Teen Titans, or flying solo, Robin and Nightwing offer a lot of great cosplay options. These cosplayers bring the “dynamic” to the Dynamic Duo. These are the best Robin and Nightwing cosplays.
Can’t decide which superheroes are your favorites? Why not enjoy a little bit of all of them? That's the great thing about superhero teams; they bring together everyone from the most famous and iconic heroes to the most bizarre and obscure. And no superteam captures that idea better than the Justice League.
For your viewing pleasure, we’ve amassed our own super gallery featuring cosplayers portraying members of the Justice League throughout the years. Every cape, every cowl, every leotard featured shows off the enormous wealth of talent on the part of the cosplayers who take up these heroes' mantles. These are the best Justice League cosplays ever.
Dick Grayson has done it all. He was in the circus. He was the first Robin. He’s the reason almost every superhero had to have a kid sidekick. He started his own super-team with his friends. He broke away from Batman and became his own hero, and took over for his mentor and became Batman.More than once. He’s been a good cop in a bad city. He’s died and come back as a super-spy. And now, with DC Rebirth in full swing, he’s set to slip back into the black and blue and become Nightwing once again!
Oh, and if you haven’t been on the internet, he also has the unquestioned, best butt in comics. So, yeah, as you might have guessed there’s a lot of fan art of him floating (or flipping, spinning, and swinging) around out there on the internet.
Since the dawn of the Silver Age, legacy characters have been a staple of superhero fiction, and having a new character step into a well loved role can open up new opportunities for writers and artists to tell different kinds of stories. In The Replacements, we’ll look back at the notable and not-so-notable heroes and villains to assume some of the most iconic mantles in the superhero genre.
The first truth of Batman is that he was never alone, he always had help and he's almost always had a Robin by his side. Bruce Wayne has always needed the lightness of Robin to balance the darkness of Batman, and despite some tragedy along the way, the title of Boy (and Girl) Wonder is one of the most enduring legacies in the DC Universe.
Take a look at the biggest names in superheroes and you probably realize that you're looking at a sea of red, blue, yellow. There are some greens, whites, blacks, etc, but the most iconic superheroes are the red and blue, with yellow accents. It's no accident that the easiest colors to render in the four-color printing process became the choice for bold heroes. But what does it mean for characterization of these heroes? What does it tell us about those characters?
In honor of the caped crusaders of the convention scene, ComicsAlliance has created Best Cosplay Ever (This Week), an ongoing collection of some of the most impeccable, creative, and clever costumes that we’ve discovered and assembled into a super-showcase of pure fan-devoted talent.
Back before the turn of the decade, DC Collectibles was still going by the name DC Direct and had just launched a new statue series, Cover Girls of the DC Universe. Kicked off in 2009, the statues were based on the artwork of Adam Hughes, and featured characters like Black Canary, Catwoman, and Zatanna as full 3D recreations from Hughes' covers from the comics at that time. The statues were some of the most sought after collectibles on the market, as each had a limited run of anywhere from 5000-8000 pieces. After about a half-dozen pieces the line ceased, and as you can imagine, the secondary market demand skyrocketed. Many of those Hughes-designed pieces still fetch absurd prices, which is why it was a bit of a delight to see DC Collectibles would be re-releasing the Adam Hughes Wonder Woman statue as part of its new Designer Series.
Batman statues are a dime a dozen. I mean, not literally --- they're generally going to set you back a pretty penny --- but there are enough of them out there that if you want to decorate your home exclusively in miniature replicas of the Dark Knight, you could do so pretty easily. There's one for every era, all manner of sizes, and thanks to DC's Black and White line, there's one for almost every artist who's done a notable take on the character. Robin, though? Robins are a whole lot harder to find.
Q: Beyond the whole "kid's POV" character thing, why do we love Robin so much? We should be horrified by his existence. -- @TheDwightSteel
A: All right, first of all, if you're going to be horrified by the kind of child endangerment that's necessary for Batman to take a kid sidekick along to fight murder clowns and crossword robberies, then I have some bad news for you about pretty much every other adventure story that involves children. The sheer number of criminal charges over Scrooge McDuck's dubious employment of his nephews would keep Duckburg's courts busy for a decade, and Hogwarts? That place is a deathtrap just based on the idea of sending ten year-olds onto staircases that move of their own volition, let alone the part where they've got magic death snake hiding in the plumbing. And if we ever get around to Pokémon, well... You're probably going to want to sit down for that one.
But really, that danger ends up being a pretty big part of what makes Robin work, although there's a little more to it than that.