A Dig At Wonder Woman In Ms. Marvel #1 From 1977

I’ve been enjoying Kelly Sue DeConnick and Dexter Soy’s new Captain Marvel series so much that I recently picked up Essential Ms. Marvel Volume 1 at my local comic shop.  It collects the Ms. Marvel run from the late 1970s, when Carol Danvers was the editor of Woman magazine and turned into Ms. Marvel to bust up bad guys.  So really, she was Gloria Steinem with superpowers.  That’s right up my alley.

The stories are a good time, in that Bronze Age kind of way, but one panel in particular really amused me.  It’s from the first issue, just after Ms. Marvel took down a bad guy:

That dude rocking the sunglasses is saying:

That little lady makes Lynda Carter look like Olive Oyl!

Ms. Marvel #1 came out in 1977, so the Wonder Woman TV show would have been on the air at the time.  So:

a) Burn!!  They’re basically saying that Ms. Marvel is way awesomer than Wonder Woman.  A little bit of the DC/Marvel rivalry was coming out there.


b) Apparently the Wonder Woman TV show existed in the Marvel universe, so presumably you can buy DC comics in the Marvel universe too.  And not Marvel comics, since their heroes are just real people in the Marvel universe.  I wonder if DC has a rival publisher there?  Maybe Fawcett survived?  Or Charlton?

Anyway, I was amused.  And I recommend checking out the old Ms. Marvel comics.  They’re a good time.  Plus Mary Jane Watson is in a bunch of them, and she’s always fun.  It would be cool if she showed up in the new Captain Marvel series.  The new series does seem to reference the old one sporadically, from female astronauts to the more Marvelly costume to Carol having a bad time of it underwater on both of their eighth covers:

The new series hasn’t had a date on the beach between Carol and her therapist though.  Maybe next month.

So yeah, that was an amusing dig at Wonder Woman in Ms. Marvel #1.  Way to make it clear that there’s a new female hero in town!!

Published by Tim Hanley

Tim Hanley is a comic book historian and the author of Wonder Woman Unbound, Investigating Lois Lane, The Many Lives of Catwoman, and Betty and Veronica: The Leading Ladies of Riverdale.

9 thoughts on “A Dig At Wonder Woman In Ms. Marvel #1 From 1977

  1. The original Ms. Marvel series was a lot of fun. It — and the 1970s Spider-Woman series — were my first forays into the Marvel world.

    Alas, I haven’t been reading Carol’s new series. The art is just too hideous. Dark, murky, ugly — and sooooo many shots where her ginormous shiny breasts are as big as her mannish grimacing head.

    1. I like Soy’s artwork, personally… I think it’s different and kind of cool, and outside of Marvel’s usual style. If you’ve been skipping the book because of Soy, you should check out the latest issue. Emma Rios drew it (and will draw the next one), and she’s super fun.

  2. Hey, Tim, glad you took up my suggestion to get the Ms.Marvel Essential edition – those early issues bring back some happy childhood memories for me. And yes, that joke sure is funny – I love how self-reverential and ‘knowing’ Marvel could be in those bygone days – made it feel more real, somehow.
    Little known fact – Marvel felt after their previous female books failed [The Cat and Shanna The She-Devil, respectively] they decided to fill Ms. Marvels early issues with Spider-Man characters, such as Mary Jane, J. Jonah and the Scorpion to bring in new readers who would not normally pick up a female-hero comic Thats why so many Spidey refs are in the first issue.. Once she was established, those characters were sent back to their own Spidey book.
    Ms Marvel’s success meant a year later we got Spider-Woman and then She-Hulk. In much the same way WW paved the way for female heroes at DC, Ms. Marvel did the same for Marvel!
    When ‘Marvel vs DC’ was published a few years ago, I was disssapointed that Diana was pitted against Storm of the X-Men. In reality it shouldve been Ms .Marvel as Carol and Diana have similar fighting abilities and strong power-sets.

    1. Yeah, my shop got a ton of Essentials in so I picked up the Ms. Marvel one! I’m about halfway through, and I’m enjoying it. That’s interesting about the Spider-Man characters, and explains why Mary Jane has been showing up less lately. That’s a smart way to launch a book, really.
      A Wonder Woman vs. Ms. (now Captain) Marvel scene would be really cool. I doubt we’ll ever see it, since Marvel and DC don’t seem to be on speaking terms, but I’d totally buy it. Especially if they had Kelly Sue DeConnick write it and Cliff Chiang draw it 🙂 Captain Marvel’s travelling through time all ready… why not universes?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: