Sometimes you’ve just got to write a post about things that are super cool, for no reason in particular. In Wonder Woman Unbound, I wrote briefly about several female DC Comics characters and their feminist leanings in the early 1970s, including Lois Lane, Batgirl, and Emerald Empress; they were picked for specific reasons, but Big Barda would have fit perfectly in that group as well. Recently, I’ve been rereading Jack Kirby’s Fourth World comics in their massive omnibus editions, and every time I hit a Mister Miracle comic I get reminded over and over how fantastic Big Barda is.
Big Barda first appeared in Mister Miracle #4 in 1971. She was an Apokaliptan warrior who helped Scott Free escape the hate-fueled planet, and later escaped herself to meet up with Scott on Earth. Here she is meeting Scott’s assistant, Oberon:
While Scott was a clever escape artist, Barda was all about brute force, and taller and stronger than Scott. When she thought Scott might be trapped in a trunk, she just straight up tore the trunk apart:
Barda is also very comfortable in her own skin. Her casual clothing is basically just a bikini, but Kirby drew her to emphasize her strength and not her sexiness. Here she is, leisurely moving a massive iron cannon for Scott:
“This ‘woman’s lib’ thing is getting more serious than I thought!!” is one of my favourite lines ever.
Later in that issue, a gang of evil goons tried to sneak up on Barda, and she was not at all impressed:
Nor was she impressed with Earth’s weaponry, as evidenced by her treatment of Funky Flashman’s gun in Mister Miracle #6:
She remained unimpressed when she and Scott returned to Apokalips and a guard took a shot at them:
And continued to be unimpressed when she returned to her unit and found her former fellow soldiers fighting over the leadership position:
She leapt from unimpressed to full on furious after Granny Goodness captured Scott, though:
And even in the past, Barda was a force to be reckoned with, as this flashback sequence from Mister Miracle #9 demonstrates:
There are more Barda adventures, but that’s as far as I’m at in my Fourth World reread right now, and I’m enjoying Barda so much that I felt compelled to share her awesomeness with the rest of you. Barda is such a fantastic character, and I’d love to see DC use her more. She’s all sorts of cool.
Also, if Marvel can do a Guardians of the Galaxy movie, then surely DC can do a New Gods movie. How spectacular would Big Barda be on the big screen? Get on it, Warner Bros.