PF: We all sort of know what Superman and Batman are about. But what about Wonder Woman? Where’s her appeal and what’s sustained her popularity as a character for 70 years? We know she fights bad guys and does the right thing, but is that all there is to it? She’s not a well-defined character, but she has mass appeal — and enjoys a lot of popularity in certain subcultures, as well. Has to be more than that she’s a tough woman, has cool gadgets, does the right thing. Why is she such a persistent character?
DML: So, as a folklorist, I’m going to argue that it’s precisely because her character is poorly defined that she is so attractive and compelling. Folk characters like Jack, or little Red Riding Hood, or even the Big Bad Wolf do formulaic things (kill giants, escape wolves, try to eat innocent characters going about [more...]