Don Heck

I had one errand to run today but it’s going to take me all day to get to it because I keep waiting on people. It’s frustrating as heck. Don’t even get me started on the debacle that is the third grade wax museum project. Why must my children argue with me? I raised a bunch of rule followers. Poor suckers are just like their mother.

Steve… we’ve been fools for too long. We have circled each other for years. Playing at love like children… when life is so short. But we have never truly tried, despite what we each know is in our hearts. 

Wonder Woman #329, released in 1985, was the last issue of Wonder Woman in which her relationship with her original love interest, Steve Trevor, was canon. After this, he was aged up and paired off with Etta Candy; she entered occasional, short-lived romances (Trevor Barnes, Io, Tom Tresser, Superman – to name a few). Now over 30 years later, their relationship is back in the pages of her home book in last month’s Wonder Woman #9. 

Here’s to hoping it lasts!

Panels from Wonder Woman #9 (2016) by Greg Rucka and Liam Sharp and Wonder Woman #329 (1985) by Gerry Conway and Don Heck.

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MIND-CONTROLLED WANDA: I remember… that though your body and clothing are man-made, you do possess a jewel in your forehead –
VISION: Wanda! No!
MIND-CONTROLLED WANDA: – a jewel which will bend to my command and empty itself of all energy within!
VISION:  Your magic has beaten me! I have no way – to consciously control my gem! Wanda – only you can save me now! You must remember – who you are – who I am! Wanda – my strength is draining from me – the most horrible feeling I can imagine! You’re killing me, Wanda – and – I love you –
WANDA: V–Vision–? Vision–? By all the spirits – what have I done?!!

Giant Size Avengers #4 by Steve Englehart & Don Heck

Oh no! Not the gem!

Wanda was feeling the “Genie in a Bottle”-esque hand motions during this story.

Avengers Vol. 1 #21 by Stan Lee & Don Heck

People love to drag out that bottom right panel like it’s an embarrassing photo of their dad with a mullet and a Members Only jacket. “Haha look at this old thing! Old things are so cringe-worthy, amirite?” It’s treated as irrefutable proof that Silver Age Wanda was a melodramatic waif and her characterization was All About Dicks™.

That’s ridiculous for a few reasons:

  1. Wanda’s thoughts there (and her feelings for Steve in general) are not over the top.
  2. It’s usually accompanied by an assumption that Silver Age melodrama only affected the women, which is very, very wrong. It was Steve, after all, who proposed to Sharon shortly after meeting her.
  3. The context.

It’s that last one that really matters. Wanda knocked Hawkeye down over a minor slight that wasn’t even directed at her, and Steve responded by saying, “Hey, I told you not to beat people up all the time.”

Wanda thinking that Steve is “so gentle” looks different when you put it next to a panel of her being decidedly not gentle.

What people don’t get is that Stan Lee’s Wanda had violent powers and was a-okay with using them any time she was mildly annoyed. What they especially don’t get is that she was drawn to Steve, in part, because he wasn’t like that. He didn’t physically fight any time he felt like it (or at least, he tried not to). He had restraint that she didn’t. He was gentle in a way that she wasn’t. She was attracted to him, a guy who was a lot less powerful than her, because he had feminine qualities she didn’t see in herself.