Formed from the clay of Paradise Island, given shape by Hippolyta and life by the Olympians, Wonder Woman has long been a puzzle, wrapped in an enigma, deep-fried in batter til golden brown.  Her current origins have her as the biological daughter of Zeus himself (though that may have changed in the last half-hour), a demigod like Hercules or Cúchulainn or Eliza Dushku.  Given either of these origins, I’ve always thought that Wonder Woman is thus posses of greater raw power than “scientifically” based heroes such as Lobo or Mon-El, whose strength is a purely-physical property of their alien biologies.  Indeed, from a story perspective, the opposite of “Superman” is “magic”, which seems to imply that Wonder Woman’s physical prowess might be greater than even his.  Whether or not you believe in this premise, one cannot argue that it raises a very important allocational query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) reminds Faithful Spoilerites that women have more core strength, a lower-center of gravity, and also blah blah blah magical fishcakes, asking: Given her origins as mystical golem or demigod, shouldn’t Wonder Woman possess greater physical power and/or strength than Superman?

The Author

Matthew Peterson

Matthew Peterson

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture!

And a nice red uniform.

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7 Comments

  1. October 24, 2014 at 12:04 pm — Reply

    I wouldn’t quite think she’d be STRONGER, but I would think that given the mystical nature of her origin, she’d be able to toss him around like a ragdoll rather than simply got toe to toe with him. They have had incidents in the past where something of hers affects Superman (like in “Kingdom Come” her sword cut his finger), but that isn’t really WW herself.

  2. October 24, 2014 at 12:39 pm — Reply

    I don’t know. Superman is already too powerful to write effectively. I’d like for them to be evenly matched, but I also don’t want Wonder Woman to be able to chuck continents at other people. It’s a conundrum.

  3. Malone_hasco
    October 24, 2014 at 12:57 pm — Reply

    I have always thought that Superman should be the one with most physical and also to great extent mental strength. Its pretty much his thing, the one who everyone else looks up to. Batman said something like this: “Looking at him, flying above us, shooting fire from his eyes, one cant help but think of a god. Lucky for us, Clark is the only one to whom that has never even crossed his mind.”

  4. Greg
    October 24, 2014 at 2:27 pm — Reply

    Yes and no. I have to compare her to other mystical or demigod type characters, even those outside of the DCU. Keep in mind I also think that Superman and is power set is over the top and should not be equivelant of any deity, a demigod maybe. That said, Thor is a full on god. Wonder Woman as a “demigod” or mystical golem should not be able to take on Thor. I find it reasonable though that Wonder Woman should be equal to that of Marvel’s Hercules or within that range. I have no problem with Superman being a humanoid alien empowered by the yellow sun being close but not quite on the level of Hercules but not Thor. So with that said, as demigod, yes Wonder Woman should be Superman’s superior, as a mystical golem or whetever, I have a hard time seeing Wonder Woman being Superman’s equal or greater, but not too far behind.

  5. Arbor Day
    October 24, 2014 at 3:11 pm — Reply

    It should probably be like rock, scissors, paper, only Wonder Woman, Superman, Batman. Wonder Woman beats Batman, Batman beats Superman, Superman beats Wonder Woman.

    • October 25, 2014 at 9:22 am — Reply

      Sounds like a DCU version of Jerry Springer.

  6. Cody
    October 24, 2014 at 6:59 pm — Reply

    Wonder Woman isn’t as strong as Superman but is close to his strength but she has the skill and training to make up the difference. In the new 52 I believe she locks away some of her strength with the bracers.

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