mabfan (Michael A. Burstein) (mabfan) wrote,
mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)

The Moral Imperatives of Wonder Woman

For those looking for my next Infinite Crisis speculation post, I'm afraid that you're going to have to wait until Sunday or Monday. A combination of Rosh Hashana and the Ig Nobel Award Ceremony made it difficult for me to read through all the tie-in comics deeply enough to make further speculations. (Although I am amazed at the revelation of Donna Troy's status as the Anti-Harbinger.) So to give everyone something to think about while waiting for my final speculation before Infinite Crisis #1 hits the stores next week, I thought I'd open up a discussion about the recent choice made by Wonder Woman.

To recap, as part of the events surrounding The OMAC Project, Maxwell Lord took control of Superman's mind, fooling him into almost killing Batman by making him think Batman was one of many villains threatening Lois's life. When Wonder Woman finally confronted Lord, he told her that the only way to make him give up control of Superman would be by killing him.

And so she killed him.

The repurcussions are being felt throughout the other comics. In Wonder Woman #221, released this week, the world finds out what she did before she has a chance to turn herself in to an international tribunal, and people's loss of trust in her becomes evident. Although both Superman and Batman benefited from her actions, they have distanced themselves from her. Diana has become that one thing a superhero never should become: a killer.

But is she a murderer?

Wonder Woman has often viewed herself as a soldier in a war. Soldiers in war kill without committing murder; it's entirely possible that one could justify her actions under that perspective. Even Superman seemed intent on killing Doomsday when there appeared to be no other choice.

On the other hand...she did have other options. She could have brought Lord to Zatanna for a magical lobotomy. Or she could have found a way to keep him unconscious until they had a chance to figure out a form of safe incarceration. From that perspective, her actions might be considered morally repugnant, saved only by the defense that she killed him in the heat of the moment, without really having a chance to ponder her other options.

So...was Wonder Woman justified? Were her actions moral?

What do you think?
Tags: comics, infinite-crisis, personal

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