Stephanie Brown=Carol Danvers

Like I said, if Stephanie Brown were to not only go Goth but also become her nieces’ mother figure and coach as well as creating her own gym equipment and using football/soccer tactics in combat she’s practically Carol Danvers. In the sense that Carol Danvers also started out as a love interest turned female counterpart and constant punching bag until recently. (Whatever that means.)

The real icing on the top’s when Stephanie Brown scolds Tim every time he screws up or lazes around, perhaps a doable analogue to Carol Danvers taking her anger out on men who bother her a lot. This might not even be unique to those two. (Tigra’s one such example but one where given the many attempts at making her more bestial looking should get away with being this hairy and could’ve been a reliable huntress.)

I still think the comparison might hold weight should Steph ever improve big time and become a Goth. It wouldn’t be exact but it does help give an idea of how provocative reinventing Carol Danvers is.

Oddly relatable

Whilst it would be rather shocking should Stephanie Brown go Goth for good on top of being a mother figure and coach to her nieces and an excellent weightlifter herself, keep in mind it’s actually not uncommon for nerdy men to have a thing for Goths. Likewise naturally blond Goths aren’t that strange either, moreso considering that the woman behind Death is also blond herself.

If I’m not mistaken, the late Cinamon Hadley was described as having blond hair at some point or another. So it’s really not that weird for Steph to become Goth though that would mean giving some readers an idea of what Cinamon Hadley may’ve been like in person. If her mother and father expected her to repress her emotions and have her dress normally, Steph being a Goth would be shocking.

Actually it’s even less shocking since Cinamon Hadley tried to keep a cheerful attitude in her lifetime, so it’s not a stretch for Steph to do the same really. (Comes to think of it, Tim Drake is Elon Musk and Stephanie Brown is Grimes by then.) Though that would mean and necessitate a wider or more contemporary idea of what’s relatable.

Superheroines as working mums

I think the essay ‘Supermoms’ as written by Jefferey A Brown has made good observations about the portrayal of motherhood in superhero fiction. Especially if/when you have writers dismissing pregnancy and motherhood as well as disrupting the male gaze (ditto those with a pregnancy fetish) but I’d go on arguing it’s got to do with the apparent suspicion at/disdain for working mums.

It’s like how some men expect women to be total stay at home wives where they do all the providing and breadwinning. Never mind that women were at some point paid whenever they do housework at all. And that some mothers will do anything to support themselves and their families especially when they’re in a bad situation. Whether if it’s becoming a widow or if husbands are unreliable/irresponsible that some are left to do it on their own.

Most of the time and that there are some teenagers who’re mature enough to care for their younger relatives which should explain why it’s actually not much of a stretch for Steph to be her nieces’ babysitter, seamstress and coach. Likewise Tigra would’ve been a huntress taking her son to hunting expeditions (this is even the case in Sierra Leone). Whilst sexism is being undone in superhero comics, for some writers the idea of a career mum’s way too controversial.

Even if it does happen out of necessity anyways.

Kind of subversive

I still have the feeling that having Black Canary around as Tim Drake’s biological aunt and Stephanie Brown to become an angry working mother figure and coach to her nieces cum Goth who takes it out on him would make one wonder if the earlier stories were sexist. Or at least really dated in its depiction of female characters.

I guess it would be sexist in that some writers would find it hard to believe somebody like her would be Tim’s blood aunt despite that there are actual children whose mothers dress skimpily and that even people like Beyonce are already somebody else’s mothers, aunts and wives. (That would necessitate actually having to see Dinah as a capable mother surrogate.)

She practically is one of sorts on Young Justice where she is their mentor. Had she been Tim’s blood aunt, there wouldn’t be any need for both Lady Shiva and Dana Winters as Dinah’s judge, jury and executer. Or at least essentially so. Now as for Steph becoming a working mother figure and coach to her nieces, this is enough to not only have her mature big time.

But also become more independent (if because she has to attend to her family first and foremost, especially if she’s made to do so and if/when they get sick at all). Maybe too mature as to be rather matronly for her age (even though there’s an even younger Chinese girl looking after her brother in a remote village on her own). Too independent to remain a sidekick anymore now that she’s got serious familial obligations.

That’s despite her own distrust of her other relatives at times (some real people feel the same way too and do play favourites themselves). If she also became Goth and makes her own gym equipment out of scratch (that she can also pull cars when needed), she’s practically Carol Danvers. Generally how unexpected this is and that both of them started out as girlfriends turned female counterparts who got impregnated.

(Keep in mind there are some teenagers who’re this self-responsible enough to do difficult situations on their own and there are likely some single mothers who’re practically like this too.)

Perhaps this might reflect a rather conflicted attitude towards working mums. If/when working mums are sometimes distrusted, in that they should stay at home and leave it to their husbands (though some point even housework got paid and some mums will do anything to work to support themselves and their families) that this makes Dinah into Tim’s blood aunt and Steph into a working mother figure difficult.

(As for Steph, this might come into conflicts of how they expect her to be and her becoming a working mother figure and coach to her nieces would be pretty shocking should it happen.)

If believed to be true among some writers, this could explain things even when there are cases where somebody’s female relative or wife also wore skimpy or racy clothing (moreso had she been a popstar) and ones where some teenagers are mature enough to take on difficult things like caring for their families a lot. But that would involve a real change of sorts.

Especially should they happen at all.

She got too good

I sometimes still think if Carol Danvers is any indication, should Stephanie Brown improve big time (especially in using soccer/football tactics against opponents as well as training and tending for her nieces a lot) in addition to becoming a Goth for good, it’s going to baffle or alarm some people. Especially if they’re not used to Steph becoming like this. But also because she doesn’t follow Goth stereotypes much.

Ironically blond Goths do exist, whether if they bleached their hair or they’re naturally so (whether if that may include mousy blond hair). There’s already a good precedent for these in bands like Bauhaus, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Sisters of Mercy and XMal Deutschland. Even the model for Sandman’s Death was stated to be a natural blonde herself. (If many Goths are said to use hair dyes, one wonders if some of them are actually blond.)

There’s also a Goth football team in Brazil (I’m not making this up). But I still think the comparison to Carol Danvers rings true because they’re actually quite similar and should Steph become a Goth footballer who cares for her nieces a lot and creates her own gym equipment (as well as pulling cars whenever they break down), it’s going to be comparable. Carol was also incompetent, especially in that she was arguably not yet that powerful and marred by alcoholism.

Until she improved big time and that both Steph and Carol started out as love interests turned female counterparts to certain characters. So there’s that and why Carol Danvers is what Stephanie Brown will be like in 5 months from now.

The unwelcome wolf

I have a feeling should Caitlin Snow become a werewolf on the Flash, chances are not only would it let out the Red Riding Hood undertones but also piss off certain demographics. I mean it’s the thing with wolf fanatics where if you point out that not all Europeans (especially Italians in here) necessarily trust wolf-dog hybrids as well as wolves proper, it’s not that the truth’s uncomfortable but it’s insulting their sacred cow.

Likewise if Caitlin Snow becomes an evil werewolf who uses dogs and wolves to torment people, even if it’s in line with folklore (witches and their dogs and wolves) and real life to an extent (some slaveholders made dogs attack slaves) it’s not flattering to a lot of people. Especially if it’s something that attacks their sacred cows and should it happen at all, it’s going to provoke a lot of people really. (At to some, a repressed distrust coming to the fore again.)

Carol Danvers again

When it comes to Stephanie Brown being comparable to Carol Danvers, let’s not forget that like Stephanie Carol started out as a love interest turned female counterpart, was kind of incompetent (especially with her alcoholism, being readily abused and not quite as powerful and taken seriously yet) and was practically a punching bag. (Even if writers are well-intentioned, it’s as if they really sometimes distrust their own creations.)

Maybe not necessarily distrusting them (at least not outrightly so) but more in the sense of a disturbingly patronising suspicion that somebody’s so incompetent they can’t alwyas be readily trusted should they be on their own and be told to do something. Especially if they’ve got seriously flaws (the real life cartoonist John Callahan was tired of being patronised for his disability and was for awhile rightfully angry about it).

I think even if they have flaws, some people can try to manage themselves and do challenging things on their own as much as they can do about it (I actually think some disabled people are this independent and why patronising them’s a bad idea). It’s like with Carol Danvers being drunk and then not only overcoming it big time but also improving a lot in her abilities. It seemed the distrust switched from patronising to disdain.

I have a feeling that if Stephanie were to not only improve a lot in her fighting skills (that’s by kicking football balls at her opponents) but also beat up would be sexual harassers (since some people do learn martial artists to avoid being molested themselves too) and become a Goth mother figure/coach to her nieces who nags at Tim for being a sexist, it’s going to be more of the same character, practically speaking.

That’s if the seemingly pitiable character turns out to be highly independent and also confrontational enough to attack misogynists, then it’s going to be Carol Danvers all over again.