Patty Campbell

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Stan Lee's Superhero Women is a collection from Marvel Comics that provides some glorious role models for young women's fantasies. Ms. Marvel, Hela, Red Sonja, Lyra the Femizon, Shanna the She-Devil, Medusa—all of them use their awesome power without shame….

It could be argued that these superheroes are sex objects for boys rather than role models for girls. They have long legs, neatly rounded rumps, taut muscular bellies, and enormous sculptured breasts—but their male counterparts have amazing bodies, too, and nobody ever accused them of being sex objects. In a naive way these comic superheroes are idealized human beings, and while their sexuality is exaggerated, so are their muscles. Realistic role models these are not, but they can reinforce a young girl's dawning awareness that it's O.K. for women to be powerful. (p. 180)

Patty Campbell, "The YA Perplex," in Wilson Library Bulletin (copyright © 1978 by the H. W. Wilson Company), Vol. 53, No. 2, October, 1978, pp. 180-81.

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