Since all my remaining picks have already appeared on others' lists, I'm not going to spend a lot of time talking about the characters. Rather, I'm going to tell you what they meant to me personally, as when I first encountered:
3. Katar and Shayera Hol, Hawkman
As a young'n, I was much more into the Marvel heroes than their DC counterparts. But I knew the latter well enough to recognize that editor Julius Schwartz lked to pair his supermen up with strong ladies like news photographer Iris Allen, business executive Carol Ferris, and lawyer Jean Loring. But even they didn't prepare me for the revelation that was Mr. and Mrs. Carter Hall of Midway City. If I may quote myself from my several-years-back Alter Ego article:
“The chemistry between Katar and Shayera is another high point of the [Hawkman] revamp, [writer Gardner]Fox giving the couple a warm, mature relationship unlike anything yet seen in a DC comic. The scenes he and [artist Joe] Kubert craft of our heroes' domestic lives, on Earth and on Thanagar, are delightful, off-setting the sometimes stiff characterization they've given Katar. A running gag centers on naturalist Mavis Trent repeatedly and fruitlessly throwing herself at Carter, as Shiera looks on with a combination of annoyance and amusement. Her confidence is warranted. This Hawkgirl, unlike her 1940s counterpart, is a full and equal partner to Hawkman, proving every bit as intelligent, athletic, and courageous as her husband while remaining thoroughly female, the ultimate incarnation of the independent career women Schwartz likes his heroes involved with. She deserves equal billing, and had the strip been created in a later decade she might have it.”
I'm not saying that the Hawks made me a feminist, but exposure to their partnership did lay the groundwork for my eventual adoption of that way of thinking and for that, I am eternally grateful.
3. Scott Summers and Jean Grey as written by Chris Claremont
I'm going to be the odd one out and admit that I think Scott and Jean were poorly matched. As a romantic partner, Scott was both clueless and a total Debbie-downer, while Jean was often a source of such warmth and brightness that he just didn't seem to deserve. I include the pair on this list less for the couple they were for those first sixteen years, and more for what they were becoming at the very end. While Scott had been so set in his ways for the entire history of the X-Men, we saw him struggling to make better sense of his feelings for Jean and evolve as a person, beginning to look inward and work on himself so that he could be a better partner, all while she gave him limitless patience and love, even when it had become abundantly clear that her days were numbered.
It was total mutual devotion, and thus Jean's death moved me even more, not because of what they'd had and lost, but rather because of what they were on the verge of becoming.
On the Tenth Day of Christmas, True Love gave to me Miyamato Usagi and Mariko
Usagi and Mariko were childhood sweethearts whom life too on different paths. In many young romances, love burns bright and true but young people are continually growing and changing, so the challenge in such relationships is to continue to grow together or you will grow apart. What caused them to grow apart was duty. Young Usagi was called to serve as a samurai and had to leave to serve his new master. Mariko was called to duty to her family and village and had to stay behind. Their last moments together were heartbreaking, but wound up producing the child Jotaro. The love between Usagi and Mariko was pure and true, but sometimes in live, love is not enough, and that is the case with this couple, but they are still among my favorites, both for what they were, and for what they were not.
People don't want the Truth. They want only information that supports what they think they already know. -Vess from Invisible Kingdom
I see a comics culture that preserves and appreciates its past, but doesn't wallow in witless nostalgia. -Scott McCloud
Humans beings always do the most intelligent thing…after they’ve tried every stupid alternative and none of them have worked -Buckminster Fuller
I am astounded that this is the first time this pairing has popped on anyone else's list. Are my tastes so far out of step with the rest of my CCF family? I mean, Jack Kirby isn't even involved with this year's 12 Days!
I suspect my fondness for this relationship is not due to any particular aspect of it, but is more down to when I encountered it. I was a teen in the 1980s, and when I started getting into superheroes, the title that caught my imagination and hooked me (after my favourite Batman, of course), was the New Teen Titans. It was to me what X-Men was to many children of the 70s. These characters were relatable to me as a teen (in a broad sense), and the struggles they faced resonated with me. And the romances in the book resembled more what I was seeing around me than anything between Superman and Lana Lang (as it was in those days).
And I was a hormonal teenage boy, and Starfire is every teenage boy's dream girl. And if the uptight Dick Grayson could score with an alien hottie like Koriand'r, then maybe there was hope for a geek like me.
Confession time: I do not like Earth-1 Lois Lane. Sure, she’s compelling, and has been part of many great adventures, but who likes a self-absorbed, selfish person? Maybe I read the wrong kind of comics, or caught her at her worst, but she was all me, me, me.
I liked Margot Kidder’s Lois Lane, God rest her soul. She showed a bit of sensitivity at least, even in the much-maligned fourth movie. But in the comics, particularly during the 1986 reboot, Lois just came across as someone unlikeable, out for herself, who dismissed Clark constantly, unlike Lana Lang, who liked Clark - or should I say Kal-El - for who he is.
But, I feel differently about Earth-2 Lois. Sure, she could be snappy and irksome at times, but what I have read of her showed someone who did at least love Superman for who he is, not necessarily what she could get out of him. I feel their love was convincing, and Infinite Crisis, which certainly isn’t my favourite story, cemented that for me. They love each other.
Post by Icctrombone on Dec 22, 2021 6:51:46 GMT -5
3. Sue and Reed Richards
They started the entire Marvel universe and remain the main family of comic books. It has been said that Marvel just employed the “ illusion of change” but that’s not actually true. This couple went through many changes. They started off single and got married.
They also had kids, not one but 2. That’s a lot of change. They have shown a williness to do anything for each other. Reed risks everything going to the negative zone to make sure the birth of his child and Sue's life are both preserved. Sue goes from dimension to dimension looking for Reed when he's believed to have been killed by Doom. Thats' love and devotion. They have survived break ups of not only the team, but a separation in their marriage. It's refreshing to see a couple stay together in real life AND in fiction.
I'm aware that it ended, but I have no idea how - my reading of New Teen Titans/New Titans only got as far the "Who is Wonder Girl?" arc (which - even though it was supposed to fix a post-Crisis mess - was kind of a mess). Never had any desire to read any farther than that.
3. Bruce Wayne (Batman) and Selina Kyle (Catwoman) I won’t even qualify this by saying Earth-2 Bruce and Selina, even though my favorite story with them as a couple, cited by pretty much everyone else here in preceding days when this pairing was chosen, is the well-known origin of their romance from Brave and the Bold #197, written by Alan Brennert (my #1 pick in last year’s favorite writers 12 days). First, I have to say that even before I’d read that story, as a little kid, I somehow always thought that Batman and Catwoman are supposed to end up together. They just seemed like a ‘natural’ pairing (not really sure why I thought that). But Brennert’s aforementioned story in B&B 197 just seems to encapsulate why I think they should be together. We see how their relationship evolved from an alliance of necessity between former adversaries…
…but then grew into something more, as their compassion for each other developed and they began to understand each other’s vulnerabilities and longings…
…which then grows into a deep, unwavering love (everybody else already posted the panels that illustrate those points). To me, these aspects seem to apply to Batman and Catwoman across the board, not just on Earth 2.
Last Edit: Dec 22, 2021 10:20:05 GMT -5 by EdoBosnar
Post by Roquefort Raider on Dec 22, 2021 7:50:33 GMT -5
#3: Jane Porter and Tarzan of the apes
(Splashing water made this image suitable for the Sunday paper I read as a child, so I hope it's appropriate here! Splish splash I was taking a bath!)
Tarzan and Jane... how many couples are more iconic? Romeo and Juliet? Peanut butter and Jelly?
Tarzan of the Apes might be the greatest romance I ever read, and its tragic love story (it was tragic in the original novel, at least) is of course a major reason for that.
Those two, Lord Greystoke and Miss Porter, are totally loyal and devoted to each other, notwithstanding what revisionist writers might say about a certain priestess of Opar. To me, their union always represented the ideal marriage; one in which each individual has their own life but trusts the other absolutely, a marriage that keeps flourishing decade after decade. (I was lucky to get one of those, with the added perk of never having had to fight an enraged gorilla to win my lady's hand!)
I think it was my esteemed colleague Slam Bradley who said that he preferred Tarzan as a free agent, as depicted in later titles... but to me, it was always the books featuring Tarzan's family that were the significant ones. I didn't want Tarzan only; I wanted Tarzan, Jane and Korak! (I would have wanted more Meriem as well, but...) That preference might have come from my being introduced to the characters in Manning's comic strip, or because the very first novel I read as a kid was The Son of Tarzan.
In any case... I raise a toast to a love story now more than a century old, and still going strong!
Post by thwhtguardian on Dec 22, 2021 8:00:35 GMT -5
On the Tenth Day of Classic Comics Christmas I give you...
The May-December Romance of Catwoman and Slam Bradley
I know people love the pairing of Selina and Bruce as its already appeared here a few times, and don't get me wrong I like that pairing too...but for my money the relationship that Ed Brubaker developed between Slam Bradley and Selina Kyle felt more real and was far more interesting than any story involving Batman and Catwoman. Like any relationship with a serious age gap you just know that it isn't going to work out in the long run so you turn each page just waiting for it to go down in flames and each page that it doesn't just adds to the tension which is why it makes for such a compelling read. On top of that I love how real Brubaker made these too, so often (especially in super hero comics) the people are so perfect, but here we see Selina and Slam with all their flaws, foibles and their shining moments making them much more three dimensional than most other characters. I think my favorite part of it all was the antagonism that the relationship brought in Batman, the way he confronted Slam was not only funny:
But it perfectly illustrated that in both relationships Selina was the one wearing the pants.