Brave & Bold #63 (Supergirl & Wonder Woman)

BRAVE AND THE BOLD #63; DC Comics; Dec. 1965-Jan. 1966; George Kashdan, 
editor; featuring Supergirl and Wonder Woman in "The Revolt of the  Super-Chicks!"
On the cover by Jim Mooney (Supergirl's regular artist at  the time),
Supergirl is trying to halt a hurtling missile, but Wonder Woman is  fastened to a
nearby flying disk and her body is emitting Kryptonite rays which  are making
Supergirl distinctly queasy.  Down in the corner of the cover, a  mushy-faced
figure is boasting, "MULTI-FACE talking!  I've turned WONDER  WOMAN into a
KRYPTONITE BOOBY-TRAP!  She'll be the death of SUPERGIRL  yet!"  And the cover

Review by Bill  Henley (toast of the rubber-band-airplane set)

The interior story is  written by Bob Haney, the regular B & B teamup writer,
and drawn by John  Rosenberger, according to the Great Comicbook Database.  B
& B was  notable at this point for using a variety of artists, some of whom
rarely if  ever worked on other DC superhero titles.  Rosenberger a few years
earlier  had been one of the main artists on Archie Comics' THE FLY and THE
JAGUAR.   Later on he would draw a number of Lois Lane stories for her title and
SUPERMAN  FAMILY.  This issue was also of note for being the first B & B
teamup--  and one of the few ever-- to feature a "Superman Famiily" character as
one of  the partners.  Evidently the obviousness of teaming up Supergirl and WW,
the two most powerful and prominent DC heroines, overcame Mort Weisinger's
well  known reluctance to allow any of "his" characters to be handled by any
other  editorial hands.

On the splash page, in separate scenes, Supergirl and WW  are both enjoying
the good life, female style, in "beautiful, glittering,  romantic Paris!" 
Supergirl is modeling a white floor-length evening gown  with elbow-length gloves
and pearl necklace, and as male onlookers utter French  endearments, she 
sneers at a mental image of her more usual self; "To  think I once wore that silly
costume and cape...NOW look at me!"  Likewise,  Wonder Woman is on a dance
floor being kissed by a handsome man, and wearing a  fashion gown (though she
stilll has on her Amazon tiara).  "When I wore  that frumpy Amazon outfit,
nothing like this ever happened to me!"  On a  "cockleshell" boat somewhere out in
the ocean, two lovers are stranded and  adrift, and things are about to get
worse for them, as a storm is ready to blow  up.  But the storm is man-made, as
the couple are movie stars shooting a  film on location, and the director on
shore nearby orders a giant fan to be used  to create wind and waves.  When the
fan goes out of control, it appears the  mock film tragedy may turn real, as
the small boat with the two stars is blown  through the air.  "Twenty million
bucks worth of talent-- gone with the  wind!", the director bemoans.  But
fortunately for the stars and Magna  Productions, Supergirl is happening by on
patrol, and she flies down to rescue  the boat and its famous occupants and carry
them ashore.  The Girl of Steel  is miffed, though, when the movie crew and
onlookers cluster around the stars,  particularly the leading lady, and ignore
her, the heroine of the  incident.  "I rescue the two most famous, valuable
stars in the world, and  all anybody can think of is her!  No wonder...she's all
woman....all  FEMALE!"  Looking at her image in the water, Supergirl is
suddenly  disgusted with her "loud costume" and her career of battling "grimy 
crooks".  She wants to "live the life of a normal, real, human girl" and  "be
feminine, desirable, adored by men".  (Uh, Supergirl, if you really  think the
typical "life of a normal, real, human girl" involves being a movie  star "adored
by men,", I'm sure a lot of normal, real, human girls would be glad  to
disabuse you of the notion....)  The news is flashed around the world  that
Supergirl has announced she is abandoning her super-heroine career, and  soon,
college student Linda Lee Danvers (in her demure schoolgirl clothes and  brown wig,
scarcely more glamorous than Supergirl's super-costume) receives a  visit from
her cousin Superman, who wants to dissuade her.  "You're simply  not like
other girls!  You can't escape your duty-- your destiny... the  responsibility of
using your great powers for mankind's benefit!"  But  Linda/Supergirl is
unmoved; she's determined that "that square chick, Supergirl,  is going out to
find glamor and romance-- something every girl needs!"   When Supes persists, she
gets downright cruel; "You sound like a stuffed shirt,  Superman!  What do
you know about they feel...what they really  need?  You may be a
great hero-- but in the romance department-- well, just  ask Lois Lane!" 
Superman can only mumble, "Why...uh....ulp....I-- I'm very  FOND of girls....
I....uh...."  (Yeah, Supes, you better watch out, or Doc  Wertham may turn his
attention away from your friend Batman to you.)  As a  parting shot, Linda reveals
that her foster parents have given her permission to  take a year off from
college and are sending her on a trip to Paris.

But  Superman hasn't given up, and if he doesn't understand women, he'll find
someone  who presumably understands both women and super-heroics-- his JLA
comrade,  Wonder Woman.  He flies over Paradise Island (careful not to unleash 
disaster by actually "setting foot" on the female-only isle) where he is
spotted  by Wonder Woman, Wonder Girl (here, as in TEEN TITANS, Haney and editor
Kashdan  seem to think WG is a younger sister of WW) and their mother Queen 
Hyppolita.  Wonder Woman glides into the air to find out what Superman  wants,
and he explains how "Supergirl has forsaken the crime-fighting life to  seek
romance and glamor."  "Why, that foolish, giddy teen-ager!  She  can't do that! 
Super-heroines have a duty, a responsibility, a..."   "Uhh, that's what I
said!", Superman replies, and he begs WW to use her  "knowledge of female
psychology" to persuade Supergirl to change her mind.   WW eagerly agrees; "You bet I
will, Superman!" 

Arriving in Paris,  even WW is momentarily swayed by its romantic aura-- "If
only Steve were  here!"--but, "What am I saying!  I've got a job to do!" 
Trailing the  Giddy Teenager of Steel to an establishment called Anatole's, WW
finds her  modeling evening gowns for an admiring male audience, and then catches
one of  the admirers kissing Supergirl in the dressing room.  Ordering him
out, WW  accuses Supergirl of abandoning her duties to fall in with a "gigolo". 
But  she is distracted in mid-lecture by the sight of Supergirl's rack of 
high-fashion gowns, and when SG offers her the loan of one that would fit her, 
she agrees to do so, "just for fun, of course."  WW is dazzled by the sight 
of herself in the gown, but a mustachioed Latin-lover type named Andre Count De
Tour is even more dazzled, grabbing WW and smothering her with kisses.  And 
as she gazes into the Count's eyes, WW dizzily reflects, "Steve Trevor never 
kissed me like that.... I mustn't let this happen...this wonderful, delicious
thing... I'm WONDER WOMAN....wonder woman...."  It's not long before WW's 
superheroic duties are forgotten, as she tours Paris on the Count's arm.   But
the Count wants them to be "absolutely alone" together, and he has just the 
place in mind,  "a little isle in the sea-- Ile d'Amour!"  Curiously, 
Supergirl's own blond, beret-clad lover has exactly the same suggestion.   And on that
very Ile D'Amour, a a scientist informs a mysterious "Leader" that  something
called "Operation Armageddon", which will stagger the world, is now  ready to

In Part 2 of "Revolt of the Super-Chicks", Supergirl  and the Count arrive at
the Isle of Love by boat, while Supergirl and her beau  approach from the
other direction by plane.  Each heroine idly wonders what  has become of the
other, but both are too distracted by their glimpse of glamor  to care much.  "But
both super-chicks are unaware that the Isle of Love is  also the secret
headquarters of a fantastic criminal character known only  as...MULTI-FACE!" 
Multi-Face, we learn, is thought dead in a prison  escape, but actually gained in a
freak accident the "ability to change my  features into any face, human or
animal, to suit my mood or purpose!"  His  current plan is to "strike at the
rocket freighters carrying precious cargos  over this island",  A plan which may
be stymied by the arrival on the  island-- reported to him by his spies-- of
two famous super-heroines, even if  neither is acting very heroic at the
moment.  "I cannot scare THEM away--  but perhaps I can INDUCE them to leave by
jeopardizing their male  escorts!"  Meanwhile, Wonder Woman's male escort,
whispering sweet nothings  in her ear, says he sees her as "at heart a truly frail,
feminine  creature!"  When a nearby drawbridge threatens to fall and injure
Andre, WW  has to perform a split-second superfeat while Andre has his eyes
closed to kiss  her, in order to avoid ruining her "weak and feminine" image. 
Similarly,  when falling boulders threaten Supergirl's French swain while they are
cavorting  on the beach, the Beach Bunny of Steel diverts his attention with
a wild  beachball toss and catches the boulders in midair-- then further
distracts him  by leaping into his arms in feigned fright at the sight of a small
crab.   Little do our reluctant heroines know that both threats have been
engineered by  Multi-Face and his agents.  Multi-Face sends his agents out to
create more  perils to distract Supergirl and WW.  Spotting a burning ship
offshore,  Wonder Woman manages to fix her lover's attention on an impromptu
performance of  "Cyrano de Bergerac" while she glides out to douse the fire by creating
a  waterspout.  However, "This is just so un-feminine-- and certainly doesn't
do a girl's hairdo any good!"  And still on the beach, Supergirl spots a 
plane about to crash, and sends her beau off to retrieve a lost beach towel 
while she flies up to restart the plane's engines with a blast of  super-breath. 
But returning to the island, she notes the complex of  buildings in the
isle's center and the"weird man" running it.  Then a cargo  rocket passes over the
island-- and is pulled off course by a magnetic beam  emanating from the
mysterious island installation.  And now the Chick of  Steel faces a dilemma.  Will
she keep her resolve to "give up being a  Supergirl who spends her life
battling crime", or will she "kiss romance goodbye  and wade into battle" against a
"fantastic hijacking scheme"?

In Part 3,  Supergirl decides to rescue the rocket, but she's not quite ready
to give up her  dream romance yet, so she makes sure her lover Henri is
trapped on a small ledge  while retrieving her towel before she flies on her
mission.  "Oh, if only  there were someone else here for this job!"  There is, but
she's not any  more enthusiastic either-- Wonder Woman sees Supergirl
struggling with the  runaway rocket, and decides she must help, but she persuades Andre
to jump into  the island castle's moat to retrieve a flower for her, knowing
he will have  trouble climbing back out.  Changing into her unfashionable but
functional  star-spangled bathing suit, WW prepares to go to Supergirl's aid,
but Multi-Face  sends a "strange disk" rolling after her from his nerve
center.  Suddenly  she finds herself helplessly held to the magnetic disk by her
metal Amazon  bracelets, and she is brought into Multi-Face's lab, where the bad
guy proceeds  to turn her from Supergirl's would-be ally into a weapon against
her, by  showering her helpless body with liquid Green Kryptonite. 
Multi-Face sends  the disk flying after Supergirl, who is still trying to stop the
runaway cargo  missile, and the Green K rays emanating from Wonder Woman quickly
weaken  her.  Supergirl realizes that WW gave up her own romance in order to
come  to her aid-- "I guess neither of us could escape being super-heroines!"--
but  will Multi-Face's scheme eliminate both of them?  Desperately, Supergirl 
uses her weakening heat vision to melt a load of gold bullion carried in the 
cargo rocket, causing it to drip down and cover Wonder Woman's body and block
the deadly Kryptonite rays.  (Funny, I always thought it was only lead that 
could stop Kryptonite rays, not gold.  And Supergirl is sure taking a  chance
on WW's degree of invulnerability to assume that a shower of molten gold 
won't do nasty things to her complexion and skin tone.)  The weight of the  gold
causes the flying disk to spin out of control and crash into Multi-Face's 
lab, and the impact of the crash frees WW from the magnetic grip on her 
bracelets as well as the coating of gold.  Leaping and spinning to the  attack, WW
punches out Multi-Face with a vengeance; "Time to punch your ticket,  you
romance-wrecker!"  Multi-Face's gang attacks WW with guns, but  Supergirl crashes
through the wall to stop them; "These characters didn't know  that Wonder Woman
and I are a double feature act!"  (I've owned this comic  for a while, but I
can't remember for sure if I actually read it before, and  while reading it this
time I kept expecting to learn that one or both of the  heroines' lovers were
Multi-Face in disguise.  But they weren't.  In  fact, Multi-Face never does
put his shape-changing ability to any good use in  the story, which makes one
wonder why Haney bothered to give it to him.  He  could have been any ordinary
scheming high-tech villain.)

After rounding  up Multi-Face's gang, Supergirl and WW realize their lovers
are each both still  stranded, but instead of trying to carry on their frail
flower act, they each  come to the rescue in their costumed identities and
reveal that their romances  must end because they cannot escape their destinies as
super-heroines.   Bidding a sad farewell to the Isle of Love and to love
itself, they fly back to  the U.S., where Superman thanks Wonder Woman for her
successful effort to bring  Supergirl back to her senses and her career as a
superhero.  Supergirl and  WW both wink at the reader-- and Superman folds his arms
with a skeptical look  on his face-- as Supergirl assures her cousin that WW
did, indeed, save her from  the awful fate of "living in Paris like a *sigh*
foolish, frivolous child!   Right, Wonder Woman?"  "Right, *sigh*, Supergirl!"

Also in the issue are a public service page, "Builders of the Future,"  about
the work of the United Nations organization UNESCO: a text page on "unsung 
heroines" such as Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell (the first American woman doctor) and
Susan B. Anthony; a house ad for the first appearance of Ultra the
Multi-Alien  in MYSTERY IN SPACE.  And also, oddly enough, a house ad for this selfsame
issue of BRAVE & BOLD.  ("They're BRAINY...they're BRAWNY... they're 
BEAUTIFUL... and they're the SWINGIN'EST SUPER-CHICKS you ever laid eyes on! Who 
else but SUPERGIRL and WONDER WOMAN!")  Apparently somebody in charge of 
slotting house ads on the pages didn't notice there wasn't much point in  promoting
an issue which presumably the reader has already bought and paid  for. 

Supergirl and Wonder Woman had one other Silver Age team-up, in WONDER  WOMAN
#177, which I reviewed on the list some time back.  It was a  transition
issue between the Kanigher/Andru/Esposito WW and the "new"  non-costumed WW, and
involved the two heroines both being kidnapped by an alien  conqueror and
forced to fight for the right to marry him.