Starting today, Project: Rooftop is teaming up with Super. Girl., a Girl-Wonder.org project, to bring you a week-long Supergirl appreciation event! Here at P:R, we’re going to be reviewing our top picks from last month’s Draw Supergirl meme throughout the week, and on Friday, S.G. will be posting a comprehensive article on Supergirl’s costume history.
Our reviewers for this event include Project: Rooftop regulars Chris Arrant, Dean Trippe, Joel Priddy, and Vito Delsante, and special guest reviewer, Jessica Plummer from Super. Girl. Alright, let’s get this going!
Dean Trippe: Luc took a nod from the palette of my old Supergirl pic, but the sweet costume design is all his own. I really dig the lighter top, the low riding belt, the matching gloves and boots, and the addition of glasses. Sure a character with an arsenal of super vision capabilities probably doesn’t need prescription specs, but they do add a much needed touch of personality.
Joel Priddy: The glasses are great. I like the idea of a Supergirl with a dollop of Clark Kent’s nerdiness. This costume works very well in Luc’s beautiful graphic style, but I don’t think the flared-out gloves and boots would translate well to another style. Fun S-shield, and, yes, a delightful color scheme.
Vito Delsante: There’s a certain feel of nostalgia here that I really enjoy. It reminds me of these ads that Jet Blue used not too long ago. She’s a little leggy for my tastes, but I think, design wise, this is a really good one. The background reminds me of your original Supergirl, Dean.
Chris Arrant: I love this piece, but as Joel said earlier — alot of this would be lost in translation by another artist. The two elements I think would carry over well are the glasses, and the “S” as a brooch and not a chest emblem.
Jessica Plummer: I’m with Joel and Chris on this one – the piece is lovely, but I can’t picture this costume in action or drawn by another artist. The glasses might work better in civilian gear, like a certain other Superperson – together with the loose, low-riding skirt, the flared gloves, and the flared boots, they just look like another thing that will fall off if she moves.
Dean: Joel’s design has a ton of good stuff going for it. It’s got classic superhero elements like the cape and symbol, as well as neat modern bits like the store-bought shoes and the Kryptonian bracelet. Adding Streaky the Quantum Cat puts it over the top! Though the idea of a superhero in a skort is just something I haven’t yet accepted.
Joel: I approached this design by thinking about how high school girls actually dress when being physically active. Thinking back to Marc Swayze’s Golden Age Mary Marvel, I started out with a dancer-motif, tried out a few other notions, but eventually settled on an athletic look. I thought I had to retain most of the design elements inherited from Superman—such as color scheme, emblem-placement, and the cape—in order to maintain character identity. But many of the other pieces in this meme have shown me how wrong I was.
Vito: Joel, you had me until I got to the shoes. I’m not sure if I like sneakers with that outfit. I heard that record scratching sound when I saw them. I think if the whole outfit was a little more sporty (headband anyone?) then it would make a lot more sense…or, instead of yellow trim on the shoes, try red!
Dean: You gotta hear Joel’s cool explanation about the shoes, though!
Chris: I like this, but like Vito I have one problem — but it’s not the shoes. The cape looks out of place for me here, as the rest of her ensemble as a sporty after school feel that I love. I’m not the artist of Joel’s caliber by far, but maybe a red hoodie instead?
Joel: My thinking on the shoes is that she does have a pair of indestructible super-booties, but that she just plain doesn’t like them. The sneakers wear out pretty quickly—or burn up on re-entry—so she probably ends most battles barefoot. But that just gives her an opportunity to try out new pairs.
Jessica: But wouldn’t her Super-aura protect her sneakers the way Clark’s protects his costume? I love this costume from the waist up, especially the sleevelessness and the way the cape connects, but like Dean I’m stuck on the skort. If she’s going to be sporty, why not just give her panties that match her skirt, like cheerleaders or tennis players? I love the sneakers, indestructible or not, but I’m not crazy about the socks. I don’t think she needs them, anyway – do Superfeet get stinky?
Joel: Hmm, good point. It is surely best not to contemplate the strength of Kryptonian sweat glands.
Nerdy McNerdface (Dean): I’m pretty sure Clark’s Super-aura only affects things that are very close to his skin. Plus, it’s worth noting that different writers have tackled this idea in different ways. Some explain his uniform’s durability with the aura power, while others note that his uniform is actually made from Kryptonian fabrics from his rocketship.
Dean: Adora’s design plays up the alien aspects of Kara’s Kryptonian heritage, and that’s pretty cool. I also like that she’s managed to not have the character be embarrassingly naked.
Chris: I really enjoy this costume — it harkens back to the space suits of Battle of the Planets.
Joel: Although this design reminds me a bit of footy-pajamas, I like the idea of Kara showing more of her heritage. As a newcomer, she might try more actively to assimilate than Kansas-raised Clark would need to, but she spent some pretty formative years growing up in Argo City. Basic cultural assumptions and aesthetics would sneak into just about everything she would do. The problem is trying to figure out which Krypton she would be harkening back to: Curt Swan’s retro-futurism? John Byrne’s sci-fi sterility? Richard Donner’s cinematic freezer burn?
Vito: I think the design is fun, but it looks more like a guy’s costume than a teenage girl’s. I’d take away the sleeves and give her a longer cape. I agree with everyone that it has a little more Krypton than other costumes, and that’s why I have no problem with the overall design.
Chris: I want to reiterate how much I like this costume. Much like Superman is head-to-toe covered except for his hands and head, so is this costume. With Supergirl, according to most origins, having spent most of her time on Krypton, I would say she would dress more Kryptonian in nature. For Superman, his outfit is a hand-me-down heirloom, but for Supergirl it’s what her people wore — and what she wore for her formative years before coming to earth.
Jessica: I like the design a lot, and it does make sense for a girl raised on Krypton. My only quibble is that it doesn’t feel very accessible to girls raised on Earth – it makes her more alien than she maybe should be to be relatable. I could see this as an outfit for formal events like intergalactic peace treaty signings, when the presence of a Kryptonian is needed, but not for saving the kids at Smallville High.