Tag Archives: Wonder Woman

Tulsi Gabbard’s Good Luck Charm

Given my family’s prolific history exploring the connections between superheroes and presidential candidates (watch the “Republicans in Tights” video below), I was amused by Tulsi Gabbard’s revelation that she brings Wonder Woman on the New Hampshire campaign trail.

Slightly disappointed it is not the Lynda Carter or Gal Gadot incarnation of Wonder Woman – or even the cartoon Superfriends version – but still very pleased by the Hawaiian Congresswoman’s taste in dashboard decor.

Here’s the video from the 2012 New Hampshire Primary, in which Superman got all the love:

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The Difference Between Boys and Girls: The Superheroine Perspective


My niece just taught me something about the core difference between how boys and girls pursue imaginative play.

A boy’s superhero shirt would show two musclebound guys beating the crap out of each other. There’s no hint of sentimentality or social inclinations — just pure kicking ass.

You would never see Batman and Superman talking about how much their friendship means to them. They would rather die alone.

On another note, when did Batgirl and Wonder Woman start wearing so much pink?

And lastly, I’m proud to say that the oversized Humvee Jeep in the background was a gift from Uncle Darren — apparently it’s being used to transport some VIP Disney Princesses around the living room.

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Filed under Excuses to Dress as a Superhero

World’s Largest PEZ? Museum owner braces for bittersweet fight

PEZ Sexual Reassignment Surgery: Black market “fantasy” KISS dispensers made from modified Wonder Women dispensers. PEZ eventually offered a licensed official KISS set due to the popularity of the bootlegs.

By Darren Garnick
The Boston Herald
Original Publication Date: July 29, 2009
Museum curator Gary Doss doesn’t anticipate his front door being demolished by bulldozer or chainsaw, but he’s taking the threat to behead his most popular exhibit seriously.

Doss runs the Burlingame Museum of Pez Memorabilia in California, boasting a display of every cartoon candy dispenser manufactured since 1952.  His centerpiece is a 7-foot-10-inch tall plastic snowman that was immortalized in the Guinness Book of World Records as the World’s Largest Candy Dispenser. More than 20 times the size of a traditional dispenser, the giant snowman gives customers a snowman PEZ when its head is tilted back.

According to a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in San Jose last month, the PEZ company wants the snowman “destroyed” and demands that the museum pay unspecified damages for trademark violations.

“Their intention is to shut me down,” says Doss. “The big question is why. We consider this a work of art and we don’t need permission to make a work of art. It’s a one-of-a-kind item and it’s not for sale.”

“If they had any American in them, they would just build a larger dispenser and settle everything right there,” he adds, referring to the Connecticut-based PEZ’s ownership by a Swiss parent company.

“You can’t claim to have the ‘World’s Largest Coke Bottle’ if Coca Cola is not involved,” counters attorney Alan Behr, who represents PEZ in the suit.  “If you don’t protect your trademark rights, you’ll lose them.”

Doss has done the copyright dance with PEZ since he opened his museum and gift shop 14 years ago. The business used to be a computer store that was decorated with PEZ dispensers, but made the switch when more customers asked about collectibles than software.

The shop was originally named the PEZ Museum but was changed to the Burlingame Museum of Pez Memorabilia to avoid the perception of being officially sanctioned. Doss also changed the “World’s Largest PEZ Dispenser” designation to the “World’s Largest Dispenser of PEZ.”

The World’s Largest Dispenser of PEZ in Burlingame, California.

Now, the PEZ company is challenging Doss’ right to repackage smiley face dispensers with his museum’s name on it and a 2008 election promotion that put Barack Obama and John McCain stickers on “PEZident” tractor trailer trucks.  The lawsuit demands that sales figures for these repackaged figures be accounted for to determine damages.

PEZ company CEO Joe Vittoria promises to donate those “unauthorized” profits to charity.

“We don’t care about the money,” he says. “With the giant PEZ dispenser, what would happen if someone put their hand in there and got hurt?  Who’s going to get all the complaints?”

Vittoria says he has similar concerns with the safety of the paint used on so-called “fantasy” dispensers which are made by collectors from PEZ products.  He admits to admiring the artwork on unauthorized KISS rock star dispensers which are made from PEZ Wonder Woman heads* (widely available on eBay), but says his company is going after anyone who mass produces them.

Doss, meanwhile, refuses to budge.

“Once you own something, you can do what you want with it. It’s the same thing as customizing your car. If you want to paint your car purple, add flames to it, put a ‘Save the Whales’ sticker on it and then resell it, you have the right to do it,” he says.

“Up until the last few weeks, I’ve had the best job in the world,” Doss adds. “But PEZ isn’t going to convince me to give up. I’m not going away.”


*Note: Artists have been selling “fantasy” Michael Jackson dispensers also crafted from the Wonder Woman heads. The “King of Pop” must have been flattered.

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Wonder Woman for President

Overdue for a CNN fashion shoot, the wardrobe of political rabblerouser Vermin Supreme is best described as "Occupy Wall Street" meets "Project Runway."

Only one presidential candidate out of the 44 on the New Hampshire Primary ballot wears a Wonder Woman cape on the campaign trail.

Democrat Vermin Supreme, who’s run for the Oval Office since 1992, brushed off the cultural significance of this, telling me: “We have no idea what’s really inside Rick Perry’s closet, do we?”

You can read all about the Wonder Woman cape (and some rather important ballot access stuff) in my latest story for The Hill.

Oh, and in case you weren’t aware of the original Amazonian Princess taking a shot at the White House, she was endorsed by Gloria Steinem and Ms. Magazine back in 1972.

What would a Wonder Woman vs. Richard Nixon debate have looked like? For that matter, what was Nixon's position on the "Last Frontier" of Body Hair?

No word yet on Mr. Supreme’s position on the complete rebranding of Wonder Woman, which includes getting rid of her classic costume for a horrendous spandex outfit.

“She’s been locked into pretty much the exact same outfit since her debut in 1941,” comic book writer Michael Straczynski recently told The New York Times. “If you’re going to make a statement about bringing Wonder Woman into the 21st century, you need to be bold and you need to make it visual. I wanted to toughen her up, and give her a modern sensibility.”

As bold and as tough as Vermin Supreme?

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Filed under Election 2012, Political Satire, politics, Wonder Woman

Support the Garnick Justice League for Children’s Hospital

Yes, comic book geeks, we do know that Marvel superheroes were not part of the Justice League!

This Saturday, if Hurricane Irene doesn’t turn New Hampshire into a pile of toothpicks, there will be a Guinness Book of World Records attempt for “Most Superheroes in One Place.”

I’m a sucker for Guinness Records, having recently been lured to participate in the World Dental Flossing Record event at the Lowell Spinners baseball game.

My son Ari (aka Golden Age Flash) and I (aka Spider-Man) will be huffing and puffing in the CHaD Hero Fun Run to benefit Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth. The Garnick Justice League team would appreciate your support.

Even if we are picking up pine tree limbs off our street this weekend instead of running around with hundreds of Batmans and Wonder Women, your donations still will make a huge difference in kids’ lives.

Thank you!

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Filed under 1966 Batman References, Excuses to Dress as a Superhero

RECYCLED FASHION: How to turn your supermarket into Project Runway


Paper or plastic?  For a brief time in the 1960s, the disposable paper dress was all the rage. Could Emily Berezin’s grocery bag recycling dress follow suit?

I once made a clunky costume out of trash bags — cape, belt, vest and shorts — for a Create-Your-Own-Superhero themed Halloween party. Trashman (and sidekick Garbageboy) also wore plastic hubcaps as belt buckles.

But Emily, who ironed sheets of grocery bags together and used newspaper to prevent the front of the dress from melting to the back, looks like she should be walking down a fashion runway. And she definitely should be competing on Project Runway.

Although this is not the kind of fabric that would hold up during the harsh Pittsburgh winters!


Grocery Girl in Action

I stumbled across Emily’s portfolio while researching a Herald business story on insect-based advertising, the bizarre use of houseflies (“flyvertising”) to pull mini-banners through the air at trade shows. I highly recommend you check out her biting satirical commentary on our consumer culture. She sculpted Wonder Woman out of pasty Wonder Bread (the crust hair is AMAZING) and makes “BRAnd bras” out of snooty designer labels.

I mean this in only the most complimentary way, she’s a smartass who can sew. Perhaps this holiday season you might consider giving that special someone an embroidered cockroach?

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