BookMusings: (Re)Discovering Pagan Literature

A lively discussion of ancient and modern Pagan literature -- including children's books, graphic novels, science fiction, fantasy, and mysteries -- along with interviews, author highlights, and profiles of Pagan publishers.

  • Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Tags
    Tags Displays a list of tags that have been used in the blog.
  • Bloggers
    Bloggers Search for your favorite blogger from this site.
  • Login
    Login Login form

Spotlight On: Bombshells


Once upon a time, I was a huge fan of DC comics. I read anything and everything pertaining to Batman, Batgirl, Oracle, Robin, Black Canary, Zatanna, and a handful of other characters. Oddly enough, though, I had a very hard time connecting with Wonder Woman. Strange, considering that she is one of DC's few explicitly, openly polytheist characters -- and a Hellenic Pagan, to boot, just like me. I found the occasional one-shot or miniseries that I enjoyed, and the Golden Age comics were awesome, but for the most part, the mainstream Wonder Woman series left me cold.

Sadly, that remains the case even today. I have to get my Wonder Woman fix with the oddball stories, the Elseworlds and what might have been tales. Happily, the new, digital-first series Bombshells fits the bill.

Imagine a world in which most (nearly all, actually) of the super-powered heroes are actually heroines. They are all women. And they arrive on the scene just in time to join the boys on the frontlines of World War II. Wonder Woman, Batwoman, Zatanna, Catwoman, Supergirl, Stargirl, Mera -- all present and ready to fight the good fight; some for philosophical reasons, some for love, some for nationalism, some for financial gain, some out of fear, some out of boredom.

Wonder Woman makes a grand entrance in the very first issue, taking out Allied and Axis warplanes alike. The rain of debris and bombs from their constant battles in the skies over Paradise Island have caused numerous casualties and immense damage to her home. When Diana rescues the shell shocked Steve Trevor, she learns of the nature of the war tearing apart the outside world and vows to aid him in defeating the Axis Powers. Even after months of fighting at his side, though, she continues to see that world through Amazonian eyes. Consider the following exchange from issue twelve:

Diana: You enjoy my new armor? Compliments of Amanda [Waller], your high priestess of war, and it's in the fashion of the Goddesses of your people.

Steve: Goddesses, Princess?

Diana: The paintings upon the steel chariots your warriors fly. The Goddesses of love and war, who protect them as they fly, or harken them home.

Diana even speaks of the leader of the United States as a Queen; she simply does not understand the concept of a male elected official. A woman raised in an all-female society -- raised as a polytheist -- sees Goddesses and women of power everywhere. For her, the world is an enchanted, numinous place; the paintings on the noses of those airplanes are no soulless things, but icons of true Powers which work in the world, and have an interest in and concern for fragile little mortals.

And that is wonderful. The positive portrayal of a polytheism by a mainstream publisher is a refreshing change of pace.

As of this writing, Bombshells stands at twenty issues, with more on the way. Issues can be purchased through Barnes and Noble, Amazon, and iTunes. For those without access to an ereader, the first print collection will be released in March of 2016. I highly recommend it to anyone in search of an entertaining, thoughtful, polytheism-positive story.   

Last modified on

Rebecca Buchanan is the editor of the Pagan literary ezine Eternal Haunted Summer. She is also the editor-in-chief of Bibliotheca Alexandrina. She thinks it is incredibly unfair that she must work for a living rather than being able to read all day. In her next life, she would like to be a library cat.


  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham Friday, 27 November 2015

    When I was in high school back in the 70's there was a book in the school library; I remember the title as "Hidden Countries of the Mind", in which the author described superheroes as 'the avatars of dead gods trying to be reborn'. That line has stayed with me and colored my perception of superheroes ever since.

    Thank you for your review of Bombshells, I will try to stay on the lookout for it.

  • Rebecca Buchanan
    Rebecca Buchanan Saturday, 28 November 2015

    Anthony: very interesting. I will have to find that book. :)

    Speaking of superheroes, have you read "Our Gods Wear Spandex" by Knowle or "Graven Images" by Lewis?

  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham Sunday, 29 November 2015

    I read "Our Gods Wear Spandex" twice cover to cover before the local library deleted it from their collection. "Graven Images" is a new one to me, I'll see if the library has a copy.

  • Please login first in order for you to submit comments

Additional information