Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Justicia and Batman in Ottawa

Whatever Gods There Be is so named not because it’s a religious website, but because it deals with archetypes and symbols and comics have these in spades.

So, while on a trip to Ottawa this past weekend, I encountered two such archetypal statues outside the Supreme Court of Canada. Upon looking at the one called 'Justicia' I immediately recalled how 'Justice', a very important idea in law, has been represented over the ages.

As a legal concept, Justice is typically personified as a blind-folded woman holding scales and a sword. However the 'Justicia' outside the Supreme Court (by the famous sculptor Walter Seymour Allward) is quite different. Here, it is masculinized with a stern, even vengeful face, flowing cape and broadsword. Naturally, it reminded me of another archetypal justice seeking character and below are some photos and panels of the two juxtaposed. Enjoy!

(This statue was forgotten until 1969 when it was discovered and placed outside the SCC. That's like finding a Detective Comics #27 in a basement shoebox!)

(From DC's Batman #531, June 1996)

(Justicia with the Peace Tower in the background)

(From DC's Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight #2, December 1989)

(With the Supreme Court building in the background)

(From DC's Batman #441, November 1991)

(Above and below work well together)

(From DC's Detective Comics #576, July 1987)

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