Star Wars, iPhones, and Fleeting Anachronisms

It’s ladies’ night out in Gotham City as Zatanna Zatara, Wonder Woman, and a pre-paraplegic Barbara Gordon decide to hit every nightclub, karaoke joint, and bar that they possibly can.

Yowza...talk about being dressed to kill.

Early on, our favorite female magician proves just how deadly the combination of a woman’s wiles with magic can be when she shamelessly uses her powers to cut in line (and show off her pop culture knowledge to boot).

This is what's commonly referred to by nerds as "foreplay".

Later, out on the dance floor, Wonder Woman makes the acquaintance of a rather boorish young man and decides to engage in a petty act of vandalism after he inadvertently insults her. Bitch.

Just be glad she didn't try and redefine the term "nutcracker".

This humorous scene is also notable for containing a unique type of anachronism for comics: the fleeting kind.

According to the floating timeline that the DC Universe operates on, the events of Batman: The Killing Joke (1988) – the graphic novel in which Barbara Gordon was crippled – took place approximately six years ago. Since it’s currently 2010, that would mean that this flashback story from The Brave and the Bold #33 (June 2010) ostensibly takes place sometime in 2004…yet the iPhone was first released three years later in June 2007.

The good news is that, while this story may be historically inaccurate now, it won’t be in three years’ time, which is pretty neat, I think. Of course, if Apple Inc. ever discontinues the entire iPhone line we’re going to have a whole new set of problems to deal with.

Which leaves us with an interesting question: did writer J. Michael Straczynski do all this on purpose or not?

UPDATE (2010.05.06.): I missed an anachronism due to serious gaps in my musical knowledge (though the fact that the lyrics are mostly obscured doesn’t help either). Several people have pointed out that the song Barbara, Diana, and Zatanna are belting out in the karaoke bar…

I would love to see them do "Telephone" next.

…is Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It) by Beyoncé Knowles, which was released in October 2008. So it looks we’ll have to wait until 2014 before historical accuracy kicks in.

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