You punch like a girl, Masochist.
Seriously, that kind of posing on a punch is pretty much only drawn on girls. You’ll likely never see a punch done this way on a man. No, a man puts his back into a punch. There’s follow-through. This girl here, she has a weak punch because her back’s going the opposite direction, and her waist is swiveled in such a way as we get to see both her butt cheeks and both her boobs at the same time. There’s also the fact that the artist chose to draw the moment the punch connects, rather than the follow-through of the punch, which makes it look like a tap on the chin rather than the impact it should be. And this is the big no-no in all “How to draw comics” books when drawing a fight scene: if you want your punch to look like it actually caused damage, draw the follow-through.
I’m going to concentrate on the full body posing here. See the first small image? This is the current line of action for Masochist. The punch is a secondary action to the body posing. Here’s the first hint of weakness. If you look at the original, the artist drew speed lines from Masochist, trying to tell us that Masochist is running really really fast to hit good ol’ Supes. In the second one, you’ve got Superman’s line of action added in, and as you can see, the speed doesn’t work because it’s not flowing in the same direction as Maso’s line of action. Weak!
Third drawing shows what the line of action SHOULD be on her. And how it impacts with Superman’s own line of action. This is a strong action! The full force of the body’s in there. So before I actually roughed out the drawing, I got up and mimicked a hard punch to the face, took note of my body, spine, back, hips. I took in account the fact that she was running first, so as much as we twist at the waist when punching in a standing pose, when running, the whole body turns with the punch. Then I slapped down really rough lines to get my motion in.
In order to understand this motion better, you really need to think of what’s happening to this character before the punch actually happens. There’s a wind up, an antic (short for anticipation) of the movement: that line of action is curved back, and whips forward with the punch! There’s a moment of pulling back her fist as far as it will go to be able to bring it forward to cause the most damage possible. Since she’s running, think of her RIGHT leg hitting the ground, the whole body twists as the LEFT leg pushes off the ground and that whole velocity carries enough kinetic force as to make Superman’s head snap back. (Art fixed! Thanks Anonymous!)
But instead we get a boobs and butt swivel-waist and a tap on the chin of our hero. And speed lines that make it look as if she was zipping forward, frozen in that pose. Yeah.