The Russian prime minister, Vladimir Putin, has condemned as "slanderous" a US cable describing him and Russia's president, Dmitry Medvedev, as Batman and Robin.
Speaking in a candid but frosty interview with talk show host Larry King, the Russian prime minister dismissed suggestions that his tandem style of leadership with protégé Medvedev resembled the uneven power share between the two comic characters.
"The truth of the matter is, this is about our interaction, which is an important factor of the domestic policies in this country," he said. "But to be honest with you, we didn't suspect that this would be done with such arrogance, with such a push and, you know, being so unethically done."
Several messages between US embassies and the state department released by WikiLeaks this week have included salty characterisations of Russia's leaders.
Read more here