Saturday, March 06, 2010

Captains Outrageous

A few weeks back a story very briefly made media noise about some Tea Party folks (with this guy as Patient Zero, near as I can figure) who had their undies in a twist over a recent issue of Captain America (January's #602, to be precise) portraying their ilk as ignorant and racist. To me this is sort of like the sun complaining that it's being portrayed as too hot, but I digress. Conservatives expressed umbrage at yet again being turned into a ghettoized minority, and liberals pronounced it all a tempest in a teabag.

While things culminated with Marvel honcho Joe Quesada expressing a mea culpa, the "incident" (using that term very loosely) did spark a broader discussion across the web over the politics of superhero comics, with folks playing pick-up-sticks with the political affiliations of various heroes (sort of like in the '80s when Reagan claimed that Rambo was a Republican). Of course, the entire discussion seems even sillier when one considers that we're talking about glorified picture books with overly-muscled, brightly-colored spandex-types pounding on each other, but, again, I digress.

For me, both as a fan of the exemplary run by current Captain America writer Ed Brubaker and as a vocal critic of the whole Tea Party thing, it's hard for me to feel too much sympathy at the rightie indignation, but I'm also the first to admit that the many sides to this discussion make it look like one of those dies from Dungeons & Dragons. Given that, I applaud blogger Greg Burgas for providing what's probably the most evenhanded assessment, both of the Cap/Teabag story in the micro, and the role of politics in comics in the macro.

1 comment:

The Mad Swede said...

Thanks for the link to that Burgas piece. A really interesting read which I think I'll do a little piece on in my own blog.