March 24, 2014

Cracked.com's "5 Disastrous Attempts at Political Commentary in Comicbooks"

Thanks once again to the incomparable Nate Winchester, I was alerted to this latest Cracked.com offering. I'm a big fan of the site (hence its listing in Colossus's "Favorite Reads"), with contributor "Seanbaby" being my fave. However, especially within the last year, there seems to be too many of their writers who display a copious degree of cluelessness about that which they are opining. Case in point is Henrik Magnusson with his article about what this post's title says. It all begins with #5 in which, by any objective person's view, Superman makes a compromise decision which placates both sides of a situation. But since Supes doesn't side with the environmentalists, well, he's such a dick!!! Magnusson would have the Man of Steel give the middle finger to average workers who plead with him not to put the kibosh on their only source of income. These workers know the plant has been an environmental clusterf*** for years, but with Supes' help, an agreement is forged by which the company will do what's right. (A little Superman threat doesn't hurt, either!). Magnusson also thinks that Lois Lane's 1st Amendment rights supercede all this -- she should have the right, dammit, to out this plant and expose them! Maybe Magnusson could put some of this fire behind our real lapdog mainstream media so they'd do some actual reporting on President Lemon.

Also included -- predictably -- is Frank Miller's Holy Terror. Shunned by DC because of its ... "sensitive" nature, Miller took what was originally a Batman tale and turned it into one starring the generic hero The Fixer. Magnusson's title for this section is "Not-Batman Stars in Islamophobic Propaganda." Because the Fixer goes after al Qaeda. Got it? It's Islamophobic to have a good guy go after murderous terrorists just because they happen to be Muslim. Consider: It's really hard to imagine someone screaming "Germanophobia" over the cover of Captain America #1, isn't it?

Yep, that's Cap socking 'ol Uncle Adolf in the kisser. How is this different, again, from what the Fixer does to al Qaeda? Someone explain this to me. Because all I can come up with is that today, contemporary political correctness doesn't like the latter ... because Muslims are supposedly a "protected class." Or something. I know, we hear that "not all Muslims are terrorists" and all, and this is true -- just like not all Germans were Nazis, either.

Furthermore, if Holy Terror is so reprehensible, then why not include Truth: Red, White and Black on the list? One could easily label Truth "anti-white" and/or "anti-American," after all. The 2003 tale deals with "never-before-seen" issues surrounding the origin of Captain America, specifically how the US government attempted to recreate Professor Erksine's super soldier formula -- how the government tested imperfect copies only on African-American soldiers. This is supposed to be an analogy to the infamous Tuskegee experiment where hundreds of black farmers, most of whom were already infected with syphillis, were monitored for several decades, never being told they were ill. But the US government certainly didn't single out specific races in its various questionably unethical experiments over the years. The TV film Nightbreaker starring Martin Sheen and his son Emilio Estevez, for example, details what soldiers (of all colors) were exposed to in the early nuclear, post-WW II age. Not to mention, the Tuskegee experiment has often morphed into the legend that US operatives gave those hundreds of black men syphillis. This isn't too surprising with Joe Quesada-era Marvel as their knowledge of actual history has been found wanting. Quesada, when once discussing Truth, for example, ridiculously stated that "most of the US military" is black. He also wrote in an Iron Man tale from the early 2000s about the "extensive US nuclear testing during WW II." I'll let you figure that one out because I know you're not dumb.


An image from Marvel's Truth: Red, White and Black.

There's also the question of moral equivalence with Truth, something with which the Left has an almost biological need to do when it comes to comparing the United States to other nations. Truth would put us in pretty much the same category as the above-mentioned Nazis, which, as with just about every other such comparison the Left makes, is smirk-inducing.

Magnusson's #1 entry is really a head scratcher as it's the Captain America "Secret Empire" storyline which I've written about previously. While "Empire" can be a bit hokey, it is a clear sign of its times, and is hardly a worthy example of a "disastrous" attempt of politicking. But Magnusson's #4 entry is his best: the ridiculous Marvel 9/11 tributes that featured its most murderous villains weeping over the infamous terror attacks. That's right -- Dr. Doom, Magneto, Dr. Octopus, the Kingpin ... you name 'em. As Magnusson writes, "they went with three guys who have a bigger body count individually than all of al-Qaida combined." Marvel claims the panels in question are "symbolic." I call 'em "idiotic."

Conspiculously missing from Magnusson's article are the numerous examples regarding The Authority, J. Michael Strazynski's Supreme Power, Image's The Big Lie, Captain America vs. the Tea Party, and the myriad other instances we've noted throughout our almost nine years of blogging here at Colossus. But should we really be surprised??

Posted by Hube at March 24, 2014 08:18 PM | TrackBack

Comments  (We reserve the right to edit and/or delete any comments. If your comment is blocked or won't post, e-mail us and we'll post it for you.)

That's a big reason why I haven't gone to Cracked in a while: its contributors have become clueless about what they've written. I saw this article this morning while perusing another blog I read and quit reading after Magnussen referred to Holy Terror as "Islamophobic," all because a Batman-like character went after Al Qaeda. I shook my head at that. Going after Al Qaeda does not mean you are going after all Muslims, contrary to what the PC lunkheads think. I'm sure that if Cap #1 were to be published today, it would probably be lambasted as "xenophobic" or some such nonsense, especially if it featured Cap punching out Osama bin Laden or any other terrorist leader.

And Truth was a complete atrocity and an embarrassment to Captain America. The poor historical research and artwork behind it didn't help, either. I remember how in 2003 Marvel's Axel Alonso blasted its critics as "racist."

I remember reading that 9-11 issue from Marvel, too... that was beyond pathetic.

Posted by: Carl at March 24, 2014 11:53 PM

Wikipedia's entry about Truth has Alonso saying there were "outright racists who just don't like the idea of a black man in the Cap uniform." While I'm sure that's true, how many, really? Were these folks miffed about the story, or just the idea of a black man in a Cap uniform? It's easy to see how Alonso would conflate virtually any criticism as "racist" given what we've seen too many other creators do.

Posted by: Hube at March 25, 2014 07:20 AM

That's what I hate most with a lot of debate nowadays. That you can't critique or dislike something without being called a hater of... whatever. You can never argue on substances. (it's like that quote from John C Wright I think I emailed you)

Hmm... maybe Hube & I should submit an article to Cracked, "X MORE disastrous political...etc". I mean I'm offended that both them AND Hube forgot the JLA Iraq issue. ;)

Posted by: Nate Winchester at March 25, 2014 11:01 AM

Hehe ... I didn't forget that issue, Nate! I was pondering adding it here ... but frankly I got too tired last night and just wanted to put the damn post up! ;-) I've discussed it elsewhere at Colossus, FWIW.

Posted by: Hube at March 25, 2014 11:42 AM

Did I show you my discussion of the issue, Hube?

Posted by: Nate Winchester at March 25, 2014 04:38 PM

About the JLA/Iraq stuff? No sir!

Posted by: Hube at March 25, 2014 04:41 PM

I remember that issue of JLA. That was pathetic. Luthor wanting to go to war against Qurac and the JLA suddenly espousing Truther talking points to try and persuade him not to.

And Hube, while there were probably were some who were miffed at the thought of a black Cap, I'd say they were in an extreme minority. I think most folks were angry about the story. You're right, though; Alonso conflates any criticism as "racist" and it certainly is par for the course for modern comic writers.

Posted by: Carl at March 26, 2014 12:56 PM

I'm certain the number of "fans" angry at Truth just because the guy(s) were black was miniscule, but as we all know, "progressives" need to play that up at all costs to show how "superior" they are, and how everyone else is some knuckle-dragging lunkhead.

Posted by: Hube at March 26, 2014 01:27 PM

Exactly, Hube. I just hope elements of Truth don't wind up in any future Cap movie... ugh.

Posted by: Carl at March 26, 2014 02:03 PM

Hube, here's a link to where I ranted about it.
http://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2010/02/01/writing-talk-verisimilitude/

Posted by: Nate Winchester at March 26, 2014 03:20 PM

Nate: THAT is epic! Deserves to be in Cracked over that idiot Magnusson's article, for sure.

Posted by: Hube at March 26, 2014 07:40 PM

Excellent post, Nate! I agree with all of it. I bookmarked it.

Posted by: Carl at March 26, 2014 11:35 PM

lol You guys are too kind.

But then that's just what happens when I get angry enough... XD

Posted by: Nate Winchester at March 27, 2014 05:15 PM

Heya i’m for the first time here. I came across this board and I find It really useful & it helped me out much. I hope to give something back and aid others like you aided me.

Posted by: agroturystyka at July 14, 2014 01:29 AM

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