Tag Archives: comics

Comics Are for Everyone: 1988 Edition [1988 Week]

Because of the amazing comics that have been released in 1988, I decided to have another comics section in this theme week. Grant Morrison and Alan Moore are big enough names for this, I guess, but we shouldn’t forget Jamie Delano. I’ll just focus on the issues published in that year, since that’s enough already. Let’s go!

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Comics Are for Everyone: 2012 Edition – Occupying Jokers, Transgender Aliens and the Web of Life [2012 Week]

As I mentioned before, 2012 had a lot of comics in it and I read many of those. So I thought today I spent some time flipping through more than 1,000 issues to see what is noticeable in those comic books. What, you say that’s crazy? Too much? You’re right, actually. I’ll try to focus on which current events were portrayed in some of those comics and also look at some interesting messages regarding humanity. So, the usual.

It’s fascinating to see how 2011 creeps into the comics of 2012, which is the fastest comics can deal with current events.

Batgirl #5 (Gail Simone, Ardian Syaf)

Batgirl #5 (Gail Simone, Ardian Syaf)

Detective Comics #5 (Tony S. Daniel)

Detective Comics #5 (Tony S. Daniel)

You can read the full post here.

 

Comics Are for Everyone – Africa, Five Years From Now (Futures End)

This time around, I thought I look at a collection of relatively recent comics at things I noticed. Much like Daniel Quinn, I’m trying to avoid Africa for now (until I work on it with my current course), but it doesn’t hurt to take a look at it from time to time. It’s one of my favorite topics because its stereotypicalization is so widespread and accepted. It’s AFRICA, one continent where all the problems are the same everywhere and no distinct culture is really known. Africans are starving, poor and need our help. That’s the short version.

In Action Comics: Futures End, one of the issues of DC’s Futures End month, we see Clark Kent in the future (five years from now… don’t ask, it’s complicated – or rather convoluted) being another white savior.

You can read the full post here.

 

Comics Are For Everyone: The Last of the Greats/Avengers vs. X-Men #6

    The Last of the Greats CoverAvX Cover“Humans are flawed and this is why they destroy the earth.” Would anyone doubt that assumption? Probably not. I do because I think it’s not humans but culture that is flawed. Anyway, I want to look at two comic books today that ask the question: What would happen if all the problems in the world could be solved? What would humans do then? Those are intriguing questions that revolve around the notion of humans being flawed or not. If they are not flawed, solving all the problems would save the world. If they are flawed, all the problems will just come back. Looking at these questions are Joshua Hale Fialkov and Brent Peeples in their mini-series The Last of the Greats, published by Image in 2011 and 2012, and Jonathan Hickman and Olivier Coipel in the best issue of the event comic Avengers vs. X-Men (or just AvX because it’s so cool), published in 2012 by Marvel (which was written by every major Marvel writer but was quite a mess overall).

Continue reading Comics Are For Everyone: The Last of the Greats/Avengers vs. X-Men #6

Comics Are For Everyone: Mara #6

mara coverMara, a six-issue limited mini-series written by Brian Wood and illustrated by Ming Doyle and published by Image Comics in 2013, is the story of a woman who is the best and most famous sports star in a slightly futuristic world. The comic mostly shows how stardom and the media are connected and the consequences this has, thereby directly reflecting upon our society’s treatment of stars and sports (as Brian Wood rarely writes a comic without reflecting upon our society). It’s a great if slightly weird comic because it does never go where we expect it to go and the ending can’t do anything but leave you astonished in its boldness. It’s a really great comic and I can only recommend it, but since I don’t want to spoil it, I’ll just focus on one aspect today.

You can read the full post here.

Punisher: War Zone (2008)

   punisher_war_zone_poster(spoilers ahead)

Punisher: War Zone. I mean, the title alone asks for trouble. Let me just say that as much as I’m a comics fan, even a superhero comics fan, The Punisher is a character I really loathe. Frank Castle’s family was killed by gangsters, so he kills gangsters now as the Punisher. He is the ultimate vigilante, showing that our laws don’t work, because they always let the bad ones go. Most of the time it’s an excuse for lots of violence and shooting and torturing, etc. I haven’t read a lot of his comics, but most of them are like that, even if there are exceptions (Mark Millar of all people seemed to have understood that Frank Castle is insane when he wrote him in Civil War). The first (or second if you remember Dolph Lundgren) movie was as you could have expected, telling the basic story and having lots of cruel violence. It wasn’t great. But now this one wants to take it many steps further. I respect director Lexi Alexander because she is very outspoken about women in the movie business and says things most people don’t even think about. But this movie is awful. This might be due to some difficulties with the studio, so I don’t want to put all the blame on her, but it is what it is.

You can read the full post here.

 

Comics Are For Everyone – Captain America Comics #1-19

Comics are of course no exception when it comes to depicting stereotypes, dealing with authority and discussing our society. I have a long list of comics that deal with various topics and now is a good as any to start digging through my archives. And when I say “archives”, it sounds like going way back in time, so let’s do that.

It’s 1941. The world is a simpler place. There are good and evil people. The good people are Americans and its allies. The evil people are Nazis and some of the Asians. Who do we need to fight this fight between good and evil? Of course, it’s the perfect time to create Captain America, the personified patriotism. Joe Simon and Jack Kirby (later joined by Stan Lee) started Captain America Comics in 1941 to fight World War II in the “funny pages.” It’s pure propaganda of course and it might be unfair to judge those old comics nowadays. Culture in general was much more open about its racism and stereotypes and it was more accepted. I would argue that as embarrassing as some of these stereotypes are nowadays, at least there was less pretense. Today a lot of it is still there (okay, not as extreme as here), but it often seems like it isn’t. Anyway, let’s take a look at some examples from the old times.

Captain America Comics #1 - Page 1

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Everywhere But Here

When I read this article on the lack of female characters in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, I realized many things.

First, that I am not so off with my many observations on the portrayal of women in movies. Other people notice it too and once you notice it, it’s hard to not see it anymore (as it is with any truths you start to see beneath the fabric our culture puts on our eyes). Women are mis- and underrepresented in our culture, despite the fact that in the real world they are everywhere! That doesn’t seem very fair. The article is especially interesting in the way it makes Dawn of the Planet of the Apes director Matt Reeves admit this problem without him ever being aware of it. We are so used to having male leads and female love interests because we rarely see anything else from the moment we consume culture. This makes it very hard to actually change it because it seems natural.

You can read the full post here.

Bloodthirsty Kids

It’s been a while since I read an interview with Alan Moore (Watchmen, V for Vendetta), one of the best and most influential comics writer ever, who is known for having “extreme” opinions and for favoring anarchism. This interview was published in 1987 and is very long and very interesting. What I want to look at is something he said that keeps coming back to me ever since then: Continue reading Bloodthirsty Kids

Comics Are For Everyone – DMZ: No Future

No FutureTying in to yesterday’s post about Four Lions, I thought this is a good time to write about something that I also care about a lot but haven’t mentioned yet, which is comics. In fact, since I started again trying to watch every movie ever produced, my comic reading has been strongly reduced. Anyway, I recently read another volume of DMZ, the post-9/11 analogy by Brian Wood and I liked it a lot and thought it was worth writing about.

Continue reading Comics Are For Everyone – DMZ: No Future