Monday, May 25, 2009

Capt. America, V for Very Authoritarian, and Some Comics Wisdom


It’s Memorial Day, a fine time to remember brave soldiers and some important political lessons, to wit:

•It’s interesting that (at the moment) Steve Rogers, who was Captain America for decades, is dead, while his old World War II sidekick Bucky, believed for sixty years to be the only comic book character to stay dead, is now alive and carrying on the role of Captain America. Let that be inspiration to anyone trying to rebuild a career after being frozen in ice for a half-century.

•A remake of the anti-authoritarian miniseries V, about an alien invasion that offers the Earth’s populace so many goodies that they just keep looking the other way while their liberties erode (even forming enthusiastic youth cadres to celebrate our new alien overlords), comes to ABC in the fall.  Here you can see a teaser clip featuring the lovely Morena Baccarin (from Firefly) in a role similar to that played by the more badass Jane Badler in the original series.  Baccarin turns thirty on June 2, by the way, so consider getting her something nice.  She offers you courtesan services and advanced technology, after all.

•TV and comics writer (and Brown alum) Christos Gage imparts some important, basic political wisdom, I think, in answering an interview question about why the umbrella organization called the Avengers Initiative continues to exist in the Marvel Universe despite widely being known to be corrupt:

What keeps any big, corrupt organization rolling? It’s benefiting the people in charge. I think we’ve all seen that many large agencies, whatever purpose they might have been founded to serve, often come to a point where the real agenda is perpetuating itself so as to benefit those in power. Obviously, someone highly placed — i.e. Norman Osborn — sees a major upside. And think about it–what better way to fleece people than pretending to protect them? If you’re the local crooked sheriff, you can soak a community for all it’s worth if you’re smart about it. Of course, it helps if the locals think you’re helping them, and if they see you take down a burglar or two every now and then. And there’s the rub. How will these, shall we say, “self-interested” individuals react to having to put their lives on the line to save Joe Sixpack from Galactus? (Just to pull out a name–Galactus is not showing up any time soon!)

Healthy anarchist skepticism — and superheroes.  Always a good combo.

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