Fandom, Entitlement and the Alt-Right

As a kid, my favorite superheroes were the Flash and Green Lantern. The Flash, because his real power wasn’t super-speed; his speed was a tool he used, but his real power was that he was smart – he outsmarted his opponents. Green Lantern worked on two levels. First, he had a ring that was functionally magic; if he could think of it, the ring could do it. Second, and more importantly, the ring ran on willpower. He had to bring resolve to the fight, to dig in and hold on and never give up, because if he didn’t, the ring would fail. He kept that willpower up through something completely unique to comics: his daily oath.

‘Basil of Baker Street’ and the Streisand Effect

In case you haven’t heard about it, here’s a tale of the time Disney ran into “the Streisand Effect.” The event took place in 1984, when the World Wide Web didn’t yet exist and very few people outside of the military or academia had email; even Disney still routed typed memos by hand via office workers. The story revolves around the making of ‘The Great Mouse Detective’.

The Super Seventies (and Beyond)

We talked about the history of superheroes on TV a couple of weeks ago, and got through the 1960s. Naturally we can’t leave off there, so here’s part 2, covering the ’70s and ’80s. After Batman ended, the networks moved on to other genres. There were a lot of westerns, WWII shows, sitcoms, cop shows, doctor shows, detective shows, and a handful of sci-fi shows, some of which were close enough to superheroes for me.