There is often not even material for a full column but there are still some things worth commenting on, so every now and again I hope to submit a piece that is just bits and pieces thrown together. This is the first. It may be the last.
I started reading comics in the early 1980s so much of the whackiness of the Silver Age was before my time. However, I do enjoy picking up collections of SA books even though it often makes little sense. During a trip to Adelaide, I purchased Crisis on Multiple Earths vol 4 which included this gem of a panel:
Of course, this same collection of Silver Age also featured the multi-part story wherein real DC creators travelled to Earth 1 and Earth 2, ended up killing the Justice Society and working for … before the Spectre pleads to magic light in the sky … and the cosmic treadmill …and … and … I really have no idea what happened but I am pretty certain there is no way that sort of story could possibly be published in today’s comic book market.
Is it weird that I’m wondering how those capes are moving like that in the vacuum of space? Or why they’re all not dying from massive doses of solar radiation?
I had a chance to reread some of Ed Brubaker’s run on Captain America and it is just as good as I remember. This run took Captain America into some excellent spy and espionage tales, full of conspiracies while forcing Steve to once again analyse exactly what it is he stood for. You had Hydra do their nefarious thing while Cap also has to deal with a messed up Bravo, who acts well as a twisted version of Cap himself. Also you have Bill Braxton, a blatant Alex Jones/Fox News stand-in, as a threat that Rogers can’t just punch, while supplying the social commentary that drives any good narrative. One panel, however, stood out to me in light of all the nonsense that is happening in fandom at the moment – it’s almost as if Brubaker could predict what was going on in 2018 back in 2013…
Australian artist Queenie Chan was featured on the ABC News website which was nice. It may be a fairly light story but the focus on the problems of stereotypes is certainly worthwhile. However, what I like most about the piece is that it is written in comic book format instead of more traditional means. It made me think back on Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics and the lessons contained in it about powerful storytelling.
More recently, the same website surprised me by running a piece on Golden Age character Miss Fury and her creator June Mills. This surprised me in that what is now a relatively unknown character gained a spotlight and also how that same character went from being popular to a mere footnote. Just how many of today’s popular franchises will still be around in 50 years time? How many will be utterly forgotten?