Saturday, May 28, 2016

The Captain America Controversy

It's weird watching so many people write think pieces of various emotional intensity about the new twist in Marvel Comics where it looks like Captain America has been secretly a member of Hydra all along. Weird in a good way. People who couldn't have given a toss a few years ago now care about the occasional comics development because they like the MCU, and it makes me feel a little good that people have embraced versions of these characters I grew up reading.

That said, don't sweat it. Captain America's not a Nazi, and this change--like most changes in comics--doesn't mean anything.

It's a story twist that, I imagine, is serving as the big lead-in to Civil War II, which is this year's big line-wide, storyline-derailing, momentum-killing event crossover from Marvel. (If you want to talk about the real problem at Marvel Comics, it ain't the Hydra cliffhanger, it's that the writers can't get any decent arcs going or sustain their regular plotlines because every summer has to have a damn event that starts okay, gets tedious, fizzles out, ships late, and limps to the finish line in January when it was supposed to be over in September.)

This is all gonna be some of kind of villainous chicanery (my current money is on the Red Skull using a cosmic cube to rewrite history... I feel like I want to add "yet again" to the end of that sentence) and things will return to status quo, the way they always do because it's freaking comics. It may take a few years (no, no, the New 52's going to last forever, they told us), but it always goes back.

So, I understand why some people are shocked. That's why they did it: to shock you. But let's hold off on writing long, angry posts about what a disservice this is to Jack Kirby, or how disrespectful this is to the entirety of Jewish history, or how Marvel is only doing this to make money and get attention. Let's not send writer Nick Spencer death threats (as has been happening) because of a temporary twist in a comic book. This is just how the endless soap opera that is funnybooks goes sometimes. Sometimes Doctor Octopus takes over Peter Parker's body for a year or two and everyone gets mad and then it just goes back to the way it was. This is comic books, where nothing means anything, change is impermanent, and death is temporary.

Also, someone give Nick Spencer a raise because this is they most I've seen the general public talk about a development in a Marvel comic in maybe my entire life.


Nik said...

The level of outrage is so over the top it's ridiculous, stoked by online activists who probably haven't read an actual comic book in 10 years. I'm sick of pile-ons no matter what "side" of the debate they're coming from. It's a story, let it play out, like it or not, but show some bloody perspective.

Tosy And Cosh said...

Man, you nailed the "twist" in one. Good prediction.