It was an amazing comic. A man has become a muck-monster, his humanity just a memory, seemingly limited to minor human-interest horror-adventures in a swamp, but somehow a magnet for society’s psychological ills, even attuned to cosmic insights, and eventually limping, looming into the central intersection of ultimate forces … Yeah, it’s great, man, Alan Moore’s Swamp Thing was really someth — wait, you’re talking about 1973?
It took a lot of working out the context in my mind, but I’m finally ready to look at a very interesting species of comics villain.
Superman, Captain Marvel. Captain Marvel, Marvelman. Marvelman, Captain Miracle. Marvelman, Marvelman reboot. Marvelman reboot, Miracleman. Paralleled by a completely different Captain Marvel too, oh wait, like four of them, plus Ms. Marvel, oh wait, three of them. What th’fuck?
It’s 1999. I’m in my first prof job at the Bio department at Valdosta State U, in southern Georgia – a much better school and general gig than I’d thought. I’m on the organizing committee for the annual Women’s Studies Conference there, similar to roles I’d played in many such events. “But what straight white guy could do it, and handle it?” “Get Edwards.” At the end of the conference, I’m hanging out with guest of honor Kate Millet, who was kind enough to attend my talk. Read the rest of this entry
BONUS POST: Thanks to Ed McW and his May pledge at the Doctor Xaos Patreon! It’s long past time for more Doom posting. I have the same thought now as I did when looking at this title on the racks forty years ago: what an excellent idea. Read the rest of this entry
BONUS POST: Thanks to Markku Tuovinen and his May pledge at the Doctor Xaos Patreon! Jared Sorensen once cogently explained why dungeons have doors: so the player-characters can break them down. Think about it; if you didn’t want them to do it, then you would have just put a wall there. Mind control in superhero comics is precisely the same in its purpose: so a hero can shake it off. Fully or just enough to resist doing the one single dastardly thing on which the villain’s plan hinges, either way.
Of my old comics, one of the very few left in my possession is the huge magazine-style version of Robert E. Howard’s “Red Nails,” adapted by Roy Thomas and Barry [Windsor] Smith (originally in Savage Tales #2-3; here reprinted in color). There is no point in trying to articulate Smith’s presence and creative force in comics. Just … look at this.