- Posted by Johanna on December 14, 2006 at 5:01 pm
- Category: LinkBlogging
Some things I found amusing out in the blogverse…
BeaucoupKevin talks about DC’s January solicitations. I am thrilled to see that we get both a Showcase Presents: Legion of Super-Heroes (although it might be a tad difficult to tell all those straight-laced boys and girls apart without their colorful costumes) and a Wonder Woman: Greatest Stories Ever Told. (I’ll love seeing the classic stuff, but I’m a little worried about what they consider “today’s epics”. Often that’s code for “modern versions that don’t live up to the originals but we didn’t want to insult creators or imply that today’s stories aren’t as good as older ones.” You can see why it needs code.)
I don’t normally care about fan-generated “what if” ideas, but this one is amazing — Whereof one can speak connects historical trends to come up with “What if Captain America were gay?” It’s one of those eye-opening premises that makes you think “of course! why did no one else see that?”
If a gay Steve Rogers became Captain America in the canonical way, fought the Nazis in the canonical way, and got frozen before the war ended, then got unfrozen in, oh, let’s say, the mid-1960s… Well. The US government of the time might not be too pleased once they found out (as they inevitably would, since Cap is much too honest and straightforward to be capable of remaining closeted, and much too good-looking to stay single for long) that their country’s poster boy was a faggot. And Cap wouldn’t take kindly to being told that his sexual orientation made him persona non grata despite his long and distinguished record of service. Place him in a gay bar that gets raided by overenthusiastic police (which was a frequent occurrence at the time) (yes, yes, I know Cap doesn’t drink; maybe he’s meeting somebody — c’mon, work with me here) and he certainly wouldn’t let the patrons get beaten up. He’d fight back, standing up for their rights as Americans. Captain America fighting cops who are beating up queers? That would make front page news.
I would love to see this. Too bad it will never happen.
Ian Brill points out another great “what if”, this time one that exists. Check out his second item on that page, about What If #34, where Roger Stern and Ed Hannigan present “what would happen if superhero stories featured the characters just standing around talking to each other.” Only it’s from 1982, if I’ve read my references correctly.
Last, more on Alex Ross’ thoughts on Obsidian. I was copied on his clarification, but every response it raised in me was too mean for two people (counting Andy Mangels, and a nice amount of self-promotion he ladled in there, too (see what I mean?)) who I do believe were trying to do the right thing.
Ok, I will say that I thought Alex Ross pulled a John Byrne. He says he wants to respect “the groundwork the original creators put down [and] be true to their earliest definitions.” Then (and I love this part, that it took him so long to remember, duh, Roy Thomas is alive) “I realized this morning that I had the rare option of finding out in this case, and I called Roy Thomas.” Roy basically doesn’t care, but that doesn’t stop Ross still being upset, because “Being gay is a fundamental aspect of a character” and since it wasn’t revealed in the very beginning, it should never happen. (Leaving aside just how many people come out of the closet later in life for a variety of reasons.)
In other words, the original creators are all, until he disagrees with them. See? It’s a Byrne. At least Ross admits “I’d say I’m just a little bit of a hypocrite.”