Saturday, May 21, 2011

In case you've been missing the Wonder Woman ranting

Oh, and for those of you who've been wondering when I'll get back to Wonder Woman. I've been having a rather lengthy conversation on Tumblr, here and here.

All kidding about Steve's intelligence aside, we've actually got a couple really good reasons he doesn't realize he's working with his girlfriend. I'll get around to posting about them sometime when I'm finished making pilot jokes.

Also, the usual twitter conversations with jmatonak and mizzelle. Got into a tangent today on how anti-military fans get at times. It's not just that guy on Tumblr. It's just something that comes up a lot when talking online about stuff with a civilian-military mix. You see it among SGA and Green Lantern fans too. I've seen John Sheppard, Steve Trevor, and Hal Jordan all dismissed in the same derisive way by different fans. From the POV of someone who works with military men, these are three widely varying personalities, but somehow there's fans who hate them for the exact same character traits (which they don't all possess...?).

What's really annoying is that comic writers seem to be buying into military as shorthand for one personality type, whether they like the military or not. John Stewart is being made more Marine stereotype and less John anymore. Hal's being slid into this macho military caricature. Steve was shoehorned into being Hal in the animated movie. Bucky's not always handled by other writers with the complexity Brubaker gave him. Not to mention that soldiers are pretty much cannon fodder henchmen in a lot of stories, and you only ever see reviewers point out that's a bad thing in their jokes.

Wonder if Captain America fans ever get this, or is he just a special character?


  1. Actually, Ultimate Captain America was the same sort of military caricature you describe in many ways.

  2. I think most fans don't even think of Captain America as a military character; he's a superhero, and beyond that, he's a man lost in a new era. The fact that he not only came out of a war, but was a military figure in that war, is probably something that would provoke an argument with a substantial minority of his fans. They would argue that either he's not really a military person, or he's not like the military today, he's a "real soldier" or some other way to denigrate current military personnel.

  3. Anon -- Oh yeah. I remember subjecting pro-Kick-Ass co-workers to that rant when explaining why Mark Millar writes utter trash.

    Guess I blocked it for my own sanity.

    Talestoenrage -- You've probably got it there, judging by the reaction when the Bucky Cap design came out and everyone saw that he was carrying a gun.

  4. On the one hand, you can NEVER have too many pilot jokes.

    On the other hand, an anti-military bias, is a shame. Nick Fury was/is a soldier, but he doesn't get denigrated. At least I don't think that he does. Being in the military means that you are disciplined, brave and not afraid of hardwork. What is bad about that?

  5. SallyP: That's certainly true, but there's the fact that Nick Fury was transitioned into being an intelligence operative. So he got to have shades of James Bond back in the 60s and 70s, and now he can be portrayed as the "smart guy" in the room, who talks down to superheroes and other parts of the government. Which also fits into fan antipathy for the military-Nick Fury can say he was in World War II, so he's seen war, and then turn around and say something like Marines couldn't handle what he has to do every day, because he's such a super badass. Or in Mark Millar speak, "this is the guy who kills 50 terrorists every day before breakfast."

  6. Also, I can't help but notice they've completely divorced Nick Fury from the government in recent years.

  7. I thought that everyone had realized by now that even though war sucks, don't take it out on the soldiers? Or is this attitude a silly antiquated nerd anti-jock tantrum? Because as you know the military is packed to the brim with nerds...