Comic book creators have a responsibility to provide readers an entertaining product; a book worth $3.99 that makes us come back for the next one.
But entertainment can be amazing art, a sense of excitement, a frenzy of emotions, or an introduction of ideas.
Despite fans finding escape in them, some of our favorite stories weren’t conceived as escapism but rather new perspectives on ideas. Comic writers and creators, have a forum, an audience that they reach, and for the most part feel a responsibility towards them.
The following are instances of books (that we have in stock) where creators communicate their strong political viewpoint to their fans.
If you know V for Vendetta the movie, you know it postulates that the road to a totalitarian regime, is through an oppressive conservative government. Directed by the Wachowskis, this came out during and references the Bush Administration. The conditions of the movie and comics release weren’t too different as England’s prime minister at the time was conservative Margaret Thatcher.
The thesis of Alan Moore and David Lloyd’s book, however, is that ALL government leads to oppression!
It’s hard to see that Bill Willingham’s Fables has conservative leanings, when the lead is a woman (Snow White) and contributing writers are prominent members of the LGBTQ community and vocal liberals! But when you read Bigby Wolf’s right to bare arms speech, as well as advocacy for preemptive strikes you start to see a pattern. Willingham DOES give his characters liberal stances and they frequently exchange ideas (great dialogue, I might add), but even when the topic comes to women’s choice, in this world the Right have the moral high ground.
When Denny O ‘ Neil took over the Justice League and Green Lantern, he wasn’t interested in telling stories of space invaders. He began to apply real issues (racism, income inequality etc) to the DC superheroes’ world! Never have the characters appeared so vulnerable to heroes then in the context of “why don’t they solve society’s ills with all their power.” It’s worth noting that O’Neil’s approach would lead to the debut of DC Comics’s first black superhero, the Green Lantern John Stewart.
Frank Miller’s Dark Knight Returns is very politically driven. As a product of the Reagan era it shows politics’s link to the media. Much of Batman’s crusade is reported on by different news programs and talk shows. Miller constantly injects talking heads with varying biases
There’s so many more examples including Warren Ellis and Bryan Hitch’s The Authority which has a superteam overthrowing dictators and taking in refugees in their massive headquarters, or Mark Millar and Bryan Hitch’s The Ultimateswhich showed an Avengers incorporated into the War on Terror. Friend of the store’s Kwanza Osajyefo’s Black abut black people with superpowers emerged at the height of Black Lives Matter. Guy Delisle’s Jerusalem shows the Israeli Palestinian conflict in his memoir about his travel.
The number of politically influenced comics is innumerable.Having come to this conclusion, we are happy to host on Wednesday andThursday at 9pm the Democratic debates at the store ( 2 days because the politicians involved are also innumerable). So feel free to come by and share your perspective and experiences.
Other Events Coming up
Dating app theLovemaze.com is hosting a couple meetup at our store onWednesday from 7-9pm just prior to the debates. Couples will get to exchange new books with each other to get a sense of each other’s personalities. This shouldn’t affect the shopping experience of anyone picking up their books, except for that fact that there will be wine glasses floating around the store. I’ll make sure you have some, too!
Pictured above Apollo and the Midnighter the first superheroes in a same sex marriage. From DC Comics’s The Authority
Our friend, Libby Formant will be setting up an art gallery for a week with the theme of disrupting the male gaze. in science fiction and fantasy. You’ll see some amazing pieces and some familiar faces from our community. Opening reception is at 6pm on Thursday
I also highly encourage parents to send their kids for this. We are really lucky to have a community of teachers who have shown patience in teaching people how to play. It’s a great game of strategy, that, frankly, keeps their faces off of the screens. Free packs for all newcomers!
Every newsletter, we will showcase a member of our community’s answers to a questionnaire, so you can maybe get some inspiration, or to maybe find others like yourself.
Our next contributor to the questionnaire is Glenn. Unfortunately he doesn’t have the social media or a photo to share for this section, but picture a guy who’s really cool, and is a firefighter, making him even cooler.(1) Where are you from and what first brought you to the store?
Born & raised in Brooklyn. Was looking for a new comic store in Brooklyn when St. Mark’s Comics ( on Montague St. ) & Bergen Street Comics shut down.(2) What is your favorite comic book of all time?
G.I. Joe # 21. The Snake-eyes silent issue. The storytelling without words just blew me away.(3) What is your favorite recent comics?
The Umbrella Academy and Locke & Key were the last two “recent” comics that come to mind.
(4) What comic book series are you looking forward to coming out?
None. Call me a disgruntled comic book fan. Marvel keeps rebooting their line so who wants to invest their time in any of the titles? D.C. thinks that Bendis is their God & savior. While Tom King is doing an admirable job, but it lacks something. There hasn’t been any recent comic that has piqued my interest where I will gladly give the industry my hard earned money. Variant covers don’t do it. Walt Simonson’s Ragnorak, Terry Moore’s Rachael Is Rising, Frank Cho’s Skybourne, Hellboy: Krampusnacht & The Swamp Thing Winter Special were the last comics I enjoyed, but not loved. My purchases lately have been the Walmart 100-page exclusive(coming soon to Anyone Comics), Marvel $1 True Believers & the facsimile editions comics.
(5) What are you enjoying so far about Anyone Comics?
The atmosphere. This is what a comic shop should be. The customer service is top notch. The love for the medium shows. The people care. The personal attention given.
(6) What would you like to see more of?
Ideally, everything my heart desires. In this day & age, I understand how tough retail can be. Just continue what you’ve been doing. The rest will come.
(7) Who is your favorite customer so far?
My visits are so sparse that almost every time I visit I am the lone customer in there. However, I see that changing.
(8) Name a comic you didn’t expect to enjoy?
Tom King’s The Vision. A modern day Pinocchio with a major dysfunctional family.
(9) Which two figures would you return to life?
Haven’t we learned from the countless horror genre that returning a dead person never works out? Lol. If I must, Bruce Lee & Duke Ellington.
(10) Who is your favorite colorist?
What an odd category. I’ve seen favorite writer ( Dennis O’Neill) & artist ( George Perez ), but colorist? Why not favorite letterer ( John Workman )? I guess colorist needs love too, huh? SMDH. Okay, I’ll play. Lynn Varley. She’s the only one that comes to mind.
Here’s another question to switch things up for the next contributor to answer:
Has a comic book ever changed your opinion about something?
Dimitrios is the store handler for Anyone Comics. He is the author of Millennials: You Are Special, Greasers in Greece, and Frankenstein vs Dracula: Throughout The Ages. He is the architect of his own destruction.