Saturday, September 18, 2010


Comic Art

You have to love a total "in your face" villain and can they get any more in your face than a guy that calls himself CAPTAIN NAZI!? We are looking at him here as a DC doppleganger to Marvel's "Red Skull" - but he is not really DC. Captain Nazi is originally the WWII baddie given to Fawcett's Captain Marvel - later bought by DC. THe battle over the Captain Marvel character and related is one of the most delicious inside publishing stories in comics. Needless to say, Marvel Comics, wants any character with "marvel" in the name, and with the Fawcett/DC guy being second iconicly only to Supes, you can imagine the litigation - not to mention the string of "Captain Marvel" wannabe's Marvel PUblishing has pushed out over the years when Fawcett/DC but the big guy into mothballs, as they tried to gain some legal leverage on the name. But litigation is boring - let's talk action.

Any guy that would flash a swastika on his chest like Superman's "S", Batman's bat or GL's Lantern - well, that is a guy you just have to hate. No subtlety there - just pure baddie.

In many ways I prefer him to the Red Skull. The Skull has gotten all sophisticated and nuanced. This guy is just strong evil.

To wax philosophical for a moment - I miss pure evil in comics. Reality is not black-and-white, but the ideals we aspire to should be, it helps us navigate the gray world we inhabit. I truly believe that comic book stories will someday come to be the American epic. National epics define a national character and I want ours to be about good winning out over bad - even though there are many shades of gray int he mix.

So give me a megalomaniacal world-conquering pure evil bad guy any day of the week. It makes my heroes that much more pure and good.

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