“I’m tired of having my actions construed as instruments of U.S. policy.”
So much for truth, justice, and the American way.
Recently, two American cultural icons have turned their back on America to varying degrees.
In January 2010, left-leaning writer Ed Brubaker had Marvel’s Captain America and African-American superhero, the Falcon, stumble across a Tea Party protest gathering in Boise, Idaho. There, protestors held signs that read, “Tea Bag the Libs Before They Tea Bag You!” and “Stop the Socialists.” The Falcon remarked that he would not fit in with “a bunch of angry white folks.”
This issue generated a lot of controversy from the right and forced Marvel to change the protest signs in subsequent editions.
Now, it seems Marvel’s competitor DC Comics is trying to one-up Marvel’s anti-American creds by publishing a storyline in which the Man of Steel renounces his American citizenship. According to blogger David Macadam, the comic, written by David S. Goyer, has already sold out.
Commerce or Communism?
Presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee considers Superman’s anti-American storyline to be “part of a bigger trend of Americans almost apologizing for being Americans.”
I actually see two different factors at play. On the one hand, the American creative class is dominated by left-leaning elites, who sometimes use their platforms to propagate their leftist political views. I see Captain America’s January 2010 issue as symptomatic of this problem.
On the other hand, both comics are always looking to expand their readership internationally. Since Captain America and Superman are almost synonymous with the American brand, some editors will feel compelled to include storylines that make their heroes more appealing to an international audience. I think the Superman storyline is likely more symptomatic of this influence.