Sunday, May 04, 2008

Marvel-ous: Civil War (2006)

Peace and blessings,

Given my interests in superheroes and comic books, it seems only natural that I share some thoughts on some of the comic book series' that I think are worth checking out, regardless if you're a comic book fan or not. Many of the issues addressed in these comic books that I will highlight address a host of issues that are central to our lived experience. The comic book I am highlighting in this post is Marvel Comics'
  • Civil War.
  • I'm not going to go into much detail about the storyline, but I will discuss the general plot and what I believe to be it's over-arching themes.

    Although the human/superhero beef (similar to the human-mutant beef in the X-Men comics) has existed for a while, the Civil War begins with a culmination of this beef that is marked by a tragic event. During a fight between superheroes, hundreds of children are killed during an explosion, which took place near a school. As a result, the government proposes that this is the last straw, and that humans with superhuman abilities (e.g., via genetics or technological assistance) must register with the government under the Superhero Registration Act. What makes this series interesting is that the superhero community are split between whether or not those with superhero abilities should have to register.

    The over-arching themes throughout the comic relate to issues of identity, rights, civil liberties, and freedom. While some, like Garrett (2008) suggest that the comic symbolizes the country's sentiment post 9-11, I would take it a step further and argue that it also relates to the national debate on immigration policy. Actually, when I first read it about a year ago, Immediately thought of the immigration debate, not post 9-11. Below are a few sources where you can learn more about the comic book:

  • Article on the Civil War

  • Review on the Political symbolism in the Civil War

  • Review discussing some positives and negatives of the Civil War

  • If you've read it, what are your thoughts on it? If not, would you consider it? Why or why not? Do you think comics have a place for addressing "real-world" issues? Stay blessed, encouraged, and speekonit...

    * Garrett, G. (2008) Holy Superheroes!: Exploring the sacred in comics, graphic novels, and film (revised and expanded edition). KY: Westminister John Knox

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