Fun. A little less metatextual than the Deadpools I love. But I've been at enough cons that had such a rich murder of Deadpools, see, e.g., https://wwFun. A little less metatextual than the Deadpools I love. But I've been at enough cons that had such a rich murder of Deadpools, see, e.g., https://www.flickr.com/search/?text=d... that this really tickled me. (at least, I want the collective noun for Deadpools to be murder.) The Big Bad was a little underwhelming, but came by his Deadpool hate honestly. And the idea of Deadpool forming a superhero team of ALL DEADPOOLS makes way too much sense. ...more
Takes its title from literary critic Leslie Fiedler who (the internet tells me) championed genre and who (the book tells me) gave a talk at Rutgers UnTakes its title from literary critic Leslie Fiedler who (the internet tells me) championed genre and who (the book tells me) gave a talk at Rutgers University titled “The New Mutants” contending:
that the counterculture youth of the 1950s and 1960s . . . represented a ‘new mutant’ generation defined by a rebellious disengagement from the traditions of liberal humanism. This included turning away from the values of human reason and progress and embracing ‘anti-rational’ aesthetics, or forms of art and literature that parody the supposedly foundational institutions and narratives of American social life, including the family, romantic love, and upward mobility. (35).
Felder also suggested that this “new sensibility” included “the willful relinquishing of attachments to traditional masculinity and an increasing identification among American youth with the outcast elements of American society: racial minorities, the homeless, and woman.” (35).
Appropriating this or riffing on this, Fawaz suggests the big two superhero was “radically transformed” from “local do-gooder and loyal patriot” to “cultural outsiders and biological freaks capable of upsetting the social order in much the same way that racial, gendered, and sexualized minorities were seen to destabilize the image of the ideal U.S. citizen.” Superheroes became “a cultural corollary to the cosmopolitan worldviews of movements for international human rights, civil rights , and women’s and gay liberation.” (4). From the Justice League’s adoption of “ethical citizenship” that emphasizes good deeds that make the world a better place and Superman’s renunciation of his U.S. citizenship (41, 282) to the X-Men’s ongoing embrace of the excluded, there’s definitely some there there.
I did learn a lot about comic history I missed. I learned that the Justice League came together to fight “Starro the Conqueror, a giant, space-faring starfish” who was ultimately defeated by lawn care. (42, 47). Fawaz makes quite a compelling case that The Fantastic Four is struggling with becoming a non-hetronormative family with a family patriarch who never comes to grips with how his own body undermines the role he doesn’t question he plays – which makes me want to take another look at Matt Fraction’s run.
I also learned that Jane Gray’s turn as The Dark Phoenix was riffing on 1970s concerns about narcissism, including a conservative backlash that feminism was about really narcissism, not liberation. (202, 2016). The Dark Phoenix storyline moved easily into concerns about demon possession, which I forget people in 1980s were really worried about. Some people. Then in the 1990s, it shifted into a story about “The Legacy Virus” which struck many mutants and gave the X-Men and opportunity to explore the consequences of HIV and the role pop-genetics play in exclusion and inclusion. (266-67).
Wraps up with a discussion of the assassination of Captain America; killed on the New York District Courthouse steps as he is summoned to answer for resisting immoral laws. (269). I only dipped my toe in the Civil War story line. I liked what I read. I’m getting too old to be engaged by the “who would win in a fight, Captain America or Captain Marvel” thing (and duh – Captain Marvel). But I get that stories are about conflict and soothing that gnawing foundational, ontological doubt that makes us wonder whether the game is worth the candle, and the question of the moral response to an immoral law is worth that candle. And also both foundational AND ontological. But I never read to the end of it, in large part because my sense is that the story never resolved; it just . . . ended. I’m struck by positioning Captain America as the capstone transgressive figure; this Übermensch created to fight Übermensch who solidly places himself in the deep American history of resisting unwarranted authority.
Generally enjoyed reading it. I was, however, frustrated by how cherry picked this text felt. There was no discussion of the counter narrative of highly influential conservative writers like Frank Miller, for example. And weirdly for a book that seems delighted by transgressive comic texts, no discussion of that champion of polymorphous perversity, Grant Morrison. Nary a mention in the text or an entry in the index for either. I thought Matt Fraction got mentioned, but there’s nothing in the index backing me up on that. And the myriad examples of the earnest but cringeworthy attempts to tackle sexuality, race, gender, and power in major story lines are just ignored. Though maybe in this age where folks like to tear down more than build up, that’s kinda charmingly transgressive in its own way.
I did wish for a clearer thesis and a deeper dive. ...more
The most sweet and sentimental book about eldritch horrors I've ever read. It may be that Stross is getting over his trauma about middle management.
SThe most sweet and sentimental book about eldritch horrors I've ever read. It may be that Stross is getting over his trauma about middle management.
Sometimes when you're a government mathematician defending the realm against Lovecraftian monsters you meet a cute girl. Sometimes, when you're an advance scout of a Lovecaftian invasion force, you meet a cute mathematician. Sometimes your housemates loan you a tank to take her out a date.
I suspect there's something sly in there about doing your homework BEFORE invading a country.
And something really wistful about rights to legal recourse.
May the UK treat its aliens better than the Black Chamber treats ours.
Has some gems in it. "Sometimes fiction is a way of coping with the poison of the world in a way that lets us survive it." (22). "Myths are compost."Has some gems in it. "Sometimes fiction is a way of coping with the poison of the world in a way that lets us survive it." (22). "Myths are compost." (55) "And now I'm occupying the awkward zone that one finds oneself in between receiving one's first lifetime achievement award and death, and I realize that I have much less to say than I did when I was young." (192-93). "I found a dog by the side of the road who rescued me." (384).
But as a Gaiman fan who counts the fact hugged me once as one of my life time achievements (and Larry Tribe likes something I wrote), I'd read almost everything, and some favorite bits of nonfiction I'd like to go back to aren't in here. That was disappointing.
Probably a great bathroom book. Not a great bus book. ...more
As Spike said, "Someone wasn't worthy." Someone else is and becomes Thor: Goddess of Thunder! Thor is believably a god based on how freaking petulantAs Spike said, "Someone wasn't worthy." Someone else is and becomes Thor: Goddess of Thunder! Thor is believably a god based on how freaking petulant he gets. Dark Elves, Ice Giants, and corporate sociopaths think they seen an opening to take over the world. Can the Goddess of Thunder stop them?
Wherein Deadpool takes on Deadpool with the Very Existence of Existence at stake. Featuring Deadpool! Wolverinepool! Beardofbeespool! Pandapool ("TheWherein Deadpool takes on Deadpool with the Very Existence of Existence at stake. Featuring Deadpool! Wolverinepool! Beardofbeespool! Pandapool ("The Species that Endangers You!")! Dogpool! Galactuspool! HowardtheDuckpool!
A cross over event of the child characters in Vertigo comics. I quite liked the characters from Sandman. The Big Bad was big and bad. I didn't understA cross over event of the child characters in Vertigo comics. I quite liked the characters from Sandman. The Big Bad was big and bad. I didn't understand the climax. There might have been something there about understanding truth and understanding what grounds us. Or maybe Tim Hunter is just annoying. ...more