captain america, captain hydra, Hydra, iron man, marvel, politics, red skull, Thor
So apparently this week, Marvel has decided that the complete destruction of its legacy and everything it has stood for for all its history is something it wants to do. Because modern day politics are on the “right side of history” and anything that stands against the new “Social Ethics” is something that has to be completely repelled.
I am of course, speaking of the revelation that Captain America is a Hydra Agent. And apparently always has been. Because…we’ll get to that.
Now, I consider myself something of a comics fan, and while I am no expert I do know somethings. Like for instance that the two guys who created Captain America were both Jewish, and his premier appearance was of him punching Hitler in the Face in 1941, several years before we even got involved in WWII, when the Nazis were just another government and there were quite a number of Americans who were, in fact, pro-nazi. A bold political statement for its day, certainly far bolder than gender-flipping the God of Thunder or making Captain America Black.
So when the guy whose very origin was “Fight the Nazi’s” gets turned into a Nazi, well, this tells me that Marvel has very much lost sight of who the hell their characters are and what they stand for. And that they’re willing to go so far as to take Characters who have a history of being sane and rational and turn them into something, anything but. Or even take more recent Characters and completely derail them.
Much like what happened to Bor, father of Odin, in a not so distant issue of Marvel Comics. And no, that “censoring” is not in fact censoring. That is the actual dialog printed in the story. Bor, a God who had previously been disappeared into the eternal snow by Loki, Killed by Thor, and…apparently brought back to life decided to study earth politics. At which point he seems to have joined the Men’s Right’s Movement (perhaps it was the fact that 80% of all suicides are men, that drove him to this?), decided he had some issues with minorities (maybe he heard about Rotherham?), and developed an opinion on the State of Israel (which given the fact that Marvel has now made Capt a Nazi in what some are calling gross antisemitism, tells me that Bor is probably pro-Israel, because given things if his views were pro-Palestine they would not have been censored).
And even Odin has been derided as nothing more than a misogynistic, patriarchal tyrant. Why? Well…because he’s not happy that apparently Mjolnir has been stolen by what he thinks is a Usurper and the most powerful weapon of Asgard is now in the hands of a woman who breaks people’s jaws because they dare disagree with “Holy feminism” and who (in one issue I did read) apparently felt really good for hitting Odin because as a cancer patient, “it feels good to hit God.”
Despite the fact that Hela would be the Goddess ruling over Cancer, not Odin.
But let’s look at this, because now everything Captain America has done is now either a complete lie (and every good, noble, liberal, and tolerant thing he said was a lie) or…everything Capt has done and said is the Truth…but it is a Nazi/Hydra truth. Now, most might lean towards the former, but I will point out to a simple truth of the Marvel Universe: Mjolnir.
Mjolnir, in Marvel, is something that will give the person worthy enough to lift it, the power of Thor. However, the key word there is Worthy. Not just anyone can lift Mjolnir. Superman, for instance, can only lift Mjolnir when Odin allows the enchantment to fall off. Of those able to lift Mjolnir, the list is very short, 99.999999% of Asgard itself is not worthy to lift Mjolnir. Those who have been worthy though, have has a rule been people willing to defend others beyond the point of death itself, whose sole motive is not personal glory, not even the defense of others, but something even beyond that. Thor. Beta Ray Bill.
Captain Steve Rodgers.
Now, nothing can be hidden from Mjolnir when it come to “worthiness” as far as I can tell. So here we have Captain America, a guy who can apparently pick up Mjolnir as easily as Thor does, and who never keeps it because “Thor needs it more,” who…has apparently always been a Nazi.
So suddenly…worthiness is starting to take on a much different meaning in the Marvel universe. If a Nazi who has spent his entire life apparently deceiving everyone is worthy of joining the select crowd capable of using Mjolnir…that says some pretty bad things about Marvel’s universe. On the other hand, we have the option that everything Captain America has said and done, all the noble, liberal, tolerant, and just things he has said, believed, and practiced are True, and that is why he is Worthy, but that all those noble, liberal, tolerant, and just things are of Nazi nature. That the belief in truth, justice, and equality are the ideals of Nazis. Why? Because Mjolnir would only judge what was Worthy by that which was True.
Which brings me to the other thing that Marvel decided to do along side this. Namely, use Trump’s rhetoric as talking points for the Red Skull.
Short version, Red Skull has been in Europe and the USA, listening to the leaders of various Western Nations and he has grown sick with watching “refugees invade his homeland with their religious violence and their crime.” He stand up for nations having the “sovereign right to defend themselves and their culture.” He despises leader who are leading their people like lambs to the slaughter. He talks about how the US government has been seizing land from its own people, and calling those who resist traitors and terrorists.
Well…let’s see here.
“Refuges bombing our cities and raping our women.” Well….that’s factually accurate. Actually, the true accounting of how factually accurate would require a full website unto itself. Several in fact. Just to hold the baseline data. So….Skully here isn’t wrong about that happening.
And as for Europe’s leaders selling out their own people? Yep. There’s actually a lot of video proof of this out there. So…factual again.
And the list goes on accordingly. So here’s the thing, You’ve got Captain America, who is worthy of wielding Mjolnir who has publicly espoused liberal, tolerant, democratic ideals, and you have Red Skull and Hydra basically saying “people have the right to defend themselves and the right to not have their lands invaded by religiously intolerant people who will commit violence and crimes against the native inhabitants, and you have Bor who (in theory) has issues with what I can only guess is “immigrant crime,” the lack of equality for men as he sees it (unequal prison sentences, unequal parental rights, unequal social services, etc), and the right of Israel to defend itself. And Odin is a misogynist because he…doesn’t like women stealing power and abusing it (which he’s had a serious problem with men doing too).
Now, I do my best to be a Rational person. I put facts over my feelings, I put evidence over my desires, and I put Truth before Narrative. And really, given all the various facts I know both inside the Marvel Universe and the facts I know about the real world that Marvel is referencing…there’s only one conclusion.
The Bad Guys are, in fact, in the Right.
Now, I can imagine people having a mixed reaction to this. They’re Bad guys, how can they possibly be in the right, and thus…the good guys?
Well, let’s look at this. Marvel is saying that the Good guys are people who do not espouse liberty, tolerance, the right to self defense, the right to not be invaded by religiously intolerant and criminally minded individuals, etc.
Who’s a good guy in Marvel these days?
Tony Stark, aka, Iron Man. The guy who not too long ago was all about registering super powered individuals into a government database to be forced to work for the Government to do its bidding…or be thrown into an inescapable prison. And who made a cyborg clone of his “friend” Thor which he used to beat up and even kill those who resisted Government Registration and Enslavement.
Jane Foster, aka, Female Thor. The woman who will break people’s jaws for daring to complain about Thor being divested of his hammer and his heroism, and then knocks said victim’s wife unconscious after the wife surrendered. Who beats up Odin, halfway for the sake of taking out her frustrations at having cancer, despite his innocence in this regard. (Which, I will point out, is widely out of character for who Jane Foster has been since her creation). Which…Mjolnir seems to consider “worthy” so…we can make of that what we will, but apparently puts her in a select group which includes a Nazi and his racist, misogynistic friends.
I’m sure the list goes on, but I’ll admit I haven’t been keeping up with a lot of latest Marvel because honestly their level of political bullshit has gotten too painful.
But when your good guys espouse political violence and governmental enslavement of peoples vs your bad guys who apparently espouse tolerance, self defense, defending the weak, and the right to freedom….
Objectively, who are the Good Guys, and who are the Bad Guys?
Shocking revelations in comic boots are rarely what they seem, particularly if they go against canon for a popular character. A regular reader would know that, and anyone else ( which would include me these days) should probably check the outrage for a couple years until the story in question is worked out.
Lucius Svartwulf Helsen said:
On a general level I agree with you. “Shocks” like this are nothing new (how many times has Superman gone evil only for it to be a clone, robot, or kryptonite bug). The main issue here is mostly two fold though. 1) it is the latest and most glaring in a very, very long chain of such “shocks” Disney’s Marvel has done over the last year or two in an attempt to either be more “politically concious” and/or drive up sales (all of which so far have been pretty much universal bombs) and 2) they pulled something not just “out of character” and against canon for the character…they did something that is the antithesis of what this particular Character (Capt) is and has always stood for.
We’re not talking “Superman snaps Zod’s neck” OOC either. We’re talking matter vs anti-matter levels here. Even if this turns out to be nothing more than a publicity stunt…we’re looking at what has to be one of the worst publicity stunts in the history of such things. Because of what Hydra is, and what Hydra is tied to, and what Hydra has done. At which point I don’t know what is worse, them making Capt a Nazi as a promotional gig to boost sales…or the inevitable whiffling on it and changing him back, making this an entirely meaningless stunt. Regardless, we’re talking about something equivalent to a story saying Martin Luthor King Jr was a terrorist…in order to boost sales of MKL’s bio, despite terrorism being the complete antithesis of what MLK stood for.
Virginia Carper said:
This might be of interest to you from Comic Book Resources. Yes, I do subscribe to and read comics.
“Fandom isn’t broken but it may have road rage”
Meanwhile, something quite different is going on concerning the big reveal in “Captain America: Steve Rogers,” but the roots may be similar. Kicking off new series that returns the shield to Steve Rogers once again, writer Nick Spencer and artist Jesus Saiz unveiled the shocking truth that not only is the Sentinel of Liberty secretly a member of Hydra, but he always has been.
As a story point in a comic, it’s a pretty interesting development. But of course, Captain America doesn’t simply exist as a fictional character with ongoing heroic adventures; he means something. He has “America” in his name, after all. He’s been built up, over the course of 75 years, to represent all that is good about our country. To have all of his adventures recast as the machinations of an agent of a Nazi-affiliated terror group is understandably unnerving. And there are a few bothersome aspects. When I told my wife, who doesn’t follow comics, about Captain America’s heel turn, she said, “That’s a bit disrespectful to people in the armed services, isn’t it?” Plenty of people have noted that character’s creators, Joe Simon and Jack Kirby, were the children of Jewish immigrants. A colleague at work said her college-age son was nearly in tears because of what breaking the ideal of Captain America said about the country, or what it gave people permission to do; with Donald Trump ascendant and Steve Rogers turned traitor, who would stick up for the everyday people? Where is our moral compass?
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