That’s Why He’s Superman: Clark Kent Goes Johnny Paycheck


“I was taught to believe you could use words to change the course of rivers — that even the darkest secrets would fall under the harsh light of the sun…But facts have been replaced by opinions. Information has been replaced by entertainment. Reporters have become stenographers. I can’t be the only one who’s sick of what passes for the news today.”

Clark Kent, quitting The Daily Planet in a well-earned huff.

Reporters have become stenographers.  Nice touch, Scott Lobdell.  That certainly seems true in the national setting of televised news cycles and corporate communications companies.  Thankfully, cities across the country (including Allentown) have great local reporting.  It’s a crying shame that so many of their papers are owned by huge conglomerates and that they’re struggling regardless.

As for the newly emancipated Kent,CNN shares this:  “I don’t think he’s going to be filling out an application anywhere,” Lobdell said. “He is more likely to start the next Huffington Post or the next Drudge Report than he is to go find someone else to get assignments or draw a paycheck from.”

Ah, Superman. You keep finding new ways to fight for us.

Wait, What?: Racist Comics Edition (There’s No Way Aquaman Is More Popular than John Stewart)

comic books, writing 2.0

John Stewart should be the JLA’s Green Lantern and the iconic alpha Lantern of the DCU.  Put Hal back in the Corps and promote John back to the place of leadership and mainstream iconography he earned in the animated Justice League and Justice League Unlimited series.  In those vehicles, DC built a perfect platform for enfranchising the character with the kind of exposure the New 52 would have brought him .

The overwhelming whiteness of the image above, taken from the new DC home page, is staggering.   And is the Mentalist Aquaman really one of the most popular heroes in the the new 52?  Vic Stone (Cyborg), the lone African-American on the League, isn’t even pictured here.  Vic’s still paying grown-up dues as a recent grad of the Titans, and that’s fine.  But Stewart has immediate traction with readers and across popular media.  He’d be a great mentor to Cyborg, and he could bring gravity and leadership to the rest of the team.

Static Shock just got cancelled.  A Static/Stewart book would be great.  Even better would be a League with Cyborg, Static, and Stewart.

In 2012, can a group with one black character really be called the  Justice League? Please.  Oh, by the way:  in current continuity, John Stewart isn’t only off the League, he’s also on trial for murder.

Ron Paul and the other DC Reboot

politics, writing
Ron Paul supporters at a pre-debate rally in M...

Image via Wikipedia

Yes, sometimes I talk about Batman.  Sprinkled hither and yon on this Daily Cocca, between comparisons of Netflix to NATO and calls for the Tea Party and the Occupiers to seize their common ground and change the political process, sometimes I review comic books or talk about the Hero’s Journey as it pertains to Barack Obama.  This is all very natural to me, but it may vex some of you.  I can’t apologize for this…it’s the wellspring of excess and insight we’ve forged together in postmoderndom.

From this melange, a few interesting metrics:  in general, posts about the DC comics reboot have the most traction on cmmunities like StumbleUpon and bring the most seach queries knocking.  Part of this has to do with the fact that I posted pictures of “the new 52” at the right time, but more of it has to do with the online culture around fandom and the interest that piqued when the mainstream media first broke the story.

After DC Comics, things about the Tea Party have been gaining ground.  In particular, I’ve seen a trend here and on facebook for Ron Paul supporters to comment about their man without saying his name.  Very interesting tactic.  I’d love to hear more about why you’re doing this.  I have some ideas.

For the record, I like a lot of what Ron Paul is about.  He’s the only GOP candidate whose ethic of life makes any sense (anti-abortion AND anti-war), but we’re not cozy on everything.  Still, he’s the only guy up there who believes what he says and will keep on saying it until he’s unable or until we’re back on the gold standard and have fundamentally changed our financial and monetary systems.  And our foreign policy.  Good on you, Ron Paul.  That nexus of things the Tea Party is mad about and the things Occupiers are protesting is visible in large part because of you.

So the DC reboot and Ron Paul are trending topics.  Pardon the easy reduction, but a full reboot of Washington, DC, made possible by the Tea Party, Occupy, and their respective supporters and empathizers seizing common ground has been trending in my gut for a while.  My hunch is that the political tolerance of the great, disgruntled epicenter of the current American middle  enough far enough center-right and center-left to support a new kind of coalition of the willing.   Is Americans Elect the technological, electoral tool we’ve been waiting for?  Will it help us bypass the Two Major Parties and their Rigged Systems?”  I certainly hope so.  If not it, something like it.  And now.

The Superheroics of Social Justice or “Action Comics #1: Awesome Then, Awesome Now.”

Action Comics #1 (June 1938), page 1: Superman...

Image via Wikipedia

You probably know about the DC Comics relaunch.  I picked up the new Action Comics #1 and really, really liked it.  Supes looks like Woody Guthrie.  He can’t fly (yet?) and is a wrecking ball for social justice.  He trifles with authorities and struggles to pay rent.  A hero for our times if there was one.

Commentators have been talking about this as a return to Superman’s activist origins.  Indeed, a read through the original Action Comics #1 from 1938 reveals a bold American character, an immigrant, “champion of the oppressed, the physical marvel who has sworn to devote his existence to helping those in need!”

I love this guy.  Read the original Action #1 here, and cheer with me as Supes dispatches the governor’s butler in a last-minute attempt to save an innocent woman from state execution.  Like I said, a hero for our time if there was one.