When I started reading comics as a child, my only thought was, COOL! When I was in high school I had to take public transportation over an hour to get home, and comic books helped to pass that time. In fact I found a small comic shop in downtown Seattle that was a shelter for me on rainy days as I waited for the bus. As I’ve gotten older, it has been a specific characters (or interpretations of characters) that have me continuing to read.
Maturing from Spider Man to Thor
In my youth there was no superhero better than Spiderman. The art, the colors, his youth, and his humor were what I like about him. He was just an ordinary kids putting in an extraordinary situation and he didn’t have a single cheesy weakness… like a rock. In my youth Spidey was the best, and that’s why he’s the most popular ever (4 successful movies and numerous cartoons). However, as I matured and the dysfunction in my own family became clearer to me, the more I became a fan of Thor. I like him so much that my XboxLive Gamertag is Blaque Thor. There’s one thing about this Mighty Avenger that I identify with (that I’m sure many of you do), and that is the dynamic between him and his half-brother Loki. Yes I have a step-brother, two half-brothers, and one full-blood brother, but the one brother I have a problem with is my full-blood brother who is the closest to me an age.
There are many layers to Thor and to his relationship and I can connect with. The new movies have done an amazing job of showing the closeness of the brothers and how love can remain when a relationship breaks. I identify with that sentiment; my brother may annoy the s*** out of me, but he is my brother, and I love him.
Mainstreaming Equals Social Acceptance
Well waiting in the movie line to see Iron Man 3, I realize that we may be a bit socially awkward, but our subculture is moving closer to pop culture. Consider the fashion style of NBA players the dress like nerds, shacks Superman tattoo and now the Avengers movie gold for DC Comics trying to do the same. My classroom walls have schedules, class projects, and posters from ComicCon on it, because now I don’t care anymore who knows I’m a comic book geek. Now, people get my opinion on a movie before seeing it.
What Comics have, that the entertainment industry loves, is the ability to make money. When you start talking Star Trek, Star Wars, Halo, Comic books, Hunger Games, etc is that there is a wealth of characters, stories, and fanboys (or fangirls) ready to throw money at them and any merchandise that comes out! Why not create a Spider-Man Trilogy with a bad ending, and make a $BILLION then immediately reboot the series so fanboys can obsess over every detail all over again? Why not make a Batman Trilogy, then reboot the entire universe and have a new actor don the cape and cowl? Why wouldn’t George Lucas redo episodes 4-6 then sell to Disney so a new Star Wars trilogy can have money Force-Pushed at them? Fanboys cheer and react to movies when they premier. We stand in line for more than an hour and obsess about it. We are exactly what companies hope to have… a loyal and persistent fan-base that keeps coming back.
I have come to accept my geekness. Have you?
*photo courtesy of msn.foxsports.com