Earlier today, Bleeding Cool reported that DC Comics is making the first two issues of the new Lois Lane comic by Greg Rucka and Mike Perkins returnable, so that retailers could order as many copies as they liked, safe in the knowledge that they could return any left unsold. It is possible that this really won't be an issue as the series may grab as many headlines as Lois Lane usually generated for the Daily Planet.
Bleeding Cool has been informed that the new series pits Lois Lane against the White House administration. And while members of that administration are not names, there seem to be some serious parallels between this and recent moves made by the Trump administration, and accusations made against them.
That it begins with Lois Lane's laptop featuring the words Woody Guthrie painted on his guitar in 1940, This Machine Kills Fascists, after he wrote the war song "Talking Hitler's Head Off Blues" is just a signal for where this comic will go.
And as Lois Lane has been seen kissing Superman, while still married to Clark Kent, with their suddenly-aged-up son Jonathan Kent, the world has their own opinion of her.
The Enemy Of The People
The first issue is titled 'Enemy Of The People', the label that Trump gave to the media when they were covering the Mueller Report. The phrase has a long history, Emperor Nero was originally dubbed this by the Roman Senate in 68 and it was common during the French Revolution, used by Robespierre in 1793 against those who opposed it.
The Soviet Union used it a lot, especially by Lenin who used it in 1917 to describe the members of the Constitutional Democratic Party but was then used against everyone they opposed. This included Tsar Nicholas II and the Imperial family, aristocrats, the bourgeoisie, clerics, business entrepreneurs, anarchists, kulaks, monarchists, Mensheviks, Esers, Bundists, Trotskyists, Bukharinists, the "old Bolsheviks", the army and police, emigrants, saboteurs, wreckers, "social parasites", people who administered and serviced the China Far East Railway, particularly the Russian population of Harbin, China, and those considered bourgeois nationalists, notably Russian, Ukrainian, Belarusian, Armenian, Lithuanian, Latvian, Estonian nationalists, Zionists, Basmach). Those so dubbed could be imprisoned, expelled or executed, and lose their property to confiscation. Close relatives of enemies of the people were labelled as "traitor of Motherland family members" and could be sent to Gulag, punished by the involuntary settlement in unpopulated areas, or stripped of citizen's rights.
The phrase was also used to justify all manner of atrocious behaviour by Mao Zedong who declared 'social forces and groups which resist the socialist revolution and are hostile to or sabotage socialist construction are all enemies of the people.' Nazi-supporting newspaper Der Stürmer declared that Jews were the enemies of the people. More recently, the Daily Mail declared that certain high court judges who ruled that leaving the European Union after the referendum also needed the consent of Parliament, got a full page condemnation with their photos and the headline "Enemies of the People".
But it was more recently in 2017 that the phrase got new life when used by President Donald Trump, declaring that The New York Times, NBC News, ABC, CBS, and CNN were "fake news" and the "enemy of the people".
Something he repeated at the Conservative Political Action Conference, saying, "A few days ago I called the fake news the enemy of the people and they are. They are the enemy of the people" and again last year in a rally in South Carolina, Trump pointing at journalists, calling them "fake newsers" and "the enemy of the people." days before a mass shooting at the offices of a newspaper publisher in Annapolis, Maryland. The day after that, Trump doubled down with these tweets.
This received an organised response in opposition by 350 media bodies on the same day, with international institutions such as the United Nations and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights criticising Trump for attacking the free press. In August last year, the United States Senate unanimously passed a resolution affirming that the media is not "the enemy of the people."
And now, it's Lois Lane's turn.
In Lois Lane #1, to be published by DC Comics in July, we will see Lois Lane amongst the White House press corps, pressing fictional Press Secretary Lee-Anne McCarthy – the choice of surname is unlikely to be accidental – over children as young as eighteen months being separated from parents in refugee camps, and corrupt payments being made by corporate bodies to member of the administration to grant contracts for those incarcerations. Which results in Lois Lane being ejected from the White House and her press credentials revoked.
With parallels both to charged made against the Trump administration regarding the separation and caging of young children from their parents in similar refugee camps, and the action taken against CNN's Jim Acosta after he challenged Trump over what he saw as the president's scaremongering about what Trump described as a "caravan" of migrants making their way to the USA through Mexico. And more recently, the White House imposed far more restrictive terms over who can and cannot qualify for such press credentials.
However, I have also been made aware that this ending to the comic was decided at New York Comic Con in October last year – before the Acosta situation – as something that was considered out there and couldn't actually happen in real life. And then a couple of weeks later, it did.
Many folks may have many opinions about the direction this comic takes, but one thing stands out above all. It is a very, very Lois Lane direction for the book to take. And it is glorious.
Lois Lane #1 is published on July 3rd by DC Comics. Artist Mike Perkins will be signing copies that day at Orbital Comics in London from 5 pm. Final orders for comic shops are due this weekend. The image featured above is from the cover of the second issue.
LOIS LANE #1 (OF 12)
(W) Greg Rucka (A/CA) Mike Perkins
On the road and out of Metropolis-and carrying a secret that could disrupt Superman's life-Lois Lane embarks on a harrowing journey to uncover a threat to her husband and a plot that reaches the highest levels of international power brokers and world leaders. Critically acclaimed and best-selling author Greg Rucka and master storyteller Mike Perkins team up for a tale of conspiracy, intrigue and murder that pushes even Lois to her limits.In Shops: Jul 03, 2019
Final Orders Due: Jun 10, 2019 SRP: $3.99
LOIS LANE #2 (OF 12)
(W) Greg Rucka (A/CA) Mike Perkins
Famed writer and reporter Lois Lane never worries about speaking truth to power-so what's she hiding from the most powerful man on the planet (and her husband), Superman? Investigating a widening international conspiracy, Lois puts herself in the crosshairs with backup from an unlikely new ally from the streets of Gotham City. In Shops: Aug 07, 2019 SRP: $3.99(W) Greg Rucka (A/CA) Mike Perkins
Famed writer and reporter Lois Lane never worries