Recently, Bleeding Cool reported the news that next year DC Comics is looking to bring back classic titles as a home for an increase in politically and culturally conservative storylines, even while some titles continue a more progressive bent.
In a country where the polls now show Donald Trump getting closer to Hillary Clinton, and Hillary well ahead on Bernie Sanders, one might consider it would be wise to represent a more diverse political voice.
Some wish to keep politics out of the comics, an impossible desire. Superman is a pro-immigration story, Batman about the responsibilities of the rich to their fellow man, Wonder Woman about feminism, Green Lantern about the United Nations, Aquaman about the wider environment, Cyborg about the security and privacy threats of technology and The Flash about police competence. It's going to happen.
But no matter how far DC Comics choose to expand their political diversity, odds are they aren't going to go quite as far as the openly Islamophobic comic The Infidel.
A comic, within, it presents a superhero comic in which Pigman faces The SuperJihad and hordes of Islamic followers all over the world.
Heavily influenced by Frank Miller and David Mazzuchelli, the comic-inside-the-comic is a riotous righteous polemic where might makes right, Islam and its followers are the bad guys, only Pigman will stand up to it, even as American media fails to support him…
This is contrasted only slightly by the real world situation, where the author is on trial for the offensiveness of the comic. But rather the argue on the basis of the Fifth Amendment, he seeks to convince the jury that everything the Pigman comic book is saying is right. With lots of speech balloons.
It's here that the comic falls down, become far too staid and dull as the author Duke makes his cartoon courtroom speeches, now defending himself with big speech balloons. And manages to target rival comic book publishers in the process, as he channels Breitbart.
Of course, from what I hear it may not be the only anti-jihad comic, regarding DC Comics plans… but hasn't he heard of Charlie Hebdo?
But soon enough it moves back to the Pigman comic, and they marries the two worlds together, bouncing off each other.
It's an artistic and storytelling triumph, but it is incredibly wearing, you wish for more nuance, less strawmen, and certainly less Randian individualism. Any good argument needs the other voices represented well and that fails here. And the relentlessness can be tiring to read. Something DC Comics may want to consider.
But it is very pretty.