Thursday, May 12, 2011

I picked up this issue at ECCC a few years back. It’s (in part) a creative team meta issue, not entirely unlike Who Won’t Wield the Shield, with a co-feature of sorts starring Marvel’s 1984 id (and also Bernie Rosenthal). Bernie dreams about being Captain America, and the story follows her dream. As a concept, it isn’t bad, but the execution is something else. 

This is meant to be funny, an exaggerated look at what happens when you put Cap’s girlfriend in the suit: earlier in the story she gossips about men with She-Hulk and Wasp, mixes up villains, and doesn’t take either the male Avengers or her enemy at all seriously. Bernie becoming a superhero instantly turns Steve into an deferential, overwrought, dim-witted, loyal-to-a-fault boyfriend who just can’t understand her commitment to her job (a commentary on Bernie herself/maybe even superheroes’ girlfriends in general, given it’s clearly meant as role-reversal), and, of course, her biggest emergency is a run in Janet’s stockings. 

For all that this is meant to be funny, it isn’t so far removed from a 1964 bit in Tales of Suspense 59, where the male Avengers sit around waiting as Wasp fixes her make-up for half an hour. (“The trouble with girls is — they all act like females,” Steve declares.) Twenty years on, the joke is still on Jan for being a high-maintenance girl.  

At the end, it’s all a dream, and Bernie gratefully leaps into Steve’s arms. Why she was so thrilled it was a dream? Was being a superhero really hard? Was she grateful to wake up to a boyfriend too macho to cry about broken dates? 

Intentionally or not, this story delivers the message that women shouldn’t fantasize about being superheroes, and that girlfriends of superheroes should avoid being emotional and needy toward their boyfriends (that’s not extremely bright!). Hey, 1984: I see what you did there.

Sunday, May 8, 2011
In which Steve (sort of) dreams about his mom. Aww, Steve. Happy Mother’s Day!

In which Steve (sort of) dreams about his mom. Aww, Steve. Happy Mother’s Day!

Thursday, May 5, 2011
On the way out the door to see Thor. Before I go, here’s one of my all-time favorite Cap covers (not-so-coincidentally featuring Thor): “WRONG, Thunder God!” I never get tired of it. 

On the way out the door to see Thor. Before I go, here’s one of my all-time favorite Cap covers (not-so-coincidentally featuring Thor): “WRONG, Thunder God!” I never get tired of it. 

Tuesday, May 3, 2011
The Ameridroid only likes emo music.

The Ameridroid only likes emo music.

Friday, April 29, 2011
While on vacation, I made a list of panels I should post, and this was among the first that came to mind: Steve and Sam get a DIVORCE! 

While on vacation, I made a list of panels I should post, and this was among the first that came to mind: Steve and Sam get a DIVORCE! 

Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Ah, the ever-present threat of losing your girlfriend(s) to a baseball player. 

Ah, the ever-present threat of losing your girlfriend(s) to a baseball player. 

Is Sam talking to Steve or Redwing? You be the judge.

Is Sam talking to Steve or Redwing? You be the judge.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011
In which Steve expresses his inner angst by dramatically ripping off his clothes, and longs for a little action to help him forget Sharon. 

In which Steve expresses his inner angst by dramatically ripping off his clothes, and longs for a little action to help him forget Sharon.