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Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 2,586
In Reply To
little kon-el

Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 599
Subj: Re: I don't mean it disrespectfully...
Posted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 at 05:15:53 am EDT (Viewed 341 times)
Reply Subj: I don't mean it disrespectfully...
Posted: Fri Jun 02, 2017 at 04:26:29 pm EDT (Viewed 368 times)

Previous Post

    John Walker was a whole different kettle of fish.

    Gruenwald invented him to explore the idea that there are different types of patriotism, and that being 'patriotic' is not necessarily automatically a good thing.

    Whilst Walker was also designed to be an opposite to rogers, he was never a *villain* as such, was in fact as much a victim as anyone, had wholly positive intentions despite some mistakes along the way, and ended the story very much a hero.

    Whilst I dont think theres any doubt that Walker was supposed to represent a conservative standpoint, he was still an admirable character. He disliked vice, he had no respect for bigotry, he supported traditional values without being pious, preachy or judgemental. Spencer meanwhile portrays conservatives as Americas great evil, and the souce of all its problems.

    He's really nothing like Hydra Cap, and neither is this story anything like Gruenwalds - or worthy of being mentioned in the same breath.

    Grus work was a clever, profound, subtle, and sensitive piece of political commontary, where as Nick spencer has deliberately hit every big red button he can for maximum drama and histeria

Because he was writing John Walker at the height of Reagan and it can be seen as a critique of that type of Patriotism. But, like Suicide Squad, it really does read as how an Oliver North patriot is formed. And yeah, it is better, more subtle and more optimistic than Nick Spencer's take. But I personally thought that John Walker' s turn was also over the top and nuts. I really liked Walker's struggle up until the part where he kills his ex partners and does a heel turn.

If anything would send someone off the deep end, then surely it would be the brutal murder of both parents in front of your very face by a bunch of extremists?

Walker probably does reflect some of the popular political and social opinions of the time. He's stubborn, arrogant, jingoistic, and refuses to accept that there are lessons he can learn from the past.

Walker IS a criticism - but a much more balanced and subtle one - and he is ostensably still a hero and a good person, never really portrayed as a villain, certainly never portrayed as evil, and even when he does things you disagree with you can at least understand and appreciate why he did them. He's rarely *wrong* by any objective judgement - just *different*. Importantly he also shows great capacity in that story for growth, learning, and development.

Spencer meanwhile has made Secret Empire, and the Sam and Steve books, a blatantly obvious analogy for conservatives, republicans, Trump, and their politics - and theres no hint of subtlety about it, as he's filled his story with Nazi symbolism, such as public executions, book burnings, the rewriting of history to suit oneself, concentration camps, Hitler youth proxies, propaganda, overt racism, promoting informing on anyone who is 'different', imprisoning political opponants, and restricting the press.

I dont disagree that in a much less dramatic way Trump is guilty of one or two of these things - press restriction for example - but Nazi comparisons are, and always have been massively bias exagerrations, written with a clear political agenda to push the idea that all of Americans problems are the result of conservatives, and that they are the greatest and most genuine evil in the land, and that if you support them you are either stupid, ignorant, or evil yourself.

I'm not saying Gruenwalds work *isnt* a political story. I'm *not* against political stories. What I'm saying is that Gru wrote a political story in the *right* way. It was also undeniably a great and exciting read, in which the political aspect never overpowers the need to tell an exciting tale, and sadly the same cant be said of Spencers work, which often creates the impression that making a point is more important to him than telling a good story.

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