I’m a big fan of the Bill Willingham’s comics. He is a brilliant and talented writer, but this is unbelievable.
To sum up really quickly, he claims that comic’s have become too liberal and un-American.
Before I go on, let me just make it clear that I’m not offended by this because of my political views. I’m not a Democrat or a Republican, liberal, or conservative. I could care less what Mr. Willingham’s political beliefs are. What really pisses me off is this hateful garbage that isn’t even grounded in reality.
Mr. Willingham says:
“Marvel’s legendary patriot Captain America, in a comic book story published shortly after 9/11 spent a good part of the issue apologizing to the super terrorist he was battling about all of the terrible things America did in its pursuit of the cold war against the Soviets. “(But) we’ve changed. We’ve learned,” he whines. “My people never knew!” Then again, at least ol’ Cap was fighting the bad guy, so maybe there’s still hope.”
That issue looked at the tragedy of 9/11 as a global tragedy. That there were a series of causes and effects that resulted in a heinous act of terrorism.
Captain America is my favorite superhero because he always fought for the American ideal, not the American Government. He battled for the ideals and freedoms that make America, while recognizing that our politicians and policies weren’t always in keeping with those ideals and freedoms.
Willingham also says:
“No more superhero decadence [That’s his euphemism for everything he doesn’t agree with] for me. Period. From now on, when I write within the superhero genre I intend to do it right. And if I am ever again privileged to be allowed to write Superman, you can bet your sweet bootie that he’ll find the opportunity to bring back “and the American way,” to his famous credo.”
Mr. Willingham go %^&* yourself. Superman began as a Depression era crusader of the people. Not America. Not a government. Not a way of life. He fought for the people. He dealt with everything from corrupt politicians, to street hooligans, to evil menacing police officers. It was about the rights of the people, not the policies of the Government. When World War II started everything switched gears to supporting American nationalism because it was what the people needed. The Jewish comic creators also wanted nothing more than to stomp-out Hitler and the Nazis like a cigarette.
Mr. Willingham is confusing patriotism with nationalism. In the words of Albert Einstein, “Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind.”
Patriotism is about loving your country enough to tell it when it’s wrong (someone smarter than me said that, I just don’t remember whom).
Nationalism is about a mindless love of government regardless of its policies or the character of its leaders.
With the exception of the 1940’s and 50’s, comics have been a largely progressive and liberal medium. Deal with it. You don’t have to agree if you enjoy the story.
To act like our actions, or lack thereof in the aftermath of the failed Soviet invasion of Afghanistan were responsible and just, is downright stupid. The fact that Mr. Willingham has a problem with Captain America voicing such a realization is hardly a problem with the comic industry.
This editorial is akin to meeting a band that you really like and respect, only to discover that they are jerks. The music is the same, but listening to them isn’t quite what it was before you knew that they weren’t nice people. Bill, I will keep reading your work because you’re talented, but it won’t be the same.