Go forth and read Spencer’s piece in the Prospect about Iron Man’s evolution as an embodiment of American imperial power. And, while you’re at it, make sure you read Julian’s analysis of how comics have grappled with the rise of bellicose authoritarianism in the wake of 9/11 (although if you didn’t see that one in the print edition you really should hunt down a copy so you can see the associated art). Both are excellent.
But I have to admit that I’m a little embarrassed by just how excellent I think they are — how compelling I find the arguments, and how seriously I’m prepared to engage with them. Not because the authors aren’t brilliant, but because — c’mon — comic books.
Is our generation really about to start running society? Really? Shouldn’t an adult step in and do something about this before the joke goes too far?
Not that I’m complaining, mind you. I’m just feeling slightly sheepish about the fact that back issues of Marvel Universe seem poised to supplant French and German as gateways to the structures underpinning our society’s intellectual discourse.
To everyone who’s going to find this tedious: sincere apologies. It’ll only be for the next fifty years or so.