More Storytelling and Less Politics Please

The comic book industry has a massive reader base. From the “big two” to the smaller indie publishers, there’s a comic to suit every age. Superheroes, horror, romance, crime, fantasy, teenage, young children. You name it, they produce them. However, I feel the past year has been nothing more than a political arena to me.

It’s not about telling a story anymore. It’s about WHO is going to be in the story. Diversity in comics. You have some yelling, “There’s not enough minorities in comics.” Others are screaming, “There needs to be gays in comics.”

I got back into reading comics shortly before DC Comics released The New 52 titles. A few of those titles were minority-led. Static Shock, Mr. Terrific, Blue Beetle and Voodoo to name a few. Then we saw Marvel Comics Miles Morales, or black Spider-Man. I thought, “Good, more minorities are taking leading roles in comics.” For a moment I even thought everyone would be happy and forget about the politics. That didn’t happen. There’s always someone who has to oppose the situation. Not many people were happy about the changes being made to their “favorite” character. “Why kill Peter Parker and replace him with someone black?” I didn’t feel like getting caught up in that web, and not just because I’m terrified of spiders. So I kept my mouth shut (well I did run it a little bit. Okay okay I ran it like a faucet) and patiently waited to see what would happen next.

I really don’t know what happened next, or if anything happened at all with the above situations. I do know that nearly all the minority-led DC titles were canceled. Miles Morales? I don’t know. That’s wasn’t a title I was reading so it didn’t matter to me at all.

All is well right? WRONG. More politics. Now there are people kicking and screaming, “There needs to be gays in comics.” Gays in comics. Okay. What does that have to do with comics? Call me gay bashing if you want, I don’t care. I’m just telling it like it is. Some of the comics I’ve read are so overrated it’s sickening. There’s the X-Men story where there’s a gay couple. I haven’t (and don’t plan to) read it. I recall seeing an issue where the cover page is the wedding. It looked as if the entire Marvel Universe was there. Everyone looked happy and okay with it. I even saw Wolverine standing near the front. I was like, “What the f— is this sh-t? Harlequin Romance?”

Then there’s Young Avengers. Issue one was released last week. I REALLY don’t feel like talking about it. So I’ll have to refer you to my review of it. I almost ripped that book in half.

Why am I so mad? I’m not mad about the lack of minorities in comics. Or the lack of gays in comics. I’m mad because this political arena has gotten out of hand. It’s overrated. These comics are getting published with a lack of good storytelling. They throw a black character in this one, and a gay in that one. Then everyone (well almost everyone because I’m not a part of it) is okay with it. Remember that Marvel cover I mentioned above? About everyone being all happy at that wedding? Well that’s how it is in reality right now.

I’ve read so many reviews, blogs and comments from people giving high praises to this political bull. I have to question the validity of some of those reviews. I won’t name any in particular. I’m just saying that I wonder if these people are giving false praises, trying to please the LGBT community. Trying to win follows, likes, mentions or awards. Do they not realize that throwing homosexuals in a story just to say they’re in there is taking away from the story?

So what was all my ranting about in this post? It’s about the comic industry losing focus. It’s not about having a lack of minorities in comics, or a lack of gays in comics. It’s about a lack of focus in comics. Don’t mess up a good story trying to please everyone because I haven’t met or read about anyone yet that has been able to please everyone. It doesn’t matter what color the character is, just make and keep him/her strong in the story. It’s okay to have gays in comics but if it’s a superhero comic, then let there be some butt kicking. You know, superheroes vs. super villains. Like how comics used to be. How comics are supposed to be.