Header Ads

Marvel's New Captain America Comic Criticized for Political Content

Marvel's Captain America has often been a lightning rod for controversy, and that's true even today. Comic books have always been political, and that's especially been the case for Captain America. The star-spangled Avenger famously punched Adolf Hitler on a comic book cover, had an entire arc in reaction to the Watergate scandal, and has waded into the modern culture wars on many occasions - including in Nick Spencer's Captain America run, which saw Sam Wilson suit up as Captain America, a plot now copied in the MCU.

Marvel's new miniseries, The United States of Captain America, feels like a concerted response to the culture war. The story is essentially an exploration of what Captain America means to people, revealing countless different individuals who've reinvented themselves as Captains America in honor of everything Steve Rogers represents. The first issue opens with the original Captain America reflecting on the American Dream, concluding there are two American Dreams and one American Lie. The first American Dream is an isolationist one, the white-picket-fence ideal of Americana which angers people when it becomes unattainable. This American Dream easily becomes the American Lie, the fence becoming a gate that is slammed shut in the faces of others. In Rogers' view, Captain America stands for a second American Dream - a true dream, something that is shared with others, that inspires its adherents to reach out in hope.

Related: Spider-Man Disrespects Captain America in The Cruelest Way Possible

These comments haven't gone down well with right-wing commentators. The Washington Times published an article discussing this issue, bearing the title "Marvel celebrates July 4 weekend by having Captain America say American dream ‘isn’t real’." This prompted former Superman actor Dean Cain to speak out. "The cool, the fashionable thing to do is to bash America and to hate America," Cain explained. "I love the concept of Captain America, but I am so tired of this wokeness and anti-Americanism. In my opinion, America is the greatest country in history. It’s not perfect. We are constantly striving for a more perfect union, but I believe she’s the most fair, equitable country anyone’s ever seen, and that’s why people are clamoring to get here from all over the globe." He later admitted on Twitter he hadn't read the issue he was discussing but stood by every word.

Cain is a frequent critic of what he perceives as anti-American politics in comic books in particular, and in 2020 he waded into another controversy over whether the classic version of Superman would work in modern comics. "I promise you, as Superman, I wouldn't today be allowed to say truth, justice and the American Way," he insisted, prompting a dismissive reaction from comic book writer Tom King, who was able to demonstrate he'd put that line in a panel not long ago. The Arrowverse's Superman & Lois series has indeed used the phrase more recently, albeit in an amusing scene in which Lois used the expression "the American Way" during an interview in an attempt to find out whether Superman was American.

Cain isn't the only one to make his views on Captain America known. Arkansas senator Tom Cotton suggested "Captain America should be demoted to Lieutenant" in another interview on Fox, and former Hercules: The Legendary Journeys star Kevin Sorbo supported Cain over this "new, political Captain America." The main counter-argument appears to be that, if America was so bad, people wouldn't still be trying to flock into the country, which doesn't seem to be particularly connected to the argument made in the comic itself. Given Captain America's history of sparking controversy, it's fitting that the character's thoughts on the American dream would highlight such deep cultural divisions.

More: Captain America's New Iron Man Armor Officially Debuts

No comments:

Powered by Blogger.