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Mild Mannered Reviews - Specials

DC Universe: Decisions #1

DC Universe: Decisions #1

Scheduled to arrive in stores: September 17, 2008

Cover date: November 2008

"Chapter One: The Green Endorsement"

Writer: Bill Willingham and Judd Winick
Penciller: Rick Leonardi
Inker: Karl Story and Dan Green

Neal Bailey Reviewed by: Neal Bailey

Click to enlarge



Kate McClellan, a candidate for president (who looks suspiciously like Condoleeza Rice made safe for a discerning, read: easily offended audience), is threatened by a potential bombing from a trusted staffer. The attacker doesn't realize she's committed a crime. The bomb goes off anyway, hurting the crowd and spurring the heroes to action.

They agree to protect the major candidates, but Green Arrow suggests they protect candidates they're sympathetic to.

As Green Arrow assures the crowd there's no threat, a bomber appears from the staff of his chosen candidate. He stops the plan, but learns the antagonist had no knowledge of the plot.

Green Arrow is tricked into tacitly endorsing, through a camera trick, the candidate.

Lois and Clark discuss politics. Lois indicates she leans conservative, Clark won't pony up.

Perry White sends Lois out to cover the news with a camera because she has a pretty face.

Robin narrows down the suspects to a list of potentials.

Green Arrow, feeling guilty, endorses the Green candidate.

3Story - 3: Credit for the novel idea, condemnation for the novel idea. This is a book that from the start was damned if you do and damned if you don't, which is why it's always a ridiculous idea to try and suss out the politics of a superhero.

You want to know what the politics of every superhero is? I hate to break it to you, but THEY'RE ALL FASCISTS. They amass power, and if you don't fit their view of morality, they pound you into paste, put you in jail, or kill you. But because they're a league of fascists that self-regulate, they're considered utilitarian.

Point of that being, doesn't matter how you bend the politics, you can argue anything. They're all Republican, because they haven't come out FOR Obama. They're all conservative, because they're a small military.

Does any of this add to their character? No. It's just a post-modern exercise. These are superheroes, they fight for good. It's that simple. It doesn't have to be made more nuanced and complex. Adding dimensions to Brainiac through continuity is one thing. Making Lois Lane pretty much confirmed a Republican is quite another.

What are my politics, you may ask, and righteously so, given the subject matter here? Pro-gun. Pro-choice. Small government. Social net for the impoverished. Universal Health Care. Small military. Large endowment for the arts. In general republican in thought, but because of the way they act in office, democrat in voting tendencies.

So how does Lois being markedly conservative because of "upbringing" strike me? On a visceral level, it demeans her, because to me, being a generalized "conservative" after the last eight years we've had frankly makes me feel that one has not been studying what's been going on.

But then, if you're conservative, don't take that wrong. Because you might also be demeaned in this because she didn't state she was Republican, just what she leaned. It was left so vague as to be maddening, with no specificity of example or rationality.

It is simply an excuse to piss people off, frankly, and get them talking. And no doubt, for what I've written above, I'll get people talking in much the same fashion just for being honest, which is why I won't be reading the comments for this review. I don't need it. You don't need it. We don't need it. More politics is not what we need. What we need is GOOD PEOPLE. SUPERHEROES. Politics regardless.

Green Arrow wanting to protect a candidate of his choosing was unheroic and out of character. Endorsing a candidate for the Green party, while IN character, is not telling us anything NEW about his character.

This is like Arena. It's for fun, to piss people off, to rattle the cage, and thusfar, it serves no purpose beyond that. If you're looking for that, this is a book for you.

But hey, if to accomplish that end they're turning Lois not only into a semi-conservative, but a pretty face in a camera because she's a pretty face, you can have it.

I'm not buying the next issue, I'm "borrowing" it, and I'm disappointed. I expect better from both writers involved. This is a shock book with little point I can discern that is going to have to dance around its points and still tick people off. There are so many better, non-divisive things that can be done with these characters.

2Art - 2: Gangly and a little rough hewn, many of the figures looked off in terms of dimensions, and there wasn't a panel that reached out and grabbed me for the whole of the book, unfortunately. The coloring is great, but a lot of the general characters looked strange in ways.

3Cover Art - 3: Interesting draw-in concept, but the characters seem disinterested and uninvolved, perhaps on purpose, but it still says DISINTERESTED and UNINVOLVED to the eye. Beyond that, it's a Green endorsement, not a liberal endorsement. And to those of you who might not see a distinction, those who did got Bush elected, for good or ill, so I wouldn't underestimate the distinction any more than you would say you could conservatively endorse a libertarian. Same Phylum, differing Genus.


Mild Mannered Reviews

2008

Note: Month dates are from the issue covers, not the actual date when the comic went on sale.

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