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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1959.3/26276
- Magneto Was Right! When 'anarchy and magic' are the new 'time and space'
- McCrea, Christian
- The sharpest 'fiction suits' on the streets of our new etheropolis are worn by myth-smart, magic-savvy culture engineers whose radical politics are forged in four-dimensional experiences that may never happen. When the supervillans moved from the exterior, to the interior, to the purely and lethally symbolic, so did the superheroes. When one hero continuum has his authorial puppet-strings painted green and played like a autopoetic lysergic Stratocaster, questioning the nature of their construction and waxing lyrical the bald heads of the creators - and the next comic on the shelf is bound up in the eternal struggle of Spandex vs. Helmet, you realise the real value of heroes has shifted from giving us 'certainty' to giving us 'doubt'. The real epic knock-out battles, as ever, are being fought between artist and publisher, future and past. On one hand, the instinct to push the page and screen into increasingly rapid and weird ways to interact with audiences; the chaotic acceleration of potentials. The other, the colossal weight of tradition, of familiar ways to write and draw, and to make people pay for the results. This paper will paint a picture of the new kinds of struggles that superheroes face, and tie them into the kind of cultural movements that the medium faces - namely commercialisation and ghettoisation, and suggests that something wonderful has changed. The superhero has more moments of existential crisis than Crises of Existence these days; the viruses propogated by Moore, Morrison, Mignola, et al, masquerading as a slight hiccup of postmodern naval-gazing turned out to wholly lethal; the prognosis isn't good; we may have to operate. Maybe Magneto Was Right.
- Publication type
- Conference paper
- Paper presented at Holy Men in Tights : A Superheroes Conference, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 09-12 June 2005
- Publication year
- Antiheroes; Comics; Commercialisation; Critical theory; Cultural studies; Crisis; Existentialism; Hero continuum; Magneto; Postmodernism; Superheroes; Supervillains; X-Men
- University of Melbourne
- Publisher URL
- Peer reviewed