Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Byrne victim

I am a marvel zombie from way back, I used to collect comics but I stopped some time ago. One of my favorite artists was John Byrne, the dude could draw although his depiction of black people was a little limited it was okay because not many black people showed up in the comics. My only prob with Byrne was his way of putting little sneaky racial stuff in his works.
A while ago in his website he used the word "nigger" in a rather offensive way. I know how can you use it in a non-offensive way. The problem I had was that he compared the use of the N-word as being interchangeable with black, like the two words for the word bubbles in comics that hold the dialogue of the characters. I don’t know about you but "word balloon" and "word bubble" has never been as repugnant as "nigger" to me. Not only was his analogy wrong but also it was gross and a little racist. I just think it was a way for the dude to say his own feelings. As for some of his works I have a problem with, they are numerous.

  1. Fantastic four- (241) Byrne finally uses the Black Panther in a story but it is destroyed by his antagonist being a racist, a Greek or Roman racist too at a time when the kind of racism that exists today the villain would not even be aware of

  2. Captain America- (I am not sure of the issue number) Captain America is having a flashback about being in school and the pictures are an obvious play on the little rascals and there is buckwheat pictured as an inkspot. I don’t know if it was the colorist’s doing or the way it was drawn but I am sure Byrne was happy with the results.

  3. Marvel Fanfare- (29) Hammer and Anvil star in this issue. They are marvel comic’s play on The Defiant Ones (one is black the other is white)and they battle the hulk. In the end of the story a mysterious stranger blast one of the two in the face with a gun (guess which one?)

  4. Omac limited series- here we have Byrne doing a reworking of the classic Kirby character (Kirby being the one artist he is compared to most and he has chased his whole career) there is one scene that has been changed from the original comics. A scene depicting how to relieve stress. There are these dolls that you can kick and beat up. Well Byrne decided that one of the dolls should be black complete with wide mouth and white lips. A change from the original drawing by Kirby.

I could go on but I think I made my point

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