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Analytic articles, whether historical or literary, scholarly or popular. Views expressed are not necessarily those of Sequart.

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cap 24Capital Thoughts: Captain America #24

Superhero families have always been something of a mystery.  As most serious readers of comics know, the 1955 Comics Authority banned virtually all sexual activity from comics, and even within the bounds of marriage, sex… [more]

batman-returns-pic-1The Politics of Batman, Part 5: Batman Returns, Enron, and the Buying of American Democracy

I first saw the film Batman Returns when it was released in 1992. I was young and didn’t understand it. I found the Penguin disgusting. I had a sense that the movie was condemning American… [more]

Black Jesus giving Lloyd a salad as a gift, even though Lloyd is actively undermining him.Discovering Black Jesus, Episode 5 “Fried Green Tomatoes”

Boonie: Man, God ain’t good man. God sucks right now. Black Jesus: Oh negro of little faith, isn’t the miracle of the forgivin’ cholos enough proof to let yo’ disbelievin’ ass know that God want… [more]

from Swamp Thing #157, by Millar, Hester, DeMulder et al.“Why d’you think God created abortion clinics?” On Swamp Thing #140-171 (The American Superhero Comics Of Mark Millar, Part 38)

Continued from last week. After abortion as a vehicle for laddish jokes and abortion as a means for evoking terror, Millar turned to abortion as a symbol of crass irresponsibility. (ST: 147/152/157) In Sink Or… [more]

William Shatner, Nashville Comic ConThe Shatner News No One Covered: Scenes from a Comics Convention, Part 1

Recently, Denise Dorman, the wife of the great Star Wars artist, Dave Dorman, posted a blog where she described the financial difficulties faced by many of the comics creators who attend conventions.  Hers was a… [more]

Cromagnon OrgasmIs Cromagnon’s Orgasm Worth Your Time?

Austin Grasmere and Brian Elliot were successful pop producers in the mid 1960s. Despite their eminent reputations in the popular music industry, they wished to create a more experimental album, as a sort of hobby… [more]

errolandsisterTrue Detective Explores the Roots and Branches of Southern Gothic

Set on the Gulf Coast of Louisiana, and filled with images of hurricane-wrought destruction, the first season of True Detective uses many Southern Gothic visual elements. Physical decay evokes themes of moral decay, which are… [more]

deadwood1lgThe Second Coming of Television

The Beast -with sincere apologies to W.B Yeats. Blogging and blogging in widening participation The ‘twoten to’ cannot follow the timeline; Schedules fall apart; the box-set cannot hold; Cyber-anarchy is loosed upon the world, The… [more]

comic-book-snap-poll-are-you-a-twd-comic-book-readerZomBeing and Nothingness: Part 2

Previously: Being faithful to your genre, monsters as liminal beings, and horror as fascination. Beyond Thunderdome If the archetypal zombie story is apocalyptic, it’s worth considering what apocalyptic stories actually are. Chandra Phelan notes that… [more]

36094-5415-40307-1-man-called-a-x-theBrian’s Comic Book Grab Bag: The Man Called A-X Volume 1 #3

On Christmas Day 2013, my brother gave me a booster pack of random, non-sequential issues from a variety of popular comic book titles that syndicated in the late eighties to mid nineties. The nineties was… [more]

buildafriendOh, My Aching Cranium! : Jack Kirby’s OMAC Deconstructed And Reconstructed, Part Five

Hey, look! It’s our “girl” from the cover—and apparently she’s got a name and everything! Dear readers, allow me—by way of Jack Kirby, of course—to introduce you to Lila, a manufactured “Build-A-Friend” that comes our… [more]

from Swamp Thing #157, by Millar, Hester, DeMulder et al.“Terminate This Pregnancy”; On Swamp Thing #140-171 (The American Superhero Comics Of Mark Millar, Part 37)

Continued from last week. Millar makes more use of the topic of abortion in Swamp Thing than most superhero writers do in a lifetime. In each case, abortion is used either as a symbol of… [more]

ftmwhecoverThe Last Temptation of Supe: Christian Overtones in “For the Man Who Has Everything”

On those rare occasions when I teach students about superhero comics, one question that always comes up is what defines a “hero”. Is, for example, a hero simply an individual who does heroic things? Or… [more]

From Hell Chapter 10, page 15Delivering the 20th Century, Part 3: Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell’s From Hell

In re-reading From Hell, it’s hard not to marvel at the liberation Alan Moore seems to be enjoying.  Despite the brilliance of his earlier superhero and horror stories, there was often still a sense of… [more]

Article Thumb“A Narrative Structure in Which Despite a Series of Ridiculous Mishaps, All Goes Well”: On Multiversity: The Society of Super-Heroes: Conquerors of the Counter-World #1

Nearly a month ago the Multiversity event kicked off in grand fashion. Not long after that I took a lengthy and in depth look at the first issue. With the release of The Society of… [more]

Uncanny X-Men #246 - Page 1X-Men: To the Outback & Beyond… Dying of the Light

After putting them through the wringer with Inferno, Chris Claremont gave our merry mutants a two issue break filled with shopping and drinking while simultaneously broaching the fallout of the event and introducing Jubilee.  Now… [more]

Boonie preparing to go to jail.Discovering McGruder’s Black Jesus: “I Gave at the Playground,” Episode 4

Fighting the struggle to unite a broken community in Compton, Black Jesus seems to meet his match in Black Jesus, episode 4 “I Gave at the Playground.” This complicates McGruder’s construction of Jesus more so… [more]

Frontispiece_to_Frankenstein_1831ZomBeing and Nothingness: Part 1

“A Zombie movie that never ends” Like a lot of people, I love reading The Walking Dead and I’m not always sure why. Robert Kirkman, Charlie Adlard, and Tony Moore’s book is ludicrously successful, not… [more]

444333-shi_heaven_and_earth_4_00bBrian’s Comic Book Grab Bag: Shi: Heaven and Earth Volume 1 #4

On Christmas Day 2013, my brother gave me a booster pack of random, non-sequential issues from a variety of popular comic book titles that syndicated in the late eighties to mid nineties. The nineties was… [more]

12975-2665-14550-1-omacOh, My Aching Cranium!: Jack Kirby’s OMAC Deconstructed And Reconstructed, Part Four

“Man, that cover scared the shit out of me when I was a kid!” You have no idea how many times I’ve heard or read various iterations of that same statement made in regards to… [more]

killingthemsoftly2014-09-11-21h08m30s147On The Act of Killing

I suspect The Act of Killing is going to be eternally seared into my memory. Anwar Congo’s smiling face isn’t going fade soon. The last article I wrote I included this quote from Russian director… [more]

Wonder Woman_9Overcoming the Status Quo: Wonder Woman, Superheroes, and the American Criminal Justice System (Part 3)

In this three-part series, I explore where superheroes fit into popular conceptions of criminal justice in the United States, and the potential for Wonder Woman to help improve those conceptions. In Part 1, I looked… [more]

from Swamp Thing #152, by Millar, Hester, DeMulder et al.“Her Deepest, Hidden Secrets”; On Swamp Thing #140-171 (The American Superhero Comics Of Mark Millar, Part 36)

Continued from last week. As so often before, Murder In The Dark saw Millar indulging in two of his greatest fascinations: body horror at the expense of helpless female victims and the tradition and dogma… [more]

Chapter 4 page 32Delivering the 20th Century, Part 2: Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell’s From Hell

Last week’s column looked at the origins of Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell’s From Hell.  This week it’s time to dive into some of the highlights from the first half of the book. The Prologue,… [more]

2001-a-space-odysseyWhat Makes a Great Movie?

Ever wondered how I would define a great movie? No. Um… Maybe give this a read anyways? I explain how I would define a great movie, if you couldn’t guess. [more]