Like a dog to his vomit …
I just want to expand on my rant from last night on superhero satire and behind-the-scenes superhero stories: I don�t mean it as a criticism of Sean�s script. It�s a fine script. I once tried a metasuperhero story myself, and it didn�t turn out nearly that good. It was called �Spatulaman.�
And there�s the crux of my argument. I�ve done metasuperheroes. Everyone�s done metasuperheroes. SPACE is clogged with them. Jim Robinson did it well with �Starman,� Kurt Busiek hit it out of the park in �Astro City.� �The Tick� exhausted superhero satire about 15 years ago.
What�s really sick about metasuperhero stories is that they�re meant to be a more grown-up version superhero stories — but they fall into their own set of cliches. If you don�t see a body, the villain isn�t dead. What do you want us to wear — yellow spandex? If I put on a pair of glasses, no one will recognize me in my secret identity! A cliche based on a cliche is not where we want to be as a medium.
The superhero has been deconstructed and reconstructed. Regurgitated and re-ingested. And it wasn�t much of a meal to begin with, folks. Superheroes seem to work well in our little words-and-pictures medium, but they were never meant to stand up to this kind of scrutiny.
The fact that we keep raping this festering corpse points to a severe lack of imagination in our medium as a whole. Do we have so little source material that we have to keep mining this completely unrealistic concept? And like I said last night, anyone who brings in anything remotely original is hailed as a genius.
�Whiteout�s� a bad mystery, folks — even on an episode of Scooby-Doo, you�re not quite sure if the villain was the kindly old farmer or Mr. Creeply. He hid the jewels in the corpses — and he would�ve gotten away with it, too, if it hadn�t been for that meddling marshal! All it has going for it is some uneven atmospherics and a few factoids on Antarctica. Grab a Kleenex and wipe yourself off.
So in conclusion: Let the superhero rest in peace. Read a book. Observe life. Talk to some people. Show me something new.