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Old May 6 2012, 05:47 PM   #21
LaxScrutiny
Commodore
 
Location: Toronto, Canada
Re: Captain America: Sex, War & Domination

Cap isn't just a boy scout, he is the quintessential, super-boy-scout. The essay addresses this, and explores how the movie addresses this.

The idea that Cap is a virgin, and "dies" a virgin at the end of his movie, is significant. Despite the supposed purity of WWII era movies, the men at the time were spreading veneral disease across Europe. The point of Captain America is that he is personally SO GODDAMNED ETHICAL AND MORAL. It's great that he is, and the comic world needs ONE character like this. WHY IS HE LIKE THIS?

Kal-El/Clark Kent is like this because he is alien, because he has unlimited power in his world, and because he has a repressed, highly moralized upbringing. What is Steve Roger's excuse?

It's fair to ask that question, and it's fair to credit the movie for addressing it. Steve Rogers is the 1940s version of the 21st Century computer nerd who can't get laid. He is the cliche that we construct jokes around. It is perfectly fair to ask, what is the character and inner personality of a man who starts out that weak and powerless, who is bullied to that degree, and then becomes that powerful? His stance against bullying isn't just moral, it is OCD and bordering on fetishism. He has made up his mind about a black and white stance on right and wrong, and become locked into it to the point of never again questioning himself.

Steve Rogers isn't just frozen in ice, he is frozen ideologically. His ideology isn't 1940s America or democracy, it is the ideology of a chronic victim. That isn't the worst thing in the world. It is certainly believable that it is the motivation of someone who actively NEEDS to be a superhero. There are a thousand things he could have ended up doing with his power, but he drives himself in one direction only. Yes, he is neurotic, and it isn't ridiculous to ask in what ways his neurosis manifests.

To think that Steve Rogers never ever ever thinks about sex or is never motivated by it, is to reduce him to something far less human than the rest of us. He is supposed to super human, not sub human. Can we not imagine that his sex drive is as powerful as his physique implies? Certainly Peggy imagines it, as well as the secretary who tries to seduce him. The sexuality is there. He represses it, this is fact. So let's not delude ourselves that there is no repercussion to this repression.
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