Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Dusty Ayres, Jul 30, 2009.
Superman and Batman to join forces with Islamic superheroes
side-note, I remember when they first launched those series of comics, hearing about them, you know attempt to give the kids there heroes more relateable to the culture, that kind of thing. Had no clue whether it would be successful or not.
Kind of interesting to now hear that they sold well in the Middle East and getting an animated film.
An Islamic Justice League? Nice.
I wonder who twisted what arms to get this done...
This is hardly something new. There have been Islamic/Arab characters in comics before.
This just smacks of PC PR.
Doubtful. It's just a product made for people who don't feel the same way you do. There's nothing wrong with that, is there?
There have been Islamic/Arab heroes before (the article implies that the 99 have been around for a while), but I don't think there's ever been a crossover between a huge American company and a Middle Eastern comic company. That in itself is huge.
You say it smacks of PC PR, I think this is the right direction towards multiculturalism. And who better than the All-American Superman to help lead the way? Let's not forget that the US fought Iraq to save Kuwait in 1991.
There may be, there may NOT be. The timing and the hoopla seem a bit fishy to me. A lot will depend on how it's written I suppose. Will these "good Muslem heroes" be shown cleaning house on Talibans and Al-Qs or will this be a "learning experince" puff job where the "westerners" learn that "everthing they (think) they know about Muslems is wrong"?
Probably a combination of both.
Which is perhaps the right thing.
The most important thing tho' is that comics starring the heroes I like will be read by a larger world audience. I feel a little depressed at seeing all the manga-love (not that there's anything wrong with it) in relation to comics-love at the neighborhood B&N.
For 46 years, we've had the X-Men build a franchise out of fighting villains who are racial extremists who aren't that different than the KKK. The X-Men are also international in both content and appeal. If it works for them, how about focusing on some other issues of tolerance and community?
Additionally, and I hope I'm not painting too broad a stroke, but most comic readers are teens or early 20s and aren't normally used to such discourse anyway. Go to any comic book message board and just cringe at the sheer number of racial or homophobic slurs being passed around that shows that we've got a long way to go.
Again, either way, it's made for people who don't think like you do. Why MUST it conform to your philosophy in order to be "right"? Don't you support free enterprise?
I'm not sure you understand that these comics are written and published in Kuwait for Mideastern audiences. And don't worry about this being some kind of apologist tract for Islamist radicals -- nothing could be further from the truth.
The very nature of the comic, stressing multiculturalism and diversity within an Islamic philosophical framework, is a repudiation of the intolerance and fundamentalism of Islamist militants. Too many Americans assume that the Mideast conflict is about Us vs. Them, but in reality, we're a peripheral player (albeit a catalyst as well) in a deep-seated conflict within Islamic society, a conflict between the forces of modernization and inclusion on the one hand and traditionalism and intolerance on the other hand. Most of al-Qaeda's targets and victims are fellow Muslims who reject their narrow view of their faith. This comic reflects the philosophies of the kind of liberal, inclusive Muslims whom groups like al-Qaeda and the Taliban consider their worst enemies. Comics like this, that help spread inclusive values and remind Muslims of what their faith really teaches, rather than the lies that the fundamentalists spread, could be one of the best weapons against militant fundamentalism. Because terrorists and militants can only thrive so long as the rank-and-file populace tolerates them and believes their existence is necessary.
Let's also not forget that when Saddam had his troops on the border ready to invade, we told him that his problems with Kuwait were not a US concern.
Compared to the multiple times that Western characters lecture others on their failings, this is tit for tat.
And as for 'good Muslim heroes' cleaning house on Al-Q or the Taliban; why should they have to? The story can be about both sets of heroes fighting an alien invasion-it doesn't necessarily have to have them fight the great American bogeymen just so that an audience of mostly American comic book fanboys can see the heroes kick the butts of said bogeymen from here to Pluto.
I've heard about The 99 before, but material featuring them is pretty scarce on the ground here; hopefully this deal will lead to a bit more of it being made available here, because I've always been interested in seeing western-style superheroes adapted for another culture.
I didn't say it shouldn't be published. I said I was unimpressed by it.
Interesting. If it turns out that my concerns are unwarranted, then so be it.
1) Thousands of dead Americans tell me that Al-Q and the Taliban are more than "the boogeyman".
2) To ONLY portray Muslem metas as "heroes" is an implicit denial of reality. By most estimates, the extremist wahabbi element of Islam amounts to ~10% of the total Muslem population. By that percentage, at least 10 (9.9) of the "99" should be villains.
327 of the victims of the September 11th attack were non-Americans. Over 60 of the victims were Muslims, both American and otherwise. Al Qaeda's various terrorist actions around the world have killed over 1400 non-Americans, including hundreds of Muslims. Al Qaeda corrupts and violates Muslim principles, which explicitly forbid killing noncombatants, women, and children as well as fellow Muslims. They are traitors to their own professed faith.
Most of the people killed by the Taliban have been Afghanis or Pakistanis from rival factions, or Afghanis who were executed during the Taliban's reign. Again, they are a threat to Muslims, not just to Americans.
That's bigoted bullshit. Even if a fair percentage of rank-and-file Muslims are sympathetic to Wahhabist views, that doesn't mean they actually engage in terrorist acts. They're not "villains." They're ordinary people who have been misled by Wahhabist propaganda into thinking that Wahhabism is their only hope for a better life and that the West is an enemy that needs to be battled. Just as you've been misled by racist propaganda into accepting such a monstrously absurd and idiotic notion that fully ten percent of a population of over a billion people could be actively engaged in terrorism. Good grief, simple arithmetic proves how stupid that notion is. Muslims constitute nearly a fifth of the world's population of 6.9 billion, so 10% of Muslims would be nearly 140 million people. The total number of military personnel in the entire world as of 2000 was less than 20 million. If seven times that many people were actively involved in Islamic militancy, they would've conquered the whole damn planet by now!
Terrorist groups consist of small numbers of people in decentralized cells. Al Qaeda isn't even really a single organization, just a common rallying cry for various independent extremist groups. It's been estimated that their active "membership" is under a thousand people. Even most of the people who've gone through Qaeda training camps don't actually swear allegiance to the cause.
You want villains, look at the government of Saudi Arabia. The Saudi regime has ruthlessly oppressed, disenfranchised, and impoverished its people for decades, and in order to divert the people's rage and frustration away from themselves, they've aggressively backed the Wahhabist movement and encouraged anti-American sentiments, making us into a scapegoat. Al Qaeda would never have amounted to anything without the Saudi government's support, and the Saudi people would never have been angry or poor or desperate enough to turn to extremism without their government's oppression. And this is a government that America treats as an ally because we need their oil.
Don't blame the common people of the Islamic world for the oppression and lies of their leaders. These are people who have been manipulated and misled by a corrupt few into believing that the West is to blame for all their problems (when in fact we're only partly to blame) and that we're trying to conquer and destroy their civilization. They're not villains, they're victims.
Besides, your argument makes no sense. The 99 are meant to be representatives of the ideals of Islamic philosophy. One in 15 Americans have gone to prison, but does that mean that if the Justice League has 30 members, two of them should be villains? Hero teams represent the best of their societies. That's what makes them heroes.
You said that there may be something "wrong". You suggested that undue influence was brought to bear in order to get it published. You said it "smacks of PC PR." I'm sure you meant that it should be published.
Ok see this is what I was talking about. You don't want "your" heroes changed to reflect the world. I think you said create your own heroes. So when someone does create their own heroes to fight along side Superman and Batman you say it smacks of PC. Yeah I don't any problem with you way of thinking at all.
So good sir, what exactly would you like to be done for those of us who want to see stories told from a different POV.
Oh good! Finally the long-awaited team up with JihadBoy and SuicideGirl!
With their I.R.E. (Improvised Roadside Explosives) Organization they are sure to be an asset to the Dynamic Duo and purge all infidel criminals from the holy lands...and beyond!
Complications arise when JihadBoy and SuicideGirl discover that the Dynamic Duo must be beheaded with a dull butter knife -- as they too are infidels.
Separate names with a comma.