Heartily Recommended!

I suggest you all check out Marcus Singer’s new blog–I Am Not the Beastmaster. He’s off to a great start, posting on Spidey Super-Stories, Cockrum’s second stint on The Uncanny (get the joke, Freud fans?), and The Alan Alda school of super-hero team writing! Here’s a quotation from that last piece:

There is, in fact, something oddly liberal about all this emotiveness, but only in the way that conservatives have turned liberalism into a perjorative (and a deeply inaccurate one) – and since I’m a fan of liberals who roll up their sleeves, tackle poverty and Depression and racism and sexual discrimination and pop Hitler one in the jaw while they’re at it, I find that this caring, sharing stuff bothers me precisely because it breathes a little life into the lie, because it helps conservatives to confuse the political goals and ideals (and impressive achievements) of liberalism with the fairly ephemeral popular culture that emerged in the decade of its decline.

Wonderful, no?

Also, John Commonplacebook doesn’t blog much about comics, but whenever he does, it’s always a treat (which is not to say it isn’t a treat when he writes about how dreadfully overrated Saul Bellow is, or The Passion of Caviezel–he’s always good!). Anyway, today he’s discussing Morrison’s run on The New X-Men, and it’s great. I wish I had something to contribute, but I just haven’t been able to get my hands on these… Oh well, later on this year, I’m planning to read Morrison’s entire oeuvre, but until then, I’ll have to content myself with the fascinating criticism that his work has generated. Such as:

Despite the drone of anti-superhero, anti-mainstream pygmies, Morrison has used a corporate super-hero vehicle to humanize his vision, to show us compassion and love at their thrilling work of resisting the antibodies of evil, to map a new world in which evil itself cannot be defined as the alien to be destroyed because it is the part of the self that must be mastered. With considerably more intelligence than his literal-minded detractors, he bends a corporation and its low standards to his own good will; with more grace and courage than most of his contemporaries in high and low art, he aims to redefine evil, life and love and to generally increase the amount of understanding and kindness in the world. He is a radical in the etymological sense, paring away all the accrued meaning to find its root in our primary circumstance of existing as a self in relation to others–and nowhere is this radicalism more apparent than in his criminally underappreciated dialogue, which eschews mere naturalism to acquire a sometimes breathtaking terse lyrical eloquence. He believes some strange things and he writes little colored pamphlets subsidized by the consolidating colossuses that bring us war and disinformation, but his business is information and peace, and our dirty money is better spent on his pamphlets than on many of the hardcover novels put out by the same colossuses. New X-Men is one of the new century’s great works of art.

I can well believe it.

I bid you good day friends!



  1. Thanks for the recommendation, Dave! And please, it’s just Marc – the “Marcus” is a quirk of my work email – for some reason I would rather be confused with the Beastmaster than go by my given name. Go figure.

  2. Thanks for the plug! Based on what I can tell of your tastes, I think you’ll definitely like both New X-Men and The Filth, probably moreso than The Invisibles and (from the bits I’ve read of it) JLA.

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