Superman, Spider-Man respond to a message of hope(Read article summary)
For DC and Marvel comic book characters, "Blackest Night" is giving way to "Brightest Day"
When Barack Obama won the 2008 presidential election, many Americans celebrated in a wave of hope and optimism. Not least among the joyous were the comic book makers â€“ at last the White House was occupied by an admitted fan of their genre!
Throughout 2009 and on into 2010, DC Comics, home to Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman, has been producing a limited series of comic books called â€śBlackest Night.â€ť These grim tales cross over different DC publications and have many of the DC heroes facing their dead friends and loved ones who have risen from the grave.
But next month, â€śBlackest Nightâ€ť will give way to â€śBrightest Dayâ€ť â€“ a storyline that will run through a number of new and current series in the line. While details have been sketchy, DC has referred to this as a â€śrebuilding of DC universe.â€ť
Meanwhile, over at Marvel Comics (Disneyâ€™s recent acquisition), characters are working their way through an event called â€śDark Reign.â€ť This storyline â€“ which also crosses over several publications â€“ has allowed the villains to take over, putting the heroes into hiding or on the run.
"Dark Reign,â€ť however, is about to end, with the return of America â€“ oops, I mean CAPTAIN America â€“ who has been thought dead for a couple of years (a none-too-subtle analogy). First, there will be the mini series â€śSiegeâ€ť in which the heroes take back their world from the villains. That will be followed in May by the â€śHeroic Age,â€ť which begins with a relaunch of â€śAvengers #1,â€ť which â€“ in a true spirit of bipartisanship â€“ will reunite Iron Man, a reborn Captain America, and Thor as comrades rather than foes.
Comic book readers across the US canâ€™t help but wonder: Will President Obama be tuning in to the joint DC-Marvel message of hope and change?
Rich Clabaugh is a staff artist at the Monitor.