Welcome friends to Back Issue Bloodbath, a comics-centric podcast presented by Geek Hard. Join hosts Andrew Young and Petula Neale as they get down and dirty in the four-colour world of comic books, focusing on classic stories, new issues, comic creators and hot button topics.
This week on Bloodbath, we take a look at the times when a group of people or an individual in the real world takes a comic book symbol or character and uses it to represent their cause. Some use it to hide behind to flee from persecution. Others use it as a rallying cry to entice and attract others of likeminded beliefs. And some use it as a way to bring others down while promoting their own agenda. Co-opting comics is not always in line with the creator of that character’s original intent.
We’ve seen comics used as symbols in real world events a good amount over the past few years. In 2019, protestors around the world donned the Joker’s face paint and signature look for a number of unique reasons. Over the past few years, police and servicemen have adopted the Punisher’s skull insignia, wearing patches on their gear and even painting it on their squad cars. But this is not a new phenomenon. Wonder Woman has been a gay icon. The X-Men represent oppression for a number of different marginalized groups. Co-opting comics can provide iconography for people to relate to. For better or for worse, they are a simple aid in sending a message.
Join Andrew and Petula as they look at a various number of groups that are co-opting comics characters to represent them. We also dive into the effects and influence the comics code authority has had on the use of some of these symbols. It’s another interesting conversation on the power of art on an ALL NEW Back Issue Bloodbath!
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