Today I want to explore the art of embracing my Dark Side with villain archetypes. We have a tendency to love villains more than heroes. Although we think of ourselves wonderful people, some of us tend to root for the villains. Meanwhile, we talk all about positivity and try to be our best. However, we do have a dark side. How we manage it make us villains or heroes for the people around us.
In ancient times, people used mythology to explore their bright and dark sides. We can believe we’ve forgotten this stage in evolution, but we aren’t that different from our ancestors. The only difference is what archetypes we use. Instead of Hercules, we choose Superman. Our myths are found in pop culture, not in ancient books anymore.
So, when we are having a rough time, and we start thinking about a thousand ways to Hulk-smash someone, instead of thinking about unicorns, we would probably be thinking about Darth Vader and Loki. Let me explain.
The first comics THORsday of 2017 is all about Vikings Uprising, the comics based on the show. The comic book takes us to different shores. We meet a defeated Ragnar who returns home. He has nightmares and visions of his Chinese slave. Everybody can see that there’s something very wrong with him, but no one suspects there’s an uprising going on. Slaves in a farm have decided to kill the Viking Gods. Colum, the reluctant leader of the slaves, is searching for freedom. What starts being a plot to escape, ends up being a rebellion.
Meanwhile, Ragnar still dreams about his Chinese slave who gave him medicine. Or rather, drugged him. And now, he must face the demons. He killed her, but he must deal with a lot in a very short time.
I found a treasure on Comixology: a feminist lesbian Viking comic called Heathen, and it blew my mind. I usually read traditional comics, not digital ones. However, some treasures can only be accessed digitally. Surfing Comixology I found a cover that caught my eye, the first issue of Heathen. I love all things Norse, so, it was easy to start reading this comic. The art of Natasha Alterici, the author, is fresh and fabulous. The colors are also thrilling, plus the characters are both delicate and vigorous.
Aydis is a Viking girl that has been cast out from her community because she likes girls. According to tradition, her father should be the one to kill her. However, she sets her free.
LOKIsday gets wild with VOTE LOKI #1! As you know, Marvel Comics has released a new title with Loki as the main character. Loki wants to become the next President of the United States, but how can it play out? As you know, the US is facing a new election with Trump and Hillary Clinton fighting to be the winners. However, it feels like the Americans will end up voting the lesser of both evils. Loki, the Trickster God, decides to enter into politics and mimics the political environment that the US is living right now. However, we cannot say that he’s been portrayed as a type of Trump in the comics. Since Loki can shape shift and also be a woman, it does feel like a mix of both candidates in real life. So, how does this comic mirror what’s going on in the US?
Vote Loki #1 starts by portraying politics as a trickster species of their own. As soon as the candidate wins, all the promises made during the campaign, are soon forgotten. Does it seem so terrible, then, when Loki appears out of the blue and saves the day from a sudden attack of Hydra to one of the candidates?
Sometimes, Superhero fashion hides behind a mask that makes the hero. Today we’re going to explore the extraordinary power of the Superhero mask through the Amazing Spider-Man. Spidey is one of the most famous masked Superheroes. As a teen, his need to hide his real identity comes as a must. However, what type of powers does the mask give to its wearer? Superheroes create their identities through their fashions, very much like we do on a daily basis. We use to add some extras to our fashion with makeup as to appear more appealing or trying to fulfill a certain role. Costumes and the makeup that might accompany them are associated with certain roles, and as such, they are accompanied by a set of rules that we all know but that aren’t written anywhere. People expect from us a certain behavior depending on the dress that we wear. Thus, there is a direct relationship between the dress and behavior. If so, can someone modify their behavior by adding a certain item to their closet? Let’s take a look at the Amazing Spider-Man when he tries to save a child from dying burned in a car.
Comics THORsday invites you to read Spider-Woman Baby Talk #1 and to take part in a great giveaway! If you’re not sure about Spider-Woman, share the love below and win a digital copy of Issues #1 & #2. But, hang on a second!? Is Spider-Woman pregnant!? Yes, she is, and very much so! If you’re a mom-to-be, or a mom, and you’d love to start reading comics and find a Superhero very much like you, this is your comic. I’m not a mom myself. However, I found that Spider-Woman pregnant was a very positive message to send out there to many women: being a mom is being a Superhero. You’ll find out that Spider-Woman might be relating to you much more than you might be thinking. She is working and kicking ass while she is pregnant, like many other working moms out there. But, does this comic have anything else to offer you?
This week’s lessons on Geek Anthropology wants to focus its attention on the super gender, or said, in other words, the extreme gender in comics. Have you ever notice how male and female bodies are exaggerated representations of the idea of masculinity and feminity we held in popular culture? Men are hyper-musculated, and women have intense curves. However, does the super gender show up the masculine and feminine qualities as super? I’m not talking about the bodies only, but also the roles that are attached by culture to men and women. Is the super gender super in all its glory, or do we have something different from reality?
Let’s pause and think for a moment about Thor and Black Widow. Or if you’re a DC fan, Superman and Wonder Woman. How are they drawn? Thor and Superman are pretty muscular, masculine and not very delicate. They show a pretty triangular shape on their upper bodies, with thin legs (as a general rule). However, Black Widow and Wonder Woman have really amazing curves. Sometimes they’re too curvy, so much so, that it would be hard for them to exist in reality. Their feminine traits, specially waist, bust and butt, are brought to extremes. If the depiction of their bodies is an exaggeration of reality, a caricature of what we understand to be male and female; do their personalities show up super gender traits?
There is a Superhero that knows the benefits of being positive: Spidey! Spiderman is the ultimate positivist who can joke even during dark times. It’s the sense of being positive of Spiderman that makes Peter Parker be able to endure what he does. So, what does Spidey teach us all about life? What is the ultimate message of Spidey to us?
You might already know his origin story: a radioactive spider bites Peter Parker and he becomes a Superhero. He is a teenager and at firs he has no clue what to do with his Superpowers besides amusing himself. But soon, a fatal decision with a criminal makes him realize that “with great power comes great responsibility.” This geek guy who has problems of socializing at school finds the spark he needs to unleash his real self in taking responsibility in his alter ego, Spiderman: an intelligent, quick, strong and positive chap.
Peter Parker takes every single opportunity he has to shine. But he doesn’t do it as Parker but as Spidey. Where Parker fails, Spidey succeeds. Remember that, as Parker, he loses the girl, but as Spidey he gets her! So, what does give Spidey to Parker that makes him happy despite all the dramas that unfold around him? What makes him be the Superhero we love so much?
If you want to know about Norse mythology, Gods of Asgard is a great start. This graphic novel by Erik Evensen is a jewel. This graphic novel is a black and white 167-page treasure that resumes Norse myths with great accuracy. You will find a spooky Odin and a very tricky Loki in it. This is certainly a great pick if you don’t want to read a very thick book on Norse mythology, but it’s also a great idea if you want your kids to get interested in it.
Before starting to read it, please get rid of all the ideas that Marvel has put into your mind. These are the tales of the real Norse myths and not the inspiration that Marvel found in them. Despite this, Odin is still a douche. [Sorry, my opinion, but I am a real fan of Loki! Odin, read carefully, is a douche here as well.]
Welcome to Comics THORsday! This week we are going to talk about comics, women, and fashion. Especially targetting Spider Gwen and Silk. As you know, there are more and more women not only reading comics but also creating them. Comics have been always a medium that reflects pop culture, but also where pop culture takes a look at itself and pushes for change. While it might seem an odd topic to touch, fashion in comics has been always there. However, it has been recently that female audiences have found their mirror. Comics are no longer just a place where to find characters to identify with, or cool Cosplay costumes, now fashion can be found on their pages as well.
Comics have been a boys arena for many years. But the irruption and increase of female readers has created a change to the pages. Pop culture is showing up itself into the pages of Spider Gwen and Silk while they are influencing designers to take geek fashion to the next level.