Posted by: Doc Comics | October 17, 2011

Interrogating Ideology with Red Son: Week 8

This week’s comic is RED SON, an Elseworlds alternate reality that imagines the consequences of Kal-El‘s rocket crashing in the Soviet Union rather than Kansas. The 2003 graphic novel caused some controversy and won awards even as it gave Scottish writer Mark Millar more fame and acclaim. Still, the comic raises intriguing issues about superheroes and American exceptionalism outside of simplistic moral binaries. Has Superman always been a class warrior? We will be interested in examining the risks of political comics as we also review some of the superhero scholarship readings!

As a bonus, see what creators think about writing superheroines and Wonder Woman’s altered origin!

The SUPERMIDTERM is Tuesday 10/18! Bring a skinny green scantron and a #2 pencil along with your journal. According to USA Today, it’ll be one of the “easiest” college courses you’ll take 😉



  1. Scottish DC writer Grant Morrison has some interesting observations about the social class differences between Batman and Superman:

    “Bruce Wayne is a rich man. He’s an artistocrat. Superman grew up as Clark Kent on a farm bailing hay, and he’s got a boss that shouts at him if he’s late to work. He’s actually more human; Batman is the fetish fantasy psyche of the aristocrat overlord who can do anything he wants, and that’s fascinating. The class difference between the two of them is important.[…]
    People often forget Superman is very much a put-upon guy. Bruce has a butler, Clark has a boss.”

  2. Superman: Red Son is the first comic book that I truely loved…No crab in there..serious stuff: capitalism, socialism, communism, world……Another thing Red Son talks about is “charismatic leaders”…it seems all such leaders end up dictators and tyrants…and Superman is no exception..

    -By the way, the term “American Exceptionalism” was first used by Stalin in 1929.


  4. Henry Jenkins “Just Men in Capes?”: Part 1, Part 2 and the conclusion.
    Jenkins may helpfully navigate some of the tensions with superheroes as Commodified Myth and Hegemonic Ideology debates of Eco and Andrae!

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