Jun 16, 2016

The 40 Years of Comics Project - Day 478: Final Crisis #7, March 2009

http://www.comics.org/issue/528861/

What does one do when faced with the idea that we damage our fictions, that we should not be participating in them, but viewing them from outside, allowing them to grow and shift, but keeping our own toxic narratives from destroying them, and, by association, ourselves? Though then we come to realize that our toxic narratives have grown from the narratives we have inherited from our fictions, from the imaginary from which we define ourselves. And so to cure ourselves, and to cure our fictions, we must come to realize that, while we may have created them, they have taken on life and form of their own. They will outlive us all. It behooves us to pay attention to what is embedded in them, what the next civilization will learn about us from the stories we've left behind.

Hence, I suppose, the study of literature, in some ways.

The Supermen of the Multiverse, "a team of solar-powered heroes so incredible it can be assembled only once, against the absolute enemy," is a remarkable couple of pages in this issue. Each time I read the series, I spend time picking out the Superman proxies from other publishers that are marginally concealed beneath costume tweaks and changes. Hyperion and the Sentry are here. Mr. Majestic is here, as are Supreme, Apollo, Ultiman. The Red Son Superman is here, as is Sunshine Superman, Overman, and, leading the way, as is appropriate, Captain Marvel. They fly out from the page, one bounded by no panel borders, both moving from and moving into our collective unconscious, to battle the creature that sits at the heart of the darkness in reality that we all know, to battle the ultimate force of despair with the nourishing light of the sun. This is how the end of the world ends.

Onward.

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