When Our Heroes Come to Blows

 

Not Pictured: Our Feelings

This is the year we make our heroes beat-up each other: Superman fights Batman; Captain America (and friends) fights Iron Man (and friends); Daredevil fights the Punisher; Deadpool fights Our Sense of Decency and Good Taste; the Flash and Supergirl team up to fight our Suspension of Disbelief. Such concepts bring up questions from my non-cool (read: non-nerdy) friends ,who ask, “Why would good guys fight each other?”

Good question, actually! In fact, the hero vs. hero concept is an old one, not just in comic books but in literature as well. In comics, of course, it’s quite prevalent and we’re seeing a glut of it at the moment. Perhaps it’s the nature of the superhero: take a handful of guys in funny outfits who are fighting crime for a variety of personal reasons and you’re bound to find conflict. Crime-fighting vigilantes are already working on (or past) the fringes of the law, which puts them in highly subjective and nebulous territory.

Once you’re out there, you’re going to come at odds with others who’ve made the same choice for different reason.

For example, in his first comic book appearance, the Punisher was actively hunting down Spider-Man. The former was under the common mistaken impression that Spider-Man had killed Norman Osbourne. And being the Punisher, seeking justice means trying to kill Spider-Man. See? Conflict!

However, having our protagonists become mutual antagonists serves a purpose as well. It helps us to ask questions that are more difficult to wrestle over than if it were placed in a simple protagonist vs. antagonist set-up.

In Daredevil’s second season, the conflict brings up the concept of justice and how two very different vigilantes pursue it. Daredevil works outside the law but, once criminals are subdued, he brings them back to it by handing them over to authorities and the courts (often worse for wear). For the Punisher, this is not enough. The system itself is corrupt and flawed and can’t be trusted. For Daredevil, the Punisher goes too far in killing as a first (and largely only) option; for the Punisher, Daredevil doesn’t go far enough and just perpetuates the problem, telling him:

I think you’re a half-measure. I think you’re a man who can’t finish the job. I think that you’re a coward.

In Captain America: Civil War, Steve Rogers and Tony Stark wrestle with the question of who these super beings are beholden to. What happens when their abilities seemingly get out of control and people are hurt? Who’s responsible? Who keeps them in check? These answers aren’t easy (though I dislike the solutions this film offers on either side). Superman v. Batman asks much the same questions, just not as well.

In some ways, too, this need to see our heroes fight is reflective of our times as well. Look at our primaries, where we’ve had hotly-contested nominations on both sides. Our nation is strongly divided between progressives and conservatives and each of those sides is riven with internal conflicts. These groups and sub-groups come to near blows, and their fringe elements are sometimes accused of abetting the real enemy. We all agree that something is wrong, what precisely it is and what to do about it often leads to conflict.

If you want to know why our heroes fight each other, it’s because we fight each other and they’re our champions. They fight each other because, in the pursuit of what’s good, we can’t even agree on what is good.

There are 82 comments.

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  1. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    I disagree about the relative merits of Marvel & DC movies. Broadly, I’d say Daredevil is the best hero there is–he’s Catholic. But I do not think the show brings out the best in him. But of what’s actually been done on TV & in the movies, the Captain America thing is woefully mediocre, bordering on the insanely hilarious. The Batman movie, for its many flaws, looks at the experience of the good & faith in full seriousness & also introduces American politics into the stories in a way that is finally capable of revealing the importance of super-heroes: The modern executive. Whoever would like to read what I think are thoughtful notes, please visit my comic-book movie page.

    I hope you’ll get lucky & get more than contradictions out of Daredevil: This guy thinks the system is too corrupt; the other guy disagrees. Who’s right? They can’t both be right, can they?

    • #1
  2. C. U. Douglas Thatcher
    C. U. Douglas
    @CUDouglas

    Actually I think contradictions are a good thing. Why heroes fight is one way to express those contradictions. In postmodern society there’s an impetus to dismiss anything contradictory, but that’s too shallow an approach. A contradiction should be a call for us to look deeper into a matter, see why a contradiction is apparent and whether it’s truly so or if there’s something else to be seen that manifests initially as such. I think Daredevil season 2 at least attempts to explore this.

    • #2
  3. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    I keep hearing this. Also, that people don’t want black & white stories or cardboard characters or however many images people can muster. But I’ve yet to see any one man talking about this actually do this ‘seeing why’ that you’re talking about now-

    • #3
  4. Judge Mental Member
    Judge Mental
    @JudgeMental

    I liked the first Captain America movie.  So there.

    • #4
  5. Quinn the Eskimo Member
    Quinn the Eskimo
    @

    When heroes fight heroes, it reminds us that just because people don’t see things the same way that we do, it doesn’t make them evil.

    Edit: fixed typo.

    • #5
  6. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Titus Techera:I keep hearing this. Also, that people don’t want black & white stories or cardboard characters or however many images people can muster. But I’ve yet to see any one man talking about this actually do this ‘seeing why’ that you’re talking about now-

    I prefer stories to not openly declare which guy is right on moral questions such as the Daredevil Vs Punisher conflict.

    If the absolutely correct answer is easy to discern, then one of the characters has been given too cartoonish of a position.

    You may believe character A is right, and character B is wrong, but the story is too simplistic is character B doesn’t have a point.

    • #6
  7. Quinn the Eskimo Member
    Quinn the Eskimo
    @

    Frank Soto: If the absolutely correct answer is easy to discern, then one of the characters has been given too cartoonish of a position.

    Please forward this to every writer in Hollywood.

    • #7
  8. LesserSon of Barsham Member
    LesserSon of Barsham
    @LesserSonofBarsham

    Quinn the Eskimo:When heroes fight heroes, it reminds us that just because people don’t see things the same way that we do, it does make them evil.

    Depends which universe they’re in at the time…

    (I know you meant doesn’t, but who could pass this up?)

    • #8
  9. C. U. Douglas Thatcher
    C. U. Douglas
    @CUDouglas

    Frank Soto:

    Titus Techera:I keep hearing this. Also, that people don’t want black & white stories or cardboard characters or however many images people can muster. But I’ve yet to see any one man talking about this actually do this ‘seeing why’ that you’re talking about now-

    I prefer stories to not openly declare which guy is right on moral questions such as the Daredevil Vs Punisher conflict.

    If the absolutely correct answer is easy to discern, then one of the characters has been given too cartoonish of a position.

    You may believe character A is right, and character B is wrong, but the story is too simplistic is character B doesn’t have a point.

    Exactly. The movie Civil War does this better than the comic book Civil War (the latter was more of an anti-Bush Administration rant somewhat expertly veiled).

    • #9
  10. Quinn the Eskimo Member
    Quinn the Eskimo
    @

    LesserSon of Barsham:

    Quinn the Eskimo:When heroes fight heroes, it reminds us that just because people don’t see things the same way that we do, it does make them evil.

    Depends which universe they’re in at the time…

    (I know you meant doesn’t, but who could pass this up?)

    Oops.

    • #10
  11. C. U. Douglas Thatcher
    C. U. Douglas
    @CUDouglas

    Quinn the Eskimo:When heroes fight heroes, it reminds us that just because people don’t see things the same way that we do, it doesn’t make them evil.

    Edit: fixed typo.

    Which is why these stories are important for these times. We’re living in a day and age where we see things in vastly different ways at times. The impulse has been to take sides and get ready to come to blows. By placing characters we sympathize with on either side of a conflict, we see your point writ large.

    • #11
  12. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    Judge Mental:I liked the first Captain America movie. So there.

    That was before the paranoia…

    • #12
  13. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    Frank Soto:

    Titus Techera:I keep hearing this. Also, that people don’t want black & white stories or cardboard characters or however many images people can muster. But I’ve yet to see any one man talking about this actually do this ‘seeing why’ that you’re talking about now-

    I prefer stories to not openly declare which guy is right on moral questions such as the Daredevil Vs Punisher conflict.

    If the absolutely correct answer is easy to discern, then one of the characters has been given too cartoonish of a position.

    You may believe character A is right, and character B is wrong, but the story is too simplistic is character B doesn’t have a point.

    I can give you a few examples to show that’s not so. King Lear. Oedipus Rex.

    What’s sorta like tragedy? Murder mysteries. There’s no need for any justification on the part of the murderer. Although one might argue, getting away with murder might be its own justification–but I don’t think that’s quite what we’re talking about here.

    We’re talking, I think, about moral & political disputes as they relate to political freedom. Democrats want to have a say in things; right & wrong are not the only thing–consent matters, too. There is a half-educated insanity going around by the name of suspension of disbelief. Really, it’s about getting the audience to consent to right & wrong.

    • #13
  14. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    So then you have to have disputes.

    There is, concealed here, a kind of war on moral authority. If someone can tell right & wrong–Captain America, Superman–then all the people who think they’re clever because they’re basically misanthropic cannot stand on their claims to superiority. They become worthless. They won’t stand for that–& boy are they over-represented among fans of these kinds of spectacles.

    But this is not just psychology as it relates to a particular perversion. It speaks directly to democratic freedom: Not being told what to do or believe, at least not explicitly.

    So you used to have some Christians who said, I am God’s servant–implying that they were in that capacity of sufficient dignity to not be slaves to any merely human being. Now, that’s democratized in the sense that God’s tyranny has been overthrown.

    So some Christians also used to debate endlessly what exactly divine providence & divine law meant for political life. Now, supposedly wise people who think they’ve got moral complexity & gray areas as if they were masters of fine distinctions & sophisticated arguments do not really ever get to the point where they have a sophisticated discussion about right & wrong as they pertain to whatever stories they love–as opposed to the now-forgotten stories in the Bible.

    So there is no university or website or whatever where super-sophisticated reasoning or interpretation about beloved stories takes place. It’s a lie that conceals unwisdom-

    • #14
  15. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Titus Techera:

    Frank Soto:

    Titus Techera:I keep hearing this. Also, that people don’t want black & white stories or cardboard characters or however many images people can muster. But I’ve yet to see any one man talking about this actually do this ‘seeing why’ that you’re talking about now-

    I prefer stories to not openly declare which guy is right on moral questions such as the Daredevil Vs Punisher conflict.

    If the absolutely correct answer is easy to discern, then one of the characters has been given too cartoonish of a position.

    You may believe character A is right, and character B is wrong, but the story is too simplistic is character B doesn’t have a point.

    I can give you a few examples to show that’s not so. King Lear. Oedipus Rex.

    What’s sorta like tragedy? Murder mysteries. There’s no need for any justification on the part of the murderer. Although one might argue, getting away with murder might be its own justification–but I don’t think that’s quite what we’re talking about here.

    You are misunderstanding my point.  There are villains in the world, and for any number of reasons they may do evil.  They may not have any valid point of view (though they tend to be more effective when they do).

    When Daredevil and the Punisher square off, it was, and should be unclear which one of them is right.  When Heroes come into conflict, they should both have valid points.  The story need not declare who was right and who was wrong.

    • #15
  16. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey
    @AustinMurrey

    Frank Soto: You are misunderstanding my point. There are villains in the world, and for any number of reasons they may do evil. They may not have any valid point of view (though they tend to be more effective when they do).

    Fictional villains work best when they have perfectly rational justifications for what they’re doing – a well-written villain should have the same consideration paid to them as a well-written hero; to their own mind they are the hero.

    Consider Red Skull versus Alexander Pierce. Red Skull is a snarling caricature and although Hugo Weaving does a darn good job as the mad scientist, he has very little resonance as Cap’s ultimate villain. Alexander Pierce, the secret Hydra operative, is a better villain: the world really is in chaos in the MCU and there has to be a better way to handle the chaos.

    Pierce has found a way to protect “normal” people from the deviants among them and it’s every bit as extreme as the Punisher. He will have helicarriers eliminate all those who disrupt the order of the world before they can make too many waves. “The Winter Soldier” works as a movie because Pierce offers the promise of security and Cap opposes him because to achieve security Pierce eliminates liberty, which is more precious than security.

    • #16
  17. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    I think it’s the other way around. Red Skull is an attempt to think through what it means to want to be a Nazi. He is Nazi science in motion.

    This business with the totalitarian security establishment is an insanity beyond all insanities. For one, it proves SHIELD is worse than America’s worst enemies: At least those enemies are known to be enemies.

    For another, it makes the Communist penetration of the government look like foreplay.

    Then there’s a whole paranoia about Hydra & the hysteria of publishing all the info at the end.

    • #17
  18. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey
    @AustinMurrey

    Titus Techera: I think it’s the other way around. Red Skull is an attempt to think through what it means to want to be a Nazi. He is Nazi science in motion.

    Interesting hypothesis although I think Red Skull is a cartoon because it’s hard to relate to his aims: he’s going to conquer the world to prove his own superiority which he owes to the Super Soldier serum. To conquer the world he’ll nuke every capital to get everyone to capitulate if they don’t want to have their cities annihilated without recourse.

    Then what?

    He doesn’t have a next step, there’s no Aryan master plan – he’s beyond that sort of racial purity. He’s definitely not loyal to Nazi Germany, Berlin is on his map of targets.

    Of course the first Captain America is as much a love letter to 40’s war movies as much as an origin story for Captain America, a popcorn flick or meditation on the nature of World War II or conquest so it doesn’t need to have that much to say.

    Titus Techera: This business with the totalitarian security establishment is an insanity beyond all insanities. For one, it proves SHIELD is worse than America’s worst enemies: At least those enemies are known to be enemies.

    In real life or in the MCU? I’m opposed to a lot of totalitarian measures such as omnipresent surveillance and extrajudicial killings myself. SHIELD’s growing power as a result of spiralling world events is a legitimate theme to explore in the post-9/11 world: How far is too far in securing the homeland? What happens if the wrong people end up in control? Why do we trust certain bureaucracies now given what we know about their past?

    Titus Techera: Then there’s a whole paranoia about Hydra & the hysteria of publishing all the info at the end.

    Can’t defend that last part of the movie, it was dumb. Yeah, HYDRA is bad and we don’t know who to trust.

    Giving Russia, China and Iran helicarrier plans and terrorist organizations the names and identities of all SHIELD agents or informants? Maybe not a good plan.

    • #18
  19. C. U. Douglas Thatcher
    C. U. Douglas
    @CUDouglas

    Austin Murrey:…Can’t defend that last part of the movie, it was dumb. Yeah, HYDRA is bad and we don’t know who to trust.

    Giving Russia, China and Iran helicarrier plans and terrorist organizations the names and identities of all SHIELD agents or informants? Maybe not a good plan.

    Yes, there’s some of Hollywood’s inclinations and over-simplifications.

    In Civil War the question is raised as to how do we keep super-powered beings in check, especially when they cause destruction in stopping destruction? Unfortunately I find I can’t really ascribe to either side of the argument as presented in the show. It doesn’t help that MCU’s UN is like all Hollywood United Nations: a good organization founded by great intentions with occasional worrisome actors.

    • #19
  20. Quinn the Eskimo Member
    Quinn the Eskimo
    @

    Austin Murrey:

    Titus Techera: Then there’s a whole paranoia about Hydra & the hysteria of publishing all the info at the end.

    Can’t defend that last part of the movie, it was dumb. Yeah, HYDRA is bad and we don’t know who to trust.

    Giving Russia, China and Iran helicarrier plans and terrorist organizations the names and identities of all SHIELD agents or informants? Maybe not a good plan.

    Agreed.  Or, at least some consideration should have been given to the consequences.  (Although it does play a role in the new movie, but downplayed.)

    • #20
  21. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    Austin Murrey:

    So this sort of movie where it’s SHIELD enthusiasm & then Hydra paranoia is fit for children. Not that there’s not lots to think about, but it’s a bad movie–the plot is a string of insanities. Fun, for some–for others, engaging: Who’s an American who’s sort of liberal-libertarian & might betray secrets to the Russians? Who did you think? Marvel’s Captain America. It’s sick. & that’s supposed to be the moral conclusion!

    All the good stuff you get out of that movie–stretch a bit before reading on–you have to put in yourself–now you can pat yourself on the back. People who see it & care to talk could talk intelligently about it. But they cannot learn anything from it.

    Now, the simplistic first installment actually teaches you something about the problem with ‘Nazi science.’ So Nazi science, the more it takes power seriously, the more it has to become cruel, anti-human, & chaos-creating.

    This is not because the writers studied Nazi propaganda or ever thought about the problem with the scientific pretense behind anti-semitism. But because they’ve done the obvious: Put together power worship with the Nazis. It shows you stuff worth seeing; also, it’s basically true to the history, so it’s much easier to do than to do talk about current politics, which is so partisan that no one even bothers to persuade the public about what the future will be like.

    • #21
  22. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey
    @AustinMurrey

    C. U. Douglas:

    Austin Murrey:…Can’t defend that last part of the movie, it was dumb. Yeah, HYDRA is bad and we don’t know who to trust.

    Giving Russia, China and Iran helicarrier plans and terrorist organizations the names and identities of all SHIELD agents or informants? Maybe not a good plan.

    Yes, there’s some of Hollywood’s inclinations and over-simplifications.

    In Civil War the question is raised as to how do we keep super-powered beings in check, especially when they cause destruction in stopping destruction? Unfortunately I find I can’t really ascribe to either side of the argument as presented in the show. It doesn’t help that MCU’s UN is like all Hollywood United Nations: a good organization founded by great intentions with occasional worrisome actors.

    The answer, the real answer, doesn’t appeal to liberals (and no few conservatives either): you can’t.

    Like firearms, or knives, or cars, or fertilizers, etc. the PTB in the MCU would realistically have to accept that things like superpowers aren’t good or bad in and of themselves.

    Think about the Purple Man from Jessica Jones – he could have been the world’s best hostage negotiator.

    He just looks at the hostage taker and says “Hey, put down the gun, let everyone go and surrender.” Lives saved every time he shows up.

    He could have sold his services to every single man on Earth by being a couple’s counselor: how much would you pay for your wife to tell you in plain English why she’s mad at you, and what you could do to fix it?

    Heck he could have been the most famous interviewer to set foot on TV.

    • #22
  23. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey
    @AustinMurrey

    Titus Techera:All the good stuff you get out of that movie–stretch a bit before reading on–you have to put in yourself–now you can pat yourself on the back. People who see it & care to talk could talk intelligently about it. But they cannot learn anything from it.

    Now, the simplistic first installment actually teaches you something about the problem with ‘Nazi science.’ So Nazi science, the more it takes power seriously, the more it has to become cruel, anti-human, & chaos-creating.

    I think great films ask you to think deeper, go farther, discuss things that come up while giving you a great story. And from “The Winter Soldier” there’s plenty to learn about your own thoughts of where you draw the line between security and liberty and what happens if you make deals with the (metaphorical) devil to gain security: at what point do you become that devil you’re dealing with?

    The first movie has a Manichean simplicity which is comforting (Nazis bad! GI’s good!) but it’s fluff comparatively. A good movie, don’t get me wrong, but it’s shallow because the whole point of the movie is literally explained to you by Stanley Tucci (who does a great job doing it, to his credit).

    • #23
  24. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    Austin Murrey:

    I think you’re wrong. First, telling the difference between right & wrong is not at all Manichean simplicity–I’ll bet a few dollars you’re not a student of ancient Middle Eastern cults, but enjoy the put-down implied…

    I am disappointed at this attitude. The first movie is supposed to explore whether power can be good. It is not satisfied with the banal excuses ‘power is not in itself good or bad, it depends on how you use it’ or ‘science is just a tool.’ That’s moral midgetry. I’ve not seen many people try to see how the story tries to show you the conditions of the political good & how it comes in tension with anything like happiness.

    People take morality for granted in a way in which that story does not. It tries to tell a story that is serious about psychology, unlike the enthusiasm-hysteria stuff that’s the plot of the sequel. The problem with the original is complicated further because it’s tied up with manliness, which is hilariously absent in the sequel.

    It’s as though people think trying to articulate a just order that can defend itself is boring!

    These are the same people who will tell you that John Wayne always played good guys in movies where there was no moral complexity. Ignorance is the best defense anyone could plead on their behalf…

    • #24
  25. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    Austin Murrey: And from “The Winter Soldier” there’s plenty to learn about your own thoughts of where you draw the line between security and liberty and what happens if you make deals with the (metaphorical) devil to gain security: at what point do you become that devil you’re dealing with?

    What you’re saying is, do your own thinking!

    You can do your own thinking whenever you want. The question is whether the story of the movie does any real thinking that could teach you something you did not know by yourself. There is a great big difference between what you’re saying: Hey, it’s dirt as a plot, but it’s an opportunity! & what I’m saying: The original actually articulates interesting things. What is meant by American power & whether it is good receives more serious attention than any other Marvel movie.

    • #25
  26. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey
    @AustinMurrey

    Titus Techera: I think you’re wrong. First, telling the difference between right & wrong is not at all Manichean simplicity–I’ll bet a few dollars you’re not a student of ancient Middle Eastern cults, but enjoy the put-down implied…

    First, from Wikipedia:

    “By extension, the term “manichean” is widely applied (often used as a derogatory term) as an adjective to a philosophy of moral dualism, according to which a moral course of action involves a clear (or simplistic) choice between good and evil, or as a noun to people who hold such a view.”
    You don’t have to be a scholar of esoteric religious philosophy to use a broadly accepted terminology – that’s basically an appeal to authority in reverse: I’ve used a term that properly derives from an ancient Middle Eastern cult, I’m not a scholar in ancient Middle Eastern cults, therefore I’ve used the term improperly. It doesn’t wash.

    Second, I’m not putting down the film – it’s a good movie – merely pointing out that as I read the film there’s a clear message drawn by Captain America and Red Skull that reflects the belief that power, in this case the Super Soldier serum, is like any other tool: it can be used for good (Cap) or evil (RS) and by showing that dualism of character it puts down a baseline about the character Captain America – he’s a good man, and does the right thing because that’s who he is just as Red Skull is a bad man who does the wrong thing because that’s who he is.

    If it tries to tell a story about psychology it’s a reflection about who we were in World War II by mythologizing the legend of the citizen soldier: persevering despite hardship and not wanting to abandon their ordinary lives out of pursuit of glory but putting their lives on hold through a sense of duty, willing to die if necessary for the higher ideal of America and its values that Captain America literally wraps himself in and shields himself with as he charges into battle.

    It’s not moral midgetry to observe that science can be used for good or evil, or that a gun in the wrong hands is as dangerous as a gun in the right hands is beneficial. The duality of Captain America and Red Skull is naked on the screen: it’s up to the individual to decide how to use their power and the good should use theirs to oppose evil.

    • #26
  27. C. U. Douglas Thatcher
    C. U. Douglas
    @CUDouglas

    Don’t take the statement, “There’s values in stories which demonstrate potential conflicts that would make people normal on the same side see each other as opponents” as equivalent to, “stories that demonstrate moral clarity have no value.” There’s no dichotomy here. Both have their place. Captain America: The First Avenger is a good story and it reflects a time when there was such moral clarity that is sadly lacking today. Thus it makes a good story and worth showing and discussing.

    Conversely, it’s value as a story doesn’t diminish the value of stories which lack that same clarity. Nor does the existence of the latter diminish the former.

    • #27
  28. TG Thatcher
    TG
    @TG

    C. U. Douglas:Don’t take the statement, “There’s values in stories which demonstrate potential conflicts that would make people normal on the same side see each other as opponents” as equivalent to, “stories that demonstrate moral clarity have no value.” There’s no dichotomy here. Both have their place. Captain America: The First Avenger is a good story and it reflects a time when there was such moral clarity that is sadly lacking today. Thus it makes a good story and worth showing and discussing.

    Conversely, it’s value as a story doesn’t diminish the value of stories which lack that same clarity. Nor does the existence of the latter diminish the former.

    You’re quoting yourself, from somewhen.  I’m not complaining, merely noting it.
    And if I’m wrong, then I have been hit by the Mother of all Deja Vu demons.

    • #28
  29. Titus Techera Contributor
    Titus Techera
    @TitusTechera

    Austin Murrey: a clear message drawn by Captain America and Red Skull that reflects the belief that power, in this case the Super Soldier serum, is like any other tool: it can be used for good (Cap) or evil (RS)…

    it’s a reflection about who we were in World War II … mythologizing … the citizen soldier: persevering despite hardship and not wanting to abandon their ordinary lives out of pursuit of glory …putting their lives on hold …a sense of duty

    Maybe the message is what you say; but it is not clear. What you actually see has nothing to do with this message. You see a scrawny kid–that’s supposed to get you to ask questions about character, not to confirm the generalities you offer. You do not seem to see this as a particular character in particular circumstances–it’s not the citizen-soldier. That’s not how stories work. This is not a symbol–whats matters is the scrawny kid verging on fanaticism.

    It’s not moral midgetry to observe that science can be used for good or evil, or that a gun in the wrong hands is as dangerous as a gun in the right hands is beneficial. The duality of Captain America and Red Skull is naked on the screen: it’s up to the individual to decide how to use their power and the good should use theirs to oppose evil.

    There is not one thought here; there is merely that which people say.

    • #29
  30. TG Thatcher
    TG
    @TG

    Titus Techera:

    Austin Murrey: …

    It’s not moral midgetry to observe that science can be used for good or evil, or that a gun in the wrong hands is as dangerous as a gun in the right hands is beneficial. The duality of Captain America and Red Skull is naked on the screen: it’s up to the individual to decide how to use their power and the good should use theirs to oppose evil.

    There is not one thought here; there is merely that which people say.

    Titus, if I understand you … you are saying that Austin has made a banal statement, here?

    If that is what you meant … do you realize that it would have been less insulting to simply state “That is banal” rather than what you wrote?

    If I have understood you … do you care?

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