Thursday, November 10, 2011

Veteran's Day

Today is the Marine Corps Birthday (for those who don’t know) and tomorrow is Veterans’ Day, which is why tonight you’ll probably be able to find me face down on the floor at the NoVa Irish Brogue and tomorrow at an elementary school lecturing children about the importance of supporting our troops. Wait, change that: face UP. I learned my lesson last year.

Given the prevalence of the military in society, it’s interesting how few DC comic heroes have any military background. Captain Atom is Air Force, of course, but other than that it’s slim pickings. Remember, this whole “Hal Jordan was in the Air Force” thing is a retcon (by Mark Waid, I think, in JLA: Year One); before that, Hal was “just” a commercial test pilot (and one who almost never flew a plane, I might add). So, too, the “John Stewart was in the Marines” thing (an invention of the Justice League animated series). Before her reboot after Crisis, in fact, the only big DC hero with any military background was Wonder Wonder. She was a Lieutenant (and eventually rose to Major). And then, as I recall, she did what a lot of former Army Majors do: became a UN attache and opened a mod dress shop. Diana’s a hard woman to understand.

DC used to have lots of war comics, and I’m glad to see them attempting to revive the tradition in the New 52 with Men of War. While they are at, I would like to see them bring back (in some form), one of favorites here at the Absorbascon: Capt. Storm.

Now, I’ve had a lot of fun at Capt. Storm’s expense, but conceptually he’s one of DC’s greatest heroes: a military man, injured in battle, who struggles to return to fighting strength so he can continue to defend his country. Plus, there’s the whole “hot Hawaiian nurse” thing. I think it’s great that Sgt. Rock/Easy Company’s legacy continue, but, given how many Wounded Warriors the US has as a result of years of conflict in the middle east, we need a “wounded warrior hero” more than ever. And I’m not talking about “I lost my hand, but now I have one made out of energy/water/indestructible alien metal that can turn into a machine gun”. I’m talking about, “my artificial leg is not as good as my real one but I’m going to overcome that”.

Because that’s a type of heroism I think comics could use a little more of.


Anonymous said...

Jason Bard. He can easily scale to whichever conflict is our most recent.

CobraMisfit said...

I'd certainly read Cap'n Storm.

SallyP said...

Wait, isn't this the guy with the wooden leg? There is SO much you can do with that premise.

That's one heck of a cover by the way. It's not easy to find stepping stones in the middle of the ocean...but Captain Storm Has Done It.

Scipio said...

Yep, that's the guy. Actually, Sally, if you'll look closely you'll see he's in the shallows by an island ;:-)

But he is amazing nonetheless.

Suzanne de Nimes (suedenim) said...

While you're technically correct about Hal Jordan, I think it would likely have been assumed that a test pilot in 1959 would have a military background. Having a solely civilian background would be highly unusual in that context.

For instance, I'm pretty sure all the astronauts in Mercury through Apollo were military or (like Neil Armstrong, for instance) ex-military.

Cabin Campbell said...

DC heroes in the military? You overlooked the entire JSA, they enlisted after Pearl Harbor!

Citizen Scribbler said...

I have nothing to add except to say that I couldn't agree more with you Scipio. But then, I don't think a hero of Captain Storm's caliber should have ever fallen out of fashion in the first place.

-Citizen Scribbler

Ajit said...

Sorry, you are wrong about Hal Jordan. It was established as far back as 1965, in 'Green Lantern' 36's Green Lantern’s Explosive Week-End, that Hal was an Air Force veteran.

Mrs. Davis tells Dorine Clay, "I know you'll like Hal Jordan, Miss Clay! He was our son Bill's best friend in the Air Force! After Bill was killed in the Korean War, Hal paid us a visit and ever since then he's been like a son to us!"

You really ought to read the story if you can find the comic -- if only for the panel of Hal serenading the mysterious Dorine with a rendition of 'The girl of my dreams is the sweetest girl... Of all the girls I know...'