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I was wondering if anyone here knew of any good Objectivist comic books or comic strips. The best I've found is a comic book by the name of Girl Genius by Phil Foglio. It has a steampunk setting (a sort of 1880s version of cyberpunk) with very intellegent and independent main characters. It isn't Objectivism, but it's worth reading.

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crmra.jpg

Mr. A was a late sixties comic book hero, written and illustated by Steve Ditko, co-creator (with Stan Lee) of Spider-Man. The themes and dialogue of the Mr. A stories are explicitly Objectivist.

Mr. A was a bit too didactic for my taste, but there is no denying Ditko's artistic skills.

Edited by Tom Robinson

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from an older post of mine:

Batman is practically the Objectivist ideal hero. Not only is he a self-made BILLIONARE (It's like every night, after a hard day at the mills, mild mannered Hank Rearden descends into his cave... and becomes BATMAN!!) he is also a super hero in the sense that his only superpower is his mind. No fancy gimmicks, just years of martial arts training and a utility belt. He uses the power of his mind to overcome adversaries. He doesn't fight crime out of any altruistic sense, but he does it in his own interest, out of his own desire for justice.

But then again, I may be biased, because I grew up two houses down from the writer of Batman comics. I used to go there and he would give us all sorts of cool stuff. Heck, he even used one my uncle's name as the name for one of his villians (next time you see Johnny "black spider" LaMonica, you can rest assured that there is, in actuality, a Johnny LaMonica.) That and his house was like a gothic styled architecture, and his son was one of my best friends, so going to his house was an adventure for a 9 year old.

Edited by the tortured one

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But then again, I may be biased, because I grew up two houses down from the writer of Batman comics. I used to go there and he would give us all sorts of cool stuff. Heck, he even used one my uncle's name as the name for one of his villians (next time you see Johnny "black spider" LaMonica, you can rest assured that there is, in actuality, a Johnny LaMonica.) That and his house was like a gothic styled architecture, and his son was one of my best friends, so going to his house was an adventure for a 9 year old.

Obviously your uncle has a better sense of humor than St. Loius Blues player Tony Twist had when Todd McFarlane used him in a comic book. :dough:

Tony Twist Beats McFarlane

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Jeez, talk about your hyper-inflated ego (and this is coming from an egoist!) If someone ever used my name as a comic book villian, I'd be flattered.

then again, we were always cordial with their family, and after Mr. Moench (the writer's name) had met my uncle, he asked him if he could use his name (since it is kind of a catchy name... Johnny LaMonica... got a nice twist to it) and was quite gracious at his acceptance. As a gesture of courtesy, he mailed a copy of the entire black spider series to him.

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For editorial comics, I highly recommend Cox and Forkum. They manage to distill highly advanced philosophical and political messages into single square comics that are almost as hilarious as they are insightful.

If you're looking for comic books, there is a graphic novelist, Bosch Fawstin, who has a book out called Table for One which is excellent. A bit heavy on the objectivist puns, but I think that's part of the comic book aesthetic..

Scott

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Mr. A was a late sixties comic book hero, written and illustated by Steve Ditko, co-creator (with Stan Lee) of Spider-Man. The themes and dialogue of the Mr. A stories are explicitly Objectivist. 

Mr. A was a bit too didactic for my taste, but there is no denying Ditko's artistic skills.

I have search high and low for that series, but have not been able to locate it. He doesn't even sell it through is website!I do have a comic called "Package" which includes various of his works from different series. It included an "Avenging World" strip which was excellent.

Edit: Removed image from quote (unnecessary). --Felipe

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I have search high and low for that series, but have not been able to locate it.

Ebay. It's where I got Package as well as Mr. A. Just search for Ditko.

Edited by Free Thinker

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If you're looking for comic books, there is a graphic novelist, Bosch Fawstin, who has a book out called Table for One which is excellent. A bit heavy on the objectivist puns, but I think that's part of the comic book aesthetic..

Scott

:thumbsup: Thanks Scott, I have been trying to remember who this guy was since I read his material on the net a long time ago. He is pretty heavy with the puns yes but he's got some very great graphics work.

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I found this comic online. It has abit of Objectivist themes to it. It's called "No-where Girl".

I found it at www.nowheregirl.com, it's about a young lady who suffers from depression and isolation, but later learns to rediscover her self worth and boost her self-esteem and persue her own goals in life.

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Calvin and Hobbes...?

Calvin has a super high ego about himself and often proclaims himself to be the most intelligent person ever. He has a over active imagination and is generally happy with just himself and his imagination.

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I recently heard of this book a few months ago:

http://www.newsarama.com/forums/showthread...&threadid=28099

I don't know how good it is, or how "objectivist" it is (the author appears to be a fan of Rand), but it might be worth a look.

As for objectivist superheroes...Ditko, allegedly being a hardcore Objectivist, created quite a few comics based on the philosophy. Mr. A is mentioned above, but there is also "The Question" (http://www.ditko.comics.org/ditko/crea/crquest.html), "Static" (http://www.ditko.comics.org/ditko/crea/crstati.html). He also created "Hawk & Dove", two brothers with opposing political viewpoints, but both flawed by having anti-objectivist philosophies (read an interesting article on that here: http://www.ditko.comics.org/ditko/crea/crhawka.html).

Ditko's most famous co-creation was spider-Man, but it is often hard to pin him down as an Objectivist character ("With Great Power must come great responsibility"), all though I have heard that the Ditko-plotted issues reflect a more objectivist viewpoint.

I guess since MOST comic writers are left-leaning, and the concept of superheroes usually involves helping "the people"(rather than individuals), most of them tend to lean towards being more altruistic creations.

I hoped that once I registered here, I'd get to discuss why my favorite character, The Hulk (who Ditko himself did quite a bit of work on) might or might not be considered an objectivist character. I'll save that for another time though.

Edited by Captain Nate

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I doubt that many of you watch the Justice League Unlimited show, but the last episode to air in the US featured Ditko's creation "The Question" very prominently.

In the episode, he actually gave a short speech on "A is A", using it to say that "Lex Luthor is Lex Luthor."

If I can get my friend to make a short clip of the segment, I may post it online if you are interested.

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I like batman comics, especially when he is portrayed as the dectective who uses deductive skills and mental prowess to overcome his opponents. For example, in the graphic novel Hush, he survived an attack by superman by thinking fast and using his knowledge of superman against him. This larger-than-life clash of titans can make a comic book quite romantic.

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As far as comics... I'm sorry, "graphic novels" are concerned, the Vertigo label puts out some good ones. You have to be picky, though. I liked Neil Gaiman's Sandman, but this doesn't really have an Objectivist bent. It is simply a good fantasy story with an interesting take on mythology. I consider this to be the best of all Vertigo label comics, which usually have more "meat" to the plots than other "Superhero" comics. Also, the Sandman is a completed series. (They knew when to stop)

A Sandman spin off comic features a compelling character that has a value structure based on rational self interest... Lucifer! :devil:

The main character of this comic does not pursue evil for evil's sake, but has a morality that some might consider "evil" for the same reasons some people are put off by Objectivism. He is proud, dashing, honest and integrated to the core. This series is not a completed story, and suffers a little from what all open ended comics suffer from. Because the authors didn't write the story with an end in mind, it continues after it should have ended. I continue to read the series because it portrays a sort of "superhero" who's morals seem closer to a righteous ideal than I have previously seen. The comic is based on characters created by Neil Gaiman, Sam Kieth and Mike Dringenberg. The quotes below are from issue 17 of Lucifer, written by Mike Carey.

*Spoilers To The End*

Lucifer is tired of hell. In the Sandman series he kicks everyone out and gives the Key to hell to Dream (The Sandman). He starts a nightclub in Los Angeles. Lucifer is polite, dashing, and very ambitious. His beef with God is that salvation comes only through worship. Lucifer's ultimate value is to be, himself, godlike not Godlike. Toward this end, his goal is to make his own creation, a goal which he realises during the course of the story. The story of Lucifer's creation is indicative of his character throughout the series.

Lucifer goes about making creation much in the same way as God. But once he makes the first man and woman, his method changes. He shows himself to them and says, "You are the woman and the man. This is the Garden. It's yours." -Notice that Lucifer does not name them, but allows them to name themselves.

The woman, "Thank you."

The man, "But... Who are you?"

Lucifer, "I am the Maker - of all this, and of you yourselves. I am the giver of Life and Death"

The man, "What is death?"

Lucifer, "Separation from this. Darkness and the absence of thought, forever."

The woman, "it sounds terrible. Must you give us Death?"

Lucifer vows to withhold death from them as long as they obey his one command, "Bow down to no one. Worship no one. Not even me." He then confirms that they understand and departs.

Later, the snake loyal to God enters the garden. The serpent preys on the weak mind of the man, and very quickly espouses all sorts of mystic filth and contradiction, ruining the man's self esteem. Lucifer wants the man to have all of the facts, and shows him God's creation. The man begins to worship pain and God, and Lucifer destroys him, "Did the ten thousand years before thy birth trouble thee? Well no more will the ten thousand after thy death." The woman, her greatest value having been destroyed, requests death on her own terms. Lucifer grants it, and concludes that one out of two is not a bad start.

Edited by FeatherFall

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I have a computer game called "Freedom Force" which seems to be based on Freedom Force comics. I've never heard of a Freedom Force comic, but according to what I saw in the game, it was published by "Irrational Comics." I can't tell you about the comics, but the game is a lot of fun - what you do is you take a group of superheros and you fight off the bad guys, who are often typical collectivists.

There is also a small amount of self-sacrifice being portrayed as a virtue, but not as much so as to spoil the game, or even the comics - if they really exist. Do be careful not to confuse it with Marvel Comic's Freedom Force.

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Last year there was a Superman graphic novel called Red Son which was a re-imagining of Superman's story if he had been the man of steel for the Soviet Union during the Cold War. The blurb on the back of the book says, "Strange visitor from another world who can change the course of mighty rivers, bend steel in his bare hands... and who, as the champion of the common worker, fights a never-ending battle for Stalin, Socialism, and the international expansion of the Warsaw Pact."

I was really excited about reading but when I read the introduction, I knew that I was going to be disappointed. In the introduction, the author states, "In the hands of a lesser writer the story would have fallen into cookie cutter, black and white, America good, Soviets bad, feel-good propaganda. Thank God Mark Millar is not a lesser writer. And thank God his favorite color seems to be gray."

The story depicts an epic conflict between Superman in the USSR and Lex Luthor in the United States and, in doing so, implies some kind of moral equivalence between the two superpowers. A very disappointing take on the Cold War.

There is, however, an intriguing episode in the graphic novel where we see an alternate Batman character rise up as an enemy of the Soviet state and very nearly succeeds in killing Superman.

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