I'll give him this much: Kevin Ferris caught my attention.
Ferris is a columnist for the Philadelphia Inquirer. Usually, his columns are devoted to trying to justify our presence in Iraq. In early March, though, Ferris praised the first issue of a black-and-white comic book called Matamoros.
He said that the creators of the comic showed a "better grasp of how Iraq fits into the larger war on terror than most pundits or politicians.��� He also praised the title character for ���carrying on the homeland defense work of the late, great Captain America.��� ( In the world of Marvel Comics, the original Captain America was seemly shot and killed in the climax of a plotline called Civil War. It's safe to assume that Cap will be back, but just over year later, he hasn���t resurfaced yet.)
I wasn't sure that either of Ferris' statements qualified as recommendations, but I was curious now. And I thought I saw copies of Matamoros #1 at one of the comic shops I hit in my regular circuit. So, I took a look.
It turns out that naming a super hero Matamoros is a lot like naming him the White Supremicist or Super-Christian. Santiago Matamoros is a legendary Spanish figure who led the fight to drive Muslim invaders out of Spain in the eighth century. The word "Matamoros" can be translated as "Moor Slayer," or "Arab Slayer."
In the comic, the modern Matamoros is Chuck Sobietti , a veteran soldier who undergoes the classic Experimental Procedure, in order to recover from injuries he received from a landmine. "Anything," he thinks, "to get back into the fight."
Although the procedure is successful, Sobietti winds up back in America, as a civilian. Not to worry, though. He soon encounters some incredibly clumsy Muslim jihadists discussing their Sinister Plan at a " local kebab and falafel shop." When the police prove to be unhelpful, Sobietti takes matters into his own hands. After he breaks up the terrorist cell, the national news media dubs him Matamoros. His reaction? "It'll do."
In that same scene, he is reading a newspaper with the headline: VIGILANTE SENDS TERROR CELL TO THEIR 72 VIRGINS. I could spend a whole post talking about what's wrong with that headline, but I'll spare you this time.