Four-Color Democracy

The superhero is a ridiculous, heartfelt, colourful, two-dimensional shout that says that it’s tougher out here in real life than we were promised that it’s dangerous and often inequitable too, and that there are times when it would be good to have a friend who’d help to even the balance . . . . But in the language of symbols, that doesn’t mean that the superhero by its existence suggests that democracy should be replaced by fascism, because its a love of democracy that motivates our disappointment and the superheroes existence in the first place.

The superhero . . . . operates in that conceptual space between the ideals which the state preaches to its citizens and the deeds that occur in a democratic society. And the superhero is a symbol of the desire for people to live in a society where everyone does what they say they will, and where those stated intentions are founded on constitutional principles.

— Colin Smith defends superhero comicdom from cries of pop fascims at Too Busy Thinking About My Comics

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