After not touching my television in a few days, I turned it on and found that I had set my Tivo to record “Who Wants to Be a Superhero?” and had quite a mini-marathon of episodes. I’d totally forgotten about the SciFi channel show and wasn’t sure how well I’d enjoy it.
So I watched about 5 episodes of the first season marathon and I have to say as I watched them through to the finish it rekindled my love for the comics I grew up on. I can’t ever say I lost my love for them it’s just that whenever I started seeing the beau and then living together as a couple…financially sacrifices had to be made, and the local trip to comic shop was one of those things that ended up on the chopping block (yes, I was still reading and enjoying well into my 20s). Ironically, the gym membership was another thing but it finally made it’s way back into my life.
In my first About Me post I made mention of a number of boxes being stored in my closet containing my entire collection of comics. For years upon years I eagerly read and collected my favorite comics. With Marvel being my favorite publisher, it lead me to the grand world of the Xmen, Xfactor, Xforce, Excalibur, Generation X (can you see a trend here?) and many others.
Like my list above shows I was instantly drawn into the Xmen series and it’s many off-shoots. Hardcore comic fans really consider the X-series as the Stephen King of comics…wildly popular but really not the best of literature compared to what else is out there. (Disclaimer — Stating other’s views, not mine — check the now reading in the right column ^^) But the series felt RIGHT to me. The characters, their struggles, their uniqueness, the teamwork and the animosity they faced as a race in themselves. I fell in love with them and gorged myself on all I could find.
Of course I had my favorite characters: Jubilee, Meltdown, Storm, Gambit, Rogue, Mystique, Cannonball. My not so favorite was particularly just Wolverine. But despite all that I had a love for the whole entourage of characters and how they interacted and lived with each other in the face of trials by their fellow man and their fellow mutants.
There have been many gay folk out there who have cited the Xmen comics as a place of security growing up gay. Reading the comics and not seeing just a band of folks with supernatural powers fighting crime, but a group of outcasts being forced into obscurity because of who they are and how they were born. Very much like the lives we live on a daily basis. Do we divulge who we really are in the face of strangers, or hide our true selves?
I remember in my early twenties being a part of a number of mailing lists putting together narrative xmen stories via emails. Taking control of a character (or in case of events — multiple characters) and putting a story together from that characters view, interacting with other members out there for progression in the story lines. Kinda like an email RPG. That was really fun when I had the time. Wouldn’t mind doing it now…may have to do some searching, but I’m very rusty. 😛
During that time I also created a mutant character of my own. His name was Drift. He could control the gravity around him to his will. Making himself or other things float at will, or increasing gravity to apply pressure or even crush things. I loved that character. He had quite an evolution and really I lost him when I got into a relationship.
Many days I would envision myself as one of them. With what kind of superpower would I have been blessed? What super-secret persona would I exhibit? Would, I be out and proud about it, or be all hush-hush?
Invisibility would be an awesome power. Invisible woman anyone? Anytime I think about that I think of the lyrics from the Clay Aiken song “Invisible.”
If I were invisible,
I could just watch you in your room.
Paraphrasing of course, but who wouldn’t love that power? Of course it would be kinda stalkerish and lacks tact, but the power of indulgence would be too great for me.
In all cases though, I’ve realized how much I miss my favorite characters. The comic industry has had a difficult time in these past years because of video games and internet playing a major role in youth’s lives. It makes me sad I abandoned my favorite characters and even in this last move haven’t set a spot for pulling my comics out into view so that I may browse them. They’ve been part of my growing up and my life now.
Just remember, if you love comics. Whether you’re a Spiderman, Superman, Spawn fan…whatever. Support your comic companies and buy their products. The comic shop and comics are becoming a rare find in everyday life. I know many stores who don’t carry them anymore. Keep the written and drawn bliss alive.