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Thursday, September 01, 2005 

And now...conservative comic books come into play

This is quite facinating, I must admit, coming from a newspaper that's know for being liberal in its stances (save for Jeff Jacoby). The Boston Globe writes about a new comic book for the young conservative crowd called "Liberality for All" written by a Kentucky resident named Mike Mackey. But, based on the following parts, mainly what I highlight here, there's no telling if this is something for conserves to party over:
A new comic series bearing the unwieldy title ''Liberality for All" is coming out in October from ACC Studios, a recently formed one-man publishing venture in Kentucky. Advertised as ''an Orwellian nightmare of ultra-liberalism," the series features radio pundits Sean Hannity, G. Gordon Liddy, and Oliver North as biomechanically tricked-out members of a conservative underground resistance called F.O.I.L. (the Freedom of Information League). Writer and creator Mike Mackey, an affable comic book aficionado, says it's the conservative movement's first comic book series (unless you count the three 1987 issues of the exquisitely low-camp ''Reagan's Raiders") and the only series put together specifically for a right-wing audience. (A story synopsis and sample panels are online at accstudios.com).

Set in the year 2021, the eight-book series imagines an alternative history in which Al Gore won the 2000 election and liberals went on to create a grim dystopia, with Chelsea Clinton as president, Michael Moore the vice president, a hyper-active Department of Political-Correctness, and the United States under the thumb of a corrupt United Nations world government. Meanwhile, Islamic terrorists no longer consider the kinder, gentler US government a threat, and have focused their energies on assassinating their true enemies--the arch conservatives who make up the resistance. Osama bin Laden, now the Afghan ambassador to the United Nations, plans to wipe out New York with a nuclear device, and it's up to our dynamic talk-radio trio to save the nation.

In other words, ''Liberality for All" is a compendium of loopy, high-decibel conservative paranoia--or is it? Bloggers discussing the sample panels can't seem to agree whether the intention is ham-handed propaganda or more subtle ridicule. And many of the e-mails Mackey has received aren't much help either. ''My hats [sic] off to you for putting it to these self-absorbed idiots," one reader told Mackey recently. ''Keep up the good work!" Was the writer praising the attack on liberalism-gone-wild or the send-up of conservative pet anxieties? ''I have no idea," Mackey admits.

And that's fine with him. Mackey says he deliberately wrote the comic with a degree of ambiguity.
Ambiguous? If he's not taking a clear position either way, then there's no telling if this is something to be pleased about or not, I hate to say. Only if it takes a firm stance in its positions does it qualify as anything good.

There's also the fact that I find the idea of using real-life figures like Hannity, Liddy and North as the protagonists in this item that makes me doubt it'll be a bullseye for indie-published books. Why not fictionalized characters?

And considering that the article was written by a paper owned by the NY Times, I think that's one more reason why I'd examine this "Liberality for All" with caution if I ever found it up front.

I've argued before about the MSM's resorting to "fluff articles" on comics coverage rather than meat-and-potatoes coverage. This certainly isn't getting much better.

Update: Think Computers has a take on the book that does look promising at first. The Globe's coverage, however, may blur up the exact facts.


About me

  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
  • I was born in Pennsylvania in 1974, and moved to Israel in 1983. I also enjoyed reading a lot of comics when I was young, the first being Fantastic Four. I maintain a strong belief in the public's right to knowledge and accuracy in facts. I like to think of myself as a conservative-style version of Clark Kent. I don't expect to be perfect at the job, but I do my best.
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