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Wednesday, July 18, 2012 

Leftists try to exploit a conservative writer's creation for attacking Mitt Romney

I've seen how leftists today will make considerable efforts to hijack various elements of the comics medium to claim as solely their own (e.g-the X-Men as only a metaphor for gays and lesbians), but this latest effort is surely the most absurd. The Wash. Examiner tells that some Democrats want to exploit the Batman supervillain Bane, created by conservative-leaning Chuck Dixon in 1993 and now appearing for the second time in movies in The Dark Knight Rises, as a means of claiming he's a metaphor for Bain Capitol, a company Mitt Romney worked for years ago:
This summer's much-anticipated Hollywood blockbuster, "The Dark Knight Rises," is getting an unusual boost from Democrats and other foes of Mitt Romney who are eager to tie the Gotham crushing villain to the GOP presidential candidate. Their angle: the mask-wearing, "Venom" gas breathing bad guy has a name that sounds just like Romney's former investment firm that President Obama has been blasting as a jobs killer.

"Bane" is the terrorist in the new movie who drives the caped crusader out of semi-retirement in the final Batman movie. Democrats, who believe they have Romney on the ropes over the president's assault on his leadership at Bain Capital, said the comparisons are too rich to ignore.

"It has been observed that movies can reflect the national mood," said Democratic advisor and former Clinton aide Christopher Lehane. "Whether it is spelled Bain and being put out by the Obama campaign or Bane and being out by Hollywood, the narratives are similar: a highly intelligent villain with offshore interests and a past both are seeking to cover up who had a powerful father and is set on pillaging society," he added.
I don't get it how the similarity in names or sounds means anything. The name "Bain" for all I know probably comes from the same place as "Bainbridge", and the word "bane" is supposed to mean sorrow, and even poison, and could allude to how Bane the supervillain was injected with steroid-like drugs that pumped him into the behemoth he is.

And I see they're only going by the movies, and are not well versed in the comics material at all. Bane was a man who'd been born under an Orwellian system in a fictional Latin American country called Santa Prisca (which appeared as early as Denny O'Neil's take on The Question in the late 80s), born to serve the sentence of his criminal father, and later escaped, and came to the USA where he decided to plot destroying the Masked Manhunter in his quest to dominate Gotham City, which isn't exactly "offshore interests" so much as it is seeking to harm a country he didn't even come from. And as the Wash. Times says:
Comic book writer Chuck Dixon created the character of Bane with Graham Nolan in the early 90's and Dixon's reaction to the news above, according to his message board on his website Dixonverse.net, was "I saw it on FB like two hours ago. Ridiculous. Tho' I got a cold feeling in the pit of my stomach that Rush (Limbaugh) may pick up on this. And that would be the second time he pegged me and Graham as liberals on his show."

He later added, "Overgrasping Dems? Hey, if it gets Obama supporters into theaters. Maybe they'll buy thousands of Bane toys to throw at Romney. It all adds to MY Bane capital. I wonder if the Romney campaign will contact me?"

The DC Comics character Bane is best known for releasing all of Gotham City's criminals from Arkham Asylum. Batman is pushed to the point of exhaustion as he rounds them all back up, but Bane is waiting for him and breaks Batman's back. Bane brings forth chaos, anarchy, and lawlessness. Mitt Romney is not the first person to come to mind as far as the character of Bane is concerned. In fact, the chaos that Bane brings is reminiscent of Occupy Wall Street protests.
To which we could even add the destruction brought upon Europe by jihadists and Muslim rioters in France, both foreign and homegrown, and even leftist anarchists like the ones in Greece.
Other than the silly name play by the Obama campaign, the comparison is ridiculous, especially because Selina Kyle (Catwoman), a thief who steals from rich individuals and played by actress Ann Hathaway in the film, whispers to ultra wealthy Bruce Wayne, Batman's alter ego, in one trailer: "There's a storm coming, Mr. Wayne," she says. "You and your friends better batten down the hatches. Because when it hits you're all going to wonder how you ever thought you could live so large and leave so little for the rest of us."
With that kind of dialogue in the script, why would some leftists think the movie was literally meant to reflect their viewpoints? I don't know if Christopher Nolan is really a rightist, but what he's added to the screenplay per Catwoman's speech sounds reminiscent of the kind of anarchism OWS was known for. In fact, if they really dislike wealthy so much, why are they even fans of Batman/Bruce Wayne, assuming they really are?

Dixon himself said:
“As for his appearance in The Dark Knight Rises, Bane is a force for evil and the destruction of the status quo. He’s far more akin to an Occupy Wall Street type if you’re looking to cast him politically. And if there ever was a Bruce Wayne running for the White House it would have to be Romney.”
And aside from that, if they really have a problem with the wealthy, it puzzles me why they'd have any fandom for a rich character like Bruce Wayne, because being as wealthy as he is one of the power fantasies that's part and parcel of such a book.

Interestingly, while most of the comics press seems to have kept silent on the matter, when CBR did bring this up - and they do acknowledge that Dixon is a conservative writer - they only did so because Rush Limbaugh "spied links" between movie and its villain, and wouldn't mention how this all began with leftist sources until some commentors brought it up, and even then, if lines like "although the links there seem largely focused on supposed thematic parallels and photo mash-ups rather than, y’know, some secret plot that would require mind control and a time machine." tell anything, it's that they're still determined to avoid clearly acknowledging what the Dems were trying to say. This shouldn't be too surprising, since most of the comics press was also silent about the NYT's silly attack on the Avengers movie. I'm going to be honest here, I am angry at Limbaugh for how he suggests that the people who'll go to see the Dark Knight Rises are "brain-dead"; it certainly is distasteful how he implies that people who enjoy pop culture are all just a bunch of lemmings, but when CBR and other such sources fail to take the NYT's movie critics to task for how stupidly they comment on the Avengers movie and how one of them apparently didn't even bother to watch the Black Widow's portrayal seriously, then it's clear that what they do say regarding Limbaugh doesn't stem from altruism. And frankly, I can't believe they weren't aware of what the Wash. Examiner first reported and the followups from Kerry Picket and Dixon himself. If they wanted to, they could find all the original news via the busloads of search engines available on the web, and I'm sure they did too, but didn't want to say anything lest they end up being critical of "their own".

This does make me wonder though just what leftist moviegoers will decide now when they read the exact story behind the creation of Bane and the movie premise: will they decide to shun it? Maybe not, but the UK Guardian's written something that sounds pretty negative:
So it should be no surprise that The Dark Knight Rises so firmly upholds the financial status quo. Christopher Nolan's film indulges in much guttural talk of the gap between the 99% and the 1%, but it is the former who are demonised, whose revolting actions require curbing and mutinous squeals muting. Your average Joe, it turns out, requires a benevolent, bad-ass billionaire to set him straight, to knock him sideways, if necessary.
Knowing just how left-leaning that paper is, I won't be surprised if "guttural" is meant as an attack on the film, which can only be telling how good it really is, and if the description of how Batman and the goodies deal with the anarchists is correct, then the movie is hitting the right notes indeed.

If the left was trying to exploit this movie and the comics characters it's based on just to suit their goals, I think all their "hopes" are going to be made to look like comedy gold pretty soon.

Update: Dixon also spoke about this on the Schnitt Show radio program broadcast in Tampa, Florida.

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"I don't know if Christopher Nolan is really a rightist, but what he's added to the screenplay per Catwoman's speech sounds reminiscent of the kind of anarchism OWS was known for."

In all fairness, Catwoman was NOT meant to be portrayed positively when she said that. And she even has a moment later on where she realized that her OWS-style beliefs were NOT good when played out in practice and ended up siding Batman partly because of that revelation, so Nolan's adding that statement if anything was meant to CONDEMN OWS rather than promoting it. Heck, technically, the film was meant to condemn the French Revolution and Reign of Terror (as one of the bases of the film was in fact A Tale of Two Cities, aka the ultimate literary condemnation of the French Revolution and its ethos).

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