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Monday, March 31, 2014 

The wealthy are the baddies in Geoff Johns's awful reboot of Shazam

Here's a blogger who, while his review of a trade collecting the Curse of Shazam storyline seen in Justice League is rather lenient, still gives some more clues about the story structure that raises eyebrows:
The story reads a lot like a pilot episode to a CW show. Billy’s foster family is cynically made up of kids from every demographic so it’s like a marketing team constructed the cast. You’ve got a hot white girl who may as well be wearing a badge saying “Billy’s love interest”, a Latino, a black, an Asian, and a disabled kid – together they are the Bizarrely Politically Correct Family! There are two bad guys – Black Adam and the angry rich white guy. The rich dude is, of course, the father of the spoilt kids who beat up Billy’s new brothers and sisters and rants and raves like a cartoon bad guy. “I’m rich, I’m better than everyone, do what I say police officer, blah blah terrible dialogue etc.”
Well how about that. Johns resorted to a classic cliche - a white millionaire as the prime cause of all their suffering. It's not the poor and uneducated who could be so sick, it's just the wealthy. And the people publishing this garbage are getting pretty rich off the hard earned money of naive collectors. Johns has also worked in movies and TV, so he's making big paychecks, and leaving everybody wondering why he's got issues with the very segment of society he happens to be part of today. As though it weren't bad enough Billy's persona is rendered so unbearable here, they also had to inject some of the easiest ideas into this unfunny joke of a tale. Another reason to stay far away from this remake of the Big Red Cheese.

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In real life, criminals come from every social and economic class, and I have no objection to fiction sometimes depicting rich tycoons (and their spoiled kids) as villains. But it's tiresome when all successful people are portrayed as villains, and vice versa. Leftists preach "diversity," but it's one-sided and selective. The sympathetic characters have to include one token black person, one token disabled person, one gay person, one girl or woman, one Latin or Hispanic person, and, now, one Arab. But the villains are all stamped out with the same cookie cutter: rich WASPs. (Two exceptions: blue collar working class white people can be portrayed as bigots, and war veterans can be portrayed as whacked-out homicidal maniacs.)

According to DC and Marvel (and Hollywood), there are no such things as Muslim terrorists, Mexican drug smugglers, or black muggers.

The Left also makes no distinction between someone who worked and achieved success honestly, and someone who got rich through unethical means. Just as they make no distinction between disabled people who can't work, or people who lost their jobs through no fault of their own (laid off, downsized), and able-bodied people who defraud the welfare system by pretending to have disabilities.

And, speaking of diversity, does every comic have to be grim and gritty? Can't there be one or two escapist entertainment comics?

As I've complained umpteen times, if DC wants to do grimdark, they have plenty of characters (Deadman, Spectre, Etrigan, Dr. Fate, Phantom Stranger, I...Vampire) who are perfectly suited to that style. There is no need to turn Billy Batson into a punk.

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  • From Jerusalem, Israel
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