The moon over Lerhyn was full, giving the sands of Lerhyn a reflective, mirror like sheen that seemed to go on forever, stretching so far into the desert it became a mass of white on the horizon. Lamezzo studied it through the window in his room like was common every night. Lamezzo once had heard a poet describe Lerhyn’s desert as a sea of polished glass, but to the Dopplegangers eye it just looked like sand stretching out in every direction. Poetry didn’t really seem to resonate with Lamezzo, other Jatuum felt it was necessary to inject a little romanticism into taking a life, to Lamezzo there already was romanticism there. What could be more romantic than making the ultimate decision for someone else? Lamezzo sat down on the bedroll that was kept in the room, brushing sand that had blown in and built up on the covers away. Being this far out into the desert was starting to become tiring, the occasional trip to the actual city of Lerhyn hardly helped, most of the time spent there was skulking about the manors of the rich and powerful (and quite a lot of time choking out ex-husbands for said rich and powerful) What Lamezzo knew then, if it was not poetry, was there was a discontent growing inside and it had to be connected to the area that had started to become stifling. The one place that had at once a feeling of home, of comfort, was starting to feel like a prison. Bricks in the walls had started to become individually numbered, small ways of distracting the self became the only distraction. There was no outlet, save for when Lamezzo haunted the streets on the very few times there was a chance of sneaking to the city. Lerhyn, even as it was marvelous and large and filled with secrets, shadows and everything in between, had also become old. On the other side of the mountains there was Valikorlia, a place Lamezzo had been told maybe one day the group of Jatuum that were family would need to travel there, but that day was far off. Ferrazim was Lamezzo’s master, a gaunt and tall, dark skinned man who commanded respect with a booming voice and giant presence. At the same time, he was like a father to Lamezzo and many other Jatuum in this camp. From the day Lamezzo was inducted, Ferrazim had related that Jatuum live meticulously planned out lives, following orders and bending to the will of the larger Jatuum. Lamezzo was different though, the possession of a specific set of gifts put lamezzo on a place higher than any other here, and not being able to utilize them was the most aggravating part of life here. Everything in Lamezzo’s small room had been packed nice and tidy; the Jatuum didn’t own much. A short bow, a sword, and the rest of the gear a Jatuum needed. There were no personal belongings in Lamezzo’s things; what use did such nostalgic artifacts have to a dealer of death, anyway?
Valikorlia lay waiting, far across the mountains and rivers.
Lamezzo slammed an angry fist against a stone wall. Koto had made chase through a dead end alley in a dead in city, somewhere in Valikorlia. Up the side of the smooth stone building, to the left, to the right; there was nowhere to go. With stiff fingers, a blind-fired dagger ripped out of Lamezzo’s bandolier and cut through the air at Koto. A metallic cling echoed out through the other side of the plaza, the knife spun off into the air, falling a few feet behind him uselessly. Koto’s red Khukri hummed its way back to his side, he tapped it still with a single finger and prepared to deflect another one of Lamezzo’s knifes, keeping his arm and sword crossed. Lamezzo spun from the wall he was pressed against, his hand reached and pulled a throwing knife off of his belt. Lamezzo spun away from the wall that had been cutting the blue-skinned Jatuum off. If there really was no way to go, Koto would fight on Lamezzo’s own terms. Another throwing knife un-holstered from the bandolier, Koto barked at Lamezzo. “Whatever you think that will do, it will be easier for you if you dont’.” Lamezzo didn’t listen. Lamezzo never listened. There may be a gap between the two when it concerned the martial arts, but when it came to things like knowing when to quit, Koto would always be the one to stop first when he was pitted against Lamezzo. Koto could tell Lamezzo was trying to pick a target. Lamezzo’s face was placid, giving away no clues or hints. The knife would do the talking, flying out straight and narrow at Koto, who had just become an enemy. Koto’s red machete whipped through the air and turned flat, he’d practiced deflecting Lamezzo’s knives hundreds of times during training, and he’d executed many succesful parries on the field. What was one more? There was no metal clang when the knife hit, Koto swung the sword too fast too soon.When the tip of the knife struck Koto’s arm, it passed through skin and then muscle, making his fingers go slack and the Khukri to clatter to the ground. Lamezzo had let Koto know he was predictable, and now the blue-skinned Jatuum held the advantage. It was a reminder of the difference between the two of them, and why it was so hard for them to work together. Koto might have thought on his feet expertly, but Lamezzo was a meticulous planner. Nothing was up to chance, and certainly not the idea of taking each other on with an equal handicap. There was a minute where neither of them knew who was going to swing first; Lamezzo was holding his guard steady and Koto clutched at his arm. The Doppleganger swung wide, wanting to fool Koto into trying to parry and retaliate. Koto’s more reactive nature set him up perfectly for melee combat, though. The blow connected to the side of his head and hardly deterred him, the tip of his elbow caught Lamezzo right under the chin and made the Doppleganger scramble backwards and knock over a pile of firewood stacked neatly against the wall.
As more blood left Koto’s arm, he steeled his resolve. The pain of the knife tip rubbing against bone became dulled. Lamezzo’s expression went from placid to surprise; the look in Koto’s eye was one the Doppleganger had seen before, usually before someone died. It came down to a wild swing from the khukri Koto picked up. He was doing the same thing Lamezzo had tried, and Lamezzo knew it. Every time he ran through the next few seconds, it ended with being crumpled on the ground, wounded. When a Doppleganger copies a person, it’s custom to take an object that belongs to that person, or even a scraping of their skin or blood. This isn’t always neccesary; many times did Lamezzo copy someone without doing so, but to make a perfect duplication of the way someone looked required it. At various points in time, this had also extended to natural objects like wood and stone. The process hurt, though. It was almost always unbelievably painful to do, but right now it was desperate. Lamezzo put a hand on the wall behind him and felt his veins become hard, his skin turn mottled and grey. Lamezzo’s fingers locked in place, unmovable around Koto’s blade, jerking it inward towards the wall. The look of rage on Koto’s face went from bewilderment to hopelessness, he watched Lamezzo everything in his arm up to the shoulder on his way to the ground. He had to look up at Lamezzo know, who beared back down at him with a sneer. Lamezzo had won, and Koto felt like a fool for it. The sole of the dopplegangers boot pressed against Koto’s throat, the Khukri pointed right against his skin. “Who did they send?” He asked “Who?” Underneath Lamezzo’s boot, Koto struggled to move. Weakness had completely overtook him, there on the plaza ground in a small puddle of his own blood. “Ferrazim sent only sister and I.” Lamezzo’s face twisted from the placid sneer to a snarl of disgust. Not only had Ferrazim tried to use Koto to press him to return, but Sele who he considered his own sister had even volunteered. “If you make it home, tell Ferrazim I will return when I am ready, and not before.” Lamezzo’s heel knocked his friends head against the cobblestone, sending his vision into a haze and eventually blackness. The last thing he heard was the words Lamezzo said, pulling up a hood. “Enjoy your scars, friend.”
Lamezzo scanned the rooftops of the street adjacent to his hotel building. Koto had been skilled with his hands ever since they had been children, but Sele, his sister, was a marksman through and through. If she was here, she would have been waiting, from sun up to sun down. Lamezzo did not panic, he would have to draw her out and not approach the building directly. Operating on the hunch that she was already arrived he figured he could save himself and be prepared if she wasn’t. The darkness of the alleyway was quite welcoming, especially considering there was obvious foot traffic between the two buildings. Lamezzo stood patiently on one side with his hood up, staring at the ground. Whoever came by would work excellently. Thoughts stirred in his head about his duties, but he pushed them to the back of his head and locked them away. What duties did he have? His father spoke for great lengths that it took a Jatuum returning from five assignments with no scars, and tomorrow would be his fifth. So what if he did this on his own? Father would not always be there to hold the students hands. Lamezzo would prove he was not only sworn to the creed, but the best the company had to offer. He heard footsteps a foot away and looked up slowly; she was an older looking woman who had a scar on the left side of her throat. It took a moment for him to snap a link of bone in her neck and pull her behind the dumpster. Another casualty of city living, Lamezzo figured. Lamezzo didn’t ever have to study how a face or a body looked, it just worked that way. His eyes turned green to match hers, his hair long and dark. The bones in his face unsettled themselves and cracked, breaking themselves apart and reshaping. The skin stretched and pulled itself tight in new ways to accommodate the new facial structure. Lamezzo ran fingers that elongated and thinned down across the scar on her neck. This is what it felt like to be scarred, to be less-than. It rapidly blended into the rest of the skin, vanishing. Scars a mark of a failure to Jatuum, and even a Doppleganger mustn’t have them. She pulled her coat around her waist, it fit the body she had prior and as similarly form fitting, which was not at all. The front door was the easiest way to get in, had Sele seen her on the street she would’ve made no hesitations about winging her right then and there with a crossbow bolt, or even shot if she’d been using her rifle. Lamezzo turned the handle to her room slowly, inching the door open with her foot and slipping in, closing it so lightly that it made no noise whatsoever. The other possibility was that Sele had been waiting the entire time to shoot her in the room she’d paid for with some of the money from the temple in Lerhyn, but it was just quiet and still as when she’d left. Lamezzo walked in front of a window facing the street, and patiently waited. She only had a little view of the street on the other side, not enough to get in a challenge of marksmanship. Lamezzo pulled a bandolier of throwing knives and a belt with crossbow bolts from underneath the bed, passing in front of a window. It was a little too slow, a little too initial: Sele had made Lamezzo and a bolt came crashing through the window, slamming her to the ground. Everything went black.
From Sele’s perspective, there was almost five minutes of no movement in the house. Lamezzo was probably pinned to the ground, lucky to be alive. The bolt hadn’t been intended to kill, and if Sele was behind the trigger, whatever her intentions of the shot were always turned out true. She made her way quickly down the rooftop, sliding down a rope on the back of the building that had been tethered to a spike on the roof. Her feet splashed in a puddle at the bottom of the grimy alleyway, and she booked it for the front of the hotel. Her crossbow was clip loaded, and worked by a relatively simple gear based mechanism from Dalmar. When one bolt was fired, the auto locking mechanism drew the string back a set number of times, giving enough space for a bolt to drop down and be forced into place against the groove. That’s what let her immediately pin a guard standing in the hotel to the wall behind him as soon as the front door swung open. There was no room for distractions, an a quick hustle left the young man that was the attendant tied to a desk in the lobby, with the front doors barred shut. She would bring Lamezzo back to Ferrazim because Koto had failed; if she was the one to bring Lamezzo back, there would be accolades and opportunity waiting for her. Right inside the room, there was Lamezzo on the floor, unconscious. The bolt was embedded just slightly in her shoulder, it looks like she must have struck the bed frame with her head on the way down. Lamezzo’s eyes snapped open as soon as the crossbow was leveled at her. “Stupid!” barely made its way out of Sele’s mouth. Lamezzo had played possum and waited until she had her at a disadvantage. Her feet wrapped around Sele’s ankles and kicked against her shin. Sele fell backwards and rolled across her shoulder, clutching the crossbow tight. With both of them sitting upright in a kneeled position, there was maybe ten feet between them. Sele with her crossbow, and Lamezzo with a bandolier of a few throwing knives. Sele raised her crossbow and fired. It took the bolt hardly a second to cross the sparse different, but Lamezzo was already moving out of the way. A roll into the adjacent room and Lamezzo popped up onto her feet. Sele wasn’t far behind, reaching out in a full run and pulling her back by the hood, The rug underneath Lamezzo’s feet and the polished wood floor beneath that didn’t offer any support, sliding right out from under her and forcing her flat on her back with a forced grunt. Sele pointed her crossbow straight down, hardly in time. Lamezzo’s ankles wrapped around her throat and pulled her forward and down, flipping her to the floor. Her ankled locked around Sele’s neck, forcing the top of one foot and the bottom of the other together against her throat. It fit Sele perfectly for the fight to be like this; the two of them may have been close but they hardly ever shared words. Even in the field, Lamezzo and her seemed to simply operate on the same principles and be capable of coordinating without speaking. It made them a highly dangerous combination. Her struggled and grunts faded as she lost strength, passing out from lack of oxygen. As it turned out, Lamezzo was the more dangerous of the two.
She leaned back and let out a sigh, before scrambling to her feet. It was clear that Ferrazim was desperate for her to return, but if Koto and Sele had been sent, who would be next? Lamezzo barely had time to dwell on it; Sele’s commotion in the foyer of the hotel and the battle in Lamezzo’s room had gotten a group of guards attention, the sound of splintering wood and the angry yells of the city watch carried all through the halls and up the stairs.
They came before Ferrazim empty-handed, weak and defeated. Ferrazim looked down from his pedestal upon them, musing about a busy work desk, dipping quill in red ink and hastily scrawling something to parchment. Koto had opened his mouth to force out a small whisper of an excuse, an excuse that was snuffed out before it could ever greet the halls. "You have done well, only as well as you could." Said Ferrazim. He didn’t bother to look at him now, talking over his shoulder. "Lamezzo taught you of limits, shame he still believes he has none." "To your feet, Sele." Ferrazim turned, his gaze held forward as if staring right through her. "See this letter delivered to the Ganelon Inn, in Valikorlia. I will see this charade ended."
Remember Me isn’t very difficult to describe at all: it’s a very straight forward example of a modern action game that’s incredibly well dressed. What’s difficult to explain to someone about Remember Me is why you would actually want to play it. Remember Me first hit the internet with nothing but praise during it’s initial unveiling. What it looked like was a highly original IP being published by a company that wasn’t exactly known at the time for that, it also happened to come out of literally nowhere atTokyo Game Show. People thought it was going to be an ace in the hole for the fledgling developer Dontnod Entertainment, and even more so for the games publisher, Capcom. There was this really huge reaction to it’s presence, especially as more and more of the Game got shown off. Especially the Memory Remixing feature, which proves to be one of the most original (if messily executed) mechanics in a modern AAA title. Flash forward a few months from this, and the game hit store shelves worldwide to lukewarm reviews and a very disappointed following: the game had some elements it had touted, but not all of them are executed well and those elements that are almost take a back seat to the “modern design” elements that are ripped from other games. Bringing it up now seems to get phrases like “style over substance” thrown around with reckless abandon, but when you really look closer at Remember Me the words take on a hollow tone, like the kinds of critics who use them don’t actually know what they mean. Remember Me is absolutely filled with style, just look at almost any screenshot from the game or even watch a video of it in motion. Beneath that though, there’s a yearning like the developers wanted the game to have more substance, but something happened in its development cycle and it just wasn’t feasible.
The way Neo-Paris looks and feels in Remember Me could be displayed in an art gallery of an example of “this is art design, game developers” especially considering the meticulous level of craft present in most of the indoor environments in the game that’s almost unheard of even on the powerful consoles we had during this last generation. There’s a part in remember me where you, as the protagonist Nilin, enter someone’s apartment through the window. This is at a point in the game where Nilin is highly wanted. The second the person notices you, they book through their apartment and disappear. As you wander through the apartment, you can see traces of a family, a knocked over glass dripping on a table, a chair leaning against a bookshelf. You see the elements of chaos caused by your disrupting these people’s daily lives, the presence of an invasive force disrupting the normalcy of the city, juxtaposed against the cold and unfeeling service robots in the house still carrying about their daily tasks.
In stark contrast, earlier in the game as you make your way pre-directed (more on that later) through the slum area ducking in and out of ruined homes filled with squatters and small hovels holding families, nobody notices and very few people care; it’s almost like being in a completely different city where such things are a common part of the day. Running through the streets and climbing lower and lowers into the depths of the city, and trek further out into places the common citizens wouldn’t see there are touches like the graffiti on the walls being vague and almost more like art installations to becoming anti-corporate and anti-capitalist messages. It’s a subtle touch to the game but helps lift it above the vague and often meaningless handwritten game graffiti that we usually get and worth noting as an example of the developers really going that extra few miles to make everything fit the world.
The film Blade Runner was set in a city sort of like Remember Me’s Neo-Paris, it felt lived in and truly alive, in many ways the city in Blade Runner breathed as much as the actors playing the characters did. It never felt like just a background for the events, but like a real living place where people went about their lives. Most of Cyberpunk fiction that came since Bladerunner have failed to pick up on that being part of what makes it so re-watchable and successful, and instead choose to just copy the aesthetic elements of the movie, how many times have you seen a futuristic city brimming with Asian influence that feels hollow and cold, like it’s just an afterthought because some other movie did it before? The city of Neo-Paris in Remember Me is somewhere closer to Final Fantasy VII on a scale of interactivity I like to call the “Final Fantasy Skyrim Interactivity Scale”
Final Fantasy has always operated at the furthest end of the scale especially during the PS1 and PS2 era’s of the series. Final Fantasy VII and VIII as examples are absolutely filled to the brim with background details that are placed specifically to add more weight to the worlds the game takes place in. Everything feels like it has a real reason for being there even if the player can’t directly pick it up and inspect it. Even games made on more recent consoles like Final Fantasy XII still are built on the same concept. Rabanastre feels like a living and breathing place, especially when you go into the city-sublevel where the poorer inhabitants live. There’s a deliberate messiness that’s invoked to make you really feel the area when you traverse through it, at least initially. Skyrim or better yet, Dragon Age both are on the opposite end of this scale. The games are filled to the brim with things you can interact with, but they often don’t seem to be there for any reason other than the merit of being able to show off a physics engine, or simply for the sake of being able to be moved around.
You can pick up as much of the same four or five varieties of bread in the game, or put pots on someone’s head and they will literally never notice. Filled with physics based objects that have very little impact on the game world itself, it’s interactivity for the sake of letting the player have something they can distract themselves with. Remember Me is hard on the Final Fantasy VII side of this scale. Neo-Paris is a visual delight whether you’re walking through the city streets or breaking into Le Bastille, the giant prison area. Yet the game world is absolutely static around the resolute and selfish protagonist, Nilin. Remember Me lets you go where it wants you to go, and nowhere else. Gifted by a larger budget and maybe even a longer development time, or just a studio with more experience I wonder if Remember Me could have delivered on actually letting players explore a place that’s so delightfully teetering between dystopia and utopia as if one revolutionary or despot could throw it completely to one of those extremes. Describing Remember Me in a way that makes that aspect of the game come through is difficult, I’ve heard it called “an interactive art gallery” and that really seems to be the most fitting; even the key feature of the game, which is the memory remixing aspect (which quite frankly doesn’t happen enough) is little more interactive than watching a cut scene and occasionally hitting a button, and replaying that over and over again until you get the right combination of effects to get the memory to play out how you want.
When you’re climbing around Neo-Paris, Nilin is told where she can navigate to by bright yellow arrows that fit nicely in with the game’s augmented reality visual aesthetic, but for the sake of digging deeper I don’t really know if that’s a good thing. There seems to be something wrong about the idea of a game that needs to highlight the only areas you can actually interact with, especially because unlike Final Fantasy VII, part of Remember Me’s entertainment is mostly dependent on the player traversing these areas. It’s a spectacle, but there’s nothing behind it, leaving the otherwise tense platforming sequences feeling hollow and empty.
I mentioned earlier Blade Runner and the people that after its release that chose to ape what were essentially the wrong things about the movie, and that goes a long way to explain Remember Me’s platforming elements. Ever since the release of Prince Of Persia on the Playstation Duex the prevalence of ‘realistic platforming’ has been far reaching in modern videogames, yet many games, and Remember Me being one of the most recent offenders don’t really seem to understand what actually made the platforming in that game memorable. The Prince’s acrobatics and climbing skills weren’t just how he got around, they formed the basis for how he solved every puzzle and mounted every challenge in the game. Nilin’s acrobatics are just used to traverse a beautiful yet static landscape and that’s the only way they ever come into play. Prince of Persia also managed to intertwine The Prince’s acrobatics in the combat: he didn’t just move with finesse and grace through the levels themselves, but he could actively use those abilities to traverse the environment during real time combat using enemies more like obstacles. One of the most difficult things for games that blatantly take inspiration from Prince of Persia this generation has been that they don’t ‘get’ that you can in fact blend level design and enemy placement to work together.
Weirdly enough, Remember Me’s developer shows at least a little talent when it comes to the area of using level design to as a puzzle, especially with some abilities Nilin learns later in the game. It almost would be a completely better game if they had cut out combat entirely, and focused solely on the memory remixing, acrobatics and hacking aspects of the game. Especially considering everything else is tied together so well. The art direction, music and story all work great and flow together quite nicely, but the actual mechanics and how they are implemented fail to successfully create any cohesion between those elements.
It’s 2013, so I think Remember Me and Bioshock Infinite set two great examples of it being time to start asking more questions about the games we play. Why aren’t there more games with worlds that feel as full and lived in as Neo-Paris in Remember Me does?
What could this game have been like without combat, if the developer chose to instead focus on an aspect that worked better with the setting? More importantly, why is Remember Me one of the only games with a woman of color as the protagonist? (That’s a different conversation altogether)
Additionally, there was a conversation going on around the time before Remember Me was released, about it being a sort of ‘videogame’ equivalent of The Fifth Element. This isn’t true; Videogames have a much longer way to go before we’ll be able to create anything with even half of the weight. Remember Me is weighed down by the ball and chain of Videogame Writing; Nilin is a likeable and selfish protagonist that feels flawed but eventually triumphs over her shortcomings to save the city; even in the face of a twist that is actually nicely executed for how on the nose those sorts of things in videogames tend to be. Remember Me plays with the idea of the rebellious faction in the game not being any better than the regime in power, but then goes out of it’s way to turn the villains into snidely-whiplash moustache twirlers when you actually come face to face with them. It’s because of that weight that Remember Me doesn’t exactly cross that storytelling finish line that The Fifth Element does, what it comes close to though instead of the movie, is being one of the comics that would eventually go on to inspire it.
Remember Me is worth EXACTLY two and a half copies of Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner: Directors Cut
but only EXACTLY One and a half copies of William Gibsons Neuromancer.
this bullshit about ‘you should tolerate peoples opinions even if theyre racist/sexist/homophobic/transphobic because its their right to think that way’ like uh no
no im not gonna tolerate you believing you can treat people like dirt just because you dont think i should trample all over your precious feelings like fuck you im gonna fuckin do it in concrete shoes get them feelings ready
In the middle of the 90’s, DC made a fevered pitch to boost sales by killing of their arguably most famous character, The Man of Steel, Superman. In a supposedly climactic battle with Doomsday, The Man of Steel is left broken and dead in the street, to the horror of onlookers everywhere. It was on the news, it was referenced in other comics, even Marvel shouted out to it once or twice. Superman, like Captain America after him, and dozens of other characters, eventually came back. When Superman was brought back to life though, it kind of raised the question that if Superman can come back to life, why can’t anyone else? Death became a permanent part of comic books shortly afterwards. A tool used to boost sales, to create an ultimate point of drama in a series that may not have enough, the perfect end cap to a character’s legacy. Comic book fans in particular have very interesting opinions on the idea of a character dying, even if they do pass on the mantle: it’s less about whether or not they do but to who they pass it onto.
In the Ultimate Comics line, Peter Parker died and Miles Morales took up the mantle. Though Miles is a lot younger than Peter was, there are a lot of similar things about both characters, such as dealing with the responsibility of their powers. Miles Morales proves that comic fans are okay with heroes dying as long as the person that picks up that legacy are similar; the character doesn’t necessarily die so much as the essence Is passed onto another character. It doesn’t help Miles’ case that no matter how good his comic is, Brian Michael Bendis will always write every character with the same voice. Can death be prevalent in mainstream superhero comics ever again? It’s not likely, but Dan Slott’s The Superior Spider-Man is a wonderful take on the concept, and a brilliant take-that against whiny nerds who want the status quo to change but only so much as to still be comfortable. There are a lot of other things that The Superior Spider-Man does. It’s a brilliant take on Spider-Man’s theme of responsibility and power, and an inherent tradeoff between the personal life and the public one.
Yes, Amazing Spider-Man #700 let the villain win, but in achieving his ultimate victory, Doctor Ock or “Spock” (short for Spidey-Ock) also met his greatest defeat: He had to play by Spider-Man’s rules, and those rules exist independent of Peter Parker. What I mean is Spock had every chance to ruin Peter Parker’s life and reputation, even with having his conscience and memories. He can’t do it though, because this series also deals with the conscience of the villain, and how heroes are made, not born with inherent qualities.
What I like about Superior Spider-Man is seeing someone else struggle with the idea of having power. Spock goes off the deep end with the gadgetry and inventions, but it also rouses a particular notion that comics have juggled for years, and one of the biggest criticisms of other characters. “Why doesn’t Batman fund the police?” Is one of those questions, in asking that but with Spider-Man The Superior Spider-Man does something mature. Why hasn’t Peter Parker invented more than just webshooters to compliment his crime fighting? Invisible costumes notwithstanding, why try to juggle protecting the entire island of Manhattan when he could have easily made Spider-Drones ten years ago?
Spider-Drones are a neat addition to Spock’s pool of resources, because it ties thematically in with his very active assault on crime. If you’re not “there yet” in the story or aren’t reading, Spider-Drones which use the very ugly connotation of the word “Drone” to it’s full effect are little robots that Spider-Man has flooded the city with, to go on patrol when he doesn’t feel like it. They tie very well with the idea of ‘Spock’ being more pursuant towards crime like going right to the source, trying to predict the movements of villains. Judging from the general fan reaction, Dan Slott has succeeded in juxtaposing the idea that we don’t want superheroes to be active pursuers of justice and make harsh decisions, we want them to be passive defenders against injustice and crime that wait and then strike. Even SuperMan has been guilty of it, how many times has he waited until Lex Luthor has the giant power-armor on, instead of just dragging him out of his penthouse condo and throwing him in a box somewhere? The
Superman comics have always played the notion that that’s not his duty, and that’s sort of been the stance of superhero comics for the last seventy years or so, barring deconstructions and The Nineties. The Superior-Spiderman entertains the idea of a Superhero who honestly believes that is his duty, he’s not above leveling an entire city block to get at The Kingpin, or breaking a neck to ensure that a certain Goblin won’t bother him anymore. Is there a merit to a superhero who doesn’t hold back against his villains? More importantly, is there merit to a superhero who doesn’t turn his persona “off” even when putting up the façade of his secret identity? More importantly The Superior Spider-Man asks what the role of things like legacies are, should we be allowed to choose who should inherit our legacy? can a legacy be taken from someone? The way The Superior Spider-Man asks those questions may be in a more upfront comic-bookish manner, filled with a lot more of Spock ogling Black Cat’s chest, they’re still a central part of the character. After dealing with the famous ex-girlfriend, goblin-based villains, if you’ll notice The Superior Spider-Man has started to fold characters like Scarlet Spider and Agent Venom into the current mythos, culminating soon in including even Spider-Man 2099. These are all different takes on the same theme of responsibility/power. Red-Flag or Flagship, as a character Peter Parker and Spider-Mans influence on comics has only grown since the “good old days” (whichever days those are to you)
One of the best things about Superior Spider-Man is that the character of ‘Spock’ embodies traits were generally conditioned by a culture of passive males to see as immoral. Spock is aggressive, pursuant of things he’s actually interested in to a sort of metaphorical dying breath but he still ultimately has a resolve to do good even if his idea of doing good is driven by those obsessive traits. ‘Spock’ is written to have traits that we, as nerds, see in ourselves as negative. He’s obsessive, driven, incredibly critical of his perceived small failings and even more critical of those around him. ‘Spock’ reminds us of the people we are, the kinds of people we would be with super powers. The Superior Spider-Man has, in a way, turned the character into a brilliantly written take that against other modern comic heroes, and that’s why The Superior Spider-Man is the best thing to happen to Spider-Man in comics in quite awhile. Spider-Man has never had a comic that takes a closer look on his character and legacy, he’s never received his The Killing Joke or Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow? Attempts like Reign were critically dried or plagued by horrible choices in judgement (let’s not mention radioactive sperm) and failed to deliver. The Superior Spider-Man is Dan Slott and Marvel’s way of asking about the legacy of Spider-Man, and it couldn’t come at a more important time.
Or has it always been popular and I just noticed it on tumblr for the first time this year?
yeah, JoJo has been around for a long time but kind of the deal is it’s only recently recieved decent scanlations online around a little before the anime came out, it was always pretty *fringe* before that, considering the only anime/OVA’s it had were really poorly dubbed from the 90’s and centered mostly around one storyarc in the middle
“g…for the contingent out there who sneer at heroes like Superman and Wonder Woman and Captain America, those icons who still, at their core, represent selfless sacrifice for the greater good, and who justify their contempt by saying, oh, it’s so unrealistic, no one would ever be so noble… grow up. Seriously. Cynicism is not maturity, do not mistake the one for the other. If you truly cannot accept a story where someone does the right thing because it’s the right thing to do, that says far more about who you are than these characters.”—Greg Rucka (via murmurandshout)
I think this is one of those nights where I really can’t do anything. Nothing I’m drawing looks good, I don’t feel like playing video games, I’m just sitting here glass-eyed browsing aimlessly. I think I’ll just sleep instead, that’s something I’m good at, at least. The waking up bit, not so much.
dude, i hate waking up and this is every night for me. i try and get around it by doing something out of my comfort zone!