I used to be a comic book collector. I still have hundreds of comics stuffed away back in the US. I tended to collect mostly Marvel Comics, although far from exclusively. Part of this was that I found it easier to relate to many of the characters, such as Peter Parker, or many of the X-men with their uncertainties and angst. Superman was too “Nietzchean” and wasn’t even human anyway.
Marvel Comics (unlike Archie or the more overtly Christian comics) does not have a lot of Christianity (as a well-defined Christian faith). Nightcrawler (Kurt Wagner) is the only character that I can recall who was a Christian. Cleverly, he had the appearance of a demon, and was the offspring of a demon and a mutant villainess. In Nightcrawler we see the ambiguity in Marvel of one who appears evil and yet was good (even sacrificing himself for his team). Of course, the ambiguity doesn’t end there. There are antiheroes, people who do good with evil means or evil motives (very teleological). We have heroes who are uncertain what is the right thing to do. We have villains who have redeemable qualities, even moments of heroism. We have people who defy destiny (like Nightcrawler… or to draw from a different Universe, Hellboy).
To me, the world we live in is in many ways like the Marvel Universe (although people in the know might see the world as more like the NEC Universe).
So in the next few posts I would like to look at some of the correlations between our world and the Marvel Universe, and correlations between our mission and the mission of many of the heroes in comicdom.
Hopefully, it will make sense…