Monday, July 18, 2016

New Super-man #1

Cars don't get into serious accidents with other cars in China! They get into accidents with mopeds, bikes, pedestrians, and capitalism!

The Review!
This is my new favorite Superman book. It is a real DC Comics comic book, right? This isn't just a Chinese knockoff? Because it feels like I just got a Bat-Man action figure whose name is Bruce Parker and he carries a lasso of truth. But that's the joke, right? "Let's make a Chinese version of Superman and it'll be like a counterfeit, knock-off Superman product! And why stop there? China can have knock-offs of the whole Justice League! It'll be totally hilarious and not insensitive or stereotypical at all! Because it's just a fact that China doesn't give a shit about international trademark and copyright law! And also they're very wise!" But seriously (which is something I say to make sure nobody thinks I was being gross or problematic!), this is a fun book. Even the unlikeable main character is totally likeable. I think it's the way he says "ha ha" a lot! Plus he's got enough flaws that he'll be learning lessons for a long time. That's like pre-written material built in to the premise! Also the art is great! And the lettering didn't make me go blind, so I guess it was good. Plus there were colors, so way to go Hi-Fi, if that's even your real name. What are you, a robot? Or a DJ?

The Commentary!
I'm a bit worried about commenting on this comic book. What if I say something racially insensitive when I think I'm just being facetious and charming? This is why I like comic books with white male leads! I know that I can't ever go too far with a joke about them! People are always crying for more diversity and representation and inclusion. But I'm always thinking, "No! No! That just means more pitfalls for me to fall into because of my stupid sense of humor! Can't we let the white males remain in power for just a little bit longer?!" I suppose I should be happy about a comic book starring a Chinese Super-man in China because it'll give me a chance to tell all of my stories for when I traveled in China! I bet I can even wedge in a few Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan, and Thailand stories! Well, maybe not Thailand! I bet if I stay silent about Thailand, people will think I had a more sexually adventurous time there than I actually did!

Plus it'll give me a chance to share vacation photos!

Maybe the next one will even be a photo of China instead of the Badlands in South Dakota!

The issue begins in Shanghai, China, where I've been. I've been there. Totally been all over that. It also begins with a stylistic choice that I despise but I suppose I'm just going to have to get over it at some point. It's been nearly five years now that I've been back to reading comic books and I just can't get past it: the Narration Boxes in the voice of the main character directed at the reader. Don't acknowledge me, you fictional character! You're not supposed to know that you're in a comic book and that I'm reading your adventure! Chinese Superman is even telling me to take notes about his origin story! Fuck that! I haven't been in school for twenty years! I'll be damned if I remember anything ever again!

Now I'm expecting an old man in a fishing boat to tell me about prejudice because I called New Super-man "Chinese Super-man". It's not like I refer to Superman as American Superman! But then that's because "Superman" never needed disambiguation before! Maybe I can just refer to him as "Superman" and it can be acknowledged that I'm speaking about the Superman who is the star of this comic book. If American Superman guest stars, I'll call him American Superman because he's the one causing the confusion.

Oh good! New Super-man is an insensitive bully! Maybe he'll distract people from my insensitivity and penchant for bullying!

I wouldn't normally think of myself as a bully. Critic is a much better term! Besides, I would never comment on Scott Lobdell or Ann Nocenti's physical features! I just critique their ability to write! It would be wrong of me to point out Cullen Bunn's cue ball head while writing about his terrible writing choices on Twat Lobo.

I don't think Superman will continue to be an unlikeable and unsympathetic character. I have a feeling he's going to learn some lessons soon! Although he's still mighty cocky in his Narration Boxes. Double although, no more cocky than I am in my reviews! So maybe he's actually kind of lovable! He even calls the kid he's stealing the soda from "Fat Boy." Ha ha! That's funny! Like both atomic bombs in one, right?! I bet that kid's farts smell terrible!

After the bullying and the reverse-bullying plays out, a villain named Blue Condor flies down to kidnap Fat Boy because Fat Boy's parents are rich. Instead of just laughing about it, Superman throws the can of soda at Blue Condor's head, helping Fat Boy escape. What a hero! An insensitive bastard of a hero but still a hero!

Superman's secret identity is Kenan so I should probably start calling him Kenan when he's not Superman. Especially since he isn't even Superman yet! Although he is in the Narration Boxes! Kenan must be his surname since it sounds like Kent. Does surname mean last name? Maybe I should stick to words I know the definitions of. No, that would hardly work. I need to have a reputation for using the best words!

Kenan meets Chinese Lois Lane!

Lan shares the video of Kenan throwing the soda at Blue Condor on social media and she's instantly fired from Primetime Shanghai for giving away the exclusive footage for free. Although China is still Communist-minded (if not totally Capitalist-hearted!), so maybe she'll get a big promotion for sharing such footage portraying the average Chinese citizen as brave and dutiful! And by promotion, I mean maybe they'll let her use the special internet without the government firewall two or three times per week.

I hope my complete ignorance of China isn't showing!

Lan makes up for her blunder by getting an exclusive interview with Kenan which enables the woman who will eventually turn him into New Super-man to pick him for her experiment. He's become the People's Hero and he doesn't even know it yet! I just hope he doesn't start an international incident by referring to Batman as "Fat Boy".

Kenan lets Lan know he's totally interested in doing it to her but she's not into robbing the high school locker room. I bet later she totally falls in love with him though! And maybe they'll get married in issue #250! I hope I don't have to wait that long for them to do it though. I bet Lan floods the Mekong Delta when she gets a glimpse of New Super-man though! That wasn't insensitive because she's Chinese and not Vietnamese. Plus it's wordplay on Kenan's name Kong!

Since Kenan can't convince Lan that she's going to fall in love with him eventually so why not start dating now, he rushes home to tell his dad about his heroics.

I think Kenan's dad is going to teach Kenan all about great responsibility! With a little help from Blue Condor, of course!

Kenan's dad is all "Truth! Justice! Democracy!" "Democracy" is obviously just the only way he could say "The American Way" without being American. But we know everybody secretly wants to be American! Or at least have the confidence of an American. Hell, I wish I had the confidence of an American. But I think you have to be really stupid and ignorant to have the kind of confidence that most Americans have.

Anyway, Kenan's dad is already teaching him about responsibility and he hasn't even been killed by Blue Condor yet! He's all into freedom and junk because he belongs to a Writers Group called "We Are Not Revolutionaries At All!" I wish he were actually in a revolutionary improv group.

Kenan's dad shits all over Kenan's hopes of getting laid by a big shot reporter. So he's a normal dad. He also reveals that Kenan's mom was killed in some mysterious way that might have been caused by Fat Boy's father! Instead of telling his dad he hates him like a good American kid would do, Kenan simply goes to hang out with his mother in the cemetery. That's when he's approached by the woman who will turn him into New Super-man! Her name is Dr. Omen and she works for the Ministry of Self-Reliance and none of that sounds spooky or suspicious at all! Take the offer to become the New Super-man, kid!

Kenan goes off with Dr. Omen because that's what kids do when their fathers are huge dicks who don't get excited when good stuff happens to you. You run off and join a circus and overdose on heroin! Or hide out at Larry Mondello's house! But Kenan has a different opportunity! He can become a superhero! Which he totally does! He's infused with Superman's powers and then starts acting like a teenager who thinks they know everything. Which means mom and dad need to knock some sense into him!

Ha ha! This issue is called "Made in China"! I feel like I'm off the hook and can be as insensitive as I want! I mean, as long as I'm funny! I won't be mean and racist just to be mean and racist! Probably!

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