To Beep or Not to Beep

cartoon character death

Conservatives are always outraged about something. A few weeks ago, we told you about the right-wing umbrage being tossed around — not because of Obamacare – but because of good old comic books. Well, for the conservative Comic-Con set, it’s getting worse.

Conservative comic book writers have already complained that illustrated heroes have become too complicated. Superman is “less patriotic.” Batman is too “dark and ambiguous.” Moral relativism is ruining our cherished American medium, and the real villains are those crazy liberals conspiring to keep conservative cartoonists from telling their wholesome stories!

There’s only so much that conservative comic fans can stand before they corner the market on Kryptonite and hold the world hostage, they cried!

All this yammer was before Marvel Comics thwakked conservatives this week with a double-whammy. First, we learned that the hammer-wielding Marvel character Thor will be reintroduced to readers as a woman. And the new Captain America will be black! Holy agenda, Batman!

This might have been enough to send these folks over the cliff. But then we read some incredible news, this time from Archie Comics: Archie Andrews, beloved white-bread icon since 1941, will be killed off in a storyline that has him taking a bullet for a gay gun-control advocate.

Yes, you read that right. “Life With Archie,” a progressive Archie Comics spin-off that imagines Archie, Betty, Veronica and Jughead as adults dealing with cancer and money troubles, first made news when it introduced an openly gay character, Kevin Keller. Keller is portrayed as a military veteran turned US Senator who later went on to get gay married and take a firm stance in favor of gun control.

And now there’s this: The four-year-old spin-off series will conclude when Archie gets in between the gay gun-control Senator Keller and his would-be assassin.

If conservative comic book fans were sock-hopping mad before, this news is going to have them lining up at the Acme Corporation for a stockpile of instant holes and dynamite plungers.

Speaking of dynamite plungers, comic book characters do die. Jimmy Olsen, Lex Luther and even Hercules are pushing up daises along with hundreds of others.

So, back to those conservative writers who are complaining that comic book publishers don’t let them tell their stories. Are they of the opinion that everything should always stay the same, thank you very much, and let’s stop messing with things? Or would they take the side of killing off cherished characters?

We’d like to think these writers would rise to the challenge. No good writer, conservative or not, could forever resist the opportunity for a bold story move – even if that meant killing off an important character.

But how would they do it? If Archie Andrews is taking a bullet for homosexuals and gun-control advocates, how would these conservative writers put their spin on the inevitable death of a cherished character? And, more important, who would they kill? And how would they do it? Tell us what YOU think!


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