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Saturday, January 15, 2005

DIGITAL JEHOVAH

I looooove Indian Comics, particularly the ones that source Hindu Mythology for their imagery:





Rather than blatant Wolverine rip-offs like this:



I was somewhat saddened to hear that Marvel had collaborated with Gotham Comics, their Indian licensee, to put together a regional version of Spider-Man. Sure, this has the potential to turn into a strange and exciting cultural hybrid, but you just know it won't...in fact, Marvel execs are creaming themselves at the prospect that India will soon have a population of under-20's that will be larger than the entire population of the USA. Global Branding Opportunity, anyone?

Still, it's interesting to me that most cultures outside the West feel comfortable enough with their religious/mythological imagery to allow it to be annexed by Pop Culture. Why is it, I wonder, that (Judeo-)Christian imagery and motifs generally only tends to be used by Christians? And Garth Ennis. And, er, Nick Cave.

Biblical imagery tends mainly to be openly used in the hysterical and offensively-propogandist 'comic-book' tracts of Jack Chick. This stuff is soooo un-PC that it's painful. So, a while back, I decided that since the Bible was rich with strange, violent and hyper-ecstatic images, that maybe it was time that we reclaimed this stuff for our own use. Needless to say, my proposal for Digital Jehovah went down like the proverbial lead wottsit with various American comic publishers. Maybe they just weren't ready yet (I mean, they've only had a couple thousand years) for the idea of an angry, unforgiving and vengeful Deity.

Still, if there's some open-minded comic-book editor (or film producer) out there somewhere with an equally open-minded cheque-book, then I'm 1/64th Jewish and raring to go, baby...

"The Hebrew comic-book spin-offs with their fake gold-plate graphics and mock Old Testament fervour were always my own personal favourites. Every issue was chock-full of mutant angel-vigillantes or Digital Jehovahs that demolished brothels with fiery tornadoes. Villainous harlots would scream as explosive stigmata burst from their eye-sockets and the sky rained bloody hands..."

EUGENE PODDANY



"I once knew a fellow who had twelve teeth/five up on top and five underneath/and one in his pocket/and that left one more/that he kept back home in his bureau drawer/He said: 'that is the truth/that one is my very best tooth/so I keep it safe/safe at home, in my bureau drawer...'"