Club PA 2.0 has arrived! If you'd like to access some extra PA content and help support the forums, check it out at patreon.com/ClubPA
The image size limit has been raised to 1mb! Anything larger than that should be linked to. This is a HARD limit, please do not abuse it.
Our new Indie Games subforum is now open for business in G&T. Go and check it out, you might land a code for a free game. If you're developing an indie game and want to post about it, follow these directions. If you don't, he'll break your legs! Hahaha! Seriously though.
Our rules have been updated and given their own forum. Go and look at them! They are nice, and there may be new ones that you didn't know about! Hooray for rules! Hooray for The System! Hooray for Conforming!

A Thread 4 Talking About the F4nt4stic 4

VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine.Registered User regular
edited August 2015 in Graphic Violence
So, it's been raised that the Superheroes thread in SE++ is a bit megathready and has probably sucked the traffic out of GV. I have never posted in GV before, I don't think, but figured why the hell not address the problem right now rather than waiting for whatever.

In honour of the recent release of the spectacular bomb of Josh Trank's F4 movie, it seemed appropriate to divert some of the discussion about a super fantastic family into its own thread.

Fantastic_Four_Vol_5_13_Textless.jpg

FEATURING:
Reed Richards, super genius and analog for the element of water.
Sue Storm-Richards, deemed the "most powerful" of the four (a requirement for being married to Reed, I suspect) since being written with the ability to disconnect vital organs from the rest of your body by creating a forcefield INSIDE YOU and analog for the element of air.
Johnny Storm, obvious analog for the element of fire, serves as the team's goofy comic relief and stereotypical handsome-guy-in-a-group-situation playboy.
Ben Grimm, analog for the element of earth, known to be the team's muscle and serves as Johnny's foil within the team as well as, back in the day, being a visual reminder and cue for Reed's internal guilt and conflict at what happened to his family.

Franklin Richards, son of Sue and Reed who is basically a super-omega level mutant.
Valeria Richards, daughter of Sue and Reed, named by Doctor Doom, and whose genius rivals that of her father's.

HAVING ADVENTURES! SCIENCE! SPACE! NEGATIVE ZONE! SAVING THE WORLD! BEING OUT IN THE OPEN, REAL NAMES AND ALL, FAMOUS FOR IT, CONTRASTING MUCH OF THE REST OF THE MARVEL UNIVERSE FOR A LONG TIME!

I used to read F4 when I was much younger, and only recently revisited them with a subscription to Marvel Unlimited and a reading guide to Hickman's run. Which I loved and recommend; see below.
Dark Reign: Fantastic Four #1-5
Fantastic Four (1998) #570-588
FF #1-11
Fantastic Four #600

Then Fantastic Four #601-611 and FF #12-23. I read these in date order (ie, alternating) cuz it's easy to do that on Unlimited and that worked well.

Be sure to include #605.1 as well!

NOTE: Also happy for someone to list out a Waid reading guide as well, as I've heard good things about Unthinkable but haven't read it myself yet.

Anyway, this thread is for all things Fantastic 4, from the comics to the movies to the TV shows to the individual characters to, of course, their amazing villains.

All hope lies in Doom.

XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
Vivixenne on
ToxRingoTransporterArmorocDevlin_DragonusTexiKenCilla BlackOlivawMidnitedarunia106ZonugalBucketmanChomp-Chomp
«13

Posts

  • ToxTox I kill threads Punch DimensionRegistered User regular
    A+ thread title right there.

    My immediate question is, I've read (and loved) the following comics:
    - Matt Fraction's Hawkeye (most of it, at least)
    - Jason Aaron's Thor
    - Ms Marvel (first trade of current run)
    - Secret Wars (current run)

    Based on that, is there a good jumping off point if I wanted to check out the F4?

    I'd considering grabbing the Ultimate F4, just because why not and also it's somewhat modernized? And also also because Maker looks to be moving to the main universe as a villain.

    Wishlists! General | Gaming | Comics | Dilige, et quod vis fac
  • BroloBrolo Broseidon Lord of the BroceanRegistered User regular
    I was unaware that the Fantastic Four movie had even come out.

    fKsd5ex.jpg

    From the promo materials, Reed Richards looks like he's 17.

  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    Realtalk - I have no plans to see the new movie, not even out of curiosity.

    Like I know some people are being all "well if Marvel/Fox/whatever didn't interfere, then maybe Josh Trank would've ended up with a half-decent adaptation", but from what I've heard I don't think I could've forgiven some of the decisions that had to be 100% Trank.

    Namely:
    "It's clobbering time!" being attributed to Ben Grimm's abusive older brother prior to physically abusing him.

    Sue not even getting to get into the capsule and go on the trip at ALL?

    Other issues that may or may not be Trank-related:
    - utter lack of action sequences
    - somber colour palette
    - multiple script changes and dubbed-over lines

    It just seems to miss all the beats that are key to the Fantastic 4 for me. It's been raised that maybe there is NO formula wherein the Fantastic 4's story translates well into a movie, but somehow I doubt that. It actually almost seems like it'd fit a movie SO WELL that people are tripping over themselves with the available options.

    I've said it before that the earlier F4 movies (Chris Evans et al) seemed to get the tone and palette right, but failed in the writing and execution part. And then this new one overcorrected on all the issues with those movies.

    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
    Ringo
  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    Tox wrote: »
    A+ thread title right there.

    My immediate question is, I've read (and loved) the following comics:
    - Matt Fraction's Hawkeye (most of it, at least)
    - Jason Aaron's Thor
    - Ms Marvel (first trade of current run)
    - Secret Wars (current run)

    Based on that, is there a good jumping off point if I wanted to check out the F4?

    I'd considering grabbing the Ultimate F4, just because why not and also it's somewhat modernized? And also also because Maker looks to be moving to the main universe as a villain.

    honestly, I'd check out the Hickman stuff if you've been away for a while

    Fraction also did a run for the F4 but I haven't read it myself, I've heard mixed things about it

    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
  • RingoRingo Stardust, Golden Caught in a Devil's BargainRegistered User regular
    So, talking about Sue Storm and her characterization and such - I have to say I really enjoyed the last Marvel Adventures line where somebody had the brilliant idea to make Sue a core member of the Avengers. It was a breath of fresh air to see her interacting with people outside her immediate family, and get to show off what makes her a capable superhero in her own right.

    I'd really like to see more of that.

    ceres wrote: »
    I'm just going to go ahead and lock this thread before I feel any worse about humanity.
    Edcrab's Exigency RPG now featured at the Exigency Forum
    Vivixenne
  • FearghaillFearghaill If there is nothing but what we make in this world let us make goodRegistered User regular
    edited August 2015
    I've been doing a Claremont-onward X-Men readthrough for a while now but I recently finished his run and am getting into some pretty seriously 90s stuff and have been thinking about what else to read to balance out the XTREMEness, and talking with people about what makes the Fantastic Four great has made me want to read some of that.

    Not sure if I want to go all the way back to Lee & Kirby, because I made it about 5 issues into their X-Men before deciding to jump to Claremont, seems like a lot of silver age stuff didn't age so well.

    Does anyone know if there is a particular creator/creative team on Fantastic Four that really defines the team the way Claremont did the X-Men? Ideally it would be someone who wrote Sue as more than just "the girl on the team"

    Fearghaill on
  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    edited August 2015
    Ringo wrote: »
    So, talking about Sue Storm and her characterization and such - I have to say I really enjoyed the last Marvel Adventures line where somebody had the brilliant idea to make Sue a core member of the Avengers. It was a breath of fresh air to see her interacting with people outside her immediate family, and get to show off what makes her a capable superhero in her own right.

    I'd really like to see more of that.

    Yeah under a lot of writers she really feels like "token female" or "mom" and I think that's why I stopped reading the series for a long time. And even nowadays there's still some aspect of the "Mama Bear" characterisation coming through, but it's being handled a bit better these days than previously. Like, she's not a mom of kids so much as she is the MATRIARCH of the family, which I am totally okay with.

    The stuff with Namor has always kinda skeeved me out though.

    Vivixenne on
    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    Fearghaill wrote: »
    I've been doing a Claremont-onward X-Men readthrough for a while now but I recently finished his run and am getting into some pretty seriously 90s stuff and have been thinking about what else to read to balance out the XTREMEness, and talking with people about what makes the Fantastic Four great has made me want to read some of that.

    Not sure if I want to go all the way back to Lee & Kirby, because I made it about 5 issues into their X-Men before deciding to jump to Claremont, seems like a lot of silver age stuff didn't age so well.

    Does anyone know if there is a particular creator/creative team on Fantastic Four that really defines the team the way Claremont did the X-Men? Ideally it would be someone who wrote Sue as more than just "the girl on the team"

    There are some pieces of Hickman's run that does have Sue doing her own thing, though I must admit that the main strength of his run was that it stared the whole Reed-centric thing (that had been going on with F4 for aaaaages) in the face and then wrested it back to focus on the family. I don't know if anyone would agree that Hickman's run, being so recent, really "defines" the Fantastic Four, but it certainly made me love them again.

    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    Hickman's run spoilers
    Johnny's sacrifice in the Negative Zone

    Ben's future long after everyone else is gone thanks to only aging one week a year

    Sue's foray into Atlantean politics

    these individual storylines give each character their own important moments, no doubt, but I do think the family as a whole is where they really shine, so I actually don't know if Sue is a "good" female comic book character or not

    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
  • BroloBrolo Broseidon Lord of the BroceanRegistered User regular
    Vivixenne wrote: »

    It just seems to miss all the beats that are key to the Fantastic 4 for me. It's been raised that maybe there is NO formula wherein the Fantastic 4's story translates well into a movie, but somehow I doubt that. It actually almost seems like it'd fit a movie SO WELL that people are tripping over themselves with the available options.

    uyCcADfl.jpg

    This honestly seems like the movie that's truest to the F4's spirit.

    RingoToxTransporterchiasaur11RainfallOlivawXaquinHarry Dresdendarunia106ZonugalAnzekayBucketmanChomp-Chomp
  • Mego ThorMego Thor "I say thee...NAY!" Registered User regular
    I find the "there's no way to do a good Fantastic Four movie" line of thinking ridiculous. Just because Fox has screwed it up three times doesn't mean it can't be done by the right studio *coughMarvelcough*

    kyrcl.png
    Harry Dresden
  • RingoRingo Stardust, Golden Caught in a Devil's BargainRegistered User regular
    Oh hey, all those 2008-2012 Marvel Adventures lines are available on Unlimited.

    Almost makes me want to get Unlimited.... hmmm

    ceres wrote: »
    I'm just going to go ahead and lock this thread before I feel any worse about humanity.
    Edcrab's Exigency RPG now featured at the Exigency Forum
  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    Brolo wrote: »
    Vivixenne wrote: »

    It just seems to miss all the beats that are key to the Fantastic 4 for me. It's been raised that maybe there is NO formula wherein the Fantastic 4's story translates well into a movie, but somehow I doubt that. It actually almost seems like it'd fit a movie SO WELL that people are tripping over themselves with the available options.

    uyCcADfl.jpg

    This honestly seems like the movie that's truest to the F4's spirit.

    Yeah this has come up before. The Incredibles absolutely proves that a family of superheroes is a totally doable movie. I wonder if F4's problems exist because they need to distinguish from The Incredibles somehow, which you think wouldn't be hard but maybe?

    I just don't know why it's so hard to have a family go to space/another dimension and come back with superpowers and have the genius who feels super guilty about what's happened encourage them all to lean into the superpowers and make them a good thing with ADVENTURES to help distract himself and the rest of the family from that GUILT. You could even subvert a mental health story into that if you wanted to go all out with that angle!

    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    Mego Thor wrote: »
    I find the "there's no way to do a good Fantastic Four movie" line of thinking ridiculous. Just because Fox has screwed it up three times doesn't mean it can't be done by the right studio *coughMarvelcough*

    My honest hope is that this movie bombing SO HARD may prompt Fox to sell the rights back to Marvel, but at the same time the movie bombed SO HARD that Fox doesn't have much to bargain with in that arena. Their best hope is to just go "look, we've got Doom and Kang and some other awesome villains that you can't use right now, what'll you do to get them back" as bargaining chips rather than the Fantastic Four themselves.

    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
    RingoMego ThorTransporterDevlin_DragonusZonugal
  • OmnipotentBagelOmnipotentBagel up to my see thru butt in wily espionage Registered User regular
    Viv, is the MAMA BEAR characterization inherently problematic, or is your issue mostly that it's typically the only defining quality she's given?

    cauvjy2q47n7.jpg
  • FearghaillFearghaill If there is nothing but what we make in this world let us make goodRegistered User regular
    I've read and loved Hickman's run, which is whyI I'm now interested in diving deeper - it's actually the first/only F4 I've read.

    As for good examples of Sue's characterization, my favorite issue of Jeff Parker's X-men First Class was when Prof X arranged for Jean to "job shadow" with Sue because he realized she could use a female mentor, especially one who knows what it's like to be the only woman on a superhero team

  • RingoRingo Stardust, Golden Caught in a Devil's BargainRegistered User regular
    I think the number one problem that Josh Trank's movie had (besides everything) was that someone thought "realistic" and/or "dark and gritty" was something that needed to be added to make the premise "better", which is something that I think happens when you let people who don't believe in comic book movies make comic book movies.

    Nobody goes around saying, "Indiana Jones would work better if we could make it more mature" because there's no idiots on the planets who are utterly convinced that Indiana Jones isn't a proven commodity. If only people had the same faith in comic properties!

    ceres wrote: »
    I'm just going to go ahead and lock this thread before I feel any worse about humanity.
    Edcrab's Exigency RPG now featured at the Exigency Forum
  • RingoRingo Stardust, Golden Caught in a Devil's BargainRegistered User regular
    Ringo wrote: »
    Nobody goes around saying, "Indiana Jones would work better if we could make it more mature" because there's no idiots on the planets who are utterly convinced that Indiana Jones isn't a proven commodity. If only people had the same faith in comic properties!

    That's right, even people on Mars and Venus know that Indiana Jones is fine just the way it is.

    ceres wrote: »
    I'm just going to go ahead and lock this thread before I feel any worse about humanity.
    Edcrab's Exigency RPG now featured at the Exigency Forum
    Fearghaill
  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    Viv, is the MAMA BEAR characterization inherently problematic, or is your issue mostly that it's typically the only defining quality she's given?

    I mentioned this briefly in SE++ but am happy to rehash it here.

    I do not have a problem with the Mama Bear characterisation in and of itself. It is supported by the fact that Sue can straight up murder someone if she wanted to, but she doesn't want to because she can be taken seriously and assert her views without needing to make that threat. Like, I have always liked that about her.

    But! A Mama Bear isn't and shouldn't be ALL SHE IS. Like, it rings true to me as a woman because I know lots of Mama Bear types - I may end up being one of them, myself. But it's not all we are or could be within our families. It's easier to explore when she's separate to her family, but I don't think any writer has yet done that WITHIN the family system.

    She's not JUST a Mama Bear, just like Reed isn't JUST a genius and Johnny isn't JUST a playboy. And while I think anyone could easily describe aspects of Reed or Johnny's characters outside of their "tropes" (for lack of a better term), I don't know that many people - if any - could identify any effective characterisation of Sue as anyone BUT a Mama Bear.

    Her actions in Civil War kinda came close to that, but felt like a tacked-on option to further REED's internal conflict rather than to explore her own.

    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
    Transporter
  • TransporterTransporter Registered User regular
    edited August 2015
    I love Sue Storm.

    Sue Storm is not a good female comic book character.

    And that is 100% not the character's fault. Sue Storm is a victim of her history, more than anything.

    She was originally characterized as a damsel in distress trope, before being eventually written off as Reed Richard's spouse, because of course your hot action hero should marry the other single not monster not brother member of the group.

    This was all set in stone WAY before the powers that be realized that, "Holy shit, this is all regressive as HELL". So the tried everything. They tried to make her sexy(HELLO 90's), they buffed up her power set, they made her the heart of the team.

    But probably most damaging thing, in the end, is that they made her a Mom.

    I'm not saying that mom's are not intristically bad characters. I'm not saying that a mom can't be a good character.

    But I ask, how many comic writer's are ACTUALLY mother's?

    How many comic writer's can write around the platonic idea of a mother that nearly every human being has, even IF their own mother's were terrible?

    When you characterize a mother, specifically, when you want to portray a mother, the desire to write that platonic ideal basically overrides any other desire of the story you may or may not want to portray.

    This is embodied in Namor. Every husband's fear is, "She'll find a hotter guy and leave me!". So what's Namor? A hot dude that relentlessly pursue's Sue Storm who's also a King and amazing.

    But she never leaves Reed, her lovable nerd man, she never cheats on him, because she's married, and she wouldn't be a good MOTHER. MOTHER'S DON'T CHEAT ON THEIR HUSBANDS THEY ARE ALWAYS FAITHFUL NO MATTER THE SITUATION.

    There's a, dare I say, PRIMAL fear not to portray a mother as anything else but an angelic force of good, better than all of their surroundings and always adhearing to the mother's code of perfection. Because if you DON'T, you open up to the possiblity that this mother, may also in fact be a WOMAN and a human being.

    Transporter on
    fightinfilipino
  • Mego ThorMego Thor "I say thee...NAY!" Registered User regular
    Vivixenne wrote: »
    Mego Thor wrote: »
    I find the "there's no way to do a good Fantastic Four movie" line of thinking ridiculous. Just because Fox has screwed it up three times doesn't mean it can't be done by the right studio *coughMarvelcough*

    My honest hope is that this movie bombing SO HARD may prompt Fox to sell the rights back to Marvel, but at the same time the movie bombed SO HARD that Fox doesn't have much to bargain with in that arena. Their best hope is to just go "look, we've got Doom and Kang and some other awesome villains that you can't use right now, what'll you do to get them back" as bargaining chips rather than the Fantastic Four themselves.

    I hope so as well, @Vivixenne.

    kyrcl.png
    Andy Joe
  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    edited August 2015
    Fearghaill wrote: »
    I've read and loved Hickman's run, which is whyI I'm now interested in diving deeper - it's actually the first/only F4 I've read.

    As for good examples of Sue's characterization, my favorite issue of Jeff Parker's X-men First Class was when Prof X arranged for Jean to "job shadow" with Sue because he realized she could use a female mentor, especially one who knows what it's like to be the only woman on a superhero team

    There was the Lady Liberators arc in She-Hulk (I think around the time of Slott's decidedly average run) where Sue made an appearance there alongside Valkyrie, Thundra, and Shulkie. That was pretty fun, actually.

    There's a line where Sue thinks about checking in with Reed before she goes off on a mission in another country with the ladies, and was then like "nah, I'll just buy him something shiny, it'll be fine" and I just LOVED THAT.

    Vivixenne on
    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
    RingoToxTransporter
  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    I love Sue Storm.

    Sue Storm is not a good female comic book character.

    And that is 100% not the character's fault. Sue Storm is a victim of her history, more than anything.

    She was originally characterized as a damsel in distress trope, before being eventually written off as Reed Richard's spouse, because of course your hot action hero should marry the other single not monster not brother member of the group.

    This was all set in stone WAY before the powers that be realized that, "Holy shit, this is all regressive as HELL". So the tried everything. They tried to make her sexy(HELLO 90's), they buffed up her power set, they made her the heart of the team.

    But probably most damaging thing, in the end, is that they made her a Mom.

    I'm not saying that mom's are not intristically bad characters. I'm not saying that a mom can't be a good character.

    But I ask, how many comic writer's are ACTUALLY mother's?

    How many comic writer's can write around the platonic idea of a mother that nearly every human being has, even IF their own mother's were terrible?

    When you characterize a mother, specifically, when you want to portray a mother, the desire to write that platonic ideal basically overrides any other desire of the story you may or may not want to portray.

    This is embodied in Namor. Every husband's fear is, "She'll find a hotter guy and leave me!". So what's Namor? A hot dude that relentlessly pursue's Sue Storm who's also a King and amazing.

    But she never leaves Reed, her lovable nerd man, she never cheats on him, because she's married, and she wouldn't be a good MOTHER. MOTHER'S DON'T CHEAT ON THEIR HUSBANDS THEY ARE ALWAYS FAITHFUL NO MATTER THE SITUATION.

    There's a, dare I say, PRIMAL fear not to portray a mother as anything else but an angelic force of good, better than all of their surroundings and always adhearing to the mother's code of perfection. Because if you DON'T, you open up to the possiblity that this mother, may also in fact be a WOMAN and a human being.

    No lie, sometimes I feel like the people who write comic book moms are just projecting their individual ideas of what makes a "perfect wife" and "perfect mom" into characters like Sue. It's also why they've struggled to write her ANY OTHER WAY, because they are actually writing about the mother they wished they had, or the mother they believe they had, or something. It's actually SUPER obvious once you know to look for it.

    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
    TransporterCilla Black
  • NeoTomaNeoToma Registered User regular
    I kind of liked the first 30 minutes of this latest F4 movie. Sue being really good at recognizing patterns, and having the foresight the others lacked. Of course then when they run off without her everythin goes to crap

  • OmnipotentBagelOmnipotentBagel up to my see thru butt in wily espionage Registered User regular
    Vivixenne wrote: »
    Viv, is the MAMA BEAR characterization inherently problematic, or is your issue mostly that it's typically the only defining quality she's given?

    I mentioned this briefly in SE++ but am happy to rehash it here.

    I do not have a problem with the Mama Bear characterisation in and of itself. It is supported by the fact that Sue can straight up murder someone if she wanted to, but she doesn't want to because she can be taken seriously and assert her views without needing to make that threat. Like, I have always liked that about her.

    But! A Mama Bear isn't and shouldn't be ALL SHE IS. Like, it rings true to me as a woman because I know lots of Mama Bear types - I may end up being one of them, myself. But it's not all we are or could be within our families. It's easier to explore when she's separate to her family, but I don't think any writer has yet done that WITHIN the family system.

    She's not JUST a Mama Bear, just like Reed isn't JUST a genius and Johnny isn't JUST a playboy. And while I think anyone could easily describe aspects of Reed or Johnny's characters outside of their "tropes" (for lack of a better term), I don't know that many people - if any - could identify any effective characterisation of Sue as anyone BUT a Mama Bear.

    Her actions in Civil War kinda came close to that, but felt like a tacked-on option to further REED's internal conflict rather than to explore her own.

    Cool, thanks for elaborating. I also like that aspect of her personality, but I agree she should be more than that. I don't know why writers struggle with it--she's a person just like any other. There aren't really "woman only" or "man only" characterization options!

    cauvjy2q47n7.jpg
  • TransporterTransporter Registered User regular
    Vivixenne wrote: »
    I love Sue Storm.

    Sue Storm is not a good female comic book character.

    And that is 100% not the character's fault. Sue Storm is a victim of her history, more than anything.

    She was originally characterized as a damsel in distress trope, before being eventually written off as Reed Richard's spouse, because of course your hot action hero should marry the other single not monster not brother member of the group.

    This was all set in stone WAY before the powers that be realized that, "Holy shit, this is all regressive as HELL". So the tried everything. They tried to make her sexy(HELLO 90's), they buffed up her power set, they made her the heart of the team.

    But probably most damaging thing, in the end, is that they made her a Mom.

    I'm not saying that mom's are not intristically bad characters. I'm not saying that a mom can't be a good character.

    But I ask, how many comic writer's are ACTUALLY mother's?

    How many comic writer's can write around the platonic idea of a mother that nearly every human being has, even IF their own mother's were terrible?

    When you characterize a mother, specifically, when you want to portray a mother, the desire to write that platonic ideal basically overrides any other desire of the story you may or may not want to portray.

    This is embodied in Namor. Every husband's fear is, "She'll find a hotter guy and leave me!". So what's Namor? A hot dude that relentlessly pursue's Sue Storm who's also a King and amazing.

    But she never leaves Reed, her lovable nerd man, she never cheats on him, because she's married, and she wouldn't be a good MOTHER. MOTHER'S DON'T CHEAT ON THEIR HUSBANDS THEY ARE ALWAYS FAITHFUL NO MATTER THE SITUATION.

    There's a, dare I say, PRIMAL fear not to portray a mother as anything else but an angelic force of good, better than all of their surroundings and always adhearing to the mother's code of perfection. Because if you DON'T, you open up to the possiblity that this mother, may also in fact be a WOMAN and a human being.

    No lie, sometimes I feel like the people who write comic book moms are just projecting their individual ideas of what makes a "perfect wife" and "perfect mom" into characters like Sue. It's also why they've struggled to write her ANY OTHER WAY, because they are actually writing about the mother they wished they had, or the mother they believe they had, or something. It's actually SUPER obvious once you know to look for it.

    I'd call this the Jean Grey Problem.

    Only Sue predates Jean by a bit. So I guess it is totally the Sue Storm Problem.

  • Lindsay LohanLindsay Lohan Registered User regular
    It's really one of the challenges where so many characters we read were created so long ago. You have characters whose back stories go back to 1961 and personality traits/features just get baked into them. You don't see many of the TV shows from 1961 trying to come up with new stories or stay relevant today. I'm pretty sure Donna Reed 2015 or the All New Dick Van Dyke show aren't coming on CBS this fall. It's hard to expect natural feeling growth from characters established so long ago.

    Her powers by themselves are sort of sexist and mom styled. She can hide and protect. It feels a lot like when I tried reading the early X-Men books and the guys are strong and gymnasts and the girl has mental powers that make her not need to fight.

    I wonder what the reaction would be to completely re-do F4. Kind of like what they are doing with Archie. Just pretend the old stuff doesn't exist, take the character names and some traits (like Thing still being some form of rock based) but change the roles and personality types around significantly.

    Fencingsax
  • AtomicTofuAtomicTofu She's a straight-up supervillain, yo Registered User regular
    Fearghaill wrote: »
    I've read and loved Hickman's run, which is whyI I'm now interested in diving deeper - it's actually the first/only F4 I've read.

    As for good examples of Sue's characterization, my favorite issue of Jeff Parker's X-men First Class was when Prof X arranged for Jean to "job shadow" with Sue because he realized she could use a female mentor, especially one who knows what it's like to be the only woman on a superhero team

    @Fearghaill I would say check out Waid's run (F4 Vol. 3 #60-71, Vol. 1 #501-524). It's not all on Unlimited but there are four Ultimate Collection tpbs that collect the run.

    I guess most people would say Byrne's run is definitive but I have no experience with that personally.

    w0C0ezT.png?1
    Steam | 3DS: 1177 7520 9456
  • FearghaillFearghaill If there is nothing but what we make in this world let us make goodRegistered User regular
    AtomicTofu wrote: »
    Fearghaill wrote: »
    I've read and loved Hickman's run, which is whyI I'm now interested in diving deeper - it's actually the first/only F4 I've read.

    As for good examples of Sue's characterization, my favorite issue of Jeff Parker's X-men First Class was when Prof X arranged for Jean to "job shadow" with Sue because he realized she could use a female mentor, especially one who knows what it's like to be the only woman on a superhero team

    @Fearghaill I would say check out Waid's run (F4 Vol. 3 #60-71, Vol. 1 #501-524). It's not all on Unlimited but there are four Ultimate Collection tpbs that collect the run.

    I guess most people would say Byrne's run is definitive but I have no experience with that personally.

    Thanks!

    I'm gritting my teeth and reading through some of Byrne's X-Men stuff now because I feel I've comitted to a certain level of thoroughness on that readthrough, but I'm not super keen on Byrne as a person these days so I'm happy to skip his stuff otherwise

  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    edited August 2015
    Kamala Khan is a good modern comparison. She exists within her family system as a daughter and all that implies, but a daughter isn't all that she is. She IS Muslim and she IS a devoted daughter, but she's also a geek, a fanfic writer, a teenager, a superhero fangirl, an Inhuman, a superhero herself, an overachiever, etc. Even her superpowers give her a variety of ways to fight, including brute force. It's a benefit of having your own solo title, I think, because the book gives you plenty of space to explore all aspects of her character.

    In an ensemble title, it's harder to do that but still possible because then you get the benefit of contrast between characters to emphasize certain traits. The issue with both Jean and Sue, though, is that the primary thing that contrasted them from the others was their gender. And that meant that all the characterization that was ever needed was "girl".

    Even when Lee and Kirby were still running X-men, the male characters all had emerging personalities. Scott as the overprotective stoic leader. Warren as the handsome rich aristocrat. Bobby as the joker/quipper. Hank as the nerd with refined tastes.

    Jean was never given any such personality because her distinguishing characteristic was "woman". That's all that was needed for a very very long time. And even decades later, it still shows.

    Vivixenne on
    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
  • FencingsaxFencingsax It is difficult to get a man to understand, when his salary depends upon his not understanding GNU Terry PratchettRegistered User regular
    edited August 2015
    It's really one of the challenges where so many characters we read were created so long ago. You have characters whose back stories go back to 1961 and personality traits/features just get baked into them. You don't see many of the TV shows from 1961 trying to come up with new stories or stay relevant today. I'm pretty sure Donna Reed 2015 or the All New Dick Van Dyke show aren't coming on CBS this fall. It's hard to expect natural feeling growth from characters established so long ago.

    Her powers by themselves are sort of sexist and mom styled. She can hide and protect. It feels a lot like when I tried reading the early X-Men books and the guys are strong and gymnasts and the girl has mental powers that make her not need to fight.

    I wonder what the reaction would be to completely re-do F4. Kind of like what they are doing with Archie. Just pretend the old stuff doesn't exist, take the character names and some traits (like Thing still being some form of rock based) but change the roles and personality types around significantly.

    This is one of the biggest problems DC and Marvel has, and it permeates basically all of their comics and movies.

    I think not making her a mom might actually be a good idea.

    Fencingsax on
    torchlight-sig-80.jpg
  • ToxTox I kill threads Punch DimensionRegistered User regular
    edited August 2015
    Vivixenne wrote: »
    I love Sue Storm.
    Sue Storm is not a good female comic book character.

    And that is 100% not the character's fault. Sue Storm is a victim of her history, more than anything.

    She was originally characterized as a damsel in distress trope, before being eventually written off as Reed Richard's spouse, because of course your hot action hero should marry the other single not monster not brother member of the group.

    This was all set in stone WAY before the powers that be realized that, "Holy shit, this is all regressive as HELL". So the tried everything. They tried to make her sexy(HELLO 90's), they buffed up her power set, they made her the heart of the team.

    But probably most damaging thing, in the end, is that they made her a Mom.

    I'm not saying that mom's are not intrinsically bad characters. I'm not saying that a mom can't be a good character.

    But I ask, how many comic writer's are ACTUALLY mother's?

    How many comic writer's can write around the platonic idea of a mother that nearly every human being has, even IF their own mother's were terrible?

    When you characterize a mother, specifically, when you want to portray a mother, the desire to write that platonic ideal basically overrides any other desire of the story you may or may not want to portray.

    This is embodied in Namor. Every husband's fear is, "She'll find a hotter guy and leave me!". So what's Namor? A hot dude that relentlessly pursue's Sue Storm who's also a King and amazing.

    But she never leaves Reed, her lovable nerd man, she never cheats on him, because she's married, and she wouldn't be a good MOTHER. MOTHER'S DON'T CHEAT ON THEIR HUSBANDS THEY ARE ALWAYS FAITHFUL NO MATTER THE SITUATION.

    There's a, dare I say, PRIMAL fear not to portray a mother as anything else but an angelic force of good, better than all of their surroundings and always adhering to the mother's code of perfection. Because if you DON'T, you open up to the possibility that this mother, may also in fact be a WOMAN and a human being.

    No lie, sometimes I feel like the people who write comic book moms are just projecting their individual ideas of what makes a "perfect wife" and "perfect mom" into characters like Sue. It's also why they've struggled to write her ANY OTHER WAY, because they are actually writing about the mother they wished they had, or the mother they believe they had, or something. It's actually SUPER obvious once you know to look for it.

    I'd call this the Jean Grey Problem.

    Only Sue predates Jean by a bit. So I guess it is totally the Sue Storm Problem.

    You see the irony here is that Sue is so generic of a character that even systemic problems for which she is the ur-example ultimately get named after other characters because nobody thinks of Sue.

    Tox on
    Wishlists! General | Gaming | Comics | Dilige, et quod vis fac
  • VivixenneVivixenne Remember your training, and we'll get through this just fine. Registered User regular
    I have no issues with her being a mom and in fact I welcome more mom characters that are also still superheroing.

    Like "mom" isn't inherently a bad thing. It just tends to become the ONLY thing (because they are not being written by people who are moms) and that's where the problem is.

    XBOX: VIVIXENNEXIVIV | TWITTER | BATTLENET: VIVIXENNE#1433 | YOUTUBE
    Lindsay LohanTransporterchiasaur11OlivawCilla BlackZonugalLinespider5
  • Mego ThorMego Thor "I say thee...NAY!" Registered User regular
    Tox wrote: »
    Vivixenne wrote: »
    I love Sue Storm.
    Sue Storm is not a good female comic book character.

    And that is 100% not the character's fault. Sue Storm is a victim of her history, more than anything.

    She was originally characterized as a damsel in distress trope, before being eventually written off as Reed Richard's spouse, because of course your hot action hero should marry the other single not monster not brother member of the group.

    This was all set in stone WAY before the powers that be realized that, "Holy shit, this is all regressive as HELL". So the tried everything. They tried to make her sexy(HELLO 90's), they buffed up her power set, they made her the heart of the team.

    But probably most damaging thing, in the end, is that they made her a Mom.

    I'm not saying that mom's are not intrinsically bad characters. I'm not saying that a mom can't be a good character.

    But I ask, how many comic writer's are ACTUALLY mother's?

    How many comic writer's can write around the platonic idea of a mother that nearly every human being has, even IF their own mother's were terrible?

    When you characterize a mother, specifically, when you want to portray a mother, the desire to write that platonic ideal basically overrides any other desire of the story you may or may not want to portray.

    This is embodied in Namor. Every husband's fear is, "She'll find a hotter guy and leave me!". So what's Namor? A hot dude that relentlessly pursue's Sue Storm who's also a King and amazing.

    But she never leaves Reed, her lovable nerd man, she never cheats on him, because she's married, and she wouldn't be a good MOTHER. MOTHER'S DON'T CHEAT ON THEIR HUSBANDS THEY ARE ALWAYS FAITHFUL NO MATTER THE SITUATION.

    There's a, dare I say, PRIMAL fear not to portray a mother as anything else but an angelic force of good, better than all of their surroundings and always adhering to the mother's code of perfection. Because if you DON'T, you open up to the possibility that this mother, may also in fact be a WOMAN and a human being.

    No lie, sometimes I feel like the people who write comic book moms are just projecting their individual ideas of what makes a "perfect wife" and "perfect mom" into characters like Sue. It's also why they've struggled to write her ANY OTHER WAY, because they are actually writing about the mother they wished they had, or the mother they believe they had, or something. It's actually SUPER obvious once you know to look for it.

    I'd call this the Jean Grey Problem.

    Only Sue predates Jean by a bit. So I guess it is totally the Sue Storm Problem.

    You see the irony here is that Sue is so generic of a character that even systemic problems for which she is the ur-example ultimately get named after other characters because nobody thinks of Sue.

    It's almost like she was invisible!

    kyrcl.png
    RingoStraightziZonugalLinespider5
  • FencingsaxFencingsax It is difficult to get a man to understand, when his salary depends upon his not understanding GNU Terry PratchettRegistered User regular
    Tox wrote: »
    Vivixenne wrote: »
    I love Sue Storm.
    Sue Storm is not a good female comic book character.

    And that is 100% not the character's fault. Sue Storm is a victim of her history, more than anything.

    She was originally characterized as a damsel in distress trope, before being eventually written off as Reed Richard's spouse, because of course your hot action hero should marry the other single not monster not brother member of the group.

    This was all set in stone WAY before the powers that be realized that, "Holy shit, this is all regressive as HELL". So the tried everything. They tried to make her sexy(HELLO 90's), they buffed up her power set, they made her the heart of the team.

    But probably most damaging thing, in the end, is that they made her a Mom.

    I'm not saying that mom's are not intrinsically bad characters. I'm not saying that a mom can't be a good character.

    But I ask, how many comic writer's are ACTUALLY mother's?

    How many comic writer's can write around the platonic idea of a mother that nearly every human being has, even IF their own mother's were terrible?

    When you characterize a mother, specifically, when you want to portray a mother, the desire to write that platonic ideal basically overrides any other desire of the story you may or may not want to portray.

    This is embodied in Namor. Every husband's fear is, "She'll find a hotter guy and leave me!". So what's Namor? A hot dude that relentlessly pursue's Sue Storm who's also a King and amazing.

    But she never leaves Reed, her lovable nerd man, she never cheats on him, because she's married, and she wouldn't be a good MOTHER. MOTHER'S DON'T CHEAT ON THEIR HUSBANDS THEY ARE ALWAYS FAITHFUL NO MATTER THE SITUATION.

    There's a, dare I say, PRIMAL fear not to portray a mother as anything else but an angelic force of good, better than all of their surroundings and always adhering to the mother's code of perfection. Because if you DON'T, you open up to the possibility that this mother, may also in fact be a WOMAN and a human being.

    No lie, sometimes I feel like the people who write comic book moms are just projecting their individual ideas of what makes a "perfect wife" and "perfect mom" into characters like Sue. It's also why they've struggled to write her ANY OTHER WAY, because they are actually writing about the mother they wished they had, or the mother they believe they had, or something. It's actually SUPER obvious once you know to look for it.

    I'd call this the Jean Grey Problem.

    Only Sue predates Jean by a bit. So I guess it is totally the Sue Storm Problem.

    You see the irony here is that Sue is so generic of a character that even systemic problems for which she is the ur-example ultimately get named after other characters because nobody thinks of Sue.

    It's like shes invisible or something.

    torchlight-sig-80.jpg
    Ringo
  • FearghaillFearghaill If there is nothing but what we make in this world let us make goodRegistered User regular
    Vivixenne wrote: »
    I have no issues with her being a mom and in fact I welcome more mom characters that are also still superheroing.

    Like "mom" isn't inherently a bad thing. It just tends to become the ONLY thing (because they are not being written by people who are moms) and that's where the problem is.

    I'm curious to see how the upcoming addition of a baby/motherhood to the Spider-Woman ongoing is handled. Hopeless has been writing her as someone who is good at superheroing but kind of a mess at being a regular person outside of that, so I doubt he's going to have her take to motherhood perfectly either.

  • OmnipotentBagelOmnipotentBagel up to my see thru butt in wily espionage Registered User regular
    The joke so nice, they told it twice.

    cauvjy2q47n7.jpg
    ToxTransporterMego ThorRingoFencingsaxOlivawZonugal
  • TransporterTransporter Registered User regular
    Vivixenne wrote: »
    Viv, is the MAMA BEAR characterization inherently problematic, or is your issue mostly that it's typically the only defining quality she's given?

    I mentioned this briefly in SE++ but am happy to rehash it here.

    I do not have a problem with the Mama Bear characterisation in and of itself. It is supported by the fact that Sue can straight up murder someone if she wanted to, but she doesn't want to because she can be taken seriously and assert her views without needing to make that threat. Like, I have always liked that about her.

    But! A Mama Bear isn't and shouldn't be ALL SHE IS. Like, it rings true to me as a woman because I know lots of Mama Bear types - I may end up being one of them, myself. But it's not all we are or could be within our families. It's easier to explore when she's separate to her family, but I don't think any writer has yet done that WITHIN the family system.

    She's not JUST a Mama Bear, just like Reed isn't JUST a genius and Johnny isn't JUST a playboy. And while I think anyone could easily describe aspects of Reed or Johnny's characters outside of their "tropes" (for lack of a better term), I don't know that many people - if any - could identify any effective characterisation of Sue as anyone BUT a Mama Bear.

    Her actions in Civil War kinda came close to that, but felt like a tacked-on option to further REED's internal conflict rather than to explore her own.

    Cool, thanks for elaborating. I also like that aspect of her personality, but I agree she should be more than that. I don't know why writers struggle with it--she's a person just like any other. There aren't really "woman only" or "man only" characterization options!

    It's not that there was "man only" or "woman only" characterization options.

    It's that the options for both gender's were, "Male power fantasy" and "Male sexual/emotional fantasy".

    They didn't realize it, of course. It's hard to be that self aware of your own bias and tastes, but that's what it was.

    That's what it is.

    And that's what it continues to be.

  • Lindsay LohanLindsay Lohan Registered User regular
    I'd love more superheroes that are real parents. Like they fight crime, come home and make dinner and put the kids to bed and watch tv with their spouse. Like a sitcom mixed with a comic - Superior Foes meets Roseanne type of thing.

    But that's not how comics work. Instead the movie will involve kids taken hostage or the constant worrying about what if something happens to the hero and who will take care of the kids.

    As a parent, I'm really, really tired of kids being used as easy emotion grabs in stories. It's bad enough that Pixar movies reduce me to a nub for hours, I don't need my superhero movies doing that :)

  • RingoRingo Stardust, Golden Caught in a Devil's BargainRegistered User regular
    It would be kind of interesting if, instead of the constant "Kids are in danger from supervillains, parents must save them!" it was "Kids are in danger of growing up to be shitty people with powers, parents must save them!"

    Like, explaining to your superpowered child how the whole great power, great responsibility thing works and modeling it and then consoling them when things don't go their way even though they have superpowers... I think I'd dig that a lot.

    And of course there's the flip side to being the kid in powered family - basically becoming the "Mom's out saving the world, nuke yourself some dinner" latch key kid and balancing helping other people with committing to your family

    ceres wrote: »
    I'm just going to go ahead and lock this thread before I feel any worse about humanity.
    Edcrab's Exigency RPG now featured at the Exigency Forum
    Straightzi
«13
Sign In or Register to comment.