- Marvel's Secret Empire, the controversial storyline unmasking Captain America as a secret Hydra agent, finally ended with an epilogue issue this week. It probably wasn't a story worth telling:
While the lead-in to Secret Empire seemed like the event itself was going to have something to say about the nature of American fascism, the actual series focused more on being a standard superhero romp without much to say. Over the course of eighteen months, the story of Captain America’s turn towards outright fascism has caused pain, anger and outrage and ultimately just wasn’t worth the the offense, the excuses or the effort... So the Hydra-aligned Captain America was the real Steve Rogers until the end of the comic when he wasn’t, and Hydra weren’t Nazis until the end of the comic where they were. So much of Secret Empire has revolved around splitting hairs over semantics and arguing subtle differences to explain how the story isn’t offensive. A big summer event from a major superhero publisher should not need to thread that needle. If you start a sentence with “Well, actually it’s not a Nazi thing, because…” you’ve already lost your argument. “Is this supposed to be a Nazi thing?” isn’t a question readers should have to ask in the first place.
- The Powerpuff Girls are getting a new Black teammate, voiced by South African singer Toya Delazy. Racists are predictably unhappy, but fuck 'em.