Captain America (Image via Marvel)
Celebrate both Independence Day and your love of heroes with some of the most colorful and patriotic superhero costumes in the world of comics
When you think about the whole concept of superheroes, it’s odd that you don’t find more nationalistic ones. We’ve got plenty of mythical gods, space aliens, and regular old mutants, but rarely is someone willing to take on the mantle of a particular country.
Of course, it could be that the fantastical realm of comics doesn’t jive quite so well with the real world. Then again, in the right hands, a finely crafted comics tale can be a powerful interpretation of events both current and historic. It takes a thoughtful team of creators to make that work, however. Perhaps it’s just easier to write about a rich guy who likes to dress up as a bat, rather than the personification of the United States of America.
But some brave — or at least determined — creators forge ahead. As a result, there is a bevy of especially American heroes, though I doubt it will ever compare to the sheer number of X-Men waiting out there.
Sometimes, all of this is cause for a complex exploration of what it means to be an American. So, you may get Captain America punching bad guys while wearing a stars and stripes costume, or you also find Steve Rogers wondering how to be a righteous, upstanding hero in the modern world.
It’s not all grim and serious
Then again, you could also encounter Yankee Poodle or American Maid. As much as these red, white and blue costumes may lead creators and readers to highfalutin’ musing on nationalism, it’s also rich grounds for humor and satire. In today’s world, we all need to think long and hard about the U.S.A.’s place in the international community, to be sure.
However, we can still laugh at ourselves, too. There’s nothing like an anthropomorphic poodle shooting stars and stripes out of her paws to bring you out of overly serious musing.
As you read on, you’ll encounter red, white and blue costumes that are serious, silly and everything in between. This is also a great opportunity to look back on some of the more strange and even surprisingly affecting characters in the world of American comics. Enjoy.