Created by comics artist Robyn Kenealy, American Captain a uniquely downbeat take on Steve Rogers, the alter ego of Marvel’s Captain America.
On a superficial level, Captain America is a classic square-jawed superhero, a staunchly moral and patriotic wartime icon who slowly evolved into the Hollywoodized Chris Evans character we know from movies like The Avengers.
Frozen and then reawoken in the present day, in many ways Steve Rogers is one of the most tragic superheroes around: a man trying to find his way in an alien environment, where all his friends are dead or dying of old age. American Captain borrows the diary comic style of indie artists like Robert Crumb and Alison Bechdel to explore how he deals (or doesn’t deal) with adjusting to life in the 21st century.
What made you decide to go this route with Captain America, of all characters? American Captain explores some pretty dark and downbeat topics that most people wouldn’t really associate with a hero that’s often perceived as being very wholesome.
Robyn Kenealey: Honestly I have some skeptical looks for anybody who thinks it’s normal to want to be a superhero. I don’t think it’s normal. I don’t think it’s normal to start fights with people in alleys (defending yourself is one thing. Actively starting fights? You may have some anger issues, son). I don’t think it’s normal to actively let the military put weird stuff in your body. Also, I’m not a fan of the historical consistency with which the military scoops up young men from shitty socio-economic situations and sends them to war.
The other thing I think a lot about in writing Steve’s character is that he’s a baby. He is (given the birthdate in the comics, not the movies), what, 23 when he’s frozen? He’s so, so young to be in the situation that he is. And that’s not unusual, but it is important, because it is so often invisible. So, so often, when you watch movies about WWII, something like Saving Private Ryan or Band of Brothers, or the Cap movies, in that Chris Evans is like 32 or something, you see actors who look like fully grown adults playing all of these these roles that in real life would have been staffed by very young men.
Shiva transformed into a naga (serpent) and Ardjuna transformed into a garuda (eagle) in battle, Wayang wong dance, Java, Indonesia, ca. 1937
The kid in the blue grew up to become iconic femme queen face iconic femme queen performer and Legendary Mother of the house of Laperla, Alyssa Laperla
(x) here’s a video of her from 2011, this makes me so unbelievably happy because I always feared the worst had happened to them
We’re not usually big on self-aggrandisement or mythologising. More or less, we just do one thing — we rate pop songs out of ten — but we love it and we do it well. We don’t pay attention to the consensus around us; we build our own (sometimes, but we often disagree). And we’ve now been doing it for five years.
Of course the story of the Jukebox goes back further than that. We started as a pair of columns on Stylus, one for UK singles and one for US singles, which ran until the site closed in 2007. A chance meeting between two writers in a pub led to a few emails going across the globe, and all of a sudden the band was back together, just like we’d never split up. Sure, our friends at Pitchfork began to focus on individual tracks in earnest a month earlier, stealing our thunder somewhat, but we’ll always have the extra decimal place.
In the last five years, there have been nearly 3400 songs covered from over 60 countries, with about 30,000 individual paragraph-long reviews from us adding up to about 2,000,000 (two million) words. It’d take you a week solid to read the site from front to back. We don’t recommend you do that, so here are some highlights from our first five years. Feel free to share your own in the comments!
Here’s to another five just like these.
singles jukebox 5eva tbh
Nicole Krauss, The History of Love
Arkady and Boris Strugatsky are probably the most famous Soviet-era science-fiction writers, but only recently have any of their numerous books come back into print in the US: Chicago Review Press published a new translation of Roadside Picnic (the basis for Tarkovsky’s Stalker) in 2012 and Melville House just published Definitely Maybe (translated by Antonina Bouis). CRP will also publish Hard to Be a God in June.
These scans come from the 50 Watts hoard except for the top 1979 Penguin (art by Adrian Chesterman) courtesy of David/qualityapeman. Richard M. Powers illustrated the bottom Roadside Picnic and the four other covers in that style.
i’ve read enough of them (exploiting the used-bookstore market to satisfy my insatiable curiosity) to know they’re way more influential (especially on the science fictional approaches that developed outside the united states’ mainstream) than their current obscurity would allow most casual observers - and many who wouldn’t think of themselves as “casual” at all - to ever recognize.
i really support the effort of everyone working to get them back in print. it’s a funny thing how you don’t realize how much of a gaping hole in your heart/head a lack of history can create until, suddenly, what ought to have been there all along gets handed back to you.
bolding mine; I’ve never seen this put so succinctly.
Wow, Theodore Sturgeon was on a one-man mission, there.