Irenic Thoughts

Irenic. The word means peaceful. This web log (or blog) exists to create an ongoing, and hopefully peaceful, series of comments on the life of King of Peace Episcopal Church. This is not a closed community. You are highly encouraged to comment on any post or to send your own posts.


Our Heroes Have Always Been Episcopalian

Episcopalians who see GodDid you know that many of the first super heroes were Episcopalians? I didn't either until I found my way to an online chart of the Religion of comic book characters. While their list isn't full of Episcopalians and Anglicans alone, the site notes,
"The original creators of comics, 60 or 70 years ago, were almost all Jewish and Italian kids from various parts of New York," notes DC Comics Executive Vice President and Publisher Paul Levitz. "And the characters they created were pseudo-whitebread Episcopalian. It was almost de rigueur back then to paint people in this idealized American image."
This in a world of science fiction and the like where God is rarely mentioned. An early exception involved two Episcopal super heroes, The Invisible Woman and the Human Torch. This brother/sister pair got to see God. The site above says of thisLittle spoken of faith
This occurred after Susan's husband Reed Richards (Mr. Fantastic) was forced to shoot and kill their long-time friend and partner Ben Grimm ("The Thing"), who was possessed by the consciousness of Doctor Doom and was about to kill Susan's brother, Johnny Storm ("The Human Torch"). Reed Richards rebuilt a machine that Doctor Doom had created many years before for accessing the afterlife. Jean Grey as dark PhoenixSusan Storm Richards accompanied Reed Richards and Johnny Storm as they journeyed to Heaven where they were able to find Ben and get him to return to life on Earth with them.
And then there is Jean Grey, aka Marvel Girl of the X-Men. On board from X-Men #1 in 1963, she was an Episcopalian with a brother who was a priest. The site says of her,
In the famous "Dark Phoenix" storyline, Jean Grey is said to have sacrificed her own life so that the world could be saved. A number of writers have described interesting parallels between these events and the New Testament account of the Jesus Christ's sacrifice on the Cross. These stories are not exact parallels, however, because Jean Grey's character, under the influence of the Phoenix, had a dual nature and evil/destructive component which is not present in the New Testament account of Jesus.
the Rev. Dr. Christopher SynBy way of our Anglican heritage, Episcopalians can also lay claim to the first masked avenger as the Rev. Dr. Christopher Syn was a character created two decades before Superman. A hero rather than super hero (he had no powers), Syn dates from a 1915 novel. He was probably the first in the line of costumed crusaders and a good role model for Priest, the decidedly Roman Catholic character in the two comic books I have framed on my office wall (one is pictured here at right).

The Rev. Frank Logue, Pastor


Post a Comment

<< Home