Image Courtesy of Marvel Comics
Hello again, readers! As this pandemic continues to loom large over our daily lives, I figured it’s best that I do my part to keep you all occupied by having some consistency and frequency to my articles. However, that won’t be easy considering what’s been going on with the comic industry the past couple of days. For those who don’t keep up with that stuff, Diamond Distributors is the company that receives shipments of new comics from the publishers and in turn, ships those new comics to the shops. Well, as of Monday, Diamond will no longer be receiving new shipments after April 1st until the pandemic is over. Basically, there are no more new books for me to review until things get better. That presents a challenge for me since most of my posts are about new stuff. I guess I’ll just have to get creative! Part of that is doing brainstorming sessions like what you’ll read today. If you remember my post from Sunday, I talked a lot about hypothetical scenarios involving viruses in comics. Well, I looked over that post after publishing it and it felt a little incomplete. I felt like there was more that I could say and, instead of going back and editing the post to death, I decided to make a Part 2 to flesh out my thoughts and present more ideas. Enjoy!
So, what more can I say that I haven’t already said? I stand by my ideas that I came up with last time. However, there are lots more fictional viruses that I failed to mention before. One of which is the futuristic Techno-organic virus from the X-Men comics. Not much is known about it other than that it comes from the future and turns its organic host into a technological lifeform. The only example we have of this is the mutant mercenary, Cable. No, he wasn’t always the hard-edged cyborg that we know today. As the child of Jean Grey and Scott Summers, one of Cable’s abilities is telepathy. When he got infected with the Techno-organic virus, he had to narrow all of his focus to prevent it from spreading any farther than it already has. In fact, he’s still doing that to this day. If he lets up for even a split-second, he’ll be consumed by the virus. He’s definitely got a handle on multi-tasking! And we think COVID-19 is bad?! Imagine if all of our electronic devices tried to literally bond with us. We’d all be doomed! Think about that for a second.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the “Spider Island” event that took place in “Amazing Spider-Man” around 2010, 2011. The basic premise is that a virus is unleashed upon New York City and grants the majority of the citizens’ spider powers. Suddenly Spider-Man isn’t so unique. Everybody else might share his powers, but not necessarily his sense of responsibility. That’s an interesting seed to a story if there ever was one! It also temporarily removes the need for Peter to have a secret identity because he can just say he was infected like everyone else. Of course, not everyone wants to use these new-found gifts for good. Naturally, there are those who see this as a way to make a profit. Also, even if everyone shares the same abilities, they still need someone to look up to and aspire to. A symbol, if you will. That’s why there’s always a need for Spider-Man. It’s not necessarily the powers that make him a hero. It’s the example he sets and the hope he inspires. I think that’s why people love him so much. I know that’s why I do!
I believe there’s also a fair argument to be made by considering the symbiotes as an infection. They certainly check all the boxes. I mean, even in the description for “Absolute Carnage” it says “Carnage has infected.” Infected being the keyword. So yes, that pretty much seals it. Of course, the symbiotes take it to a whole new level by altering the host’s appearance as well as corrupting their mind. So, they might not be what you’d normally think of, but they definitely qualify as a disease. An ugly, angry, violent disease.
One thing that pops to my mind a lot is “can the Flash catch a cold”? We’ve never seen it on the tv show and it hasn’t happened in recent comics to my knowledge so, is it possible? I mean, sure, anything’s possible in the world of comics. But, that doesn’t mean it’s likely. My only argument for saying he can’t is his immune system. It’s safe to assume that, like everything else, Barry has a hyperactive immune system. Therefore, any sort of virus or bacteria would be squashed before Barry even sneezed. I could be wrong. After all, I’m just working on the knowledge I have. From what I know, the only times Flash has been infected with anything is if it’s something science-fictional or supernatural like a Zombie virus. Something that’s not of this Earth, basically.
There you have it! I think this rounds out my thoughts on diseases in comics pretty nicely. I can’t think of anything more to say on the topic, so I doubt there’ll be a Part 3. Anyway, I hope you enjoyed it! Like I said before, things will be a bit trickier since Diamond is closing their doors for the foreseeable future, so don’t expect anything on the review side of things beyond what I already have planned. But, don’t worry, because I still plan on doing plenty of special editions, throwbacks, and tv spotlights to pass the time until we’re allowed to crawl out of the cave again. All I ask is that you please be patient because we are all just figuring this out together. With that said, until next time, stay healthy, stay safe, and stay comical!