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Home > Letters to CR

Kim Thompson On Frank Miller Slamming The Occupy Movement
posted November 14, 2011
 

I nearly dropped my Batman mug when I read your comment that Frank Miller's current political positions represent any sort of a swing from his earlier ones, let alone a "180-degree" one. (Maybe you meant 360?) From the first major Comics Journal interview he did where he expressed his deep admiration for Ayn Rand to his latest one-two punch of Holy Terror and hateful Michelle Malkin-level blog fulminations about Occupy Wall Street (although even Malkin might have stopped short of calling them "rapists"), Miller has clearly been a hard rightwinger. I suspect that those of his readers more liberal than him (which is likely about 97%, since he resides on the fringe between Sean Hannity and Darth Vader) eager to enjoy his work unsullied by his politics were misled by his public fights in the 1980s against "censorship" (i.e. comics ratings) and big comics companies' misbehavior, and a few mild jibes at Ronald Reagan's expense in The Dark Knight Returns. But his anti-ratings stance was pure libertarian and his battles for creators' rights about as anti-corporate as Howard Roark's, and while I haven't re-read Dark Knight Returns in a while and don't plan to, I've seen convincing arguments that if anything Miller was attacking Reagan from the right rather than the left. (Remember also that in today's political climate a Republican with Reagan's politics would be called a liberal by the rank and file; Nixon would be a Marxist.) Holy Terror and the OWS blog rant are just more unhinged and bitter, either because Miller himself is more unhinged and bitter or because he's working with no editorial filter whatsoever now.

Personally, I'd love to see a comic (book, strip OR panel) written and drawn from a conservative perspective that wasn't paranoid, bigoted, incompetent and hateful (where have you gone, Jeff MacNelly?), but it gives me some satisfaction that they all seem to end up that way.

Everyone should rent and watch Miller's Spirit movie, though. Not only is the movie fascinating in its mind-boggling dreadfulness (it's one of those movies that's bad not because the director failed, but because he succeeded in exactly what he intended, which makes it even more delicious), but the commentary track (clearly recorded before the critical shithammer hit) has a touchingly giddy, proud, "Oh, I so nailed this one" smugness to it. There are countless second- hand copies on Amazon.com starting at four cents.