Al-Qaeda Taking Tips from Liefeld and McFarlane?

Bloggified by Jake on Tuesday, March 7, 2006

How the hell did I miss this? Sure, it was an entirely forgetable story arc. No doubt it was a lame crossover, but how was it I--and, according to a Google search, the entire blogosphere--overlooked that terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden was getting his ideas from Rob Liefeld and Todd McFarlane?

The crossover of X-Forces #3-4 and Spider-Man #16 is probably best remembered for featuring issues drawn landscape-style instead of portrait-style (in other words, you had to turn the comic 90 degrees from normal to read it). Instead, perhaps it's more notable that it features a story of Black Tom and Juggernaut exploding a bomb in...and ultimately knocking down...wait for it...


These issues were published in 1991, two years before a truck filled with explosives was detonated in the underground garage of the North Tower and ten years before planes were flown into the Towers, causing their collapse. At the time, the idea that someone would actually blow up the World Trade Center was fit only for publication in comic books.

I understand this is kind of like diminishing Thomas Jefferson's contributions to American history because he owned slaves and regularly sexed them up. McFarlane and Liefeld obviously had no reason to suspect that a decade later someone would actually pull off what was at the time something that was a stretch of believability even for supervillains, so I don't want it to seem like I'm criticizing them (I mean, except for their poor writing and substandard art) or that I'm honestly suggesting this lame duck effort (this was McFarlane's last Marvel work before going off to form Image; if it wasn't Liefeld's last issue, it was close) led to the tragedy of September 11th.

Though I might jokingly suggest it...Unfortunately, the most jarring part of this story is the lack of casualties. The hostages Black Tom takes aren't hurt. When Juggernaut runs into the Tower and knocks it down, X-Force and Spidey emerge from the rubble ready for round two (or three or four, I lost track). After watching the clouds of dust that swept across Manhattan on 9-11 and knowing of the ensuing effort just to remove the rubble, it's hard to really get pumped up for Spidey posing and asking, "Is that the best you can do?"

Sorry for the lack of the funny. I'll get back to form tomorrow.

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