Retro-Review: Magneto – Testament
Nightwing17 recently reviewed the amazingly historical, tangentially superhero-related X-Men graphic novel Magneto: Testament. I absolutely loved this book and think it should required reading in schools as it is both incredibly powerful and surprisingly educational. Despite taking numerous history classes, elective and otherwise, this was the first time I ever heard that 10 million people died in the Holocaust, not 6 million, as every teacher I’ve ever had has mistakenly taught me. Anyway, check out the review and consider giving the book a read (although be prepared for crippling feels).
Our culture fetishizes moral ambiguity.
As much as it’s become a dead horse trope, our storytelling conventions still rely on a black and white framework. Too often, like adolescents testing limits, we obsess over the ways we can complicate this simple dichotomy of good and evil. An entire age of comics was defined by our love affair with violent anti-heroes, ‘good’ characters who engage in ‘evil’ behavior.
Nonetheless, it’s rare that we latch on to a character who truly inhabits a moral shade of gray, rather than some attractive paradoxical commingling of good and evil. Magneto is one of these characters.
Part of what makes Magneto special is the inherent presence of a greater evil in his story. As limitedly as it factors in to some stories, Magneto inherently allows us to grapple with the problem of evil and to sort out our feelings about hatred, intolerance, and genocide.
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