Four Color Comments: Unnecessary Outrage Over Freedom Fighters: The Ray

Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it..even in comics. It was announced a while back that Arrow and DC Legends of Tomorrow showrunner Marc Guggenheim, would be doing […]

Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it..even in comics.

It was announced a while back that Arrow and DC Legends of Tomorrow showrunner Marc Guggenheim, would be doing a new animated series for the CW Seed called Freedom Fighters: The Ray. 

Take a look at the trailer:

As it’s explained in the opening this series takes place on Earth X where Germany won World War II. The Freedom Fighters are trying to free this Earth, and it sounds like a great concept. But here’s the part that has gotten people up in arms: Nazi versions of Green Arrow, the Flash, and Supergirl.

I really mean insanely bent out of shape. Just check out some of these Tweets:


 

After reading some of these, my mind was blown. These are people that are not familiar at all with the Freedom Fighters from the comics. The Freedom Fighters first appeared in Justice League of America #107, by DC Comics in 1973 by writer Len Wein and artist Dick Dillin. The team consisted of Uncle Sam, the Ray, the Human Bomb, Phantom Girl, Black Condor, and Doll Man. They eventually got their own comic written by Gerry Conway and drawn by Martin Pasko. It lasted 15 issues. The setting was Earth X and the Nazis won the war there. 

Now even if you aren’t familiar with the comic, by this time you should be used to the theory of the multiverse. The possibility that there are different Earths. A different version of you that may have made a different choice. A left turn instead of a right turn.  It’s been a staple in DC Comics since about 1961. It was also shown in the Flash TV show. We saw different Earths with different versions of characters from the CW.

So what is the problem? Are we that sensitive we can’t handle fictional characters turning bad or even as Nazis? Do we hate to see our heroes as villians? Maybe the event in Charlottesville is still raw to us? 

You can’t jump to conclusions without seeing the show first. Yes, first impressions are important, but this outrage is just ridiculous. These are not the same characters as on the CW. While they are similar, they are different. 

Take a look at the show The Man In The High Castle. It’s also a story where the Nazis won World War II, and I haven’t seen half the outrage I’m seeing with The Ray. This show isn’t glorifying Nazis. I’m a Jew and I’m not offended. My wife’s father was a Holocaust survivor and she’s not offended. Hell, if you really want to get technical, Marc Guggenheim is Jewish. He’s not looking to offend anyone. This is a comic he grew up with as a kid and thought it would make for a great story, and quite honestly, I agree with him. 

This entire thing reminds me of Nick Spencer making Captain America an agent of Hydra. A lot of outrage without reading the entire story or looking into the history. 

Look, I know I’m not going to change your mind on how to feel about this show. There’s a simple solution: Don’t watch it. 

The biggest problem here is the internet has given people a voice, but maybe people shouldn’t use it so much. 

Me? I’ll be watching it and enjoying it.

Brian Isaacs - Executive Editor / Publisher

About Brian Isaacs - Executive Editor / Publisher

An avid comic collector/reader for over 40 years and self-proclaimed professor of comicology, Brian original started up the site Pendragon's Post to share his voice. Well that voice has been shared, and evolved into The Fanboy Factor. Brian is an advocate for remembering comic roots, and that we don't forget what was created in the past, and encourage everyone to read it as well. When not swimming in geek culture, he can be seen corrupting..introducing his young son to comics, much to his wife's chagrin.