Publisher IDW is showing its true colors with Presidential Material, a 2-issue biographical comic book on candidates Barack Obama & John McCain.
At first glance it seems nonpartisan. The covers, which show each man doing his best impression of Superman, are identical. But while both describe each man’s ups and downs, McCain’s bio is clearly lopsided.
And it’s not just the abundance of unflattering facts like McCain’s unlucky streak with planes or him literally standing on a soapbox to appear taller, it’s illustrations that take artistic license to a whole new level (pictures below). Some panels are intentionally sinister looking like one where McCain accepts an actual moneybag ($ sign and all) from his wife Cindy. Others are factually incorrect like the one showing an incensed McCain pulling his hand over his head to throw a punch, even though it’s well documented McCain can hardly lift his arms as a result of the torture he experienced in Vietnam. And still others are just plain silly like those showing McCain standing on a table & swinging his hips like Elvis or having drive a tiny toy car to represent him “pulling away from the pack” during the primaries by.
And just for good measure they threw in some innuendo describing how McCain oversaw “business trips by senators (and very often, their wives)” Now I don’t know if they just meant to suggest the wives went along when they shouldn’t have, but that’s not how it comes off. Putting “their wives” in parenthesis especially after the previous panel talked about McCain’s marital problems, and had his ex-wife claiming that the downfall of their marriage was him “wanting to be 25 again” makes it sound like it was more like “business-time” (if you know what I mean).
But there are no such scenes in Obama’s bio. In fact, what little negative information there is (the flag pin controversy, Rev. Wright, Tony Rezko’s money laundering, William Ayers, Michelle Obama’s “proud of my country” comment, and Barack’s comment about small towns being bitter and clinging to their guns), is confined to a single page. The illustrations for them are mundane at best, and there are no illustrations at all about Ayers or Rezko. In fact, there was no mention of Tony Rezko on an earlier page which showed off Obama’s million dollar mansion in question.
Even the endings were biased. McCain’s ends with him setting “his sights on overcoming perhaps his most formidable adversary… Barack Obama” Really? I think the Viet Cong might have something to say about that. On the other hand, Obama’s ending pictures him in front of the White House explaining whether or not he wins he’s already made history (awww…).
Even DC Comics appears to be in the tank for Obama. In Flash #244 Wally’s wife praises his fatherly talk with his kids, saying “Nice speech. ‘Dad.’ Fatherhood seems to bring out the Obama in you.” But kudos go to Marvel for not choosing sides (yet). Instead they’re promoting Stephen Colbert for President, who’ll make a special appearance in Amazing Spider-Man #573!