The results are in! And, well, no one guessed it. Now, to be certain, there are a number of good guesses. Gambit is well worth hating for being, well, Gambit. Snapper Carr and Rick Jones both deserve the ire they receive as well. Kitty Pryde is high on my hate list as well, both for being a blank slate for fans to project their fantasies of an ideal girl-friend on to, and her fans. And Penance is a great example of the worst excesses of Marvel’s pandering to the lowest common denominator, but that just makes me sad.

But there’s really only one character I hate so much that I would actually buy a Spider-Man comic by Mark Millar and Rob Liefeld if it featured Spidey beating this character to death with a blunt object:

In a universe that’s already littered with an embarrassing number of Superman and Captain Marvel knock-offs, Sentry is a redundant amalgamation of the two concepts. His method of introduction, the “hoax” of him being a lost Silver Age character, was so transparent as to be insulting to Marvel’s fans. He’s been shoe-horned into events and high profile books, where he does nothing. And his “woe is me, life is shit” demeanor is the worst kind of crutch in comics writing; the mistaken belief that melodramatic angst and self-pitying is the same thing as characterization.

But the prize goes to Mike Loughlin, who had this to say:

Green Arrow, because he’s a lame Batman wannabe with a stupid Peter Pan costume and a beard straight out of 1850. He fights people with guns with a weapon that fires *slower* than guns. He thinks he’s a liberal crusader when he’s really a condescending jerk (see: any time he talks to Black Canary, espeacially when he calls her “pretty bird”). Worst of all, he walks around like he’s the world’s greatest super-hero. He can’t see just how hard he sucks!

Yeah, there’s no way I can argue against that. Green Arrow pretty much sucks. Heck, I have an entire category here dedicated to how lame he is. So even if Ollie isn’t my most-hated character, Mike makes a good case as to why he should be, and that’s why he gets a copy of Boody, a joyfully anarchic comic with no sign of angst.

14 Responses to “Feel The Love”
  1. Sallyp says:

    Of COURSE, Ollie is lame! That’s his whole appeal! Frankly, I adore Ollie because he’s an idiot.

    The Sentry however, is awfully whiny, without Ollie’s charm…smarmy though that charm may be.

  2. Lawrence says:

    Were people meant to believe that the Sentry was actually a “lost silver-age character?” I thought Paul Jenkins was just trying to be “meta.”

  3. I think the intitial idea was meant to be something a bit sad and magical. A bit MiracleMan-y, a bit – well, “metafictional” is pushing it allll the way to the edge of the plank, but while on one hand it was trying to fill a gap that wasn’t really there – that of a Superman figure in the Marvel Universe, i.e.: a Superman with “issues” – they were also, sort of, acknowledging that the Marvel Universe is kind of fine without that kind of character in it.

    (is that one sentence? My gosh.)

    The things that Big Blue and Big Red represent either already exist in Marvel, albeit parceled out differently, or don’t fit anymore, like a jingoistic Captain America, or, I don’t know, the android Human Torch. Those one-dimensional or outdated archetypes were replaced with updated (ish) or…uh…two-dimensional ones.

    Of course, they couldn’t resist digging up the old boy again and again and repeating all the schtick that made his brief flicker interesting, rakiing over all the paper-thin retro “chic,” etc.. And thus, probably unconsciously, they were doing something a bit metafictional, inasmuch as so many superhero comics are now, sadly, about nothing more than reacting to other superhero comics.

    Actually, that’s probably a really unfair assessment. I haven’t read the new Sentry stuff. I didn’t like the look of it, and the cheerful retroism just makes me sad. Plus, I’m not feeling great. Blecch.

    //\Oo/\\

  4. Mike Loughlin says:

    The thing is, I like Ollie. In fact, he’s one of my favorite characters. I took a guess based on the fact that Dorian has a “picking on Green Arrow” category.

    Thank you, Dorian! I just e-mailed you my address, and look forward tp reading Boody.

  5. Crowded House says:

    Hmm…a “lost silver age” character, who angsts about his life, shoehorned into continuity, Superman analog…is anyone else thinking of Triumph besides me?

    Wow, that is a spectacularly bad idea.

  6. Arynne says:

    I absolutely have to quote Rupert Griffin from Fanzing here. He says that Green Arrow is:

    “…the only superhero with a political point of view. Granted, it was sometimes hard to tell what that point of view was – Green Arrow never espoused a coherent political philosophy, eg, something which was recognisably and definitely Marxism or liberalism or anarchism – but it was anti-authoritarian and socially aware. That separated him from the other superheroes. The other Leaguers – including Green Lantern II – may have had vague conservative beliefs (which revolved around the notion of the goodness of virtue, decency and a faith in authority and the status quo), but political and social beliefs were never as essential to their characterisations as they were to Arrow’s.

    “This trend began during the Hard-traveling heroes run on the Green Lantern-Green Arrow book from around 1970 to 1971. After O’Neil and Adams got their hands on Ollie, he became a moralising, cantankerous, undisciplined, occasionally sanctimonious and overbearing hero who made all the other Justice Leaguers look like the bunch of stuffed shirts they were (God bless ’em). He is instantly recognisable – by his signature slangy eloquence and his mixture of ranting and whining. He is the superhero as the sixties and seventies hipster”.

    I think the character is loved by some people and hated by others for the exact same reasons…

  7. Brian Smith says:

    And, Lawrence, I’ll add that Wizard Magazine made a collaborative effort with Marvel to fool readers into thinking that the Sentry was an actual honest-to-goodness Silver Age creation. First, they ran an obituary for Silver Age artist “Artie Rosen.” Then they ran the “Wizard exclusive” that Rosen left behind a file with unpublished artwork for Startling Stories #1 — supposedly Stan Lee’s introduction of the Sentry, which Wizard said he had co-created with Rosen before the Fantastic Four, but had forgotten about when the FF took off instead.

    As memory serves, Wizard published a “Ha ha we fooled you!” months later, followed months after that by a more chaste “Will fans forgive and forget?” as part of one of their overly frequent retrospectives on the history of their own magazine.

  8. Martin Wisse says:

    Thank you. My faith in humanity is restored, as I loathe the Sentry with a passion almost equal to yours.

    I dislike all sort of long lost mysterious people from [Hero]’s past, gettin unearned respect.

  9. Jon H says:

    I have to assume that whoever created the Sentry managed to get a part-ownership deal with Marvel and gets royalties on any appearance.

  10. Jefferson says:

    I get the hate about Leifeld, but what’s wrong with Millar? Is it those long-winded, comma-free balloons of “hip” dialogue?

  11. Brian Smith says:

    If you don’t mind my jumping in, Jefferson, a partial answer to your question can be found at http://www.postmodernbarney.com/2008/08/odds-n-ends-2/

  12. Jefferson says:

    So it WAS a long-winded dialogue balloon. I dig now, thanks.

  13. CapnCarrot says:

    I would of gone a long time without guessing Sentry. I guess I don’t even think of him, you know, at all. I know he’s there, but I don’t care.

    As for Ollie, I’d argue you need characters like this in your universe. Yes bad writers, and sometimes even good ones, can make you roll your eyes at how they use him, but if he’s good enough for Hal Jordan, he’s good enough for me.

  14. Derek says:

    Yeah, Sentry is a failure on pretty much every conceivable level.But last year’s Age of the Sentry was actually pretty good.

    Of course, I don’t think it’s really “in continuity” or whatever. It’s never been mentioned, that I know of, and it hasn’t affected how the Sentry has been portrayed since. All in all, the Sentry in Age of the Sentry is like an entirely different and – naturally – more likable character.

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