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January 28, 2016

good lord i hate ted cruz

So here's the thing about the Joker. (Nerd alert?) The Joker was easily the most indelible of the bad guys created by Bob Kane (or as some would say, Bill Finger) as punching bags for his late 30s character Batman. And he was creepy! Clowns are creepy. And sure he was homicidal, at least to start, because all the bad guys were homicidal, at least to start, at the time, but somehow the super-power of "looks like a clown, laughs a lot" caught in the minds of the kids, and stayed in the minds as the kids became not so much kids.

And by the 1980s, when the kids were creeping past their 30s and all of a sudden funny books had to have a little psychology to stay relevant, a bunch of very very smart creators found a fulcrum for the whole men-wearing-underwear-on-the-outside genre in the Joker, a blank clown-shaped canvas on which to project a pathology. So then, is he insane? Misspent youth? Brain-damage? Actually, no &emdash; he is some sort of ultra-sane person, a creation of the passage of time as evinced by the late 20th Century. Does the world make less and less sense? The Joker is what happens when you focus that senselessness, that disassociative, dislocating modern world, into a human morality structure you get the Joker.

That's just a rough sketch, and if that's interesting give a shout and I'll post a bibliography, but all I'm trying to say is that if you want a contemporaneous phenomenon, then take this current version of naked greed and cynicism and oily ickyness and you get Ted Cruz. Whomst I hate. And I'm ankles-deep in this last debate before Iowa and mildly cheered that he is being roundly ganged up on so I just wanted to say hi.

Posted by mrbrent at 9:02 PM