Superman protects undocumented immigrants from armed white supremacists in a new issue from DC Comics. This incredibly-timely story hit stores on Wednesday, September 13, one week after President Trump announced the end of DACA: the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy, which President Obama established in 2012. This immigration policy deferred deportation for some individuals who entered the USA illegally as minors and made them eligible for work permits.
The striking comic book moment, which depicts DC’s iconic Man of Steel standing between a group of immigrant workers and a flurry of machine gun bullets fired by a white man with an American flag bandana, appeared in Action Comics #987, “The Oz Effect”. This same issue has also hit the headlines for revealing the true identity of the mysterious character Mr. Oz.
“Stop this”, Superman orders the gunman, who responds by revealing his reason for firing on the undocumented immigrant workers: “They ruined me! Stole from me!” He accuses the workers of taking his job, which Superman does not take kindly to. The Last Son of Krypton has some choice words for the gunman: “The only person responsible for the blackness smothering your soul – is you!” In under a day, images from the issue have begun appearing on Twitter:
— Lodix (@lodix1) September 13, 2017
Action Comics #987 pic.twitter.com/zUwXcEWQNV
— Arthur (@Bouhanul) September 13, 2017
It’s easy to read this story as DC’s direct response to President Trump’s decision to end DACA. Superman has always stood for truth, justice and the American way, sond it makes perfect sense for him to tackle political issues at the moment. In a time as turbulent as this, when ideological differences are flaring up across the USA, it’s not hard to imagine Kal-El taking a strong stance on certain issues. (He isn’t the only pop culture icon to tackle political themes this week, either, with South Park featuring Confederate flags and Tikki torches in its latest episode.)
However, the process of writing, drawing, editing and publishing a comic takes rather a long time. It’s entirely possible that DC had this story in its pipeline for months and that the fact it’s landed in stores this week is a pure coincidence. It’s unlikely that fans will know the truth either way, unless DC puts out a statement.
The issue was written by Dan Jurgens and drawn by Viktor Bogdanovic. Nicholas Bradshaw did the cover, and Mikel Janin did a variant cover. The story arc about the gunman ends with the shooter being arrested. Superman asks the police to ensure the targeted immigrants are “safe and cared for." One of the officers replies, saying, “Anything you say, Superman!”
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