Page 2 of 4 FirstFirst 1234 LastLast
Results 16 to 30 of 60
  1. #16
    Astonishing Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Posts
    2,155

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Carabas View Post
    I think the main reason for the concept going out of style is that as technology marches on, it has become ever less probable that somebody without Bruce Wayne resources would be able to have a secret identity.

    If Superman rushes into a phone booth to change into his supersuit (let's say it's the 90's and they still exist), he gets caught on an anti-vandalism camera.

    Another thing that has made them go out of style is that people got wise to the fact that constantly lying to all your friends, family, spouse in some cases... makes you kind of an asshole.
    Spider-Man Homecoming showed some of the downsides of a duel identity, where Peter has to change in an alleyway and someone takes his backpack while's he's off Spider-Man-ing.

  2. #17
    Astonishing Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Posts
    2,155

    Default

    One positive thing about secret identities is that it can explore the different facets of the character through one or both of the personas of the character. Classic example is Peter Parker, who is more willing to shoot his mouth off when he's Spidey. Since he can get away with dodging his opponent he can insult them or say what's on his mind, and if they don't know he's Peter then he doesn't face them retaliating on his Peter life.

    Plus it's prime for the two person love triangle. You can't beat the main character's love interest being in love with their superhero identity, or being antagonistic to their superhero alter ego. Another fun trope is when they're needed as their hero identity, but one of the hostages or even the main hostage, like Bruce Wayne being the hostage for summoning Batman.

  3. #18
    BANNED
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    6,312

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Carabas View Post
    Do you have an example of this happening? And not Wonder Woman, because her endless supporting casts always go away, secret ID or not.
    How often do you see Hal Jordan's supporting cast?

  4. #19
    Chosen One Carabas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Belgium
    Posts
    18,726

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Trey Strain View Post
    How often do you see Hal Jordan's supporting cast?
    Never. I don't read Green Lantern. But he still had a secret identity last time I looked, and there was not a sign of his supporting cast anywhere.
    "One may be intelligent, and a Nazi. Then one is not decent. One may be decent and a Nazi. Then one is not intelligent. And one may be intelligent and decent. Then one is not a Nazi"
    - Gerhard Bronner

  5. #20
    BANNED
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    6,312

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Carabas View Post
    Never. I don't read Green Lantern. But he still had a secret identity last time I looked, and there was not a sign of his supporting cast anywhere.
    His secret identity and his supporting cast are not being used, and his comic has not improved as a result. It's like having a car in your garage you never drive, and meanwhile you drive a worse one. Yes, you've still got the better car, but so what?

  6. #21
    Boisterously Confused
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    3,044

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Carabas View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Trey Strain View Post
    It might be, but it shouldn't be. When it goes, then supporting casts tend to go too, and the stories become poorer as a result. Everyone in a comic doesn't need to be a super-hero.
    Do you have an example of this happening? And not Wonder Woman, because her endless supporting casts always go away, secret ID or not.
    IMO, it's not merely a matter of supporting casts, but also a matter of the breadth of the world in which the characters inhabit. For example:

    The poster child is The Fantastic Four, who largely lived in a celebrity bubble, with the exception of Alicia. They had other characters, like The Inhumans, or Wyatt Wingfoot, but these were almost always temporary additions.

    Another example is Captain America. At various points in his run, most prominently during his Brooklyn Heights era, he had a rich supporting cast as part of his secret id. Whenever his secret's out, however, his cast tends to dwindle to The Avengers, SHIELD, and whoever SHIELD deigns let near him.

    A problem that I have with this is that it "shrinks" the world in which the characters live. One has to wonder why they bother good-guying, when they're not part of any world beyond their Batcaves and Asgards. It's a personal preference, but I see merit in presenting characters that live in worlds bigger than just themselves. More to the point, casting every character as a supercelebrity takes away from the opportunities to portray the characters as human, with lives that including irritating neighbors, trying to be supportive of friends, and the ordinary pressures of life, with which most of us can identify.

    Early in their run on The New Teen Titans, Wolfman and Perez balanced this pretty well with Cyborg, who had an outside life even tho a secret id was impossible for him. That's a particularly interesting contrast with Robin, who had a secret id, but no life outside of his work.

    I don't think every character should have, or even needs, a secret id. As ed2962 said, it would make sense for Moon Knight, but not for Scarlet Witch. The secret id is also easier to swallow for characters that could reasonably evade surveillance, or majorly alter their appearance, such as The Atom, or (the real) Captain Marvel, than it would be for a character like Wonder Man.

    Repeating my earlier post, I suspect that narcissism lies at the heart of the departure from the secret id. Too many of us seem to think that the world isn't any bigger than ourselves and the bubbles in which we choose to live. Only our own stories matter to us. It shouldn't surprise me so much that the way comic characters are portrayed reflect that.

  7. #22
    MXAAGVNIEETRO IS RIGHT MyriVerse's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    3,088

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Carabas View Post
    I think the main reason for the concept going out of style is that as technology marches on, it has become ever less probable that somebody without Bruce Wayne resources would be able to have a secret identity.

    If Superman rushes into a phone booth to change into his supersuit (let's say it's the 90's and they still exist), he gets caught on an anti-vandalism camera.

    Another thing that has made them go out of style is that people got wise to the fact that constantly lying to all your friends, family, spouse in some cases... makes you kind of an asshole.
    Well, yeah, Clark can't use payphones anymore. There practically are none, anyway. But the funny thing about all of those cameras is that they're pointed down. Supes shouldn't be hindered much by that. And he's too fast for cameras, anyway.
    f/k/a The Black Guardian
    COEXIST | NOEXIST
    ShadowcatMagikДаякѕтая Sto☈mDustMercury MonetRachelSage
    MagnetoNightcrawlerColossusRockslideBeastXavier

  8. #23
    Chosen One Carabas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Belgium
    Posts
    18,726

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MyriVerse View Post
    Well, yeah, Clark can't use payphones anymore. There practically are none, anyway. But the funny thing about all of those cameras is that they're pointed down. Supes shouldn't be hindered much by that. And he's too fast for cameras, anyway.
    If he's too fast for cameras then he's way too fast to get in and out of a phone boot without wrecking it.
    "One may be intelligent, and a Nazi. Then one is not decent. One may be decent and a Nazi. Then one is not intelligent. And one may be intelligent and decent. Then one is not a Nazi"
    - Gerhard Bronner

  9. #24
    BANNED
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    6,312

    Default

    Bruce Wayne and Oliver Queen couldn't maintain a secret identity in the modern world. There are too many security cameras, cell phones, motion detectors, databases, drones to follow you around, satellite images, web sites where information gets shared, and so on. You'd have to have super-powers to do it.
    Last edited by Trey Strain; 03-13-2018 at 05:38 PM.

  10. #25
    Astonishing Member
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    2,742

    Default

    Secret identity is more like a hindrance than an asset when you are serious about fighting crime.

    Whenever a billionaire like Bruce Wayne attends evening socialite parties, how can he have time to fight crime at night, a time at which Batman usually appears?

    Matt Murdock can fight as Daredevil during the nights since the courts are open in the daytime instead of nighttime.

  11. #26
    Extraordinary Member Tendrin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    7,254

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Trey Strain View Post
    His secret identity and his supporting cast are not being used, and his comic has not improved as a result. It's like having a car in your garage you never drive, and meanwhile you drive a worse one. Yes, you've still got the better car, but so what?
    But how many comics have strong, not-heroic supporting casts anymore, anyway? The answer seems to be 'nowhere near enough', and then they get busy changing classic supporting cast characters into new heroes.

    It's a problem.

  12. #27
    Ultimate Member numberthirty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    14,246

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Trey Strain View Post
    Bruce Wayne and Oliver Queen couldn't maintain a secret identity in the modern world. There are too many security cameras, cell phones, motion detectors, databases, drones to follow you around, satellite images, web sites where information gets shared, and so on. You'd have to have super-powers to do it.
    That one's probably not as simple as that.

    Each of them are probably rich enough to fund creating countermeasures.

  13. #28
    BANNED
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    6,312

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by numberthirty View Post
    That one's probably not as simple as that.

    Each of them are probably rich enough to fund creating countermeasures.
    Nobody can escape the surveillance state that we've accepted by default.

    I address the problem here:

    http://community.comicbookresources....78#post3523478
    Last edited by Trey Strain; 03-14-2018 at 04:38 AM.

  14. #29
    BANNED
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    6,312

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Tendrin View Post
    But how many comics have strong, not-heroic supporting casts anymore, anyway? The answer seems to be 'nowhere near enough', and then they get busy changing classic supporting cast characters into new heroes.

    It's a problem.
    You're right. The idea that everybody needs to be a super-hero is a fundamental problem with comics writing. It's a big reason why the writing is so lacking.
    Last edited by Trey Strain; 03-14-2018 at 03:51 AM.

  15. #30
    Chosen One Carabas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Belgium
    Posts
    18,726

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Trey Strain View Post
    Nobody can escape the surveillance state that we've accepted by default.

    I address the problem here:

    http://community.comicbookresources....78#post3523478
    Batman isn't real and doesn't play by the rules of our reality.
    In our reality swinging from rooftops like Batman is a good way to lose an arm.
    "One may be intelligent, and a Nazi. Then one is not decent. One may be decent and a Nazi. Then one is not intelligent. And one may be intelligent and decent. Then one is not a Nazi"
    - Gerhard Bronner

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •