Marvel Noir Looks at Depression Era Politics
Those teasers Marvel has been showing at recent conventions? They’re for a new imprint called Marvel Noir, a re-imagining of it’s characters as gritty pulp stories set around the era just post Great Depression. In an interview with some of the series writers, IGN pulled out the below nugget of how the writers plan on including the political realities of the time:
David Hine: …We wanted to get some of the politics of the period into the book, so we made Peter the nephew of socialist agitators, Ben and May Parker, who run up against the Goblin – the major gang leader of the period, whose activities include strike-breaking and busting the heads of commies on the orders of corrupt politicians and with the connivance of corrupt cops. There are a lot of parallels with the real-life corruption that was rife in American politics in the thirties. We also wanted to depict the life of the homeless during the Depression, so we did a lot of research to make everything as authentic as possible.
JJJ is a campaigning editor who wants to expose the political realities and the appalling living conditions of the working class, particularly the millions who had lost their jobs. Felicia Hardy is the femme fatale of the series. She is the owner and manager of the Black Cat speakeasy.
IGN Comics: What informed the recreated characters the most – the “noir” genre, the era or the changes to Peter Parker himself? Were there any characters that simply would not work with this new reality?
Hine: The noir genre certainly influenced the cynicism and bleakness that permeates the series. Even our ‘good guys’ are corrupted by their entry into a shadowy world on the margins of society. But all that bleakness comes as a natural consequence of the historical setting. 1932 was not a very edifying time to be living in New York. Prohibition, unemployment, the dead-end policies of President Hoover, widespread political corruption, homelessness, alcoholism.