Saturday, 1 March 2014
More On Miracleman
"He wonders what to do next."
- Miracleman no 2 (New York, 2014), p. 12.
With the benefit of hindsight, this is ironic because we know in graphic detail exactly what Bates will do to London the next time he has the opportunity. Moran should have killed him when he had the chance but, again, this statement is made with the benefit of hindsight.
In no 3, we learn that MM's costume can be torn and his body battered. He never fought anyone with comparable, let alone greater, strength in Mick Anglo's comic.
Bates is schizophrenic. Back in child form, he denies responsibility for his crimes.
Evelyn Cream is a big black man with blue teeth in white clothes. What I mean by this is that he is eminently noticeable and recognizable. I know that he has the government on his side but I still think that it makes no sense for him to walk into a hospital in broad daylight, speak to two staff members in Reception, ask for a patient by name, then go and kill that patient.
Morally, since Cream works for a covert arm of government and since the man he kills is a nuclear terrorist, it might be argued that this killing is a summary execution, not a murder. We want to like Cream because he is capable, urbane, polite and allies himself with MM. (We do not know that last part yet. I am getting slightly ahead of the story.)
We follow his deductive process:
the superhuman burst out of the power station so he must have been in it;
only the terrorists and the pressmen were in the station and all the terrorists are accounted for;
the transformation to superhumanity must require energy;
only one of the captured terrorists, Steven Cambridge, is burned;
Cambridge confirms that he was with a journalist who whispered and exploded;
when Cambridge describes the journalist, Cream, who has a list, circles the name "Moran."
Thus easily is a secret identity penetrated. Mick Anglo's Marvelman Family were forever transforming directly in front of witnesses ( see p. 44) but we now know (or later find out) that that was in the para-reality program where it was not necessary that events make sense.
Liz continues her deductions. In fact, she deduces that Mike has two bodies, the one not currently in use stored elsewhere, only the one in use aging normally. Mike thinks that this is "...a bit science fictiony." (p. 13) Again, our world and the superhero world are starting to interact before the latter goes on to obliterate the former. Mike points that they share the same mind but then concedes that it is not exactly the same. They share memories but Miracleman is cleverer. So are they the same person? Legally, two bodies means two persons but laws change with circumstances.
Two months later, Liz is still at it: how come MM's costume was intact the next time he transformed? Why did they not even notice? Mike is oppressed by his inferiority to Miracleman:
Miracleman got Liz pregnant;
his thoughts are like poetry and his emotions are pure;
his love for Liz is gigantic, strong, direct and clean, unlike Mike's. (p. 19)
So the differences are not merely physical. MM is a "superman" in more than the comic book sense and not in the Nazi sense.
Mike mentions the Falklands, which was then a current war, and his editor mentions Profumo, a scandal of the sixties. We still have one foot firmly in our reality.