Ma­jor mayor dan­ger

The King­pin is the new mayor of New York, join­ing a select few he­roes and vil­lains who have held that ti­tle.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Culture - By MICHAEL CHEANG star2@thes­tar.com.my

IN last week’s Dare­devil #28, Matt Mur­dock comes back from a jaunt in China to find that one of his worst night­mares had come true: his arch en­emy, crime lord Wil­son Fisk, had been elected mayor of New York City!

Fisk is not the first comic book char­ac­ter to hold the of­fice of mayor, of course. It’s not a very long list, though.

In fact, the list of su­per­heroes/ vil­lains who ac­tu­ally be­came the Pres­i­dent of the United States is much longer, with Thor, Won­der Woman, Cap­tain Amer­ica, Su­per­man, and even Lex Luthor on it. Heck, even Howard the Duck ran for pres­i­dent once. (Gee, they’ll re­ally just let any­one into the White House th­ese days, eh?)

There have been other char­ac­ters who have dab­bled in pol­i­tics as well. As King of Wakanda, T’Challa, aka Black Pan­ther, is re­spon­si­ble for run­ning his coun­try and main­tain­ing good in­ter­na­tional re­la­tions with the out­side world.

Barbara “Bat­girl/Or­a­cle” Gor­don served as a US con­gress­woman in 1973, and Tony “Iron Man” Stark was once the Sec­re­tary of De­fence (though he wasn’t ex­actly elected to that po­si­tion).

Maybe in the fu­ture we’ll see Wolver­ine as Prime Min­is­ter of Canada, or Green Lan­tern as Prime Min­is­ter of Greenland as well. Who knows?

For now, let’s fo­cus on comic char­ac­ters who have been elected mayor. Th­ese are the five who were deemed wor­thy (or in some cases, wacky) enough to run a city.

Wil­son Fisk

While we still don’t know what kind of mayor Fisk will turn out to be, you can be sure the su­per­heroes of New York won’t have it easy with The King­pin in charge of the city.

That’s a list that in­cludes (deep breath) both Spi­der-Men (Peter Parker and Miles Mo­rales), Spi­derWo­man, the Pu­n­isher, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Doc­tor Strange, Jes­sica Jones, Iron Fist, She-Hulk, and, er, Howard the Duck, among oth­ers.

It’s safe to say Dare­devil will bear the brunt of Mayor King­pin’s wrath, though, es­pe­cially since Matt re­cently scored a vic­tory over Fisk in court by mak­ing it le­gal for masked su­per­heroes to tes­tify in court against the bad guys.

J. Jonah Jame­son

Be­fore Fisk, another su­per­hero-hater also be­came mayor of New York: Spi­der-Man’s staunch­est critic and num­ber one hater, J. Jonah Jame­son, who re­ally put a dent in Spidey’s ac­tiv­i­ties in the city.

Af­ter he takes of­fice in 2009’s Amaz­ing Spi­der-Man #591, he im­me­di­ately sets out to make Spidey’s life a liv­ing hell with his Anti-Spi­der Squad.

How­ever, the ta­bles are turned when Doc­tor Oc­to­pus takes over Peter Parker’s body and, as the Su­pe­rior Spi­der-Man, black­mails Jame­son into do­ing his bid­ding!

Jame­son re­signs in 2014’s Su­pe­rior Spi­der-Man #31, af­ter the Green Gob­lin hacks his Spi­derSlay­ers and uses them to at­tack the peo­ple of New York.

Jay Gar­rick

In 2010’s Jus­tice So­ci­ety Of Amer­ica #50, the Golden Age Flash, Jay Gar­rick, takes of­fice as mayor of Mon­u­ment Point. While he has the power to run very fast, he doesn’t get to ac­tu­ally, er, run the city (or run it to the ground) be­fore the en­tire DC uni­verse was re­booted with the New 52 ex­er­cise in 2011.

If any­thing, Jay’s stint in of­fice proves one thing: scenes fea­tur­ing su­per­heroes in suits at­tend­ing city coun­cil meet­ings are not par­tic­u­larly ex­cit­ing.

Oliver Queen

Set one year af­ter the In­fi­nite Cri­sis event, the One Year Later event in 2006 saw plenty of changes to the DC uni­verse, one of which in­cluded in­stalling Oliver Queen as mayor of Star City in Green Ar­row (Vol. 03) #60.

It’s a sto­ry­line that was re­cently used in the Ar­row TV series as well, though at least TV Oliver doesn’t have a goa­tee that would have given away his se­cret su­per­hero iden­tity in­stantly.

In the comics, Oliver only lasts 15 is­sues as mayor. In 2007’s Green Ar­row (Vol. 03) #75, he steps down at a press con­fer­ence, af­ter apol­o­gis­ing for hav­ing failed his city. It isn’t all doom and gloom in that is­sue, though, as Oliver ac­tu­ally pro­poses to Black Ca­nary at the end of it!

Mitchell Hun­dred

Brian K. Vaughan’s stel­lar Ex-Machina sets the golden stan­dard when it comes to comic book may­ors.

Mitchell Hun­dred can talk to ma­chines. So he de­cides to don a cos­tume to fight crime in New York City as the Great Ma­chine. Then the 9/11 tragedy hap­pened in real life in 2001. De­spite manag­ing to save one of the two World Trade Cen­ter tow­ers, Hun­dred de­cides that the Great Ma­chine isn’t do­ing enough, and that the best way to make a dif­fer­ence is to be­come mayor.

Us­ing Hun­dred’s unique per­spec­tive, Vaughan tack­les is­sues rang­ing from drugs to cor­rup­tion while main­tain­ing a strong main sto­ry­line about the su­per­hero’s past and ori­gin the en­tire time. Ex-Machina is proof that writ­ing a po­lit­i­cal story with su­per­heroes need not be about bor­ing meet­ings all the time.

Looks like J. Jonah Jame­son just hit the jack­pot, tiger! — Mar­vel Comics

Oh $%*&; in­deed, Mr Mur­dock. Oh $%*&;. — Mar­vel Comics

Mitchell Hun­dred is still the gold stan­dard of comic book may­ors. — Wild­storm

As the Flash, Jay Gar­rick is prob­a­bly bet­ter at run­ning through a city than ac­tu­ally run­ning it. — DC Comics

Mayor Oliver Queen was straight as an ar­row. Worst. Politi­cian. Ever. — DC Comics

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