|Mondays, am I right?|
There's no excuse for having stumbled across this fact only recently, but I did: Al Hartley, the virtuoso artist, writer and letterer whose career in comics passed through assorted romance titles, all the way up to the softcore men's comic character Pussycat and then, after a road to Damascus moment, ended up as practically the sole creator of the Spire Comics line of Christian comics? That Al Hartley?
Well, his dad was Congressman Fred Hartley, sponsor of the disastrous anti-labor Taft-Hartley Act and a pal of Joe McCarthy. A fine fella, all the way around.
I feel like this is relevant only because of the anti-revolutionary rhetoric which is a component of Adventures With The Brothers, one of the few original, non-licensed titles to come out of Spire.
|"Let's just take a moment to appreciate it."|
The three separate issues of Adventures With The Brothers (with evocative titles such as "Hang In There," "The Cult Escape," and "Smashing the Smuggler's Ring," the last of which sounds like a really rough porno) follow Pete and Tom Brothers, the Brothers brothers, who accompany their missionary parents into all sorts of missionary positions in underprivileged areas of the globe. Hey, who am I to judge, it's the most searched-for genre on PornHub.
While the stories are highly simplified morality tales aimed at the kiddie-wink crowd -- or so the CONSTANTLY SHOUTED AND BRIEF SENTENCES INDICATE!!!! -- they also fall prey to the kind of casual paternalism which is natively inherent in the propaganda of any majority culture. Hey, how y'all liking my college education? Still fits just like it did when I was twenty. You know, pretentiously.
|Prior to this panel, they kicked a|
fat dude off a cliff.
The differences between The Brothers and every other comic in the Spire line is primarily cosmetic, using as it does roughly the same type of script, in spirit if not in letter, as all the other books across the line. What they bring to the table on their own merits is treating other races and cultures like helpless infants just desperately eager for the white man's hand to lift them out of poverty and influence. I say that dismissively now, but I'll be singing a different tune when I get out of the re-education camps later in 2017, I'm sure.
(PS If God is real, then I pray that the above sentence isn't rendered cruelly ironic by the current executive power at some point in the immediate future, amen)
With the rest of the original Spire Comics characters, the Brothers disappeared when the line ended. There hasn't been much of a call for the revival of these characters, but that doesn't mean someone somewhere couldn't arrange for a League of Extraordinary Gentlemen but made up of the Brothers, Barney Bear, Archie's Car and Tom Landry.