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“The Letter Pages” by Reed Beebe

Overman Comics

Hey, Overman fans! We had a great response to the recent “Time Crisis” story, so let’s get to your letters…

Dear Team Overman,

I’ve loved the Overman comic for years. I enjoyed the “Time Crisis” story, but why risk alienating fans like me by making so many changes to Overman and his supporting cast? Will Mrs. Overman and Woof the Overdog still be in the comic? Are these changes permanent?

Tom Alonso
Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tom, Overman has been around since the 1920s. As the world’s first comic book superhero, over the years the character has had fantastic adventures and a great supporting cast. But by modern standards, some of those adventures and characters are just outdated, silly, and confusing. Our hope is that the character changes will be exciting to both new and veteran readers. Mrs. Overman is still around, but sadly Woof the Overdog no longer exists in Overman’s revised world. As to whether the changes are permanent, well… TO BE CONTINUED… – Ed.

Dear Overman Crew,

I am turning 21 this year, and I am looking forward to voting for the first time. It got me to thinking – I don’t recall Mrs. Overman ever expressing her political opinions? Does she vote for the Progressive Party? Or the Reformists? Or the Populists?

Ramona Robbins
Atlanta, Georgia

Like any good wife, Ramona, Mrs. Overman has the same political opinions as her husband, and since Overman is an independent voter, so is Mrs. Overman. – Ed.

Dear Team Overman,

As a person of color, I hope that the changes brought about by the recent “Time Crisis” storyline allow some modifications to the Overman comic that might appeal to a larger, more diverse audience. For starters, hopefully you can have more people of color in the comic. Negroes have had the right to own property and vote in this country for the past 15 years, but there are currently no Negro characters in the comic, other than the occasional bank robber or purse snatcher. Also, the anti-Semitism of the comic’s past is an embarrassment. While the current comic is more progressive on that issue, Overman’s archenemy remains Dr. Evilberg, whose name, appearance, and speech are based on anti-Semitic stereotypes. Please consider making changes to the character to make him less offensive.

Dwayne Cowan
Biloxi, Mississippi

Dwayne, your comments are appreciated. Society has changed a lot in the almost 90 years since Overman was created, and the Overman creative team is committed to making Overman more contemporary. As for the future of Dr. Evilberg, just wait and see… – Ed.

Dear Overteam,

Since “Time Crisis”changed Overman’s origin story, is Overman still from the year 2025 A.D.?

Brian Brubaker
St. Louis, Missouri

Brian, Overman is still from the future, but now he is from the year 3025 A.D. When Overman was created in 1925, the idea of a genetically perfect superman traveling back in time from a hundred years in the future was a fun idea. But with the year 2025 not too far off, it seemed like a good idea to change Overman’s date of origin. – Ed.

Dear Overlords,

With the recent blockbuster success of the Overman movie, how about giving some financial compensation to the descendants of Overman’s creators, Joe Gale and Andy Hill! Joe and Andy created the character, and although S&B Comics has made a fortune off the character over the years, Joe and Andy died almost penniless. It would be great if S&B could reward the creators (or at least the family of the creators) for the vision and work that they put into such a beloved character.

Todd Kirkman
Pensacola, Florida

Todd – with all due respect to Joe and Andy’s families, it is undisputed that Joe and Andy both sold their rights to Overman to S&B Comics. In 1925, there was no such thing as superheroes in comics, and S&B was taking a considerable risk buying the rights to the character. Overman is owned by S&B, which has guided the character to success for almost a century, and the company has no financial or moral obligation to the Gale and Hill families. – Ed.

Dear Overtime,

After “Time Crisis”, will we see Red Evil again? We bombed Soviet Europe to hell years ago, so I don’t think a communist super-villain is all that scary anymore.

Matt Aaron
Memphis, Tennessee

Matt, communism may be in retreat, but every cause has its diehards. So don’t think that Red Evil is going to disappear quietly. – Ed.

Dear Overteam,

Why do you have so many foreign writers working on the Overman comic? Are there not enough good writers in this country? There are so many Brits working on your comic, I think I am starting to develop a British accent.

Warren Moore
Huntsville, Alabama

Well, tally ho, Warren! Britain has some great comics creators that we are privileged to have working for us (it doesn’t hurt that they are cheap labor, either!) Also, please remember that the creators of Overman were foreign immigrants – Joe Gale and Andy Hill were political refugees from Communist Germany (like many immigrants, they changed their names to better integrate into our society). Soon after they were given asylum in this country, the struggling playwright and artist collaborated on the creation of not only a great character, but a new genre. They may not have been born here, but Joe Gale and Andy Hill (or, to use their original German names, Joseph Goebbels and Adolf Hitler) have contributed greatly to the culture of the Confederate States of America. – Ed.

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“The Letter Pages” is © 2015 Reed Beebe. All rights reserved.

Reed Beebe writes fiction in Kansas City, Missouri.  Reed is also a comics fan and a staff writer for the comics site Nothing But Comics!

You can read his articles on comics here:  http://nothingbutcomics.net/author/reedbeebe/

 

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