A Fact-Check for the Four-Color World

Wednesday, February 16, 2005


Longtime readers of Comic Buyer's Guide may remember Bob Ingersoll's now-retired column The Law Is A Ass, where the esteemed Mr. Ingersoll reguarly examined legal issues that were broached in comic books. Today's online fans may be familiar with Polite Dissent, where Scott provides medical reviews of comics from a doctor's perspective. Both of these provide educated insight into how accurately comic creators present real-world facts and issues are within the pages of some of our favorite funnybooks.

But there are so many other real-world concerns in comics beyond the legal issues presented in She-Hulk or the medicine practiced by Dr. Mid-Nite. What about the psychology we hear from the doctors at Arkham Asylum? Does Chuck Austen have his Catholic theology right? Oliver Queen may know archery, but what about his artist? And how factual are "Flash Facts," really?

Thus, in the spirit of educating the public and the publishers, we here have created this group blog. We'll complain when creators get the facts wrong, and congratulate when they get them right (and we expect there will be no shortage of the former). Some may call it nitpicking; we prefer to think of it as accuracy. It's one thing to read about Gorilla Grodd kidnapping the President of the United States, but that same talking gorilla story suffers if the story has him abducting a supposed U.S. Prime Minister. Comics regularly expect us to believe the impossible. Making the real-world backdrop that they're set against truly realistic makes those impossibilities easier to handle.

So welcome to Suspension of Disbelief.