World Comic Book Review

10th April 2024

Aliens in Mississippi and Cultural Ownership

Strange Fruit 1, 2
BOOM! Studios, July 2015, October 2015
Writers: JG Jones and Mark Waid
Review by DG Stewart, 5 January 2016

Set in the town of Chatterlee, Mississippi in 1927, this comic by JG Jones and Mark Waid reworks the Superman mythos: what if Superman was black and landed in the racist South in the 1920s?

The first two pages consist of dialogue between a group of white men, armed with axe handles, about to enter a “coloured café” so as to coerce black workers to help with a flood-stricken levee. One of the gang tells his son to keep away from the café, with the words, “This ain’t no place I ever want to see you in.” It is quite deliberately not clear whether the man does not want his son to be in a place where black people socialise, or whether he does not want his son to witness blood-letting.

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