The accumulation of crises in comics

I spent a chunk of the bank holiday weekend reading 90s x-men comics for the first time in years. Particularly the story of how Charles Xavier, leader of the x-men, became the godlike villain Onslaught who almost destroyed the world. This is one of a number of examples of how heroes become villains (what in wrestling is called a heel turn) only for this to later be forgotten. It’s easy to write this off as the simplified narrative form involved in superhero comics but it suggests an interesting point about crisis; the constant sequence of world-ending crises taking place in these fictional universes lead past crises to rapidly be forgotten. The fact a potentially world ending event is constant imposing itself on the present inevitably creates a forgetfulness of past world ending events. I suspect I’m more sensitive to this narrative quirk in the 2020s then I would have been 10 years ago 🤔

Note to self – I’ve been meaning to read this book for ages:

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