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A Brief History of Superheroes

From Superman to the Avengers, the Evolution of Comic Book Legends (Brief Histories)

By Brian Robb

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Format: Paperback, 304 pages
Published In: United Kingdom, 29 May 2014
A fascinating written exploration of the superhero phenomenon, from its beginnings in the depths of Great Depression to the blockbuster movies of today. For over 90 years, superheroes have been interrogated, deconstructed, and reinvented. In this wide-ranging study, Robb looks at the diverse characters, their creators, and the ways in which their creations have been reinvented for successive generations. Inevitably, the focus is on the United States, but the context is international, including an examination of characters developed in India and Japan in reaction to the traditional American hero. Sections examine: the birth of the superhero, including Superman, in 1938; the DC family (Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and The Justice Society/League of America), from the 1940s to the 1960s; the superheroes enlistment in the war effort in the 1940s and 50s; their neutering by the Comics Code; the challenge to DC from the Marvel family (The Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, and The X-Men), from the 1960s to the 1980s; the superhero as complex anti-hero; superheroes deconstructed in the 1980s (The Watchmen and Frank Miller's Batman), and their politicization; independent comic book creators and new publishers in the 1980s and 90s; superheroes in retreat, and their rebirth at the movies in blockbusters from Batman to Spider-Man and The Avengers.

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A century of reinvention, from Superman in the Great Depression to the blockbuster movies of today

About the Author

BRIAN J. ROBB is the New York Times and Sunday Times best-selling biographer of Leonardo DiCaprio, Johnny Depp and Brad Pitt. He's also written acclaimed pop culture books on silent cinema, the films of Philip K. Dick, Wes Craven and Laurel and Hardy, and TV series Doctor Who and Star Trek. He is co-editor of the popular web site Sci-Fi Bulletin and lives in Edinburgh.

Reviews

Praise for the author's Brief Guide to Star Wars Well-written and easy to read . . . I recommend this book to any Star Wars fan. -- Chad Cloman Praise for the author's Brief Guide to Star TrekYou won't find star dates or names of redshirts killed off in the fourth episode in the third season of the original series (trick question, they were unnamed). What you will find is an honest and excellent source of information about the work that went into the series that is still surviving after almost 50 years. -- Aidan Fortune * SF Crowsnest *

EAN: 9781472110558
ISBN: 1472110552
Publisher: Robinson
Dimensions: 19.6 x 13.2 x 2.2 centimetres (0.20 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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