Selfie time! Featuring The Spies and The Spoiler
You’ve probably already seen the panels already, and if you didn’t, then well, the title of this quick think piece probably just gave away what happened in Injustice: Gods Among Us #21.
And on that note, I just wanted to write about it. Read below the cut for more.
Continuing my theme of examining how Helena Bertinelli is perceived in her native Italy, along with the discourse that examines Italian stereotypes, here’s another article from Rai Tg3 on the matter.
The article is entitled ‘The Super-gang of Superheroes’, and it not only discusses the mafia stereotype, but also a new, troubling stereotype that has emerged in recent years. And that stereotype just happens to be the portrayal of a brutal and authoritative police force, specifically the carabinieri in Italy.
The new stereotype is troubling, because it portrays the Italian police as brutal and mindless machines who will beat anyone into submission. Not only does that demonstrate a great misunderstanding of the Italian police and the carabinieri in particular, but it also resurrects the image of Italy as a fascist state, and one whose government (and quite possibly its citizens) tolerates actions like this. Not only that, but it also subliminally reinforces the stereotype that Italian men are ultra violent, so much so that the violence even seeps into the nation’s police force. (And of course, it’s up to the virtuous non-Italians to come in and oppose them …)
Though the article was written in 2011, the themes of police brutality and the abuse of power are still quite relevant today, given the recent events in Ferguson and New York City.
The article does mention both Helena Bertinelli and Dick Grayson, specifically with Cry for Blood (with the mafiosi stereotype) and Nightwing #72, and the incredibly inaccurate portrayal of Italy in general that was the theme of that issue.
The focus however, is not limited to DC, as Thor’s encounter with the Italian police is also mentioned here, too.
It’s a long read, but it’s well worth it. If you want to move past an Americentric view of the world and understand just how wide reaching the American media is, and said media contributes to both creating and reinforcing harmful stereotypes, then read this.
Also note I removed the images for the sake of space, but they can be found once you click the link. And a big, heartfelt thank you to Filippo Rubino for translating this for me when I was going through a bad time in life, and unable to translate it myself.
The Super-gang of Super-heroes
Let me preface this essay by first off, introducing you to my friend.
This is my friend, Lariza.
(She’s on the right).
Now Lariza is a smart girl who is currently majoring in anthropology at UCLA. She also happens to speak three languages: English, Tagalog, and Italian.
And she speaks Italian because, well, she’s Italian herself.
She’s both a Filipina and Italian, and she was born and raised in Milan, and used to live there, up until a few years ago. That’s when her parents decided to move her and her family to California. She now lives in the US and goes to school here, but she still fondly thinks of Italy as home.
In addition to this, there’s also another, current, Milan resident to consider.
His name is Mario Balotelli.
Spoilers under cut: