Gothic Council Debates Best Comic Book Character

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Gothtopia has been tapped to be the eyes and ears of the Houston Press at Comicpalooza. Considering that the first thing that gets put up whenever we move to a new apartment is a limited-edition poster advertising Sandman: Brief Lives - which by the way hangs over a small bookshelf dedicated entirely to Neil Gaiman - we feel pretty comfortable in the assignment.

In addition, the world of the superhero is really stepping up its game cinematically. Thor rocked, Captain America looks stellar, and Christopher Nolan is knee-deep in Batman 3. All in all, it's a good time to be a geek.

Sadly, our own favorite comic book character, Green Arrow and Batman villain Onomatopoeia, will never make it onto the big screen. It's all well and good to have a guy whose only form of communication is bullets and making action sounds out loud in a comic book, but do that in a film and everyone is just going to think he's speshul.

Musing on Onomatopeia made us wonder what other comic book characters resonate with the gothic community? The only way to find out was to lick the binding of the first Gloomcookie trade and summon the Gothic Council.

Joining the Council this week is fashion designer Batty, Carol Daeumer of the Vaniteux Salon et Nano Spa, blogger and hearse enthusiast Desiree Stark, Punky Moms founder Sarah Fanning, and spooky dessertier Lynda Rouner.

Gothtopia: Who is the best comic book character?

Batty: Batman because he has bat in his name and that just appeals to my vanity. Otherwise I never really got into comic books much. I could be obvious and go with someone from the Sandman comic books, like Death, but all that ever did was inspire bad eye doodles and a bunch of stupid girls saying they inspired her, when we all know Houston was the home of the real inspiration for that character.

Carol Daeumer: Tank Girl, she always had the coolest hair and biggest weapons. Do I get extra nerd points for being into Tank Girl pre-movie? Excellent soundtrack, though.

Desiree Stark: I agree with Carol that Tank Girl is an awesome choice, and I'd also throw out Enid from the Ghost World graphic novel as another good candidate. But I am going Rogue.

Rogue is the best dressed X-Men with an awesome two-tone hair style most scenesters don't even realize they're stealing, and the most intensely distressed. Her vampire-like powers of energy/memory/power absorption render it difficult for her to bone the hot guy she's usually dating, Gambit, or fully connect with anyone.

She also has to be sexy without showing a lot of skin, because whomever she makes contact with will be drained. So, the thing that makes her unique and powerful also makes her isolated, tragic, and creative with her wardrobe: what is more goth than that?

Daeumer: Desiree, I totally forgot about Enid from Ghost World... I've always kind of identified with her. When the movie came out and my first husband and I watched it, he blurted out "So that's what you were like in High School!"

Sarah Fanning: I do love super heroes and villains, but they've become ...well... mainstream. They lack the imaginative spark and deliciously warpedness that I crave. When I do buy comics, I gravitate toward those from Slave Labor Graphics and Dark Horse.

Yes, I do keep up to date with Marvel and DC. And yes, my kids know more about the comic heroes than most 6- and 4-year-olds... And yes, I still read and watch Manga from time to time. But I always come back to Lenore.

What's not to like about the adorably creepy dead girl named after Poe's lamented love? She's just so... off... And she plays with knives. Though she's horrifically violent and dark, her cute naïveté makes it acceptable.

Lynda Rouner: If I have to pick just one comic character, I'll go with Jesse Custer from Preacher. In a series where every character is tortured and disturbed, he is hands-down the most tortured and disturbed.

He does the anti-hero better than Batman or Morpheus ever did, which is saying a lot, and he has the most interesting origin story. His super power is The Word of God, meaning that he can make anybody do literally, and I do mean literally, anything. Also, he's hot, and his girlfriend, Tulip, kicks much ass. In my opinion, you haven't read a disturbingly great comic until you've read Preacher.

Gothtopia: It is the decision of the Council then that the best comic-book characters will always be those who are angsty, violent, or somehow involve bats. Extra points are awarded for blasphemy and Poe references.

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