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Superheroes Blog to the Rescue

Chris Gavaler, visiting assistant professor of English at Washington and Lee, is the author of two novels as well as numerous award-winning short stories and plays. He’s also got one of the more intriguing blogs that you’ll find, particularly if you grew up, as he did, reading comic books.

Every Monday, Chris posts a new item on The Patron Saint of Superheroes that explores such intriguing questions as “Who Would Win in a Fight: Captain America or Archie Andrews?” (from this week) or Spider-Man vs. the Superman (Or, Why Bono Is God).

Chris taught a course called Superheroes during Spring Term 2010 and will be offering it again this coming spring. The blog title is also the working title of his latest novel-in-progress, and he’s preparing a collection of scholarly pieces on the early superheroes.

He explains his abiding interest in both comic books and superheroes in his first blog post, “School for Superheroes,” from last July. As he writes: “While I was promoting my second novel, School for Tricksters, ThreeGuysOneBook.com asked me what books made me a reader for life: This is embarrassingly unliterary, but comic books started me reading.  I remember my first: The Defenders #15.”

The post goes on to note his parents’ involvement in the civil rights struggle in Pittsburgh, when authorities tapped their phone and vandals targeted their house. He writes, “I was too busy studying superheroes to take much notice. . . . I was seven and more concerned with the Defenders’ battle against Magneto and the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants.”

Anyone who is interested in the real relationship between Batman and Robin or the latest in superhero fashion should stop by the blog on Mondays and see what Chris has to say.