“For 400 hundred years, that word… has kept us down”

January 7th, 2009 by | Tags: , ,

This is from Haunted Tank #2, words by Frank Marraffino, art by Henry Flint:


I was going to review it, but I got a surprising message from a fan of 4l! who beat me to the punch. Prince, how did you feel about the issue, and this page in particular?



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8 comments to ““For 400 hundred years, that word… has kept us down””

  1. Under a Cherry Moon Prince is not happy, dies hilariously

  2. Reading that page made my head hurt.

  3. I’m not sure if there’s a direct authorial mouthpiece in that scene. The juxtaposition is poorly done. I don’t know if there’s a coherent message there other than the author trying to express all of the sides of the argument (to the author’s opinion/POV) and that there’s no quorum, thereby leaving no satisfaction to anyone that deliberates on the subject…?

    Oh fuggit, let’s just pretend I just said “Game… Blouses”

  4. But hey guys, it must be racially enlightened if Hannibal “I will never ever buy or read another Garth Ennis comic ever again because he is a white man who used the word ‘nigger’ in a comic” Tabu LOVES this issue!

  5. @Dave: Which is kind of odd, considering Garth Ennis doesn’t use “nigger” as a jumping off point to make clunky, sweeping statements about the subtleies (ironies? I can’t think of a better word here…) of racial epiphets’ politcial correctness when used in different contexts, but rather only when people would actually say it, so it doesn’t seem forced.

    Has anyone ever actually had a conversation like the one taking place there?

  6. I know I haven’t. I’m still not even sure what it’s trying to say.

  7. I think the best part was that the page next to that one was an add for some TV show whose tag line was something along the lines of “introducing the whitest group on TV”

  8. I looked at it more as a punchline more so than a serious message. Throughout the comic Ghost tank calls the sergeant a nigrah because “that’s why they’re called” and doesn’t realize how bad it is despite the sergeant always yelling at him about it. The punchline is that when the sergeant explains why it’s bad, someone says something to contradict it, confusing Ghost Tank further. This was done earlier when the sergeant was chastising him while they were rolling through the desert, and then one of the guys say “Sandniggers at 1:00!” or something like that.

    So that’s why I think it’s more of a running gag than anything else. I’d assume most Vertigo readers have come to their own conclusions about that word, so the creators are just rolling through the contexts because “Ghost Tank is not with the times, and hilarity ensues.” (Actual hilarity may vary.)

    Either way, all this discussion’s given me a reason to go out and buy it. I like military stories from Vertigo, and the art style’s grown on me. The expressions in the last panel still get me.