February 26, 2009

Indians in NEUTRO

Reviewer Ed Natcher looks for gay overtones in NEUTRO, a 1967 Dell comic book. He assures us this isn't the worst comic ever.

Popular MechanicsIn the opening sequence, a clearly experienced red son of the West relates an ancient Native American legend, in which a group of smooth bodied braves witness the arrival of a flying saucer. As the sleek, feather wearing buckskin boys cling to each other for comfort, “creatures, like themselves…yet different” (not that there’s anything wrong with that) emerge from the craft, bury several large crates, and depart, leaving a large mound to mark the spot. As the teller of this tale crouches in front of the crotch of his lone listener, staring at the man’s own covered box, he brings his narrative to a close with the warning left behind by the alien earthmovers: “He who disturbs this resting place shall perish!”Comment:  NEUTRO is a bit like COWBOYS & ALIENS: a flying saucer and half-naked "braves" cowering in fear. But there's no reason for 19th-century Indians to be more afraid of UFOs than white men would be. In fact, one could argue that Indians would be less afraid, since they have legends of thunderbirds and other flying creatures.

Apparently the Indians declared the alien hiding place an inviolable burial ground. Burial grounds are another stereotype.

Eventually, a white man is bold enough to dig where the Indians feared to tread. In reality, Indians sometimes unearthed meteorites, so they wouldn't necessarily be afraid to unearth the boxes.

For more on the subject, see Comic Books Featuring Indians.

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