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The Religious Affiliation of Comic Book Character
James Proudstar
Warpath
of X-Force

James Proudstar, who is known as the superhero "Warpath," is a Native American. He has also been portrayed as a character who practices some form of Native American spirituality/religion (at least some of the time). Generally speaking, he is not a particularly religious character, and is certainly not as overtly religious as some Native American superhero and mutant characters in the Marvel Universe, such as Mirage (Danielle Moonstar), Forge, Talisman or Shaman.

Discussion

From: "X-Men religious affiliations" thread started 1 June 2002 on rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks newsgroup (http://groups.google.com/group/rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks/browse_thread/thread/78e6830d00083d2f/102a03cd2dab9fda; viewed 13 June 2006):
From: Chris Dodson
Date: Sat, Jun 1 2002 9:38 pm

I'm looking for information on the religious beliefs of all the current X-Men for a story I'm submitting to Marvel. The only one I know for sure is Nightcrawler (Catholic). I get the impression that Wolverine is an atheist or agnostic, but I have no in-comic evidence to support this. Any help you guys could give me would be greatly appreciated. Also, in your responses, could you provide titles and issue numbers of the comics in which the information is stated? Thanks.


From: Kenneth
Date: Sun, Jun 2 2002 11:59 am

...Danielle Moonstar should belong to an animist American belief, and so does Proudstar...

From: "Top Ten Most Stereotypical Mutant Characters Ever!!" forum discussion started 29 August 2006 on "Comic Book Resources" website (http://forums.comicbookresources.com/archive/index.php/t-141418.html; viewed 25 May 2007):

Novaya Havoc
08-29-2006, 04:58 PM

Warpath
http://www.uncannyxmen.net/images/costume/warpath-bigcostume7.jpg

No matter what we do to lessen the hoooorrribly stereotypical outfit (X-Force), Warpath always has to bust out with the leather fringe and feathers. Even now, he's back to using knives. 1950s Western, thy name is Warpath.

And again with the code-names: Warpath. Hmm. Seems like a gentle and loving soul. Compare it with other codenames: Iceman, Polaris, Dazzler, Longshot, Psylocke, Cypher. Innocuous names that either describe a person's powers, or at least don't invoke a feeling of DOOM.

Evil, angry, knife-brandishing Warpath. Such an angry man. But contrast this with Moonstar/Mirage/Dani/Whatever-she-goes-by-now who's power was to emote with animals. More gender bias at its best along a stereotypical strata.


tunasammiches
08-31-2006, 11:42 PM

Whenever I see an artist render Forge, Dani or Warpath with a headband, feathers, mocassin boots or those frilly-fringy things anywhere on their costume, I get irrationally annoyed. And when Dani started wearing the "hair tubes" that held her pig tails in place when they came out with the new New Mutants comic, I was really really dissappointed that no one vetoed that design concept.


Sentinel K
09-01-2006, 02:23 AM

re: Whenever I see an artist render Forge, Dani or Warpath with a headband, feathers, mocassin boots or those frilly-fringy things...

Maybe they're just proud of their heritage and their culture?

You'd want them to erase all evidence of it? How about we change their skin colour too so everyone's white?


tunasammiches
09-01-2006, 11:13 AM

re: Maybe they're just proud of their heritage and their culture?

Oh please. That argument does not fly. We're not talking about whether the IMAGINARY COMIC BOOK CHARACTER might be proud of their heritage or not, we're talking about the reality of stereotyped depictions of minorities by comic book artists and writers because of pre-conceived notions of what they think all Native Americans look like.

Just becuase the artist is drawing a Native American, doesn't mean they have to wear feathers in their hair. I'm friends with a lot of minorites and other nationalities, including Native Americans, heck, I myself am Asian and trust me, there's nothing more tiresome and offensive than having to see depictions of offensive stereotypes still being perpetuated in the media.


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