This was actually said to my husband on Facebook after he posted a comment about how great he thought The Avengers movie was. The guy who said it is the husband of a good friend of mine, and while they are older than we are - it isn't by much. B (the husband) turned 30 this year and I'm not far behind him - whereas our friends are in their early to mid-30s.
In case you don't actually know much about me, my husband and I are HUGE geeks. Wait, I take that back - he's a geek....I'm a nerd. I like video games and he's gotten me into comics, but mostly I was just a smart but quiet kid who liked reading and playing Resident Evil 2. My husband has loved comics his entire life. He actually had a fan letter printed in a Batman comic - and if I remember correctly it is in the issue where Bane breaks Batman's back. Our wedding invitations had robots on them; we took our honeymoon 9 months late so we could spend it at the San Diego Comic Convention.
My husband is also a HUGE Whedon lover, so attacking The Avengers without even seeing the movie because "comic movies suck" and "comics are only made for 12 year olds" is pretty much the dumbest personal attack ever.
I loved the Avengers, and no, it is not only for kids. The movie has some amazing dialogue and well rounded characters. Plus, the themes are unquestionably adult. The idea that even in the most gray areas of life one can find right and wrong sounds simplistic, but the question on the ethics of a weapons race (like, whether earth should be armed with weapons that are powered by the Tesseract due to our frail and weak nature compared to the aliens that often attack us) is something that has been argued since we started to develop automatic firearms. How much firepower is too much? Is there such a thing as too big of a weapon? How far should you take weapons development? Because, at the end of the day, they'll probably wind up in the wrong hands at some point, and then was it worth it to build them in the first place?
The Avengers is about realizing that none of us are perfect and that we aren't always going to get along, but when we need to we can stand together for one day - for one fight - to defend that which we hold most dear. We are all flawed and imperfect, but that doesn't mean we can't work together. We can put aside the mistakes and imperfections of others to stand side by side and fight for what is right. That's what America is about. That is why comics, historically, have always been such a great reflection of the American people in that time in history. Comics are the Great American Mythology. They are the voice of the people - and tend to highlight why the USA is such a great place. </patriotic propaganda>
Aside from all that, some of the best writing these days happens in the comic book world. By writing, I mean storytelling. I've never been great at understanding literary criticism - what makes writing great? Is it proper sentence structure and perfect grammar? No one talks that way, so what is wrong with making writing a one sided conversation? If a book is popular, then it is doing something right, I would think. Then again, some of histories "great" novels are so boring to read that I can't stay awake for more than two paragraphs. However, I find, that the thing that good, popular reads and "great" historical novels have in common is the ability to tell an amazing story. You can picture the scene, understand the character motives, and know every detail without spending too much time reading pages of pure description.
Sorry for the tangent.
Back to the topic of comics and The Avengers - I am 61 days away from flying out of Texas to San Diego, CA for the San Diego Comic Con. I can't wait to be in one of my favorite cities with 125,000+ nerds, geeks, and dorks celebrating all that I love. From comics, to movies, to television, I love the variety of things celebrated at Comic Con. I'm shaking with anticipation!
I also plan on blogging as much of the trip as I absolutely can. Hopefully I will make the time to take notes and to write it up while I'm there. I want you all to see and know why I love this event so much!