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New Mural on Court Street

Local depictions of comic book heroes seem reminiscent of Renaissance art. – Liz Lane

A new mural of comic book superheroes has been painted on a wall directly across the street from campus at the comic book shop The Golden Age, 1942.

At the foreground, the mural features several superheroes from different comics, many of which are easily recognizable. The background is a landscape with fields, mountains and a big blue sky. All in all, there’s nothing out of the ordinary about it except for the fact that it is new.

Some people have stated their displeasure over the addition with the argument that it is disrespectful to the veteran’s memorial across the way or that it doesn’t belong and isn’t fitting for the area.

Rachel Resciniti, a senior at Maryville College, thinks otherwise.

“I think it adds some much needed color to the area and will help to attract customers to a local, small business,”she said. “A lot of people shop for comics and gaming merchandise online simply because they don’t know local options exist. The camaraderie of a comic shop is a big part of the fandom experience, so I love that they’re doing something that adds visually to the community and draws attention to themselves.”

As for the mural being disrespectful, she disagreed.

“The superheroes featured in the mural are all individuals, albeit fictional, who fought for freedom, justice and equality,” she said. “If promoting those ideals isn’t an homage to our veterans, I don’t know what is.”

I, for one, agree with her wholeheartedly on both points. The mural is lovely– it’s vibrant and colorful, and the intersection is all the brighter for having it. The wall that houses it used to be plain and grey. In a word, boring. That is certainly no longer the case.

From personal experience, I think the mural is a great way to attract attention to the shop. I’m not from Maryville myself, and before the mural went up, I had no clue there was even a comic book shop there. I have no doubt there are other people like me who didn’t have a clue about its existence before.

As far as the mural being disrespectful, I must also disagree. I just don’t see it. For one, the mural is across the way from the war memorial, not in any way blocking it. The heroes pictured are not depicted in any disrespectful way, neither on the wall nor in their comics.

Not to mention the characters depicted are often shown supporting America and her people and are almost always shown defending them. There’s also Rachel’s point– these heroes fight for the same things the veterans fought for.

It’s a lovely mural, bright and cheery. It adds a touch of color and creativity to the area that wasn’t there before and certainly does attract attention to the comic book store. All in all, it’s a harmless and pretty addition to Court Street, and I for one think it’s perfectly fitting.

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