Superhero comics have often been used to reflect the troubles of our times from corruption and greed, to environmental issues and civil rights. This time around, DC Comics decided to focus on the big alien debate — the status of undocumented immigrants in the US.
In Action Comics 987, which hit stores on 13 September, Superman is seen protecting a group of immigrants from a white supremacist who is attempting to shoot them down. When asked why he wanted to kill the defenceless people, the gun-toting white man, sporting an American flag bandana, explains that he blames them for the loss of his job.
"They stole from me! Ruined me," he exclaims.
"The only person responsible for the blackness smothering your soul — is you!" Superman replies before telling the police to see that the immigrants are "safe and cared for".
The new issue comes on the heels of President Donald Trump's recent plans to end DACA: the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy, which President Obama established in 2012. Repealing the immigration policy could lead to the deportation of people who entered the US illegally as minors. Under Obama's DACA, these individuals (known as Dreamers) were eligible for certain permits that allowed them to stay and work in the country.
While many were impressed by DC and Superman's stand against white supremacists others saw it as a clear sign that Kal-El was not keen on the "American way". Breitbart pointed out that in a 2011 issue, the Man of Steel had stated that he could not only work with America and was a citizen of the world.
Fox News radio host Todd Starnes also did not take kindly to the new storyline and pointed out that Superman himself was an illegal alien. "Don't be surprised to see the Flash rushing Mexicans across the border or Wonder Woman using her lasso to round up Texas ranchers trying to defend their property," he wrote in his opinion piece.
"It's unfortunate that DC Comics is turning its stable of iconic heroes into political pawns — hell-bent on indoctrinating our kids."
Action Comics #987 is by Dan Jurgens, Viktor Bogdanovic, Jonathan Glapion, Jay Leisten and Mike Spicer.