comic book religion

People have almost certainly posted about this before, but one of the (many) things I love about the Gravity Falls Transcendence AU is how it shows the evolution of complex stories with multiple authors, in the same way as long-running comic book universes and even religions.  It started with a fairly simple premise (AU where Dipper becomes a demon), and evolved with people expanding on it and pointing out other aspects of the story (what happened to Bill after?  How did the world respond?  How did this happen in the first place?).  Expansion continues with exploration of logical consequences (okay, so Mabel grows up beating up cultists with her usually-invisible demon brother.  What about her personal life?  Henry and the triplets are introduced, and become crucial figures in the mythos.  Hank accidentally forms a mafia, and stories about their backstories begin to appear.  Henry becomes the Woodsman, and other authors expound on those details).  Theories become accepted as canon (there was some early stuff that mentioned a separate afterlife for demons, before reincarnation became an accepted part of the story) and became fodder for even more stories and theories (r!Bill usually has a twin.  Dipper tends to follow Mizars closely.  Henry’s soul will always have antlers).  More and more characters are introduced, often only tangentially related to the original story (Torako, Malala, Michael).  Stories appear that contradict each other (when was Maritza’s time?  She’s friends with Maddie, but Maddie is Toby’s little sister, and Henry’s soul was absent from the reincarnation cycle for quite a while after Paloma, in Ian’s time.  How long could it have possibly taken for Bill’s soul to reincarnate?) or tell the same story in different ways (how did Maddie find out that her dad is Alcor?  How exactly did the Transcendence happen?).  The AU has only existed for about a year, but it’s already so complicated, with very little central canon and no absolute authority (you can attribute most ocs to specific people, but that’s about it), and stories written by many different people with different priorities.  It’s an interesting study in how, say, the Bible came about, and if anyone who knows more about religious studies or whatever were to write a paper about it I’d be really interested to read it.

Tl; dr: The Transcendence AU is very cool on a meta level, as well as a textual one, and when I start talking about it I tend to ramble.

anonymous asked:

Sam -- there's been some discussion of Steve being (at least culturally) Irish Catholic -- I think the upshot was that he's has no Catholic background in comics canon -- is there even anything in comics canon confirming the idea that his parents immigrated from Ireland? (not that I care -- as far as I'm concerned he carries his mother's rosary in one of those little leather boxes on his belt :- _Thanks.

Irish yes (at least in part), Catholic no. Aside from the P on his dog tags in MCU, there’s no indication that I’m aware of that firmly sets Steve’s religion in the comics. As with most of the characters whose faith isn’t a cornerstone of their existence (like Matt’s Catholicism), Steve comes off as Vaguely Christian but there’s nothing much establishing that beyond his celebrating Christmas. Which, at least once he went with Bernie to her folks’ place for Hanukkah, so even that’s a bit iffy.

His Irish heritage is mentioned several times in classic comics I believe, but I couldn’t cite specific comics to you. Certainly it was firmly established in the most recent run by Remender, where there are tons of flashbacks to his childhood, but Remender’s an ass and also retconned certain elements of Steve’s upbringing as far as I know, so he’s not what one would call a defining storyteller in Steve’s canon. 

I believe more commonly his grandparents were immigrants rather than his parents but that’s not something to quote me on. Also important to note is that in at least one comic, a Captain America And Falcon comic, he mentions that he had an ancestor with the surname Rogers who fought in the Revolution, and that statement is independently confirmed by a supervillain whose ancestor was killed by Ancestor Rogers. So while he may have primarily Irish Immigrant heritage, if we’re going to take everything as canon he’s also a Son of the American Revolution.