Surrounded by Death and Drugs (Ep. 143 - Sina Grace & Iceman)

This Week's Guest: Sina Grace

sina promo image.jpg

My guest this week set out to answer a simple question: how do you live a content life? Sina Grace is the comic author and illustrator behind autobiographical books like Self-Obsessed, and Marvel's current Iceman series. A few years ago, he reached a point of disillusionment with the American dream, discovering getting all the money and possessions you wanted isn't as fulfilling as family, health, and love. Isolated and literally wasting away,  Sina set in motion some changes that would eventually bring him happiness in ways he never even knew he wanted.

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This Week's Recommendation: All-New X-Men Issue #40

Big thanks to Sina for joining me. You can pick up his issues of Iceman at comic shops and online, though whenever possible please do support your local comics retailer. For my recommendation this week, step back a few years to All-New X-Men Issue #40, when Iceman first came out.

I've seen a million coming-out stories, and it's rare to find a new angle -- but this one's really nicely handled. The story involves a bit of time travel and young Bobby talking to an older version of himself. No spoilers, but there's a confrontation and a dialogue between them that reads like an echo of the dialogue between generations -- younger gay men expressing themselves authentically in a way that older gay men simply couldn't.

For that conflict to exist within a single character is a particularly brilliant approach, and lends a very special depth to Bobby's relationship with himself -- both the himself that is him and the himself that is someone else. Ugh, time travel stories.

Anyway it's a really lovely approach, and very meaningful that Marvel was willing to permit this story for Iceman -- one of the original characters dating back to the 1960s. And I think it echoes something that Sina said in our conversation -- "the person you become can be just as valuable as the person you were."

Stuff We Talked About

Nothing Lasts Forever
By Sina Grace
Not My Bag GN
By Sina Grace