Donald Trump is so emphatically extreme, he wouldn't look out of place as a pantomime villain. So it was only a matter of time before the walking caricature of intolerance and hatred was captured in ink, with Marvel Comics using him as the basis of MODAAK, an intergalactic bad guy residing on the Mexican border.
MODAAK — an acronym for "Mental Organism Designed as America’s King" — battles Earth-65's Captain America, Samantha Wilson, while blubbering incoherent rhetoric about America and obsessing over his hands. Fortunately, Trump — sorry, MODAAK — is eventually defeated, and all is well in the alternate universe.
But Trump isn't the first politician to become engrained in comic book history. Let's take a look at some more below:
1. Justin Trudeau
The Canadian Prime Minister is set to feature in Marvel's Civil War II: Choosing Sides — which is released on 31 August — and is depicted on the cover inside a boxing ring, wearing a vest embossed with the Canadian flag.
The story centers around the team of Canadian superheroes, Alpha Flight. Ulysses, a superhero who can see premonitions of crimes being committed, causes a dispute in the group. Some claim that crimes should be prevented before they happen, others believe someone who hasn't committed a crime shouldn't be punished. In steps Trudeau, who attempts to mediate. Writer Chip Zadarsky was keen to avoid a cliched appearance. In an interview with CBC, he said:
“I didn’t want this to just be like a walk-on rescued by superheroes and he thanks them and that’s the end of the story. I think a lot of these real-life appearances in comics tend to go that way. I liked the idea of him actually engaging them in an ethical debate. It’s a little tricky just because once you start to put words in the prime minister’s mouth, we acknowledge that this is basically Trudeau fan fiction.”
2. Pierre Trudeau
There's even an interesting, added layer of depth to Justin Trudeau's inclusion. Way back in 1979, his father and then Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau appeared in the Uncanny X-Men series.
None other than Alpha Fight made their debut at the same time, and featured in a storyline where Pierre Trudeau ordered the superhero team to go after the X-Men. Prior to that, the individual members had worked as Special Agents for the Canadian government. A coincidence? I think not.
3. Barack Obama
Can the American President feature in comic books? Yes he CAN! After Marvel discovered Obama's love of comics, and Spider-Man in particular, they decided to feature him on the cover of The Amazing Spider-Man No. 583, where he featured in the story "Spidey meets the President."
He has also featured in a whole host of comics, including Secret Invasion #8 and Captain America #41.
4. Hillary Clinton
The Bluewater comic series, "Female Force," focused on prominent and powerful females in the realm of politics, entertainment, popular culture and more. Clinton was on the topic of a biographical adaptation, called Hillary Clinton: Road to the White House.
The story focuses on Clinton's political career, pulling no punches as it delves into some areas of controversy, including the Bengazi hearings and her campaign strategy.
5. Bernie Sanders
Bernie Sanders, too, found himself immortalized in comic book pages when he featured in another Bluewater series, this one titled "Political Power" and written and illustrated by Paradise.
Unlike Clinton, Sanders does appear to come across as something of a hero; his parents struggle to pay health costs due to his mother's ill health, as well as his decision to run for political office in the '70s are captured across the pages.
PS: as well as inspiring comic book villains, can you remember this appearance from Trump in 'Little Rascals'?!