Comic books might feature characters who can shoot lasers from their eyes or crawl on walls but they are often used to reference real-world events, or at least, address certain political issues. No series has done this better than Uncanny X-Men, a long-running comic book series that opened the door for different races to be superheroes, whilst addressing racial problems.
This can sometimes result in controversy and Uncanny X-Men #5 was pretty controversial. X-Man, who has suddenly gained a lot of power, took Apocalypse’s advice and eliminated all “delusions of holiness” in the world.
As part of the build-up to Age of X-Man, the now deity-like character has made all of the major centers of worship disappear, including Saint Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican City, Rome, a center of Catholicism and the tombs of many Popes. The Kaaba, at the center of Islam’s most important mosque, Al-Masjid Al-Ḥarām, in the Hejazi city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. And the Padmanabhaswamy Temple in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India, of the Hindu faith.
The last one caused major controversy in India as members of a Hindu organization are now demanding Marvel to apologize for eliminating this sacred place. Rajan Zed had the following to say about this:
Hindus were for free artistic expression and speech as much as anybody else if not more. But faith was something sacred and attempts at trivializing it hurt the followers. Comics publishers should be more sensitive while handling faith related subjects; as these being a powerful medium; left lasting impact on the unsuspecting minds of highly impressionable children, teens and other young people.
While it’s somewhat understandable that they would be upset, they are missing the context of the story. X-Man is slowly becoming more bigoted and is using his power to eliminate, what he claims are false religions. X-Man is the bad guy here and is chastised by Kitty Pryde for these actions.
Uncanny X-Men #5 is available now.