Spider-Man may have met Barack Obama, but Zephyr saved Hillary Clinton. When Zephyr (Faith Herbert) flew on up to Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, she kept a crashing helicopter from flying into the stage, saving the presidential candidate’s life. Valiant’s woefully controversial comic series, Faith, teased at a digital exclusive in its fifth issue awhile back where the titular character would be meeting Clinton. As expected, the comic world reacted.
Faith Herbert is the shameless superheroine that we don’t deserve, and yet Valiant has graced us with her. Faith #5, which became available for purchase November 2, has an exclusive sitting right in the middle of its 48 pages where the otherwise mild-mannered Faith dons her superhero alter-ego, Zephyr, to cover a Clinton rally for her day job. Her boss knows about her superhero identity, and now uses it to the publication’s advantage when Faith isn’t writing listicles about squeal-worthy internet cats.
In the short, titled “Faith in Politics,” she ends up saving the day when a baddie shows up and blows a helicopter out of the sky, straight into the stadium. Faith ends up having a pretty innocuous conversation with Clinton after saving a secret service member — about trying your hardest and not giving up when you make a mistake or fail. The whole story is overlaid with a monologue about the importance of standing up for what you believe in and being passionate about democracy, voting, etc.
There’s no blatant endorsement of Clinton or the Democratic Party, and the story is, overall, a heartwarming one. The short does cast Clinton in a mostly positive light, though, showing her caring about her security team and being nice to Zephyr. And the cover (above) shows Clinton posing in a heroic manner. That’s stirring up some trouble.
Louise Simonson, one of the issue’s writers, told Vox: “I mean, I don’t think most people are going to get their impression of who a candidate is from reading an 8-page or 10-page comic book story. We simply say vote. Voting is important.”
But some comic retailers haven’t seen it that way. Some, such as Phil Boyle of Coliseum of Comics in Florida, see putting the issue on their shelves as an endorsement for Clinton and as an opening for contention in their stores. So, they’re refusing to sell it.
No matter your political leanings (or who you’re voting for in six days), hopefully we can all just agree that Zephyr is a fantastic superhero: a plus-sized woman with a realistic personality and a heart of gold. We’re fans of her, and, apparently, so is Clinton.
Faith #5 is now available in (some) stores and online.