Miguel Angel Martin (León, 62 years old) started in 1987 The Leon Chronicle, where he put his brushes to the service of informing events, but it wasn’t long before he invented his own crimes in the black series Keibol Black (1987), originally published in the same journal. He later became a reference author for mythical magazines such as Area 84, Makoki either the viper, for which he created some such popular series as Brian the brain (1990-1993), the story of a gifted child with a brain outside his skull, in which he develops with humor and sensitivity the difficulties of being different, a subject that drives him crazy. Provocative, extreme and always ironic, Martín faced Italian censorship in 1995 when the Cremona public prosecutor ordered the kidnapping of for an alleged apology for violence Psychopathy sexualisa compilation of the wildest stories published in the magazine Totem. The decision was appealed and ultimately fizzled out, but the episode has thrilled 27 years later my way (Kingdom of Cordelia), a revenge for the author cooking at a very low temperature. It seems incredible that someone with this aspect of a good person that Martín passes off could have such a perverted mind. “Ted Bundy [asesino en serie estadounidense] He was a bit like that too and massacred almost 30 aunts. Don’t trust, do you?” he jokes.
Questions: my way is the title of his new comic, but it could also be a reference to his entire career.
Answer: Yes, it was a conscious decision. In fact, it’s a bit self-referential and self-parodic because I make a joke of my comic being hijacked in Italy. That’s where the whole story comes from.
P How did you experience this clash with Italian censorship?
R It was an amazing experience, although like my editor Jorge Baca, I freaked out at first because we never thought anyone would take a comic so seriously Psychopathy sexualis. The surprising thing is that while prosecutors saw the comic as an apology for violence, many readers interpreted it as denouncing that violence. Although for me it was just humor. We’ll never believe it. It must also be said that the comic would have been banned in the worst case and the publisher would have been fined at most. Nobody would have ended up in prison.
P Did that influence you a lot?
R In any case, it shaped me forever. In fact, my editor was indicted, not me. In all the interviews, especially in Italy, I thank the Cremona Public Prosecutor’s Office for hijacking the comic, because it made me a well-known cult author. I toured all over Italy, giving lectures on censorship and doing exhibitions, mostly in social centers. We had a lot of support and I have great memories of the affection shown by the professionals at the time. In my case, the censorship was a very positive consequence, but unfortunately this is not always the case.
P And almost 30 years later he decides that the time for revenge has come, with in my way in which he tells of an absolute revenge, against everyone and against everything.
R Against everything, but obviously with humor. In fact, they asked me if I’m the main character and I’m not, even though it’s inspired by my event. What’s fundamental to me is a sense of humor, not taking anything seriously, not even myself. I think this comic is the ultimate proof that I don’t take myself seriously.
P In one of the comic’s scenes, the May 24 massacre in Uvalde, Texas, is somewhat anticipated. How did your body feel when you saw the news?
R Well, in the United States, school massacres are already commonplace. But the comic is different because mine is a social revenge. I didn’t have those teenage massacres as a reference, but another psychopath role, something closer to Unabomber for example. It’s just a coincidence.
P A constant in his work is the defense of the individual against society, which usually turns out to be fatal.
R Yes, well, it’s overdone in my books, but it’s part of human nature. The group is brutal by nature. His motto is: nail that gets noticed, hammer blow that lasts. But it occurs not only in humans, but also in wildlife, for example in gorilla communities.
P Since you started with comics, society has moved towards political correctness. Does that concern you?
R At the time of writing my stuff, it’s obvious that no. I’m insensitive to all that stuff. Self-censorship is something I don’t even consider.
P Aren’t you afraid that someone will draw the wrong political conclusions?
R The political discourse can be anything, but I don’t care too much about that. Those who believe that everything in life is politics may be right, but I don’t think so. In any case, politics is power and for many that means bossing the lives of others around, but for me power doesn’t mean being bossed around.
P You say there’s a lot of humor in your work, but do you know that sometimes it’s a bit awkward?
R This is very interesting. The first time they told me was at Comicon in Naples. A boy came up with everything I had published at the time and said to me: “Thank you for making me think without telling me how to do it.” I’m freaking out. I never thought my comics would make people think. I realized it thanks to that comment and then because of the things readers tell me. I think it’s quite a compliment because I’m terrified of preaching sermons and even more afraid of them giving them to me. I start from the bottom, and my experience tells me that readers are intelligent, at least the ones I have. You don’t have to tell them what to do or think. Which I’m glad about.
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