Popeye: Borned to the Sea #1 – AT4W

Popeye the Robot Puncher. Linkara checks out Popeye: Borned to the Sea #1.

If you’re having trouble watching this video on the Screenwave player, you can view it on youtube HERE!

About Linkara

Atop the Fourth Wall is a show about bad comic books. Linkara finds the surreal and the stupid and breaks them down page by page. You'll know why they're idiotic and how they can be improved.

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54 Comments on "Popeye: Borned to the Sea #1 – AT4W"

SpeedyEric
Guest
I remember growing up to most of the Popeye cartoons when I was little while also watching the Looney Tunes cartoons when they used to be on TNT and TBS; yeah, it‘s been 2 decades since I‘ve watched those cartoons, too. And before anyone asks, no, I have NOT seen the live action movie starring Robin Williams. 3:43- Anyone else thinking of Wheeler from US-1 also playing the narrator in THIS comic? 6:46- It would have been funny if Ugly Kidd grew up to change his name to Ugly Mann. 7:55- …Someone named a Navy vessel after Chester A. Bum?… Read more »
Warp
Guest
“Oriental” was not an offensive or “racist” word in the past. It has only become “racist” because people have deliberately made it so (and with this I don’t mean that people have started using it as a derogatory term, but that people have artificially started claiming that it’s an offensive term, even if basically nobody is using it in an offensive manner). Blaming people of the past for using a “racist” word when the whole concept of the word being “offensive” was invented later is quite unfair. It’s like 50 years from now society decides that “African-American” is a derogatory… Read more »
Dethhollow
Guest

I actually wouldn’t be surprised if “African American” was already on the way to being considered a future racist term since it holds a somewhat similar use that “Oriental” does, implying that just because someone is of color it automatically means they’re of immigrant status like how someone would use “Irish American” to describe an Irish immigrant or something even though “African American” isn’t intended to be offensive at all.

But, at the end of the day, there really isn’t anything wrong with these specific terms outside of what society seems to dictate should be wrong for whatever reason it chooses.

Falconfly
Guest

Didn’t take long for someone to resort to the slippery slope fallacy.

“But, at the end of the day, there really isn’t anything wrong with these specific terms outside of what society seems to dictate should be wrong for whatever reason it chooses.”

Or maybe you should actually think about what those terms means and their social context. The reasoning is also fallible at best: “it’s not my fault I’m a prick, it’s their fault for not allowing darkness to exist.”

RedDwarfIV
Guest

Slippery slope is only a fallacy if you can’t propose a mechanism for it happening. The mechanism is people deciding to promote the idea that a word is offensive in some way – for example, “negro” or “coloured person” which were once neutral or positive means of identifying skin colour but have since gained connotations for racism. We know it can happen, and we know how it happens.

Besides, he was making a falsifiable prediction – “I wouldn’t be surprised” – he wasn’t claiming that such a change is inevitable based on historical events.

Phoenix Soul
Guest
I believe Warp is right, as far as I have seen in my research “Oriental” was once not offensive, but merely was the western term for people living in and around the trading area known as “the Orient”. In fact, in the times of the printing of this comic, the people of the Asian continent – even those who did not live in or around the Orient – did not find the term offensive. For his time, Wimpy was being rather appreciative of their culture. (For that matter I so still want to ride the Orient Express, which upon my… Read more »
9ansean
Guest
Warp, I find your argument to be “forced and artificial.” How many people of Asian decent have you really talked to about this matter to decide what they should or shouldn’t find offensive? It seems rather presumptuous to suggest this or that calling out racist language is somehow the same things as accusing others of racist intentions. Oriental historically has meant things like rugs not people. Whether or not certain terms are always made with offensive intent is highly irrelevant and hardly anyone every artificial decides a word is offensive just because they want to. The implications of language have… Read more »
Carewolf
Guest

Well, I think someone has confused the fact that oriental is a pointless and imprecise word that you should never use those reasons, with it somehow being racist.

The problem with the word is that depending on context it can mean near-east, middle-east or far-east. Before 1900 it generally meant middle east, and before 1700 it meant near east.

DinkleBerg
Guest

People no longer can determine racist from insensitive anyway . Racist doesn’t mean anything any more . It used to be about hating someone because of the color of the skin now somehow a word can be racist , last time I checked words can’t hate anything.

9ansean
Guest
The reason people can’t have a rational conversation about race (and this isn’t a new problem) is because the can’t seem to grasp what race or racism even means. Racism doesn’t mean race hate nor was that the earliest meaning. There have been lots of people who hold racist view and have friends and acquaintances of a different race. This is a seriously too common misconception. Racism (which Merriam-Websters’ Colligate Dictionary traces back to 1933) means a belief that racial difference is the primary determiner of abilities and create by inheritance the superiority of one race over another. Racialism (traced… Read more »
Falconfly
Guest

Semantics. Language and the application of words evolves over time, not to mention that “racialism” was never in broad usage. even in academical works.

trlkly
Guest
This is just bullshit. The word has a long history of being used to mean “freaky foreigner.” It’s also a word created by the West to describe other people–you know, like Negro. When we found out that Asian Americans didn’t like the term, we changed it, because there was no need to offend people. You know nothing about the situation. Linkara described it accurately. It’s true that, at one point, someone might use “oriental” innocently, simply because it was the only term. But that doesn’t make the term not racist. I could even defend it in this comic due to… Read more »
theentertainer
Guest
Yes, it is indeed very easy to just point and call things “racist” without actually knowing anything about their origins. In particular, saying that it’s somehow deeply offensive to refer to Japanese people as “oriental” especially makes ignorance very obvious. And the worst part is that it’s ignorance that can be fixed with about thirty seconds of research. Now as you may already know, while “Japan” is a word that exists in English and other languages to refer to both the state and the archipelago, it is not the one that the people themselves use. That would be “Nippon” (with… Read more »
Marionette
Guest

I don’t know what it contributes to the discussion, but “oriental” is not considered racist in the UK, and is regularly used by the BBC to refer to the far east. “Asian” is used exclusively to refer to the Indian sub-continent.

Tl;dr – if you referred to a Chinese or Japanese person as “asian” in the UK, people would give you odd looks.

mbellardini
Guest

Heard another version of it. Asians consider oriental to be offensive because the don’t like the arrogant assumption by Europeans that Europe is the centre of the world. Anyway, it was a pretty awesome comic, not saying that just because I like Popeye.

RockmanX3
Guest

You know, Linkara, I never though of Popeye’s chin looking like a butt.

I love Popeye, even the silly Robin Williams movie. I have fond memories of watching the reruns of the 60’s version in the late 80’s and early 90’s. I gotta say this take on the origin story was quite refreshing (poopdeck, lol) even in all it’s silliness.

lightburied
Guest

All that without a Popeye’s chicken joke. Impressive.

Minion of Yahtzee
Guest

Especially since he’s the local chicken finger connoisseur.

dm3588
Guest

Lister: There was a cartoon character once called Popeye, said a really profound thing. He said, “I am what I am.”
Kryten: Are you sure? I always thought it was Descartes.
Lister: So did I, man! It’s so easy to get those two dudes mixed up.

SSJ3Michael
Guest

Hey, Linkara do you ever plane to review Marvel/DC crossover comics? I’m sure there are a few bad ones out there and enough of them were made to a point you could dedicate a month to it.

DantéSolablood
Guest

Excellent review Linkara, my only issue is that “puss” is slang for “face” & is pronounced like “puss-in-boots”.

Le Messor
Guest

Yes, I agree. The text quite clearly said ‘puss’ not ‘pus’. Two completely different words, not even spelled the same.
Because poor literacy is…
… probably pretty embarrassing.

angel85
Guest

I remember reading up on pop culture history back in middle school, which mentioned that Popeye might have been the first Superhero comic. Take that Superman.

cdrood
Guest

Popeye is one of those characters who gets introduced into a comic strip as a minor character and ends up taking it over and having it renamed for him. The original main character was Olive Oyl’s brother, who you wouldn’t even know existed from the cartoons.

It kind of looks like the comic, while cartoony, went a little more towards the appearance of Popeye from the Robin Williams film, rater than the comic strip and cartoons. For example, Popeye has a full head of hair rather than just a few strands on his head.

Joseph_Skiles
Guest
I am a huge Popeye fan and have been since childhood, so i was very excited to see this posted! In the old comic strip Popeye did about as much boxing as he did sailing and he was every bit as much a bad ass back in the day as he was in this comic. I found the comment you made about the dragon lady talking about eating the steaks in front of the cow very funny because of of an old Popeye strip which runs thus. Wimpy gets contacted by a lawyer saying his uncle died and leaves wimpy… Read more »
Joseph_Skiles
Guest

So by your logic is Latino also a racist term? not trying to be a troll just curious man.

Falconfly
Guest

Depends on how you look at it. “Latino” has however been first used by the nations of Central America and South America, so it’s their desired designation.

Salosandre
Guest

The whole spinach thing was the result of a massive less-than-legit marketing campaign which itself came from a maths mistake concerning the iron content in spinach. Short version of it is that spinach was once believed to be a significant source of iron, and was marketed as being extremely healthy as a result. The true health value of spinach was eventually realized but the marketing persisted despite being false advertising. It’s since developed into an ever-present nutrition myth, in part thanks to the popularity of Popeye.

TragicGuineaPig
Guest

Basically, it wasn’t the actual iron content of spinach, but the combination of iron and Vitamin C, the latter of which helps with the body’s absorption of the former.

shadowspider9
Guest

Fun fact: Popye is actually regarded as the very FIRST comic strip superhero. Or to be more accurate. The first comic strip character who had super powers and fought a reoccurring rival/villain.

basteagui
Guest

oriental wasn’t an insult at the time this comic was published. it means of the orient. and not of the occident.
in spanish, my native language there is no negative connotation. we are known as occidentals. and people east of europe are known as orientals.
i am an occidental.

basteagui
Guest

if someone of asian descent called me an occidental i would not be insulted because it is not an insult.
i AM an occidental. why is occidental not offensive but oriental is? the only possible excuse you would have for this is because the occident is superior to the orient and so the mere mention of this word is insulting because it’s belittling.
but this argument in itself is racist.
if the orient was the same as the occident there would be no such stigma, you see how american political correctness doesn’t even make sense?

Falconfly
Guest

That proves his point that it feeds european geocentrism.

Falconfly
Guest

He acknowledge the language differences when it comes to non-anglophone uses. In the end, though, as he said, the implications are nasty.

batlrar
Guest
I was wondering if Popeye saying he was 55 was a reference to the character being that old at the time. I looked it up, and the comic started way back in 1919, which is 68 years before the comic’s 1987 publishing date. The animated show started in 1933, though, which is 54 years before this comic. Maybe they were predicting a later release for the comic or maybe the went from the date that the agreement for the animated series was signed! And yeah, the racist stuff is present, but this takes place in some indeterminate place in the… Read more »
Minion of Yahtzee
Guest

Anybody else want to see a crossover between One Piece, Popeye and One Punch Man? Or is that just me?

happymel
Guest

Again, some people don’t know that Oriental is racist. I know that my aunt uses that term occasionally and she really doesn’t know that it’s racist. Anyways, this comic, from what I saw, was well done and ridiculously great.

RedDwarfIV
Guest

Out of interest, what makes you think “oriental” is a race?

Morgil
Guest

I hope that quick mention towards the beginning means that Linkara reads One Piece.

Nenilein
Guest

Fun fact, where I live “Oriental” primarily means Indian and Pakistan food and traditional dress-styles, has nothing to do with Japan or China and is definitely not considered racist, since most of the people labeling their restaurants or stores as “oriental” are Indian themselves.

MountCDOSgamer
Guest

To contribute to the discussion over whether the word “Oriental” is racist or not, I would have to agree with Linkara that it’s OK to use it to describe objects, but not people. I mean, think about it; using an adjective that would normally describe objects to describe people degrades those people as just objects.

TragicGuineaPig
Guest
Except that the term “Orient” originally referred to the place, and it is a very common convention of language to refer to people in reference to the place they happen to be from. Africans are from Africa, the French are from France, etc. So, if referring to them as “Orientals” is demeaning because it degrades them as just objects, then the same is true for any such terms as French, African, American, etc. Actually, the reason people from far eastern countries don’t like to be called “Oriental” is largely because the peoples from disparate countries do not consider themselves to… Read more »
The MegaNerd
Guest

Oooooh, this looks glorious!!!! I do like Popeye, despite them being a wee bit formulaic. Looks better then the CGI film that came out a little while ago.

Only no Olive; bizarre.

I love how anything and everything can happen in a Popeye story despite it’s basic set up; like TinTin.
If requested via Patreon, would you review TinTin?

RedDwarfIV
Guest

I have no reason to defend someone basing their views on intelligence around people’s height, nor do I have any data on the average height of Japanese people in the 1940s.

That said, this is a story about _sailors_ in the _1940s_. Casual racism should be expected of these characters if they’re going to be realistic. You can bowdlerise it for a young audience if you want, but things being “questionable” or “problematic” is no excuse for historical revisionism.

Le Messor
Guest

The artwork… I started to recognise Ben Dunn’s style about halfway through. Then I saw the Ninja High School poster and felt vindicated.
Thing is, I didn’t think I could tell one manga-style from another before now.

CaptainRoland
Guest

So much for politically correct.

CaptainRoland
Guest

Wow Popeye could have joined the Italian Fascist Party or hell the German National Socialist Party yeah I almost see it happening, if Popeye wasn’t White English American or an Uncle Sam patriot to a jingoistic fault he could have been a N A Z I, but given his insubordinate disobiediant nature and a penchant for a low-calorie and not-so-much vitamin filled leafy grassy vegetable, he’s no good anywhere, but they would use him to bully and beat up intellectuals and common educated folk for a while.

CaptainRoland
Guest

Who the hell wrote this? Josef Goebbals.

CaptainRoland
Guest

? Or Hermann Goering?

CaptainRoland
Guest

“You’re a Sap Mr. Jap, you make a Yankee Cranky” “You’re a Sap Mr. Jap Ho Delano’s gonna spanky” yeah 1942 cartoon.

CaptainRoland
Guest

Oh it’s Uncle Sam is gonna spanky, looked it up on Youtube.

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