Title: Ex Machina: Tag.
Author: Brian K. Vaughan.
Artists: Tony Harris.
Genre: Literature, fiction, graphic novels, politics, alternative reality, super heroes, fantasy, homosexuality.
Publication Date: 2005.
Summary: Retired super-hero and current New York City Mayor Mitchell Hundred makes the most controversial decision of his political career when he agrees to officiate a gay marriage of his deputy mayor's brother. As the mayor's administration deals with the fallout, a supernatural terror stalks the subways beneath Manhattan. What connection does this mysterious new threat have to Hundred's past as the heroic Great Machine?
My rating: 7.5/10.
♥ "Sir, do you feel like you're exploiting the tragedy of 9/11 to advance your own agenda?"
"Wow, fantastic question, Carlos. I haven't been asked that one in, oh... twenty minutes. Listen, my only agenda is keeping a promise I made to every brave woman and man who risked their lives at Ground Zero that day. Performing a wedding is literally the least I can do for them, and I intend to do just that for Todd Wylie and his partner, regardless of their sexual orientation."
"Mayor Hundred, this is for the Catholic Universal Dispatch. What do you say to religious groups who find the idea of homosexual marriage morally offensive?"
"The same thing I would say to you, Father, if you asked me not to grant a marriage license to one of your divorced parishioners. I'd say that I have profound respect for your beliefs, but that I took s sacred vow to uphold the laws of the state, not the teachings of your church."
"And what if New York amends its laws, to more explicitly forbid gay marriage?"
"Well, I'd have to speak with our Attorney General, but I suspect that would most likely violate constitutionally protected rights to privacy, equality and pursuit of happiness."
"And if the courts decide otherwise?"
"Then I think the state should immediately put an end to issuing marriage licenses... to anyone."
"Are.. Are you suggesting that marriage be abolished?"
"You're oh-for-two tonight, Carlos. Look, we're getting too hung up on the "m-word." Between the legal contract of marriage and the religious ceremony of the same name. So I propose that the government stop issuing so-called "marriage licenses," and instead start issuing civil union licenses to any consenting adults who want them, gay or straight. If that civil union then wants to get married, they're welcome to do so at whatever chapel, mosque or synagogue will have them. That way, conservatives can take heart that the government isn't officially condoning same-sex nuptials, and liberals can... I don't know, find something new to complain about."
"With all due respect, sir, you have to admit that this is more complicated than that. Our country is founded on a tradition of—"
"I'm sorry, but I'm so sick of that word. You know what else used to be a "tradition" in this country? Forcing left-handed children to write with their right hands. Forty years ago, teachers still screwed up kids' brains because they thought lefties were unnatural, or because the Bible said the left hand was "sinister." Just because something's been done one way for generations doesn't automatically mean—"
♥ I still dream about you. You know. Not about flying... That part always made me want to puke. No. I miss taking off. That cosmic tug I'd get all the way down to my balls. Like the rude up the parachute drop back in Coney Island. But you know what? I moved on. I grew up. "When I became a man, I put away childish things." There's a goddamn Bible quote for you. See. The first rule of being a good engineer is that it's not about the stuff you build. It's about the people who use it. That's why I had to get rid of you. So I could go back to helping human beings. And I did. I fucking surrounded myself with them. So why am I all alone?"
♥ "Lilith, what the fuck happened tonight?"
"I was always a JFK conspiracy nut, and I joined the bureau partly because I figured that if I advanced far enough, I might eventually learn the truth. Eleven years later, I finally did... and the truth is that no one anywhere knows a fucking thing about anything. You can spend the rest of your days in office trying to answer the unanswerable, but it's not gonna fill any potholes."
"My God. In less than forty-eight hours, I'm marrying two men on this exact spot... and most people will think that's the strangest thing going on in this country."
"Ignorance is bliss, huh?"