“I began to wonder why heroes were powerful enough to resist death but largely incapable of seeing past systems of incarceration. Superman just keeps returning his villains to “Stryker’s Island Penitentiary” in the river of Metropolis (a not-so-subtle nod to Riker’s Island in New York’s East River). Batman seems resigned to the cat-and-mouse he plays with the Joker and so many others.

While crooked cops and corrupt systems aren’t foreign to these shows, the logic is that police are failing to live up to their role in society, not that their role is inherently harmful. This mirrors society, where even the most heinous of police executions lead people to bemoan individual “bad apples,” despite the wealth of evidence that structure and practice of policing itself is harmful”.

©Cat Sims, 2023
©Cat Sims 2019

Represented by IllustrationX

London, UK

©Cat Sims, 2022