Why don’t superheroes have daft sidekicks anymore?

Back in the day superheroes had daft sidekicks like this.

Or like this:

Or like this:

Those are the Martian Manhunter’s Zook, Captain Marvel’s Mr. Tawky Tawney, and Supergirl’s pet cat, Streaky. They were fun, stupid and silly. They reflected the fact readers were mainly young kids but they also realised that the concept of superheroes are essentially, daft, as if you can have a Superman why not then a Supercat?

It was fun, innocent times as the readership grew up and rather let this sillyness remain it was purged, so superheroes became dark, cats were no longer super-strong and sidekicks or groups like the Teen Titans became crammed full of murderers and psychopaths because of ‘darkness’.

The fact is when the main audience for superhero comics were late teens to 60 plus in age, the urge to read daft, simple things which are fun is lesser. Partly because of the urge to make a childish genre ‘dark and mature’ but mainly because these people don’t want to be seen as being kids and since the industry listens to these people more than they should we end up with grimness upon grimness. With one big exception, Squirrel Girl’s Tippy-Toe.

I miss the days where most superhero comics were silly, and I find the endless piss-coloured stream of grimdark superheroes tedious but I can dream of the days of flying cats and talking tigers thinking it to be better than grim, moody murderers.

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2 thoughts on “Why don’t superheroes have daft sidekicks anymore?

  1. To answer your question: God only knows.
    I couldn’t agree more re. the ” stream of grimdark superheroes ” and I know these daft sidekicks were silly, but I loved them. Supercat – Supergirl’s pet – reminds me of the classic supergroup, The Legion of Super Pets. What’s not to enjoy with that lot? It’s fun.
    It’s odd though that Mr. Talky Tawny was a light, comedy character used as a comedy relief in a light, funny series. Mind, Cap,also had the useless Uncle Marvel popping in and out.
    Trying to think of other silly sidekicks, I came up with some G. A. characters, in particular, Woozy Winks, who palled around with Plastic Man, and had his own stories in the back of the comic. And Brooklyn cabbie, Doiby Dickles, who hampered/assisted Green Lantern. Actually, didn’t GL have a dog sidekick as well? G.A. Flash had those 3 buffoons, who looked like Larry, Mo and Curly Joe a bit. Just looked it up as my memory failed me again. They were the 3 dimwits, Winky, Blinky and Noddy.
    Dredd had Walter the Wobot, who was used as comedy relief and to insert a bit of light into an otherwise quite dark series.
    Do Bat-Mite and Mr Mxyzptlk count?
    This is getting as silly as the sidekicks but it would be good to have other views on this, but perhaps we shouldn’t mention Chop-Chop. OOOps, I just have.

    Liked by 1 person

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