"There is black and there is white, and there is wrong and there is right, and there is nothing, NOTHING in between."
— Alan Moore referring to Mr.A.
Born in 1967 of Steve Ditko
's fascination with Objectivism
, Mr. A
is a "superhero" without observable powers aside from his steel gloves and mask, similar to the first incarnations of The Question
. Alan Moore
disliked this character strongly
and portrayed this type of character in a rather twisted way
's Rorschach. In Street Fighter 3
, a character named Q also appears to be based on him.
Philosophical elements aside, Mr. A
marked Ditko's shift from working on contract for mainstream publishers like Marvel
to more creator-owned projects; Mr. A
was first published in the Underground Comics
and was later collected in self-published comics Ditko distributed himself.
Mr. A provides examples of the following tropes:
- Anti-Hero: While Mr. A is meant to be a completely good hero — in fact, by Ditko's Objectivist standards, he's meant to be far more moral than Thou Shalt Not Kill heroes like Superman or Batman — most readers would probably find his methods and extremely harsh stance on crime to fall squarely into Unscrupulous Hero.
- Author Tract: There are times when the action comes to a sudden stop in order for Mr. A to put on Wall of Text after Wall of Text regarding Black and White Morality.
- Badass Normal: As mentioned, he is absolutely a normal human, even without Training from Hell.
- Black and White Morality: The driving force behind the comic. Mr. A's entire outfit is portrayed as pure white because of this, and his "calling card" is half-black, half-white, and he constantly goes on filibusters about how there is no "gray area".
- Character Filibuster: Oh, bigtime.
- Heel Face Door Slam: Redemption is not in Mr.A's vocabulary. You commit a crime for any reason, and you are irredeemably evil in his eyes.
- One-Letter Name
- Save the Villain: Completely and utterly defied and averted.
- Secret Identity: One that's every bit as much a champion of objectivism, journalist Rex Graine.
- Where Does He Get All Those Wonderful Toys?: How a journalist could get all of the gadgets and an iron mask without getting any funny looks?