"Uncle Sam, Part Two": As Sam continues to ruminate over America's broken promises - particularly the prison-industrial complex, a macrocosm of his current situation - he is brought before the precinct captain, with whom he refuses to cooperate. At the fir
- If America sometimes fouled up along the way - and it did - that was the fault of the dreamers. It wasn't the fault of the dream.
- -- Columbia
Appearing in "Uncle Sam, Part Two"
- Columbia ("Bea")
- Russian Bear
- "Uncle Sam"
- All-American Antiques
- "The City"
- Washington, D.C.
- Declaration of Independence
- The Ship of State
Synopsis for "Uncle Sam, Part Two"
As Sam continues to ruminate over America's broken promises - particularly the prison-industrial complex, a macrocosm of his current situation - he is brought before the precinct captain, with whom he refuses to cooperate. At the first opportunity, Sam escapes the police, unaware that his bail has already been paid by the woman he recalls as his wife, Bea.
The exhausted Sam eventually collapses in an alley, where an armored Englishwoman soon joins him. Grimly, they discuss both America's and Britain's histories with imperialism - another source of shame to Sam, who soon finds his mental anguish turned to physical pain. As he struggles to keep himself conscious, he suddenly recalls America's first and cruelest broken promise: the quashing of Shays' Rebellion, proof that even America's founders would dismiss liberty for security.
As memories of the Rebellion (and all its descendants, from the Haymarket Riot to the Kent State shootings) threaten to swallow Sam, he finds himself facing the curio shop once more. Rushing inside, he finds it mostly empty - save for a miniature Statue of Liberty and a panorama of the World's Columbian Exposition. With the statuette in hand, he steps into the panorama, recognizing it as a future America once imagined with unbridled optimism. At its center sits Bea, now revealed to be Columbia, the personification of America.
More confused than ever, Sam is told by Columbia that after World War I, a disenchanted American populace became determined to ignore its faults, and thus built a "new" Uncle Sam embodying hedonism and greed. This ersatz Sam ran the nation for decades through the likes of Sen. Cannon, while he, the "real" Sam, wallowed in self-pitying inaction. When Sam once more recalls Shays' Rebellion, Columbia reminds him how Americans then had learned from their mistake, and rose from it a stronger Union - an act modern America has long strayed from.
As Sam slowly regains his drive, he finds himself deposited in Washington D.C., the "heart" of the modern America. There, he is met by the Englishwoman, a sapient bear, and a woman named Marianne, who explain "Uncle Sam" personifies not America the nation, but America the dream of liberty for all. Russia and France had once launched similar dreams, only to see them corrupted beyond recognition; if Sam is to preserve his, he must defeat the usurper who now claims to be him.
His mission clear at last, Sam rises above all America, confronting his doppelganger as an equal. The ersatz Sam at first dismisses him, as before, but grows violently enraged when Sam refuses to surrender to self-pity. Instead, Sam swears to honestly face America's problems instead of distracting from them - a concept that his unworthy successor, incapable of even considering, is reduced to dust by.
Once the dust clears, Sam begins wandering the streets of America once more, his soul - for the time being - restored at last.
- The Haymarket Riot is mislabeled as taking place in 1893, rather than 1886. This was supposedly fixed in later printings.
- While "The City" remains deliberately nameless, Sam can be seen standing next to a window labeled Chicago Comics on the last page. This is a real business in Chicago, whose proprietors later confirmed that Ross (an occasional customer) had used their shop as a drawing reference.
- No trivia.
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