In our last class for Electronic Rituals, I read Tarot for the very first time– and discovered that it’s an activity that I very much enjoy. Interpreting the cards and figuring out how it might be relevant to a friend’s life was challenging and interesting. My only problem with the reading was that I was so new to the practice: discerning the meaning of a card took a long time, as I had to crosscheck each card online to figure out the symbolism.
Thus my primary motivation with the assignment was to create a set of fortunetelling cards that I could intuitively read– a set of cards whose mythology I already knew. I’m also not religious and didn’t grow up with religion, so I didn’t seem to have very many options on that front. After giving it some more thought, though, I realized that there was a modern mythology that I knew very well: that of Marvel Comics. I’m a huge comic book geek, so if I picked up a “Deadpool” card to intuit the past, I’d instantly know what that meant. It’s also something fairly well known: most people have seen the Avengers, so it’s an easy way to collectively tell a story.
I created a set of cards primarily using the watercolour art of Kevin Wada, a watercolour covers artist who mostly works for Marvel and Image. I emailed him asking for permission, which is something he’d likely have replied to before he became a big-name cover artist. Consequentially, I don’t have his express permission, so I won’t include the PDF or high resolution versions of the cards– if you’d like a set, you’ll have to create your own. Or you can get a reading from me in person!
I then determined a spread for the cards, the concept of which is that each card will be placed according to which villain they will fight, and each villain corresponds to a reading.
- Red Skull : your past
- Ultron : your challenge
- Green Goblin : what is hidden
- Galactus : your environment
- Dr. Doom : your advice
- Apocalypse : a possible outcome
I also did readings for five people– two of those readings are included below.
Bryan’s reading was my first, and a bit rougher than the others– he had to help me out quite a bit. Bucky represents a fractured identity, two paths one can go on. Phoenix is rebirth, obviously. Psylocke represents spirituality and a challenge of cultural identity: she was born in a British body, but was put into a Japanese woman’s body. Nick Fury represents working against a bureaucratic environment. Namor advises that you lead with confidence, and that you should not be afraid to seem arrogant. Rogue means you will learn from your peers, absorbing knowledge from many different sources.
Marco’s reading was very different. His past is seen in the Punisher, which seems to mean there may have been a traumatic event– he should be careful that this doesn’t preoccupy him. His challenge is Falcon: he might be anxious that he is untalented, but he should be reassured that everyone else is as lost as him. His inner strength is what makes him special. Hidden forces is Ms. Marvel, who gains her strength not just from her powers, but also her family and friends. Thor is his environment: he should be wary of traditions, and not feel pressured to live up to others’ expectations. Nightcrawler is advice: do not be afraid to leave a situation you’re uncomfortable with, or say no to them. And finally, an outcome: with Captain America, justice can be attained.
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