Picture yourself just getting comfortable on a long haul flight and settling down with a favorite graphic novel. Then halfway over the Pacific, and halfway through a volume of Saga, you have to slam it shut very quickly while hastily looking over your shoulder because you see something so racy you wouldn’t be able to look your grandmother in the eye. It’s important to know what not to read or watch on a plane.
Even a comic usually considered family friendly has the potential for unexpected scenes that onlookers do not particularly want to see, like Ant-Man and the Wasp when they use their powers for something aside from saving the world. Even the scene that takes place in Catwoman with Batman is something that you don’t always expect reading and can find a little embarrassing if someone catches you! You have erotic literature which you can get away with in some places, the small font makes it harder, but in a plane the person next to you has more than enough time to see exactly how long you spend on page 178 of 50 Shades of Grey.
While there may be some great writing in fanfiction, it is usually something you want to keep to yourself. It is too difficult to explain why you are reading something that might not be sexual but does involve a crossover with Harry Potter and Australian politicians.
The same sort of thing applies to what you watch. No matter how grown up you are there will always be something you watch and are glad that your parents are not there watching it with you. The same applies with strangers on a plane.
Some might fast forward through certain parts of Deadpool just to avoid someone else catching a glance, and it’s not the violence that causes onlookers to do a double-take. Same goes for Jessica Jones when she makes her acquaintance with Luke Cage, or many scenes in Game of Thrones. Sometimes it might be extreme violence that makes the person in the seat next to you a little uncomfortable. Take for instance the eyeball scene in Game of Thrones, that had most people squirming so people not expecting to catch sight of that would be in for a nasty shock.
There were some pretty gruesome scenes in Dexter, Hannibal and Spartacus too, particularly with dismemberment. There’s also something about doing whatever it takes to stay alive that invokes some sort of violence as we see in Game of Thrones.
Netflix’s Daredevil is particularly dark and violent. The character Daredevil and many of his criminal competitors are known to be very violent from the comics. This is most notably shown when Wilson Fisk fatally and brutally beats one of his former employers.
As for movies, Rambo, Silence of the Lambs, Passion of the Christ, Battle Royale, I Spit on Your Grave and Kill Bill, just to name a few all have some pretty graphic and bloody violence that’ll make the person sitting beside you shuffle as far to the other side of their seat as they can.
Violence doesn’t translate as well in print, however when comic book art is involved it can paint a pretty striking picture. There are characters known for their violence like Punisher, Joker, Lobo, Wolverine, Judge Dredd and Bullseye, who are usually responsible for the most violent scenes in their comics. We see this in Old Man Logan when Wolverine pretty much just kills everyone. Then you have violent comics altogether like The Walking Dead, Ferals, Severed and Preacher, and you see all sorts of stuff. One that stands out is when Glen meets Lucille in The Walking Dead, or when the prison gets attacked or like every second page.
While it would be great if you could read or watch whatever you want on a plane, a good guide is if you wouldn’t share it with your grandmother then perhaps the confines of a plane is not the place to be entertained by that particular piece of material.