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Laura 'ad astra' Sack writes...

Kevin asked “Are the three martian races a nod to Edgar Rice Burroughs Barsoom Series or is it just a coincidence?” (and you responded “ <Ahem> No comment.” ;). I feel silly for not thinking of that myself- especially with M’gann’s habit of being green and growing extra arms. It bring a few questions to mind:

1- Do the Red Martians appear in the comic books or are they new to the show?
2- Are the Martian races different species or just literally different races as in the scientific term? When I first thought of the question I only saw the three groups in the comic book. Now we have a very different image of the white Martians. Ordinarily such great physical difference would imply different species, but M’gann said her shape- shifting works at the molecular level. I wonder what remains static to indicate their speciehood? It may mean that physical appearance is less important to the genetics of the races of Mars.

Greg responds...

1. Yes, and no.

2. I've said this before: the visual you saw in the comic was part of M'gann's description, i.e. part of her lie. White Martians, Green Martians and Red Martians all look more or less like M'gann's White Martian form. That's what ALL Martians look like. And, yes, that means that the image we have of Martian Manhunter is as false as our original image of Miss Martian. And, no, the Whites, Greens and Reds are NOT different species. They're different races of the same species. In fact, biologically they probably have more in common with each other than Caucasians, Asians and Africans have on our world. The real difference/divide between them is cultural, not biological.

Response recorded on August 16, 2012