Joe Quesada plays Marvel ‘Memento’ games with Comicsgate’s creation

Douglas Ernst Joe Quesada 2015

Something happened in the wee hours of the morning on Sunday, Sept. 9, 2018: Marvel’s Chief Creative Officer debated the existence of Comicsgate with the networks’s supposedly insignificant members. There was, however, some big problems with his performance: Mr. Quesada wanted to pretend as if he had anterograde amnesia straight out of Christopher Nolan’s Memento.

In short, the Marvel executive wanted to act as if your friendly neighborhood blogger wasn’t trying to warn him for years that the industry’s bad business practices would produce something akin to Comicsgate.

Joe Quesada tweets

Marvel’s personal boogeyman (i.e., Diversity & Comics), is supposedly the root of all that ails the industry. Spontaneous Comicsgate Combustion happened in late 2017 and a fire of bad behavior soured the relationship between creators and readers, if Marvel’s top brass is to be believed.

Wrong.

Memento GP

The fact of the matter is that Mr. Quesada and his peers had countless opportunities to right the ship. Myself and others (e.g., Dave Huber when he was writing at Colossus of Rhodey) gave Marvel a series of simple steps to avoid a large-scale consumer revolt.

We were ignored.

Regular readers know that I made the leap to YouTube with the assumption that I needed a bigger megaphone if I was ever going to help spearhead said consumer revolt.

What started on blogs eventually transformed into Comicsgate when myself, Capn Cummings, Diversity & Comics and a core group of others united behind the idea that we could create a parallel industry to “SJW Marvel Inc.”

The response by left-wing ideologues was to double down on unprofessional and immature antics — like Max “feast upon my a**” Bemis putting the “Uncle Ernst” villain into Moon Knight.

Moon Knight Ernst

Question: Did Mr. Quesada, who stayed up until about 5 a.m. EDT. talking about Comicsgate, dare to answer questions about Mr. Bemis’ lack of professionalism?

Answer: Not a chance. He stayed far, far away from me because he knows the facts are on my side and I would make him look like a buffoon.

Max Bemis Feast Upon My A

The good news about the industry’s decision to dig in its heels into a quicksand  pit of stupidity is that readers finally have other options. Indiegogo campaigns like Jawbreakers: Lost Souls have been wildly successful. The products will soon ship, and when that happens the paradigm will have officially shifted.

There is no turning back, and for that we can oddly enough thank guys like Mr. Quesada, Dan Slott, Mark Waid, Erik Larsen, Tom Brevoort, Alanna Smith, Max Bemis and a whole host of ideologues.

MB Sun2

If you want to learn more about Mr. Quesada’s faux short-term memory problems, then be sure to check out my latest YouTube video. As always, make sure to hit the like and subscribe button if the format is to your liking.

Iron Man #593: Bendis dragged kicking and screaming to honor Tony Stark’s “Legacy”

Iron Man 593

It’s here — Marvel’s attempt to tackle the “Legacy” of Tony Stark, aka The Invincible Iron Man. There’s only one problem, my friends: Writer Brian Michael Michael Bendis really wanted to keep the main character dead (for all intents and purposes) for a long, long time. Those pesky fans got in Editor in Chief Axel Alonso’s way, and now everyone who wanted to crown Riri Williams “the” Iron Man must to pretend as if they’re not backtracking against their will.

My latest YouTube video covers The Search for Tony Stark: Part 1, although what’s really going on is a search for ways to placate Disney overlords while still undermining Tony Stark’s long-term credibility.

Give my latest “quick-take” on the situation a listen and then let me know what you think in the comments section below. And, as always, if the video format resonates with you then make sure to like and subscribe. I don’t always cross-post these days (I need an intern!), but I try to do so as time permits.

Heather Antos: Marvel’s manufactured milkshake drama for fragile tea cups

Those who follow the comic book industry witnessed a Marvel-wide “milkshake” meltdown over the weekend, which is emblematic of everything that is wrong with the company. The whole story is incredibly bizarre, but it boils down to this:

Gwenpool editor Heather Antos saw three tweets that she didn’t like over the weekend and decided that random insults are the equivalent of harassment.

Despite the fact that a random insult is not the same as harassment or a human rights violation, the industry’s writers and artists acted as if she had barely dodged an acid attack by Taliban thugs in Afghanistan. Marvel Editor Tom Brevoort put on his daddy pants to let her know that everything would all be okay; he then told her that tens-of-thousands of fans who are tired of partisan politics at the company are “racist turds.”

There is more to the story, but for that I suggest checking out my latest YouTube video. Also, I would like to thank Mr. Brevoort for his overreaction, which netted me scores of new YouTube subscribers and Twitter followers.

Fun fact: Guys like me are not “racist turds.” Every time you criticize us, people check out our work and realize, “Hey, this seems like a pretty nice dude. I want to hear more of what he has to say.”

My suggestion for Marvel Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso would be to concentrate on good stories instead of partisan hackery, but at this point I don’t see him listening to reason. Given that, I will continue to make videos as the House That Axel Alonso built implodes.

Editor’s Note: Twitter user GoodEggJoe sent me this image today, which I told him was pretty darn good and worthy of being included on a blog post. His work shows that there are numerous ways to put pressure on the comic industry’s activist-writers. One doesn’t need a blog or a YouTube channel to have their voice be heard.

GoodEggJoe

Iceman #1: Purifiers show Marvel’s double-standard, cowardice

Marvel Comics is known for having a “world outside your window” approach to its storytelling, and for decades the company did it well. These days, however, editor Axel Alonso appears to have issued a fiat that creates the politically correct world outside your window.”

Iceman #1  — along with its Christian villains known as “Purifiers” — demonstrates the state of affairs quite nicely.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Would Marvel Comics ever have an anti-mutant group called “The Sons of Jihad” that hunts down metaphorical minorities?
  • Would Marvel Comics ever have an anti-mutant group  called “The Sword of Allah” with costumes featuring a star and crescent moon?

Magic 8 Ball says, “Not likely.” But yet, for some peculiar reason, the “Purifiers” and their Christian crosses are on full display. Meanwhile, the defining national security threat of the last 20 years has had nothing to do with Catholic guys like me.

If you want to hear more about the double-standards and hypocrisy of Marvel, then check out my new YouTube video below. And, as always, feel free to sound off in the comments section.

Editors Note: Make sure to stay tuned after the “outro” music for my “letters to the editor”-type idea for future broadcasts.

Secret Empire #3: Nick Spencer event is really his ‘Secret Lecture’

Marvel’s Secret Empire #3 came out this week, although at this point it really should be called Secret Lecture. As I have said before, writer Nick Spencer is an intelligent man who knows a thing or two about the technical aspects of storytelling. The problem, however, is that he uses his gig at Marvel as a psychiatrist’s couch and a college professor’s podium. He seems to care less about entertaining readers than he does about working out his own political issues and lecturing America for electing President Donald Trump.

There’s much more to say, but for that I invite you to check out my latest YouTube review. If the format is up your alley, then make sure to subscribe and leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Secret Empire #1: Hydra-Verse and Marvel PR damage control in full swing

Marvel’s comics division has been taking it on the chin in terms of bad press for well over a year now, and the official kickoff to its latest event is no exception. This week saw the release of Secret Empire #1 and a tie-in issue for Free Comic Book Day, which theoretically should bring elicit smiles across the country. Wrong. In fact, the project is so controversial that Marvel had to put out a statement earlier this week asking fans to be patient (even though the story has been building for well over a year).

My latest Youtube review covers the good, the bad and the ugly of writer Nick Spencer’s reality-warping Hydra-Cap tale. And yes, on some level it is good — but the whole situation is a bit complicated.

Anyway, check out the review and let me know what you think in the comments section below. Also: If anyone knows YouTube’s exact rules for using music clips without getting copyright infringement strikes, then let me know — I don’t want to make a habit of joke-singing songs like “Patience” by Guns N’ Roses…

X-Men Gold #1: The house that Axel Alonso built gives Marvel Ardian Syaf controversy

It seems like not a week goes by without Marvel Comics having some sort of PR nightmare, whether it’s smaller things like Gabby Rivera’s America making a gang of “privileged” white cyborgs the enemy, or what we saw this weekend with X-Men Gold #1 — artist Ardian Syaf’s decision to put anti-Christian and anti-Semitic messaging into his work.

Yes, that’s right, of all the books to go down bigotry path, it had to be the book that is supposed to be the “gold” standard of tolerance and acceptance.

There is much more to say about this issue, so for all the details on The House the Axel Alonso Built and its slow-motion implosion, I invite you to check out my latest YouTube video. As always, make sure to subscribe if the format is up your alley, and please share your thoughts in the comments section below.

Marvel’s zero-sum politics needlessly damage the comics industry

The partisan politics of modern Marvel Comics creators is a mainstay of this blog, but for the most part it is usually discussed within the context of whatever “red state vs. blue state” argument makes headlines each week. Today, however, I’d like to dig a little deeper into the zero-sum politics of these writers and artists. In short, they act as if any positive development for “Character A” means that “Character B” is negatively affected.

For instance, Tony Stark’s existence as Iron Man was problematic for writer Brian Michael Bendis’ to introduce Ironheart — Riri Williams. Normal people have no problem with a young girl named Riri flying around the Marvel Universe while Mr. Stark does his thing. That is not the case for Marvel writers these days. In the mind of the modern Marvel creator, Mr. Stark needed to be hurt or sidelined or have his reputation sullied in some way so that a minority female character could succeed.

This line of thinking has poisoned Marvel’s decision-making from the top down in recent years, and as long as it continues the industry as a whole will needlessly suffer. For more details on this, be sure to check out my latest YouTube video on the subject. Then, if you like what you’ve seen, be sure subscribe for regular updates.

As always, make sure to let me know what you think in the comments section below.

‘Totally Awesome Hulk’ totally makes sense; Axel Alonso should shut up so he doesn’t ruin it

Amadeus ChoMarvel announced Friday that the world was going to get a new Hulk: Amadeus Cho. The move follows a whole host of odd decisions by the company — diversity for the sake of diversity’s sake — but this one actually makes sense. The only problem is that the guy who should be able to properly promote the story, Marvel editor-in-chief Axel Alonso, can’t help but stick his politically correct foot in his mouth.

Consider the difference in language between writer Greg Pak and editor Mr. Alonso in their Entertainment Weekly interview. First we have Mr. Pak, who serves as a fine ambassador for his upcoming project:

PAK: I actually co-created Amadeus back in the day, 10 years ago — it’s coming out around the 10th anniversary of the character’s first appearance. And Takeshi Miyazawa was the artist and I was the writer, and we introduced this Korean-American kid into the Marvel Universe. It’s been a blast to write ever since. We did a lot of stuff with him over the years in the Hulk universe. This is also a character, by the way, who has a long history with Banner and the Hulk. He basically started out as Hulk’s number one fan because he’s a crazy teenager with as little impulse control as the Hulk, so he kind of identified with him. But the character always meant a huge amount to me. When I had the opportunity to create this new character, I realized there aren’t specifically that many Asian-American characters at this time in the Marvel Universe, and it was sort of a niche. I also wanted to write a character who talks a lot. I was writing a lot of Hulk stuff, I was writing very closed-lip surly characters. But it’s been tremendous. I go to cons and people come up to me dressed as Amadeus Cho, and that blows my mind. And then the character’s also been picked up in some of the cartoons that Marvel puts out, and in one of the DVD movies they did. It’s kind of tremendous when anything you work on kind of resonates with people and goes on to be used by other creators as well.

The other thing is that this felt like a natural next step for both the Amadeus and the Hulk stories. It wasn’t what we imagined 10 years ago when we created the character, that this is exactly where he would end up. But just given the character’s history, it makes total sense. And the story is totally true for both the Hulk story and the Amadeus story, so it’s a lot of fun when those kinds of things can naturally come together for something this big.

Indeed, it does make total sense. At least it did until Axel Alonso weirdly had to emphasize that the character isn’t simply a Hulk, but the Hulk.

Readers can’t simply enjoy a story that makes sense — they must be beaten over the head with a message that Tumblr kids with low self-esteem want to hear. Marvel does not inch closer to Diversity Utopia unless the language used to discuss the new Hulk arbitrarily elevates him to a status at or above the classic white character.

Alonso: I also want to say that he will be the only Hulk in the Marvel Universe. He will be the Hulk, the green Hulk, that will be him. Just like there’s one Thor in the Marvel Universe and she’s a she, there is one Hulk and it is Amadeus Cho. But I also want to say that there is a story to be told for Banner. Banner’s story is not over. And I don’t want people saying, “Oh, these guys hate Banner, and they don’t like him and they’re sick of him.” No — we love Banner.

Why was that necessary? It wasn’t, unless you are either a.) some obsessive-compulsive diversity activist, or b.) seeking to please obsessive-compulsive diversity activists.

Mr. Alonso takes a rhetorical dump on Bruce Banner and the character’s fans to score points with the social justice crowd, and then he says “No — we love Banner.” It doesn’t work that way. He “loves” Bruce Banner like people say they love Dunkin’ Donuts coffee on Monday morning, which means that he merely has appreciative love.

Greg Pak should be given a pat on the back for the work he’s done at Marvel. Mr. Alonso, however, might want to consider locking himself in the closet any time someone asks him to comment on upcoming projects. There are many readers who want to give writers like Greg Pak a chance, but refrain because guys like Axel Alonso are in monomaniacal pursuit of political activists’ approval.

Exit question: If there was a Tumblr campaign started to create “The Totally Tubular She-Hulk” — and make her a lesbian black little person who liked to surf, what are the chances that Axel Alonso would take it seriously?

Totally Awesome Hulk Marvel

Marvel’s New Spider-Man: Miles Morales. Is Your Spider-Sense Tingling?

Some people will be angered by the new Spider-Man's race. They have problems. Others will be angered by Marvel's obsession with alliteration. They are healthy.

In Marvel Comics’ Ultimates line, the new Peter Parker is Miles Morales. Miles is a half-black, half-hispanic boy. Of all the angles to this story, his race is one of the least noteworthy aspects—even more so than Marvel’s continued use of alliteration. (Will the next Spider-Man be named Guillermo Guillen?) Since I’m sure there are conservatives who will be annoyingly offering “unhelpful” comments about this new character, someone needs to set the record straight:

  1. The original Peter Parker is right where he’s always been. Unfortunately, liberal writers and editors had their way with him and he now makes deals with (for all intents and purposes) the Devil.  If Spidey fans are upset, their anger should be directed at what is quite possibly the worst editorial mistake in the history of the character. That’s saying a lot, since Marvel has botched him for years.
  2. The Ultimates line is completely separate from the universe casual fans know about.
  3. Everyone’s seen and experienced the black Nick Fury. It worked. Big time. Sometimes switching it up is a good thing.

With that said, here’s where the story gets interesting:

Italian artist Sara Pichelli, who was integral in designing the new Spider-Man’s look, says, “Maybe sooner or later a black or gay — or both — hero will be considered something absolutely normal.”

Note to Sara Pichelli: It is normal! It’s only not normal when it’s shoved in our faces. It’s only not normal when political points are shoe-horned into a story for no other reason than to make readers wear a Progressive worldview. There’s a difference between crafting a story that has—or requires—a black, gay hero, and crafting a story with a black, gay hero just so you can have one. Or so you can play sociological experiments with your readers.

As a business, it makes sense that Marvel would want to reach out to a growing demographic of young, multi-ethnic readers. As the pigment of our population changes, so will the color of our fictional heroes. And there isn’t anything wrong with that—as long as they’re fighting for Truth, Justice, and the American Way. Would you rather have a black Superman who fights for the American Way, or Brian Singer’s white Superman who fights for “all that stuff”? The answer is simple.

Fact: future generations of Americans will be increasingly brown. And no one in their right mind should care. What they should care about are the principles that will guide those future Americans. Will they be the kind of people who consider balanced budgets an “extremist” position, or will they be fiscally sane? Will they believe in limited government and the increased personal liberties that come with it, or will they allow an ever-expansive entitlement mentality to eat away at their entrepreneurial spirit? Will they believe in American Exceptionalism, or will they believe that America’s rightful place in the world is as an also-ran (or worse) with Belarus?

Welcome to the Marvel Universe, Miles Morales. Best of luck to you. I just wish the same could be said for those penning your exploits.