Dan Slott exposed by Tom Brevoort in ‘Marvel 616’ episode: ‘We use the term ‘work’ loosely when it comes to Dan’

Regular readers of this blog know that for years I have said Marvel’s Dan Slott is more of an “idea man” than a writer’s writer. I’ve said that he spends far too much time ranting and raving on social media — or opining on plans that aren’t scheduled to take place for another 100 issues — instead of buckling down and focusing on what needs to be done in the here and now.

Regular readers also know that Mr. Slott has not taken kindly to my critiques of his writing and unprofessional behavior.

Imagine my surprise, then, when Disney+ decided to do a 44-minute Marvel 616 special on Mr. Slott titled “The Marvel Method,” which confirms everything yours truly said about the man’s work ethic over the past decade.

Tom Brevoort, Senior Vice President & Executive Editor for Marvel Comics (who blocked me on Twitter long ago after I asked if it was appropriate for Mr. Slott to tell Christians to move to “Christ-Land”), discusses the problem roughly five minutes into the episode.

An exchange with the writer goes as follows:

Dan Slott: “We’ve been planning this for ages. We’ve been seeding this for a very long time.”

Tom Brevoort: “So I know you’ve got a lot of ideas and very little actually put together. And you need more time to get it done.”

Dan Slott: “I think I could make it better.”

Tom Brevoort: “We use the term ‘work’ loosely when it comes to Dan. Dan’s terrible with his deadlines. You’ll be the famous writer of Iron Man 2022. I’ve worked with Dan for a quarter of a century. And fortunately, he’s good enough at this that those strengths help to counterbalance the fact that he is his own worst enemy when it comes to being able to produce things on the schedule that they need to be done.”

The crux of the episode is that Mr. Slott is the last of a dying breed at Marvel — writers who send a general plot to artists and then fill in the dialogue after seeing the artist’s interpretation of said plot.

Mr. Brevoort’s problem with Dan is that writer’s block, time spent on social media, and other factors habitually cause scheduling headaches and require extra help (e.g., Christos Gage) to get books completed in a timely manner.

“Chris Gage is half of my brain,” Mr. Slott says at one point. “I love plotting stories, but Chris likes scripting. If deadlines are crunching, Chris is gonna get me across.”

Why would deadlines be “crunching” on Mr. Slott? The answer, covered here for years, is because the man has spent inordinate amounts of time going on political rants against [insert Republican politician or policy here].

The lack of self-awareness on Mr. Slott’s part reaches stunning levels when he talks about readers who “lost their minds” over a storyline in 2012 because social media offers “an instantaneous way for you to be mad about anything.”

The writer says:

“One of the things that we have now today, which kinda hurts, is social media. Back in December of 2012, I killed Peter Parker. I was the guy who killed Spider-Man. When that story came out, fans lost their minds. It got scary fast. Social media went insane. That’s what social media is now. It’s an instantaneous way for you to be mad about anything.” — Dan Slott, Disney+, “The Marvel Method,” 2020.

What Mr. Slott doesn’t mention is that Marvel used outrage marketing to sell the books while its writers and editors simultaneously complained about readers who honored their request for anger.

“Dan is behind where I need him to be on his various assignments,” Mr. Brevoort continues as the printing clock for the first issue of Iron Man 2020 closes in. “I can’t really start on issue 2 until issue 1 is solid enough. I needed another writer to do the dialoguing on the book. So we made the choice to bring Christos Gage in.”

The episode rightly notes that using The Marvel Method in many ways makes the artist a de-facto ghost writer, but it fails to stress how strange it is that Mr. Slott, for all intents and purposes, becomes a book’s “Head Plotter” when someone like Mr. Gage is asked to do the heavy lifting on dialogue.

Letterer Joe Caramagna sums up what happens when a book essentially has three writers instead of one:

“Because Dan works in The Marvel Method, I’m usually waiting longer than I am from everyone else. If I have no script, I’m just looking at art and there’s nothing I can do. By the time I get the script from Dan, it’s usually about two days before the book has to go to press. I’m always sending a text or e-mailing, begging and pleading, ‘Someone please send me some script.’ … If my deadline is 6:30 p.m. to deliver a book to the printer, I could still be getting notes at 6:15. Like, that’s how close we cut it.” — Joe Caramagna, Disney+, “The Marvel Method,” 2020.

The question at the heart of the episode seems to be: “Is it worth it? Should ‘The Marvel Method’ go extinct with the eventual departure of Dan Slott?'”

Mr. Brevoort and everyone involved put a happy face on the collaborative efforts. They try their best to act as if the flavor of Slott’s creative sauce is worth the delays and frustration, but it clearly is a sore subject.

The Marvel Method makes it clear that industry icons like Stan Lee, Steve Ditko, and Jack Kirby were statistical outliers who in many ways acted out of necessity. Few people could walk the tightrope of chaos demanded by the process, and writers in 2020 who are obsessed with politics on social media should embrace a more structured working environment.

Anyone who wants some definitive reasons as to why modern Marvel Comics has gone off the rails over the past decade should watch The Marvel 616 Disney+ episode on “The Marvel Method.” It is extremely telling when an executive editor chuckles and laughs at the consequences of running a “good old boy” network: activist-writers emerge who know they can goof off on social media for days on end because the boss will always bring in an extra person to get the job done.

I don’t expect Mr. Brevoort to unblock your friendly neighborhood blogger anytime soon and apologize for acting as if my observations about Mr. Slott’s unprofessional procrastination were unfounded, but I do appreciate Disney+ vindicating my message. Check it out if you get a chance.

Tom Brevoort: Marvel’s ‘King Nothing’ gives Stan Lee backhanded compliment after industry icon’s death

Tom Brevoort Stan Lee tweet

Stan “The Man” Lee’s death last week left fans across the world with a heavy heart. Kind words filled Facebook walls, Instagram pages, and Twitter feeds. There were random exceptions (e.g., professional wet blanket Bill Maher), but in general millions of people handled themselves as expected when a beloved public figure exits this world and enters eternity.

Marvel editor Tom Brevoort, however, didn’t get the memo.

Yes, that’s right, one of Marvel’s very own decided it would be a great idea to remember Stan Lee’s life by weirdly turning it into an excuse to play “Who Will Have the Greatest Legacy?”

Tom “King Nothing” Brevoort tweeted:

“Stan Lee was both the best-known comic book editor in the world and the best writer of his era, the 1960s. The fact that others surpassed him in this endeavor by building on what he did changes nothing of it,” (emphasis added).

Ask yourself this question: What kind of person uses the death of an industry giant to immediately begin figuring out creative and professional pecking orders?

Ask yourself this question: What kind of person gives a backhanded compliment about Stan Lee that translates: “Yeah, he was an pretty amazing guy — in the 1960s!

People ask me why and when the movement often labeled “Comicsgate” started. Giving an exact date is a rather pointless endeavor, but readers can glean important information merely by looking into the social-media musings of Mr. Brevoort.

Sadly, the kind of creator who would downplay Stan Lee’s significance right after his death is not the exception to the rule at Marvel Comics these days. Furthermore, the kind of man who is willing to rhetorically hit Mr. Lee below the belt is also the kind of man who is willing to do so to long-time readers.

There is much more to be said, but for a primer on the origins of Comicsgate I suggest watching my latest YouTube video. As always, make sure hit the ‘subscribe’ button if the video format is up your alley.

Related: Bill Maher: Stan Lee bad, Vapid celebs on ‘Real Time’ good. Beep. Beep. Boop. Boop.

Dan Slott writing Iron Man: Will Tony Stark be wearing ‘Ask Me About My Feminist Agenda’ armor?

Tony Stark

The universe works in mysterious ways.

Those who have followed this blog for years know that two Marvel characters hold a special place in my heart: Peter Parker (The Amazing Spider-Man), and Tony Stark (The Invincible Iron Man).

Those who have followed this blog for years know also know that your friendly neighborhood blogger has a unique relationship with Marvel scribe Dan Slott — I was writing reviews that had him rage-reading and rage-tweeting years before making the leap to YouTube.

Given this history, I thought we would both go our separate ways with the announcement that he was exiting The Amazing Spider-Man. He may have put Peter Parker into an “Ask Me About My Feminist Agenda” t-shirt, but that was in no way going to prompt me to follow his work on some random character.

The universe, my friends, had other plans!

Watch my latest YouTube video for a preview for what is to come in the years ahead as Dan continues to write for Marvel and I continue to review his work (always, mind you, with the goal of making him a better writer).

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.

Marvel’s Tom Brevoort and ideologue pals blame “toxic” fans for comic woes; hypocrisy exposed on YouTube

Tom B toxic

Thoughts become words. Words become actions. Actions become habits. Habits become character, and character becomes destiny.

Therefore, it’s incredibly sad that Marvel’s Tom Brevoort and his activist friends make a habit of lying — to themselves, to fans, and anyone else who is willing to listen.

The House of Ideologues has attempted (and failed) for months to defame YouTube creators who are exposing its hypocrisy, and the latest effort involves blaming “toxic fandom.” It’s not going to work because, as my latest YouTube video demonstrates, the partisan propaganda spewed by Marvel’s writers and editors can always be juxtaposed with their laughable moral grandstanding.

As always, let me know what you think of the latest developments in the comments section below. If you like the format, make sure to subscribe for regular updates since I don’t always have time to cross-post onto the blog.

 

Marvel’s Northrop mess: Confused and spineless a sad combo

New York Comic Con 2017 is over, but the After Action Report for Marvel Comics will not be a good one. Retailers exploded on the company behind closed doors early on, and then an event with defense contractor Northrop Grumman was cancelled on Saturday.

Ask yourself this question, though: Why did the outrage brigade not seem to care that a Planned Parenthood panel was held at NYCC, but a comic book designed to promote STEM fields generated enough anger to make Marvel buckle?

Mine NYCC

Here’s the deal: I don’t want anything political at a convention that is supposed to be focused on superheroes, but if comic industry pros are going to celebrate abortion providers, then a handful of angry fans on Twitter shouldn’t be able to end a Marvel/Northop team-up.

Check out my latest YouTube video for the full rundown. I experimented with a new format today, so feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below. I prefer scripted content whenever possible, but creating it can be very time consuming.

Marvel takes aim at Paul Reveres: King Alonso, redcoats must go

Regular readers of this blog know that I have chronicled the problems within the comic book industry for many years. Therefore, I hope I’m seen as a credible witness when I say that that things are nearing a breaking point.

The insertion of ham-fisted partisan politics into the books, unprofessional online behavior by creators, and mainstream comic websites that shill for the industry have contributed to a bubble that appears ready to burst. Sales continue to plummet and writers regularly lash out at YouTube creators like Capn. Cummings, Diversity & Comics, yours truly, and many others.

Nick SpencerTweet

Check out my latest video for the full run-down on Marvel’s downward spiral and the YouTube channels that are putting pressure on them to change course before its too late.