**Trigger warning: we briefly discuss the subject of rape culture and rape jokes as it impacts audiences of stand up comedy.**
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I didn’t even realize it until Mario opened up about his family life, that he is the son of two gay dads. When I brought up the subject of Orson Scott Card and his homophobic activism, I didn’t know that it was going to be so close to Mario’s life. This was part of our discussion whether or not he can separate his personal beliefs and opinions from being a fan of someone’s work. This involves any entertainer from comic book creators to stand up performers to actors like Tom Cruise. Daniel Tosh blundered badly months ago when he suggested that a woman in his audience “should be raped.” Mario admitted that he made a rape comment on Twitter but that his comedy mentors had told him to stay away from certain subject matter like incest, rape, and child molestation.
ASHES is about a hero who is faced with an injury so severe that he can’t resume his usual work as a fire fighter. Mario explained he talked to a fire fighter as part of his research for this project. Firemen discussions wouldn’t be complete without talking about the annual fire fighters calendar. Yes, I truly think Mario and collaborator Karl Slominski should do firemen pin up photoshoots and make them into greeting cards to promote ASHES.
Mario gives the example of how writers can get scammed out of money in their quests for finding reputable artists online. The importance of going to artists that come with personal references you know and trust is vital otherwise, like Mario, you can be bilked out of a lot of money.
There’s a lot of nerdy comic talk mixed into this episode. One area we got into was the success or failure of romance in comics.
In LGBT news, we talked about gay “conversion” camps that are so horrific and have been known to torture children – sometimes to death – but we find some acceptance in modern pop culture citing secondary characters you’d see on Modern Family and Happy Endings to main characters like The New Normal. The day we recorded this episode, the Sports Illustrated issue featuring the coming out story of NBA player Jason Collins hit stands.
We wrap up the show briefly talking about the “Cosplay =/= Consent” campaign because Mario is part of a collective of contributors for When Nerds Attack which is giving tips for convention attendees.