ANOTHER CASE OF HORRIBLE EDITORIAL DECISIONS IN COMICS
AMBER LOVE 22-FEB-2017 My work is supported through generous donors at Patreon.com/amberunmasked. This will be short and hopefully not “too” bitter in tone.
With a miserable case of insomnia last night, I watched the feeds on Twitter. Someone I consider a “Twitter friend” @TransComics brought out the discussion about Dynamite’s new VAMPIRELLA series, particularly issue three’s cover “D”. The TL;DR is that the writer and publisher have apologized for the disgracefully transphobic cover design; and the writer, Paul Cornell will be donating his entire script fee to the TransLifeline hotline.
My question is this: Why are writers continually blamed for comic book cover design?
Chelsea Cain went through this when Jöelle Jones drew Mockingbird in the “Ask Me About My Feminist Agenda” t-shirt. She was attacked from the right rather than the left wing. Comic bros didn’t want feminism in their comics.
Paul Cornell was on Twitter and interacted with several of the fan community. He was genuinely upset and issued a statement taking responsibility for not having the foresight to see the cover as anything other than a pulp homage. The artist who did the cover and the interiors is Jimmy Broxton. I can’t locate him on Twitter or even find a blog [Edit: Bleeding Cool posted a response from Broxton who said he has nothing to apologize for.]. The writer took on the brunt of this responsibility when he had nothing to do with it other than not pulling the offending text sooner.
I’m apparently not the only one questioning why this burden was placed on the writer. One of my favorite people to follow on Twitter for politics and comics, @Elana_Brooklyn, also called out the responsibility of the editorial staff. She and others were tweeted the apology by Dynamite’s twitter account. Elana is the co-host of Graphic Policy Radio and is deeply entrenched in supporting the rights of disenfranchised people.
At the end of day, it speaks volumes when an entire team takes responsibility for the end product, as the Batgirl team did with Dagger Type. I haven’t read Vampirella in many years, but I used to enjoy it along with monthly Red Sonja pulp. I can’t speak to where the characters and universes are anymore, but I can still be upset with the rest of the community that something so obvious went wrong again considering how many times homophobia and transphobia or erasure are covered by blogs, tweets, discussion panels, and podcasts. We need to stop having the scandals and learn from the ones that have already happened.
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