This Can’t Be Real… ( #AbsorbingManWasRight #gamergate )

This cannot possibly be real, but the internet is assuring me that it’s real.  Hell, anti-GG folks are assuring people that it’s real.

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#AbsorbingManWasRight
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And the comic industry wonders why sales of comics are dismal when they cost $5 an issue and are constantly trolling their fanbase…

 

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18 responses to “This Can’t Be Real… ( #AbsorbingManWasRight #gamergate )

  1. It’s pretty much the only joke they know how to make in this situation. Why not just tell a story? No, let’s comment on the story too! #CreativeBankrupcy

    –Dither

    • And they actually used Impact font! IMPACT!

      The ironic thing is, this is the sort of stuff that comes from the “comics need to ‘grow-up’ and become more ‘mature'” crowd. Comics over the last decade have gotten to where there’s very little middle ground between ridiculously fan-pandery or hella preachy.

    • Y’know, one of the most horrible things I heard someone say about the Batgirl cover thing was some feminist lady saying that men and boys were meant to identify with Joker in that picture, because all men and boys want to dominate Batgirl or something :/

      • On Wednesday when the cover came up at our gaming table… we discussed “getting mad at stupid things for the right reasons.” I think we conceded that it was a great piece of art, but if the comic was being marketed to preteens (unconfirmed?) it was probably inappropriate.

        Probably. I’d rather the piece were on a wall than a book cover. Would I have campaigned against it? No. But then, I didn’t. *shrug*

        –Dither

      • DC puts 12+ on all of its main titles, and this book apparently has the same age rating as the main Batman run (which is apparently super-duper not for kids). Y’know, I think one of the reasons why I enjoy early 90s Batman so much is that (for the most part) the main books were just dark and gritty enough for teenagers to be all “Whoa, Batman is hardcore!” without being super inappropriate. And with Legends of the Dark Knight and Shadow of the Bat, DC was pretty up-front in their editorial stuff that these titles were aimed at adults.

      • Good to know. 😉

        Since none of our group felt like investigating we settled for, “probably not suitable for kids.”

        I don’t know that it changes the conversation much, but one of those questions I return to on occasion is, “what really is suitable for kids?” And when you take into account that children are a minority (not just in age?) it seems like one of those cases where trying to cater to a minority without taking their own thoughts/feelings into account is an -ism.

        I know I basically always hated being a kid. Basically. Always.

        –Dither

      • Yeah. It’s sort of why the real problem with Starfire isn’t that she’s a Pin-up girl and always had been, but because the most well known and popular incarnation of her was NOT a pin-up girl who was targeting a completely different demographic, and then DC said “Well, we don’t want to upset the fanbase by changing the character!” The problem there was that the character’s actual fanbase was not readers of the comic; there were significantly more fans of the cutesy animesque Starfire than there probably were of the comic version throughout all of her combined history. DC (and Marvel, too, I imagine) is constantly zigging when they should zag and zagging when they should zig when it comes to catering to their fans.

  2. I don’t see the problem with the panel. I think it’s a good joke. The attitude that led to GamerGate – and bullshit on anyone who thinks “integrity in journalism” was actually the point of the GamerGate tag – is the same attitude that led to the anger over Lady Thor. The geek community has a very strong undercurrent of misogyny. Disagree? Talk to literally any female geek. I can guarantee you, she’s got a story about being treated poorly by someone in the geek community.

    I think calling out the misogynistic attitudes is necessary. I think it’s important to always say, “No, this is not cool, and it is not acceptable.”

    And as a side note, the current Thor book is outselling the previous volume. By quite a bit, too.

    • The common refrain I’ve seen in regards to the new Thor is that people would prefer to see new and exciting characters rather than have established characters’ races and genders changed. Going deeper, I’ve seen a lot of people make the comparison to Ultimate Spiderman, over the course of which fans were introduced to the new character with respect shown to the tradition of the old, whereas the introduction of the female Thor was done so in an intentionally confrontational way.

      And yeah, you’re right about the new Thor selling better than the old. It’s hard to say, though, how much of that has to do with fans actually appreciating the editorial changes or simply because it’s shiny and new and in the news. Similarly, when New 52 launched with a lot of really gross and pandery content, sales shot up like a rocket, so one could’ve concluded similarly that what comics needed was more TnA.

      The major problem with this Thor, to me, is that rather than actually addressing misogynistic attitudes, it’s strawmanning with misandrist attitudes.

      For the most part, I think you’re an awesome dude, so I’ll forgive you for saying bullshit on me. Gamergate is the result of years of payolla, scamming and corruption coming to a head. The whole misogyny in geekdom thing is waaay more complex than most folks assume. I remember that a little over a decade ago, there was a whole clash over nerds being pissed about how dude-bros were becoming a part of “geek” culture; the harassment, threats and brocious attitudes sprung up largely as the console FPS community became associated with “jocks”. I can’t remember how many times I saw the whole “jocks” have ruined gaming thing. Maybe they have. But anyway, for every “bad apple” in GamerGate, I’ve seen countless dozens of incredible diverse individuals championing the cause.

      • GamerGate was kicked off by a jilted man writing an insane manifesto about what a horrible slut his ex-girlfriend was. That was picked up on by other misogynistic douchebags, and when they got called out on it, THEN it became about the “ethics in journalism” thing. GamerGate was a misogynistic campaign that some other people jumped on because it had gotten some attention, without realizing that all the attention it had gotten was negative and could never possibly help their cause. The people who were ACTUALLY concerned about ethics in video game journalism should’ve started a separate campaign, rather than try to claim one that was started by a bunch of straight-up douchebags who just couldn’t deal with the fact that, yes, there are women involved in the video game industry.

        I find it interesting that pandering is only bad when it’s applied to people who aren’t straight white men. Let’s be honest, we’ve been pandered to for a long, long, LONG time. We dominate geek culture. So why not allow some pandering to women, too? Why not allow pandering to people of colour? There’s room for pandering to all sorts of people. We don’t need to be the only ones pandered to.

        It’s also worth noting that the arguments of “make new characters and promote existing ones” are things Marvel is also doing. Ms. Marvel is a new character who got tons of press. A lot of female characters have gotten solos lately. So the other stuff is happening, too. And you know what? Thor is vastly outselling any of Marvel’s other female solo titles. Because geeks are a stubborn group who refuse to try anything new. A woman as Thor is a different twist, but it’s the same book that’s been getting published since the ’60s, so people are willing to buy it. Meanwhile, Captain Marvel has poor sales, because her book doesn’t have 50 years of history behind it.

      • It was less the “kick-off” than the straw that broke the camel’s back. It didn’t become “gamergate” until after media outlets refused to acknowledge that there actually was a problem with game devs and publish PRs sleeping with journalists (like Tyler Wilde who was writing about and promoting Ubisoft games while in an undisclosed relationship the head of PR for ubisoft, or William O’neil, editor and chief of TechRadar with his “Who here hasn’t slept with a PR Person or Game Dev, AMIRITE?”).

        If it had JUST been about ZQ, if Nathan Grayson had lost his job, and if the game journo industry hadn’t lost its shit by acting shady as hell and refusing to admit that it had a problem, “gamergate” wouldn’t have emerged as a thing at the end of August and would’ve been completely forgotten about by the end of September.

      • It’s worth remembering that the accusation about the woman sleeping with a developer WAS A LIE. A straight-up, flat-out lie. It didn’t happen. But the fact that it didn’t happen didn’t stop a single GamerGater from apologizing to the woman whose life they’d already set about destroying, nor did it stop them from trying to destroy the lives of other women who defended her.

        If the focus had been on big developers buying positive reviews, then yes, GamerGate would’ve been a totally valid campaign. Instead, the focus was on those danged feminists trying to get their feminist messages into video games. GamerGaters rejected the idea of video games as an art form by claiming that social criticism doesn’t belong in it. Instead of looking at the relationships between big developers and gaming sites, they focused on a few female indie developers.

        GamerGate was absolutely rooted primarily in misogyny. And the only thing that would’ve stopped it would be if women had just all agreed to quit the gaming world and leave it to men.

      • ” And the only thing that would’ve stopped it would be if women had just all agreed to quit the gaming world and leave it to men.”

        That’s absolute bullshit, and there’s really no reason going on about this any more.

  3. And this is what happens when the evil empire(Disney) takes over…

    Don’t get me wrong, one can argue that the comic industry has been in real trouble since the 90’s, when characters were switched out in an effort to drive sales…Eric Masterson/Thor, USAgent/Cap, etc. This is all about reaching a wider audience in an effort to drive bottom line profit.

    • It’s more of a problem endemic with the creative teams on the big comic labels. Just as american liberalism has moved from center-left to extreme progressive-left over the last 50 years, the comics industry, which has always been fairly left of center (with a few exceptions), went that way as well. So I don’t think it’s fair to blame Disney in this case.

      If they were serious about reaching wider audiences, they’d go back to printing on cheaper paper and knocking $2-3 off the cover price.

  4. I agree with you about how the industry has moved more to the left and become more polarized, much like everything else in the US now. It’s either extreme left or right. I just think Disney has a huge piece to play due to my inherent distrust of any large corporation.

    I must disagree with your premise that it’s not done to reach a wider audience. I just heard that Marvel is re-printing some of the fav titles at a reduced price for all the “true believers” out there. Iron Man Armor Wars is one of the stories being reprinted that’s one of my favorite stories of all time. I think the reduced price reprints are a way to reach out to the 40+ year olds who are not buying books right now and to get them interested again. Once hooked, a portion of them will buy the new titles. It’s all about radiated sales, like any dept store does for their morning specials. The companies take a margin hit on the lower price morning special, knowing that a portion of the customers will purchase higher priced items elsewhere in the store.

    Disney/Marvel or DC or whomever knows exactly what they’re doing. Look at us…we’re all talking about it. It’s working.

    BTW- your posts have been great over the past couple weeks. Keep it up!

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