Thursday, December 24, 2015

Comic Book Website Commenters (or How I Learned to Loathe the Bitchy Fans)

I know I said I was off-duty until after the holiday was over, but I found myself writing a lengthy post on social media about this subject, which ended up leaving me asking "why don't I just write this for the site?" and here we are. So, yeah, if you're a fan of comic books (whether old or new), you've probably been to some websites that post news about them. I personally recommend The Outhouse, as it is both entertaining and informative. But, no matter where you go, you've seen them: the people (mostly guys) who bitch and moan about whatever because it's about all they do. Now me, I prefer to save my bitching and moaning for when I review a movie that is rather awful. And it also seems to entertain you, which is why I keep doing it.

At least...I think that's why I keep doing it. Sometimes I think I'm just a masochist.

On rare occasions, I decide to interact with these feral creatures who may or may not actually read comics. I find them to be pretty boring, mostly. They often repeat the same tired old insults, beating on that drum that declares that new things are inherently bad and that all female characters should be drawn so that they can lust after them sexually rather than enjoy or identify with them as actual characters. We've touched on this mentality before too, but then it was with some creators who seem to think sexism is okay in the modern industry. It's not and it never really was. Now, while the world of comics is still largely a boys' club, that has been changing more and more. There are tons of female fans and they want to read books that aren't about objectifying women but rather ones that might treat them like actual people.

You know, rather than write them as emotionless sex dolls who barely wear clothing.
Before you call foul on me picking on the New 52 Starfire there, I would remind you that she is a character who has in all of her incarnations always been a loving emotional being who greatly cares about others and doesn't treat sex like something paltry. Scott Lobdell didn't just write her badly, he weakened her as a character in an initiative that was meant to draw in new readers. Readers who likely grew up on the Teen Titans cartoon. Always good to alienate a potential artist by being a sexist douchebag who seems more interested in writing an erotic fantasy than they were with strong character arcs.

Which hurts when you recall that they actually were good at the exact opposite in the past.
Anywho, that's a problem that a very vocal segment of the comic fandom in general has. They're sexist douchebags who only want things their way. I roll into there to read about a new book promoting a new character that I've seen lots of newer fans have gone on about. She's called Gwenpool and is obviously a character modeled to be humourous. She's Gwen Stacy as Deadpool. Alright, groovy, I like her outfit and I can definitely get on board with some funnier books. We've had so much grim-dark shit in comics, I am frankly afraid that a literal black hole might open in the next issue of Superman/Batman.

That may actually be the secret behind the plot of Event Horizon, as nothing is more grim-dark than a nice trip to Hell.
Then I see it...the comments immediately leading to blind hate for this book that isn't even out yet. A book they have never read. I will shit on something bad all day, but dammit, I will at least check it out before I do so! What is up with that? Why automatically assume something is awful? Is it because they're just that jaded or are they really just nothing more than beligerant assholes whining just to whine because blah blah blah Galactus doesn't eat planets anymore!

Spoiler alert: Galactus finally has a brand new bag and that means we won't see the same story of him eating shit again.
Yeah, here's the thing, I understand not liking arbitrary changes. Superman wearing armour? That's silly and I'm not a fan. But him running around in a t-shirt? Yeah, that's also silly. Neither of those changes made him more interesting as a character or really improved on him, so they feel forced and odd. But a change that offers growth and serves to make a character that is stale interesting again? Yeah, that's my jam, right there. I am all for Galactus not being the star of his five-thousandth story about whether people will stop him from eating other people. That shit is played out. Give me something that is interesting. Oh look, he's now creating life and that opens up new possibilities for him as a character moving forward! And now look, a group of twats are on about how it's awful and that he's ruined because he's grown and evolved as a character.

"Changes are bad and I shall keep repeating this statement until you admit defeat!"
Back to the subject of the new book I see getting bashed, I make the risky call to throw my hat in to the ring. I write one comment where I point out that automatically hating something because it's popular and not made to please the pissier segment of fans is ridiculous. I then say that I hope the book does well and that we need more fun books, because I firmly feel we do. This is met with the standard responses that I shall describe in a bullet list.
  • The guy who hates the Big Two (Marvel & DC) and makes note of how he is very happy not to read their books...while in a thread about one of their books.
  • The same guy then responding with hostility when I express how happy I am that he can see into the future at how bad this book is. Also, I may have implied he was an elitist, which he kind of is with his whole "I'm skipping all books from this publisher because I only read indie" thing.
  • A long comment with terrible grammar where I am called "Brain" and an elitist, even though I previously expressed that I read good comics regardless of what company publishes them.
Yes, the guy who defends the Howard the Duck film is totally an elitist. Also, dirt tastes like chocolate.
I decided that, since they wanted to comment on my own comment, I'd show them the same courtesy. I commented on their own comments, basically turning their own hate around in an attempt to try and show them that they're being...well, dumb. I called some guys out for hating on a new book before it even comes out and they respond with aggression and so many grammatical errors that I can feel every English teacher in America weeping. One even accused me of being a pedophile, because somehow me attempting to counter hatred means that I must prey of children in a windowless van.

Pedobear must speak out against this sort of stuff fairly often for this comparison to exist, because otherwise it's just stupid.
Why did I do this? Probably because I get tired of seeing these gobshites litter comment sections with that blind hatred that only makes people on the outside look down on comic fans as a whole. And also because I am tired of seeing new fans getting drowned out by them whining because whatever isn’t being made expressly for them, as if they are the only ones who exist or buy comics. I want comics to be an inclusive thing, not some thing that man-children cluster around in secret as they argue about who can beat who. I want female comic fans to feel safe and unthreatened as they try out new books that are clearly being written to draw in more of them. I want comics to be fun for everyone, regardless of a person's individual tastes. And I refuse to let a very vocal group of ass-hats drown out my voice and the voice of others who want the same. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go chop up veggies and watch Ernest save Christmas. Later days, bleeders.

And seriously? This book deserves hate but Mark Millar still gets love? I call shenanigans!

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