I was suddenly reminded of this article after the influx of interest in superhero comics/movies that popular upcoming Marvel Comics titles such as Iron Man 3 and Thor: The Dark World drew in these past weeks. Especially on websites like Tumblr, where users have been furiously posting and reblogging gifs of Tom Hiddleston as Loki with unruly long hair.
As always, the internet proves itself as a powerful means of communication. For those who are not in any way, comic book aficionados, there has been a huge controversy over the hiring of famous science fiction writer Orson Scott Card, who is conversely “infamous” for his unrelenting opposition of homosexuality and same-sex marriage.
It is quite an understatement to say that this is a very delicate issue. A month ago, the backlash from the fans of DC concerning Card’s anti-gay views drove artist, Chris Sprouse, to withdraw his involvement with the project, ultimately putting the the series on hold.
Why is there so much backlash, one would ask? Perhaps it is not merely the opinions of the writer, but the particular superhero he was hired for. Orson Scott Card and other various writers and artists were hired by DC Comics for the new Adventures of Superman series. Superman has long been a figure synonymized with freedom, justice, and “the American Way.” Regardless of whether Card’s views on homosexuality are his own rights, many fans feel that by hiring Card, DC is essentially abandoning its accountability to its fans.
Card is known for his highly acclaimed novel, Ender’s Game (which is set to be a future movie this year), but unfortunately, he is more recently recognized for his caustic views on homosexuality and same-sex marriage. Some store owners are apparently boycotting DC Comics, refusing to stock issues of the Superman series. Even a studio executive for Card’s own film, Ender’s Game, expressed concern that Card’s direct involvement with the film might serve as a detriment to sales. Ouch.
In the aforementioned article, as well as other similar articles chronicling the lengthy, polemical issue, the comments posted by guests and users are equally just as heated. The main debate is that by hiring Card, DC is demonstrating that they support a bigoted, hateful person, consequentially . On the other hand, others say that forcing Card to leave due to his views is extremely hypocritical. The debates range from religion, civil rights, morality, and the list goes on…
All DC Comics had to say on the matter, “As content creators we steadfastly support freedom of expression, however the personal views of individuals associated with DC Comics are just that — personal views — and not those of the company itself.”
The petition has currently drawn up about 17,000 signatures from fans.