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Sentimental yet sardonic [userpic]

Nuff said.

May 12th, 2005 (11:03 am)

current mood: blah

Batman v Angelus.

Freaking hysterical.

EDIT: Okay, this is way more funnier if you're a comic fan to be fair, though I really should have assumed the Angel fans would also have been interested. The actual comic is called Blood of the Demon, and is based around the Jack kirby created character Etrigan the Demon. Normally Etrigan is buried deep within a human host named Jason Blood, but can be set free whenever needed. Parallels between Angel and Angelus can be drawn here.

From the sound of the review, the writer/artist John Byrne has certainly taken the basic inspiration of previous issues of The Demon and mapped everything across to correspond to the Buffyverse. Which, when you consider his previous stands against people taking inspiration from outside comics, is incredibly hypocritical and further evidence that Byrne's losing it.

This is of course the same John Byrne who recently caused quite a stink over the use of the word "nigger".

A user on the John Byrne fan board posted the following message:
Then this all brings up the question of language. Do words have inherent meanings or just those we ascribe to them? If enough pros, in addition to the fans, say "speech bubble" then why wouldn't "bubble" be just as valid as "balloon"? JB says "balloon", someone else says "bubble", and they could both be right.

To which, Byrne responds:
There are lots of people who call Black people "niggers". Are both terms "right"? You seem to have missed the rather important point that my response indicated roughly the same percentage of fans and pros use the improper terms for various elements of what we do -- but that percentage does not approach a balance. It is not that roughly half say "balloon" and half say "bubble". It is that some say "bubble" and they are wrong.

Another user states:
Um, we don't avoid using the word "nigger" because it's incorrect usage. We avoid using it because it's incredibly racist and hateful. Is there an ethnic group that's impugned when someone says "thought bubbles" instead of "thought balloons"?

Byrne again:
"Um..." in point of fact there are plenty of people who use the word "nigger" because that is the word they use, not because they imagine it has any negative racial connotations. That's precisely why I chose that word as my illustration.

Another response from the crowd:
Enough already with the casual tossing around of racist epithets!

John, you cannot possibly be that ignorant to believe that people who use racial slurs do so without any negative intent or connotation. If you do indeed believe that, I strongly encourage you to seek some counsel and educate yourself on the matter, if you don't want to take my word for it. I've only been black and lived in this country for, oh, my entire life, so I may not be aware of how things really are out there...

We spend an awful lot of time on this board dealing with the issue of respect, as it pertains to comic book characters, comic book terminology, reverence for creator's original visions, nicknames for comic book characters, etc. People tread lightly on eggshells out of fear of upsetting you and your many rules for how seriously this wonderful hobby of our should be taken, both by us within it and by those civilians outside of it. How about we extend that same measure of respect to the people who participate in this board?

We're supposed to take your word for how things should be in the industry, how characters are supposed to be treated, etc because of your years of experience. How about you extend me the same courtesy on this issue?

This isn't about political correctness, or "looking for something to be offended by." It is simply a matter of consideration and manners...

There were an infinite number of comparatives you could have chosen to illustrate your point about correct comic book terminology. The fact that you chose the one you did...why?

I think we get your point. They are balloons, not bubbles. Fine. Your comparative example sucked. Just as you ask us not to use terms that bother, offend or piss you off, I'm asking you publicly to not use racially insensitive terms and epithets on the board as well. Or is that something you would have a problem with?

Once again, Byrne replies:
Ignorance is the key, but not on my part. There are many places in this country where people to this day use "nigger" when referring to Black people because that's the word they use. They don't think of it as a racial slur. They don't think about it at all, in fact. It simply is.

This is not even considering Black people who themselves use the word. We cannot, surely, imagine that it is used in that context as a racial slur?

"Nigger" is -- like so many others -- a word with a complex etymology and an even more complex pattern of use.

And feel lucky you missed his (in)famous Christopher Reeve and Jessica Alba rants.


Posted by: In awe of sensible companions.... (wildecate)
Posted at: May 12th, 2005 05:12 am (UTC)

What the heck?

Posted by: houses (houses7177)
Posted at: May 12th, 2005 10:04 am (UTC)
Faith Wacky


I think I'm missing something here. What was that exactly?

Posted by: Marcus L. Rowland (ffutures)
Posted at: May 12th, 2005 10:27 am (UTC)

Reality check; he's talking about a real comic?

Posted by: I write (absolut_jmo)
Posted at: May 12th, 2005 01:13 pm (UTC)

Is it for real?

Posted by: skipp_of_ark (skipp_of_ark)
Posted at: May 12th, 2005 11:24 pm (UTC)

Having looked at the first three issues of Byrne's Blood of the Demon series (conclusion: wait for it to be cancelled in a year, and then somebody who actually can write will try their hand at it), I hadn't made any connection to the Buffyverse. I just thought it was Byrne's way of thumbing his nose at every appearance of Etrigan and Jason Blood since the 80's miniseries by Matt Wagner, which modified Kirby's origins of the characters by revealing that instead of Etrigan and Jason being the same being in different forms, Jason was an actual human being cursed/linked to Etrigan. (Think Marvel's Captain Marvel switching places with Rick Jones by banging the negabands together, only, y'know, more evil.) I think from that miniseries on was the establishment of the hierarchy of demons, especially rhyming demons, which Etrigan eventually became.

And then Byrne had his run on Wonder Woman, and he decided that since The Demon was at the time without a book, he was morally obligated to bring in Etrigan, Jason Blood, Merlin, and Morgain LeFay, and explain to Wonder Woman and fans that all that material featuring rhyming Etrigan and Jason as a distinct human being, not just Etrigan's nicer alter ego, in countless books and appearances, was all really a lie and Kirby's original origin (Etrigan/Jason Blood as flip sides to the same coin, ala Jekyll and Hyde, and no such thing as rhyming demons) was the truth and always had been. Granted this was during a run on Wonder Woman's book, not an actual Demon-centric title. Johnny Redbeard must have had his knickers twisted awfully painfully.

The punchline to all this was that after Byrne's use of The Demon in Wonder Woman, other writers using The Demon in their books went right back to using the post-Crisis origins and material, anyway. Essentially, they had the audacity to ignore John Byrne's temper tantrum. And thus, we have Blood of the Demon, which appears to be Byrne's way of admitting that, yes, people used the modified origins after he told them that they couldn't, but now he's using the opportunity of an actual Demon-centric comic to change things as much as he can back to the Kirby origins.

Yes, I can be a complete and utter comic's geek. I still make it look cooler than Andrew. :)

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