Happy Friday, crusaders! I have my first fight tomorrow, so please excuse my flighty cut-week brain, even if you don’t excuse some of DC’s and DC-adjacent behavior this week.
The big news, of course, is that cover, and the outcry surrounding first its reveal and then the news of its cancellation. Listen, maybe you really, really love The Killing Joke, and wanted this cover for your collection, but if I see one more conflation of “canceled” and “banned,” I’m going to blow a gasket.
Here to clear up some misconceptions is the artist himself, Rafael Albuquerque:
Aos que não entenderam a questão por trás do cancelamento da capa que fiz para a Batgirl. Acho que vale dar uma lida. http://t.co/Qp6EuS0swZ
— Rafael Abuquerque (@rafaalbuquerque) March 18, 2015
Reddit user yourdaysare helpfully translated the interview into English from the original Portuguese, and there are some interesting nuggets in there which — unsurprisingly — debunk this notion that DC pulled the cover due to online backlash:
The cover was withdrawn at your request, but did you get any kind of pressure from any sector or person at DC Comics so that the cover was withdrawn? No. It was left to me. I see many people commenting on freedom of expression and that I gave in to pressure. I have always defended minorities. I think it is right and righteous. I do not think a comic that intends to raise women’s self-esteem should have an image that may suggest otherwise. In another comic, maybe it would make sense. Not for the current Batgirl comic. Freedom of expression also means not saying what you do not want, and it was exactly that right that I exercised here.
He goes on:
I think, regardless of their position on the cover, feminism or freedom of expression, it is important to learn and to listen. Empathize with those who have a different opinion from yours. Put yourself in the other person’s place and think.
You’re a solid dude, Rafael. Four for you.
Did anyone tell Jason Momoa that you’re generally not allowed to drop the f-bomb in comics?
JASON MOMOA signs AQUAMAN poster. Adding "Fuck Marvel". pic.twitter.com/qXypcMsFLf
— Superhero Feed (@SuperheroFeed) March 15, 2015
My news feed is full of awesome quotes today. Like this one, from Preston Kevin Lewis, General Manager of Warner Bros. Consumer Products in the U.K. and Ireland, who says:
The age and gender boundaries traditionally associated with Super Heroes no longer apply.
This is probably news to plenty of the old guard who forcefully — and sometimes violently — disagree, but I’m pleased as punch to see a man in charge of consumer products state it so factually. The comment comes as DC begins expanding its commercial relationships and consumer products, but, hell, I’ll take it. Sell me stuff, DC!
And, in your weekly sad, the news that Irwin Hasen, Golden Age artist and co-creator of one of my personal favorite characters, Wildcat, passed away at the age of 96.
How’s your week, crusaders? Please, distract me from tomorrow. Leave your comments below!