benicio127: (Lois love)
benicio127 ([personal profile] benicio127) wrote in [community profile] scans_daily2010-06-10 02:20 pm

Bill Willingham and the girls of

Cross-posted to No Scans_Daily.

First of all, apologies to [personal profile] nevermore999 for posting this from her LJ without asking first.

However, I really thought it was important enough to post.

Bill Willingham came in the panel, and ohmygod this really stupid guy bought up Steph, saying her death was poignant and he didn't think they should have bought her back because it was so important Batman kicked her to the curb and Leslie Thompkins (yes, he apparently liked THAT too) and Mom got all uncomfortable next to Willingham's credit, he shut the guy down, saying the death was never his plan and he actually argued for Steph to live. Sattler said he wasn't around for it, and that the fans are really into Steph, and that he thinks it's important they redeemed Leslie Thompkins. Then Willingham had to ruin everything and say, and I swear to God this is a direct quote "I wanted to gun down those girls who kept asking about the (Steph's) memorial case."

My jaw just dropped open. I knew from interviews and shit that Willingham was an asshole- and I'm sorry, he is, for mocking people at panels, and mocking men for daring to cry over a comic book death- but that is just a creepy as fuck thing to say. I raised my hand and I wanted to say "Willingham, you're an asshole" but instead I just told him a) I hated Stephanie's death and b) You shouldn't want to gun people down for being passionate about a character.

Backpedaling time! No, see, those silly girls were just distracting from important issues at panels by asking the same question over and over again, andandand they just don't understanf how the comics industry works and then, I swear to god, he word for word said the "being hated is almost as good" quote. He DID. He and Sattler telled me that when fans hate a story, it's almost as good as if they love it, because at least they care.

So let me just lift the Internet veil for a minute. I am/was a journalist and I used to be a crime/court reporter. In my four years working for three different Canadian newspapers, I reported on a lot of incidents of violence against women. One of those was a four-part series on the high rate of domestic violence in a small community, for which I was nominated for a National Newspaper Award. So trust me when I say I have seen what violence against women does and how important a topic like this is to me.
So yeah, this comment disturbs me on many levels. It is truly an indefensible comment and the fact that it was made in a public venue with little discourse is disturbing. Serious props to [personal profile] nevermore999 for standing up to Willingham and pointing out his incredibly horrific and misogynistic comment. Young impressionable boys buy these comics and that writers who write them actually think these things and then say them outloud in a public venue is shocking to say the very least.

steve_dash_o: (Default)

Re: he shouldn't have said that

[personal profile] steve_dash_o 2010-06-14 12:41 am (UTC)(link)
Thanks for pointing to the other part of the thread -- that context does make a difference to my interpretation of this sub-thread.

That said, when you state:

Sharing a dissenting opinion is one thing, but when that opinion is that another is overreacting or just looking for things to complain about, especially towards the people directly effected by the situation, that isn't acceptable. Policing another's reaction and telling them what is or isn't appropriate in a situation like this is a silencing tactic.

I feel like you're saying, "Yes, it is always unacceptable to suggest that somebody's perception of oppression is an overreaction or misinterpretation." Or alternatively, "It is impossible for somebody's perception of oppression to be unfounded."

I guess that's what bothers me, personally, about a lot of the oppression discussions I've seen in s_d. If the message were tweaked even a little bit I'd be totally down with it. Something more like: "Even if you think somebody's perception of oppression is unfounded, you are discouraged from saying so because we want oppressed people to feel comfortable talking about their experiences." I could really get behind that idea.
kingrockwell: he's a sexy (Steve Rogers)

Re: he shouldn't have said that

[personal profile] kingrockwell 2010-06-14 01:16 am (UTC)(link)
I mean, is it really so hard to share your opinion without invalidating the feelings of others? Why should the initial reaction be that their perceptions are unfounded?
steve_dash_o: (Default)

Re: he shouldn't have said that

[personal profile] steve_dash_o 2010-06-14 02:17 am (UTC)(link)
Sometimes, I think it *can* be hard to share your opinion without potentially invalidating somebody's feelings. Especially when it comes to emotionally charged subjects. That's one of the reasons they're so difficult and scary to talk about.

And, I'm trying to speak more broadly now rather than referring to the question I asked in my first post about this particular debate. But... isn't it possible to carefully consider somebody's feelings and still think that they're unfounded? People often shoot off the first thing that pops into their head, you're right. There are a lot of "initial reactions" on the Internet phrased in very certain tones. But, sometimes even after sleeping on it and reading up on background... people can still disagree.

To pick a deliberately extreme case -- I have a couple friends who have some social paranoia. It's important that they feel safe talking about their fears ("She hates me, doesn't she?"), but it's also okay to tell them, "You know, what you're seeing isn't really there. I think they just meant [X] by that, you don't need to feel bad about it."

(Note: I called that a deliberately extreme case. By no means am I saying that feelings of oppression are akin to delusion or the result of mental illness. I just wanted to point out that, in principle, it's possible for such feelings to be unjustified.)

Anyway, I've already made more comments in this thread than I really intended to, so I will leave it be. Thanks for listening to my concerns, even you disagree with me.