informationgeek: (lyra)
[personal profile] informationgeek posting in [community profile] scans_daily
So... this is a thing that happened recently that's... rather unfortunate.

This is a complicated story, so I'll be quoting Bleeding Cool on this, who broke the story after it started making the rounds. Feel free to read the story here.

In Indonesia, 212 is the number used to denote a specific mass protest from 2nd December last year. Hundreds of thousands of Muslims marched against the Christian governor of Jakarta, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, known as Ahok,, over allegations of blasphemy regarding his use of the Qu’ran in campaigning against opponents. The march was organised, in part, with the National Movement to Safeguard the Indonesian Ulema Council’s Fatwa. It was pretty hardline conservative and the protest demanded the government prosecute and jail Ahok based on the council’s fatwa, declaring him to be a blasphemer. This year, a 212 2.0 march with similar aims was held on the 21st of February.

Ahok caused a great deal of controversy in Indonesia after he referred to a verse in the Qur’an while campaigning, specifically the verse Al Maidah 5: 51 and said that people should not believe Islamic leaders who claim it forbids Muslims from being led by non-Muslims. He has since repeatedly apologised for his statements, but it hasn’t stemmed the protest.

The verse translates into English as “O you who have believed, do not take the Jews and the Christians as allies. They are, in fact, allies of one another. And whoever is an ally to them among you – then indeed, he is one of them. Indeed, Allah guides not the wrongdoing people.”

A more common Indonesian translation of the verse, however, states that “Muslims should not appoint the Jews and Christians as their leader”. So. What has this to do with comic books?

The number 212 and 51 appears in a scene of X-Men Gold #1 by Indonesian artist Ardian Syaf, published last Wednesday, with comic book character Kitty Pryde addressing the crowd. Let’s zoom in.


That would be the Jewish character Kitty Pryde, in a scene talking about being the new leader of the X-Men.

The X-Men were created in the sixties by Jewish creators Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, in a comic written by Marc Guggenheim, raised Jewish.

Later in the comic, on Colossus’ shirt, we see the letters and numbers QS 5:51 referring to that verse. QS stands for Qur’an Surah, with Surah meaning chapter.


And then it spirals out from there, further digging discovering that Syaf did something back during his Batgirl run. Either way, it is a mess and Marvel has commented on it:

The mentioned artwork in X-Men Gold #1 was inserted without knowledge behind its reported meanings. These implied references do not reflect the views of the writer, editors or anyone else at Marvel and are in direct opposition of the inclusiveness of Marvel Comics and what the X-Men have stood for since their creation. This artwork will be removed from subsequent printings, digital versions, and trade paperbacks and disciplinary action is being taken.

Yeah... I just... I got nothing on all of this. Any thoughts from you guys?

Date: 2017-04-09 04:05 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] zachbeacon
Good thing Ike Perlmutter, Marvel's Jewish CEO, doesn't hold grudges.

Date: 2017-04-09 04:08 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] zachbeacon
Also Collosus is a weird vehicle to use to spread religious intolerance; isn't he an atheist?

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From: [personal profile] icon_uk - Date: 2017-04-09 10:59 pm (UTC) - Expand

Date: 2017-04-09 04:28 pm (UTC)
janegray: (Default)
From: [personal profile] janegray
Using the X-Men of all things to actively promote discrimination, oppression and violence in real life.

I got plenty to say, but it would break the rules of the community.

Some articles I've seen mention that Ahok became very popular among the people, despite following a different religion in an extremely religious and conservative country, because he is highly principled and honestly fights institutional corruption. The articles also mention that the videos that turned the people against him had beem edited. Assuming those articles are correct (I have no idea, could be just propaganda), it sounds to me like corrupt leaders are exploiting religion to get rid of the inconvenient guy that won't shut up and take bribes.

Date: 2017-04-09 04:39 pm (UTC)
fairestcat: Dreadful the cat (Default)
From: [personal profile] fairestcat
Wow. That's I actually feel sorry for Marvel over this one. Unlike most other recent Marvel controversies, there's no way they could have seen this coming, and on a Sunday no less. I bet a lot of people are losing their day off about now.

Date: 2017-04-09 04:41 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] gtrout
G. Willow Wilson's post on all this is a useful and insightful read on the text Syaf is referencing (and why it's being misrepresented in Indonesia for political purposes, and why the English translation we're seeing around is even worse).

Date: 2017-04-09 09:55 pm (UTC)
cyberghostface: (Default)
From: [personal profile] cyberghostface
Wonder why she felt the need to slam Charlie Hebdo like that.

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Date: 2017-04-09 04:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
While I understand that there is rarely logic to bigots, I'd think that there would at least be some common sense.

The guy who drew this had to know that thousands would see his art. Did he really think not a single person would recognize his crap?

Date: 2017-04-09 05:51 pm (UTC)
miramira: book stack (Default)
From: [personal profile] miramira
Guess he figured any publicity for the cause was good publicity. He doesn't seem to be trying to hide it in the Bleeding Cool screencaps.

More likely

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Date: 2017-04-10 01:45 am (UTC)
zylly: (Default)
From: [personal profile] zylly
Honestly, when things like this pop up, I'm always surprised they get noticed at all. Unless it's a book like one of the Transformers titles, where I'm constantly scanning for cameos, I rarely pay attention to the background details like here, or the logos on characters clothes. Or at best, I'd go, "Huh. Wonder what that's supposed to mean?" But I probably wouldn't bother to look it up.

Guess there's people out there giving these things a lot more scrutiny.

Date: 2017-04-09 05:00 pm (UTC)
superboyprime: (Default)
From: [personal profile] superboyprime
So... have any of the rest of the creative team actually apologized yet? Because I don't see an actual apology in that official comment. Or are they just going to sit back and put all the blame on the penciler?

Don't get me wrong, he's the one who holds most of the fault here obviously, but the rest of the team saw the art and either didn't catch it or didn't care. And that's all on them.

Date: 2017-04-09 05:26 pm (UTC)
bizarrohulk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] bizarrohulk
Apologise for what, exactly? For not having an in-depth knowledge of Indonesian politics? For trusting a colleague?

They're putting the blame on Ardian Syaf because it *was* entirely his fault. He's the only one who should be apologising here. Pretty sure he won't, though.

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From: [personal profile] chortles81
I can absolutely believe that the rest of the team and editorial completely missed its significance or mistook it for a personal in-joke with an entirely different context (either way "didn't catch it").

Date: 2017-04-09 05:17 pm (UTC)
spider_man6: (Default)
From: [personal profile] spider_man6
I can't believe this. We get a great new X-Men book, and the artist has to do something like this. I love his art!
I really hope this doesn't become like Rat Queens. Marvel has enough controversies on its plate as it is.

Date: 2017-04-09 06:02 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] astrakhan42
I'm curious to see how they proceed and how much Syaf has drawn so far. I think they might switch over to Kris Anka, who's not only very fast at pencilling, but he's drawn X-books for a while and knows his way around the characters.

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Date: 2017-04-10 02:20 pm (UTC)
lascoden: Anarky (Default)
From: [personal profile] lascoden
What happened with Rat Queens?

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Date: 2017-04-09 05:18 pm (UTC)
tugrul: That Chest (Default)
From: [personal profile] tugrul
I am disgusted, appalled. My stomach turns. This tells people a long-time artist, that is muslim, apparently can't be trusted. This will hurt so many I am afraid. I could almost cry. I just want to throw up. This is an outrage.

Date: 2017-04-09 07:32 pm (UTC)
fairestcat: Dreadful the cat (Default)
From: [personal profile] fairestcat
Yeah, I really don't recommend looking at #xmengold on twitter. There's a distressing amount of anti-Muslim stupidity.

Date: 2017-04-09 09:34 pm (UTC)
leoboiko: manga-style picture of a female-identified person with long hair, face not drawn, putting on a Japanese fox-spirit max (Default)
From: [personal profile] leoboiko
Hey, wait a minute: you telling me that Syaf is an islamic bigot? Not an islamophobic bigot? Because I was about to pitch in and stand with Muslims against this obvious anti-slam propaganda. And it was supposed to be pro-Islam propaganda?

I mean, look at that scene. There's Kitty Pride the Jew. She's like, you know, the hero? The protagonist? Entire story revolves around her, adopts her point of view and so on? It's a tale of her leadership, bravely standing against the bigotry of irrational Marvel civilians. And as all of you know, Marvel civilians happen to be the most unlikeable characters in the history of the medium. And they're irrational, ungrateful, exasperating Mutant-haters… in a book called "X-men". They're the villains. And not even the cool, sexy scary villains. They're the weak, scared, boring background mob of petty antagonism.

And this guy thought he was painting some sort of covert, brave Muslim resistance by associating those characters with the Muslim protest? Did he even stop to think about the implications of his own propaganda? Or have the numbers "212" and "551" merely become the Indonesia-Islamic equivalent of "420 blaze it", just an empty token of group alliance to be spammed anywhere, devoid of rhyme or reason?

Date: 2017-04-10 01:01 am (UTC)
lilacsigil: 12 Apostles rocks, text "Rock On" (12 Apostles)
From: [personal profile] lilacsigil
Yeah, I think that's exactly it. The situation in Indonesia is basically "everyone pile on Ahok" so his political rivals are jumping on this movement even when they're only lip-service pious themselves - Indonesia has a huge range of Islamic practice - because they see it to their own advantage. So he's not particularly using this to make a point so much as go "lol in-group represent". Which is still gross and stupid and bigoted, don't get me wrong, but what a stupid thing to burn your career over.

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Date: 2017-04-10 03:10 am (UTC)
sarahnewlin: (Default)
From: [personal profile] sarahnewlin
isnt he also gay?

Date: 2017-04-09 10:08 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] gnarll
I though the Terrax fight was uninspiring. Last time the X-Men tried to take on a Herald of Galactus, Firelord schooled them in less than a minute. Took Phoenix to take him down.

And Prestige just... doesn't feel like Rachel.

New York City seems to have lucked out if the X-Men actually pay up though. After Utopia, Atillan, Olympus, Broxton etc and probably others I forget, it seems there are some extensive legal precedent for superhumans just seizing domain from exisitng nation-states.

The Indonesian thing... I'm sorry I'm temporarily out of the emotional capacity to care about this.

Date: 2017-04-09 11:48 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] astrakhan42
Maybe Krakoa Jr. is still making those diamond trees and that's how they'll pay up.

Date: 2017-04-10 09:40 am (UTC)
mastermahan: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mastermahan
Apparently Logan's claws can cut an weapon created by Galactus. Even with Terrax's jobber history, that was surprising.

Mod Note!

Date: 2017-04-09 11:05 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: Mod Squad icon (Mod Squad)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
Thank you for posting this, I was still putting the text of my version together.

I will note, in my Modly capacity, that though four pages of this issue have been posted, we will make a VERY rare exception in this particular case, as it is calling out deeply problematic material (using only the scans which relate to it), which is something scans_daily supports.
Edited Date: 2017-04-10 12:13 pm (UTC)

Date: 2017-04-10 05:48 pm (UTC)
starwolf_oakley: (Default)
From: [personal profile] starwolf_oakley
Given the "Brian Bendis/Kitty Pryde harshly responds to Rick Remender's/Alex Summers' M-word speech" page, I expect we will get an "in-universe" response to this.


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