Let’s talk about some trailers: Ender’s Game, The World’s End, and True Blood Season 6.
This is probably one of my most controversial videos to date because, in it, I discuss the buzz surrounding Orson Scott Card (the author of the original Ender’s Game novel) and his very public homophobic remarks. As I stated on camera, I’m still not sure whether I’ll go see the movie or not. Although I enjoyed the book and the movie looks like it’ll be great, I don’t really feel like dishing out cash for a movie ticket when I know some of that money may line the pockets of a man who has equated homosexuality to mental illness, stated that homosexuals are genetically inferior and supported sodomy laws to discourage a sexual orientation.
Here are some direct quotes from YouTube in support of watching the film and my counterarguments:
- “Come to me when he says we got to put them into re education camps or says anything active rather than just moral condescension. This is on the level of an old man wrinkling his nose.”
Sure, Card’s statements are “mild” in comparison with, say, the Westboro Baptist Church’s view on homosexuality. Does that really excuse his behavior, though? Is it now okay to make such statements against a group of people just because they’re mild against the extreme? I don’t think it is.
- “If Ender’s Game is a well crafted movie/book then it should be enjoyed on it’s merit. Mark Twain was an atheist. Andre Norton turned out to be a “gasp* woman writing sci fi. The man who created Wonder Woman lived with his wife and mistress and was into bondage. This isn’t new.”
Part of me agrees with this, part of me doesn’t. Controversy over an artist’s personal life isn’t a new thing, true, but that doesn’t make the issue excusable either. I don’t really equate atheism or being a woman or cheating on your wife (a very personal issue) with purposefully going out of your way to define a specific group of persons as inherently abnormal and undeserving of the same rights as everyone else… because of their sexual orientation. To clarify, Card is also a member of the board for anti-gay lobby The National Organization for Marriage. Those past creators might have done things that pissed some people off, but they didn’t essentially aim to criminalize a significant portion of humanity.
- “I will likely see this film as EG doesn’t advocate his social politics. It should be noted that Hollywood doesn’t typically pay authors from film revenue, so OSC has likely made all the money he ever will from this film. The world still listens to Wagner and his politics haven’t triumphed, so why would OSC be different?”
It could be true that Card won’t be getting any money from my movie ticket, and that’s comforting, but the principle of the thing still stands. When Card was hired by DC Comics to write a story for the Adventures of Superman anthology, the Internet exploded with the fury of a million comic book fans and even retailers threatening to boycott it. The backlash was so strong that the artist working on Card’s story quit the project, and DC ended up publishing the anthology with Card’s story omitted. Presumably, Card was paid for his time and work despite fans’ reactions, so why did people bother to boycott? Because they didn’t agree with his politics and they wanted to make the issue known. They wanted to bring attention to his remarks and make it perfectly clear that they didn’t want him supported in the future.
In terms of Ender’s Game advocating Card’s politics, the original novel does, indeed, do so. Obviously the movie will likely leave out the pro-heteronormative undertones but, as a friend of mine said today, “an artist’s work always reflects him in some way. And if it doesn’t, then he’s no artist.”
- “I personally could care less what this guys view is on life. To make a decision on not supporting a movie because of 1 persons view of the many that work so hard to make the movie happen will not only effect his wallet but the innocent others as well.”
This is something that I bring up in the video and probably the only point that keeps me on the fence about watching the movie. Another friend said it boils down to this: am I willing to sacrifice the success of a(n admittedly) wonderful tale and fledgling actors’ careers just to make sure a studio never buys from a bigot again? I’m still weighing the pros and cons. I certainly won’t judge anyone who chooses to see the film but, for me, it’s a difficult decision that I need more time to make.
Edit: I found an interesting article that mirrors my sentiments. The author seems to lean the other way but concludes, like I do, that Card is a talented writer despite his bigotry. He suggests that if you really want to read his works, borrow a copy of Ender’s Game from your local library. What’s the legal equivalent for movies? Borrowing a friend’s DVD?
Free Comic Book Day 2013 is over! I chronicled my adventures in a silly little video. Enjoy!
I ran into the folks from Wayward Raven during Free Comic Book Day! They’re offering free digital comic downloads until Monday afternoon, so you should check ‘em out.
What’s the deal behind the new preview for Thor 2: The Dark World? Who’s the bad guy? And what have they done with Loki’s hair?! Let’s talk, y’all.
New video up on YouTube! I discuss Beast from the new X-Men movie, Jersey Shore for nerds, CONsent, LGBT in comics and… Mewthree?
T.S. Hullabaloo wants YOU!
My best friend is the mastermind behind this project and I’m really, really excited about it. Follow him to get updates about the children’s book in progress!