Superman and DC Comics sure are getting themselves into trouble lately. First it was Supes denouncing his U.S. citizenship, then it was DC rebooting his character, and now two little letters have the Man of Steel and writer Grant Morrison under fire—GD.
This past Wednesday saw the release of Grant Morrison's Action Comics #1, which promised to tell a brand-new origin story for Superman. Upon reading the issue, the owner of North Carolina brick and mortar store, the Comics Conspiracy, was mortified when he discovered what he thought was Superman taking the Lord's name in vain. (That's the offending panel above.)
The owner assumed that the letters "GD" were short for "God Damn", a phrase he feels should never be uttered by Superman. Not only that, but he feels such a sentiment would go against the desires of the men who created the character. He took his thoughts to Facebook and began a Grant Morrison boycott.
Let's hope the old adage "There's no such thing as bad publicity" holds true, because the response from comic readers and creators was overwhelmingly negative. In addition to the boycott, the TCC owner also referred to Morrison as a "Scottish schmuck," which didn't exactly earn him any allies in his crusade.
No matter how anyone may have felt, however, the big question became—Would Grant Morrison respond to the allegation? Thankfully, he did.
On DCU's site, The Source, Morrison said:
"It should go without saying that the offending panel and caption, a mere 'GD', is a sound effect grunt—to suggest Superman's breath being forced through gritted teeth—much like 'DHH', 'GNUHH' or the many others used throughout this book and in general in the comics business. It's not in any way representative of God or a curse."
There you have it. It was a sound effect and nothing more. The owner of TCC did go on to apologize, saying, "Thank you Grant Morrison. The boycott is lifted. Once again my apologies to Grant for the unwarranted name calling. Thank you to those who supported my stance. To those who didn't ... I respect your opinions. To those who only posted to bash Christians and people with opinions different from yours ... grow up and get a life."
Isn't there a larger question here, though? Surely we cannot forget the many works of speculative fiction that have analyzed religion and its effect on fictional narratives in our culture. For all the many acts of violence portrayed in comics, films, television and videogames—where do we draw the line? Why is decapitation perfectly saleable but "GD"—even if it HAD meant what the TCC owner thought it meant—creates a boycott?
What do you think?
(via Bleeding Cool)