A Marvel executive has come to the defense of the company's new editor-in-chief, C.B. Cebulski, following the revelation that he had written comics for several months under the Japanese pseudonym Akira Yoshida in the mid-2000s.
Marvel’s director of content and character development, Sana Amanat -- the co-creator of Marvel’s first major Muslim superhero, Ms. Marvel -- spoke out in support of Cebulski in a new interview with Channel NewsAsia.
“That man has lived in Japan, speaks Japanese, and has lived all over the world,” she told the outlet. “He very much associates with Japanese culture. And I think that him writing, for whatever time it was, was him trying to be a writer more than anything else.”
The initial news prompted some to accuse Cebulski, a white American man, of using "yellowface" and "cultural appropriation" to further his career. Cebulski chose the pen name as a way to circumvent Marvel’s policy of disallowing employees to write or draw comic books for the company, as he was an associate editor at the time.
Amanat, who is Pakistani-American, added that Cebulski is “one of my favorite people,” as well as being “one of the most globally minded, and very culturally sensitive [people].”
There has yet to be an official statement made from Marvel.
Cebulski admitted the pseudonym himself to Rich Johnston of Bleeding Cool News earlier this week, explaining that using the guise of Yoshida helped Cebulski grow as a writer. His statement read:
“I stopped writing under the pseudonym Akira Yoshida after about a year. It wasn’t transparent, but it taught me a lot about writing, communication, and pressure. I was young and naïve and had a lot to learn back then. But this is all old news that has been dealt with, and now as Marvel’s new Editor-in-Chief, I’m turning a new page and am excited to start sharing all my Marvel experiences with up and coming talent around the globe.”
What do you think of Amanat’s statement in Cebulski's defense? Let us know in the comment section below.