A guy on Twitter yesterday asked me if Stephen Wacker, a Marvel comics editor, was taking a shot at me in the Daredevil 13 letters page. I didn’t know what he was talking about, so I got a friend to send me the image. He titled the email “Day ruined.” He was right! ‘cause dude did, indeed, take a shot at me in a comic book published by Marvel. We got into a thing a few months back, directly before my bike accident. You can see it here, here, here, and here and come to your own conclusions. But I guess now he’s trying to make me famous.
It actually was the cherry on top of a pretty frustrating day. Not the insult, mind you. “Viva Brothers” is pass-agg slick dissing, and it’s nowhere near as harsh as, say, “More in Carmen.” It’s not even “Now that’s 50 porch monkeys ate up at the same time.” It’s nothing, really, a victory lap from a dude who thinks he deserves one but doesn’t realize that he already lost. My problem had more to do with my reaction to being dissed yet again by this guy. Part of me wanted to relapse and put him on blast like it was high school all over again. Scream on him in the streets, yell at my friends to hold me back son hold me back, whatever whatever. The other part of me, the part that’s twenty-eight years old and fed up with comics, knows better. So I’m left wanting to put that aggression out there and ruin his day, but having to keep that all internalized because then I’d be doing exactly what this guy wants. It made me feel like a soft batch, like I fell off or something.
Instead, I went home, played some video games, took a nap, woke up, and watched Eagleheart. (It was about Hollywood and pretty funny, especially Maria Thayer’s arc.) That gave me time to think about why this guy’s words hit me like they did. I think it’s because I hate company men and shills. They’re scum, every single one of them. It put me in mind of that Aesop Rock song “9-5ers Anthem”: “Trying to guard the fortress of a king they’ve never seen or met/ But all are trained to murder at the first sign of a threat.”
I’ve recognized a few company men (which includes both men and women, I figure) while being a part of the comics internet, but I’ve rarely had to deal with them directly interfering with me. I had such an adverse reaction to two words because I loathe the type of person this guy is, and I hate the idea that I’m going to look soft if I don’t answer back. But: answering back would make me look like the exact type of screaming douchebag fan I don’t like, and give him more ammo to come at me at a later date. He got me, and he got me good, but not for the reasons he probably thinks.
But: I’m not the guy who works for a dude who is not just a liar, but a bad one. I don’t have to defend a company run by a douchebag billionaire. I don’t work for a company that lays off employees the weekend after they make a billion dollars desecrating the corpses of the people who made the company what it is today. I don’t feel so bad about my job that I have to attack people who have perfectly reasonable concerns about books they love.
My office has more than one bathroom.
Vaya con Dios, Stephen.