Robot 6

Liefeld ‘can’t wait to someday undo’ Shatterstar development

From X-Factor #45

From X-Factor #45

Rob Liefeld isn’t happy about the latest plot development involving Shatterstar, the Marvel superhero he introduced 18 years ago.

Last week’s X-Factor #45 ended years of speculation, and in-story hints, about the relationship between Shatterstar and Rictor by showing the former X-Force teammates — both C-list players in the X-Men universe — reuniting with a kiss.

On his blog, X-Factor writer Peter David assured fans the development “isn’t a fake out.”

Liefeld, however, wishes otherwise.

“… I have nothing against gays, I have gay family, nuthin’ but love here,” he wrote on his message board (registration required). “Ditto gay characters if that’s what their true origins are.

“As the guy that created, designed and wrote his first dozen appearances, Shatterstar is not gay. Sorry. Can’t wait to someday undo this. Seems totally contrived.”

Created by Liefeld and Fabian Nicieza, Shatterstar debuted in New Mutants #99 (March 1991) before becoming a fixture of X-Force when the series launched a few months later.

Like Cable before him, Shatterstar was the quintessential early-’90s Marvel — and Liefeld — superhero. Wearing shoulder pads and countless pouches and wielding an oversized sword, Shatterstar was a genetically engineered warrior from another dimension. With a flowing rattail.

He initially was depicted as asexual, and struggling to understand human behavior. What he wasn’t, Liefeld insists, is gay.

When a forum member pointed out that other writers continued to flesh out the character after Liefeld left Marvel — some even dropped apparent clues about his sexuality and his relationship with Rictor — Liefeld responded: “Your opinion doesn’t change the fact that it sucks and it’s not a positive move in most fans’ eyes. And it’s all well and fine that you don’t respect a creator’s wishes or intent. I’m different like that.”

Later he added, “Shatterstar is akin to Maximus in Gladiator. He’s a warrior, a Spartan, and not a gay one.”

(via Andrew Wheeler)

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321 Comments

And as usual.. Rob Liefeld remains the joke of the Comicbook industry
I’m a lot more interested in what Fabian Nicieza (who still gets work!) has to say

He’s not anti-gay, he’s anti-good-story and anti-change. What a maroon!

Gee, Rob, if the character was so important to you, maybe you should have stayed at Marvel instead of leaving him in the hands of other writers.

Someone should break it to him about Cable and Deadpool and the lotion thing. Oh dear, what a backbirth

Matthew E: when you say “Other writers” you are implying that Rod is a writer…
he may have put words in word balloons a few times, but calling him a “writer” is quite a stretch

“Can’t wait to someday undo this”

God that is so arrogant too. You know, you start seeing Liefeld as a bit of a parody after a while, and you start thining ‘hey maybe this guy isn’t so bad. He can’t draw and he knows it, but that’s never stopped him. Admirable almost, that he’s so comfortable being an industry in-joke’

And then oh no wait he really is that guy he really is Rob Liefeld and he really thinks characters like Deadpool are popular because of /his/ contribution, rather than in spite of.

How arrogant. How deluded. How completely unsporting and childish of him to assume his word comes before the countless other writers who’ve embelished the characters into what they are today.

Despite the protests to the contrary, this reaction seems a bit homophobic. Hard to tell where “that’s not the way the character is supposed to be portrayed” ends and “Yuck! You made my guy GAY!” begins… this is one of those times Mr. Liefield might have been better served by silence…

Rictor and Shatterstar are gay and their romance has to there, I´m not gay but I support that and its development, great move PAD, that´s why you´are a great writer.

Later he added, “Shatterstar is akin to Maximus in Gladiator. He’s a warrior, a Spartan, and not a gay one.”

Stereotypes aside, as I understand things, “gay” as a concept wouldn’t have existed in Gladiator times–but homosexual sex certainly happened, and I doubt Maximus would have thought twice about it if the urge took him.

He does realize that ‘Shatterstar’ isn’t his character, right? Just because he created him, doesn’t mean he owns him. It’s Marvels toy, and perhaps he should show a bit of respect for his current and future caretakers.

Also, someone who is “asexual” but interested in human behaviour might well engage in gay relationships–I haven’t yet seen the issue and don’t know these characters well, but it does not seem to me unreasonable that Shatterstar could be “not gay” but “not straight,” either. Rather like Captain Jack Harkness in Torchwood, maybe Shatterstar’s just beyond the need to restrict himself.

“He’s a warrior, a Spartan, and not a gay one”.

Obviously doesn’t know the first thing about Sparta, same-sex relationships were part of the agoge, the Spartan training program.

“He’s a warrior, a spartan, and not a gay one”…

Oh Rob Liefield…how you betray your ignorance of history…and your general dumb ass-ery.

I agree with Liefeld that this seems totally contrived. I like old characters returning, especially ones abused by that awful mini that Liefeld used Shatterstar in a few years back, but this isn’t good writing now. PAD has Rictor being totally useless to any of the plotlines so in order to make him a bigger part of the story and tie it altogether, he has Shatterstar become gay as well and then a kiss follows.

It could just be that Shatterstar is pansexual, but at the same time…

Really, Liefeld? Really? You’re throwing a hissy fit over this? Dude, if you didn’t want people to move your characters forward, you should a) have never created them; b) killed them off when you left or c) said something about them having no sexual organs of which to speak or use so that stuff like this wouldn’t happen and you wouldn’t, you know, seem like the joke you suddenly do.

I’d suggest a boycott of his comics but in all honesty, does anybody actually read them?

I’d like to know who these “most fans” are who aren’t in favor of this development. I’ve seen mostly praise for it. Or indifference.

I wonder how he feels about the new character design…

There’s been a lot of other changes to Liefeld’s X-characters since he created them (or as you might say, a lot of previously-lacking depth and life has been added to them). Has Rob ever felt the need to speak out against those?

Good point, Niels. I’ve never heard Rob complain about, for example, Cable being the son of Cyclops and Madelyne Pryor.

That was the single most ridiculous and hyprocritical thing I’ve heard a creator say. Shatterstar’s development has come a HELL of a long way since those first dozen appearances, and he would not be the least bit interesting if it hadn’t.

Screw you, Liefeld, and your bigotry. Call it whatever the hell you want, but that doesn’t change what it is. Grow the hell up already.

What does being a warrior have to do with being gay? Why can’t you be both? Or are gay men only qualified to be hairdressers or interior designers?

A pretty pathetic excuse for homophobia and an even more juvenile frustration that a character he envisioned as his own Mary Sue is now gay, which, ergo would make him gay.

What an insecure baby.

Just when you think you can’t dislike Liefeld more he comes out with this. Saying you have gay family members does not take away from the homophobic and ignorant comments you have toward this Statterstar development.

Hah! I’m the board member referenced. I’m glad to see that other people agree, because everyone on there sides almost blindly together on any issue.

I understand that some parents have the same reaction. They were responsible for their children’s first appearances and, when informed of their sexual persuasion, firmly declare it’s impossible, they can’t be gay.

I find particularly distressing Rob’s contention that Shatterstar can’t possibly be gay because he’s a warrior. That might come as a bit of a shock to Alexander the Great. For that matter, among his assortment of gay friends, I suppose Rob has none in the military since of course gays aren’t allowed to serve unless they keep their mouths shut. Perhaps Rob would like to see “don’t ask, don’t tell” implemented in the Marvel universe.

PAD

You guys are talking about the guy who made a career of drawing women with rocket-tits and waist-sized thighs (or is it thigh-sized waists?). What did you expect from him?

Heh. Aheheh. Ahaha. Hahahahah. HahahahahAHAHAHAHAHAH.

Ahem.

“You guys are talking about the guy who made a career of drawing women with rocket-tits and waist-sized thighs (or is it thigh-sized waists?). What did you expect from him?”

Rob Liefeld, despite the many (many many) problems I have with his art, tends to come across as a likable fellow with great enthusiasm for comics–an opinion I’ve also heard from other creators. What did I expect? Better, quite frankly.

Consarnit, people! Why are we all focusing on BS like whether or not Shatterstar is gay when recent issues of X-Factor have left us with a way more important question – where the hell did Shatterstar’s ponytail and headgear go? Where? WHERE? WHEEEEEEERE!?

And yes, seriously, that was the immediate concern I had when I read the issues. It just doesn’t seem right for him to go without them. As a fan of 90′s X-Mania, it’s hard for me to see one of the finer examples of X-TREMEness get toned down so much.

In a related note, wasn’t Rictor mackin’ on Rahne earlier in the series? Or am I misremembering?

No, you’re not misremembering, and don’t think that won’t be addressed.

PAD

“I understand that some parents have the same reaction. They were responsible for their children’s first appearances and, when informed of their sexual persuasion, firmly declare it’s impossible, they can’t be gay.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bf6tJUYCpiI

What I want to know is what the hell happened with Longshot both saving that woman’s life and witnessing her death at the same time.

Was it arrogant that he said he couldn’t wait to “undo it”? Yes. Is he making a bigger deal than what it actually is? Yes.

Nevertheless… This guy isn’t outside your door marching with a sign, he merely stated his opinion on his own message board. Everyone is entitled to an opinion, particularly Rob who’s the guy that created Shatterstar. It’s his vision. Now because he never saw a character as gay and feels the kiss was forced, he’s a bigot, a nazi and a terrible human being?

Hello and welcome to uptight and ridiculously politically correct America. You people need to relax.

Speaking for myself, I’m pretty relaxed. Rob’s the one who seems rather heated up. I’m more amused than anything, Of all the changes and variations done to characters of Rob’s, homosexuality is where he draws the line? Nice to know where his priorities are, is all I’m saying. And not for nothin’, but only one person mentioned bigotry. No one else said “Nazi” or “terrible human being” until you.

PAD

destroythemeek

July 3, 2009 at 3:56 pm

I want to be offended, but then I remember this is the guy who created the Captain America image with the projecting chest.

God I hope Rob Liefeld comes over here and starts a shit-fit, that would be the fucking FUNNIEST.

Mysterious Stranger

July 3, 2009 at 4:16 pm

That’s like him getting pissed because someone drew Shatterstar with feet instead of those pointy arrowhead things he had when Rob drew him. And really, is it that much of a surprise that he’s gay? If that giant sword he had back in the day isn’t a phallic symbol I don’t know what is.

See? I can make a ridiculous argument too.

Euthanatos, I think there are a couple things going on here which come across as less than classy. (1) A creator essentially acting like his intentions should control a character long after he left the book (I wonder what Jack Kirby would have thought about Steve Rogers looking like this: http://grotesqueanatomy.blogspot.com/2004/05/now-thats-grotesque-anatomy.html) and (2) a creator singling out one character’s sexual orientation, out of the many ways many changes have been made to many characters over the years and THEN saying that it’s not about sexual orientation because he has gay friends. This isn’t “political correctness,” whatever that means, it’s pointing out the classlessness and hypocrisy of the guy’s public statements.

Also, “this guy is no gayer than the movie ‘Gladiator’” isn’t the most compelling argument I’ve ever heard.

“Also, “this guy is no gayer than the movie ‘Gladiator’” isn’t the most compelling argument I’ve ever heard.”

Am I the only one who has this going through his head?–

“Tell me Shatterstar…do you like gladiator movies?”

I should SO have Guido say that to him.

PAD

Rob Liefeld is being homophobic in his statement because he is implying that Shatterstar can’t or shouldn’t be gay and a tough warrior at the same time. Why is that?

Like Peter David said, there are gay warriors. There are thousands of gays in the military. Just recently some distinguished gay men such as Lt. Dan Choi and Lt. Colonel Victor Fehrenbach who kicked out of the military just because they are gay due to DADT.

There have always been homosexual warriors (just look up ancient Greece and Rome and even Samurai in Japan etc).

I wonder what Rob’s gay friends and family think about his idea that a badass warrior can’t be gay.

Shatterstar can be written just as tough as he always has been and be gay– just like Rictor can be written as tough as he always has been and be bisexual.

There are effeminate gay men but there are also hyper-masculine gay men. Not all straight men are very masculine either. Gay people are just as variable as straight people.

“Tell me Shatterstar…do you like gladiator movies?”

I should SO have Guido say that to him.

PLEASE DO.

That should read…

“Like Peter David said, there are gay warriors. There are thousands of gays in the military. Just recently some distinguished gay men such as Lt. Dan Choi and Lt. Colonel Victor Fehrenbach were kicked out of the military just because they are gay due to DADT.” These guys are tough, distinguished, and decorated.

Many nations (Canada, Israel, most of Europe) allow openly gay service members.

We have many gay service members but they can get kicked out if they admit to being gay or are discovered to being gay.

We have gay American warriors fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan right now! Our straight and gay soldiers are fighting alongside straight and gay soldiers from the other nations that are helping us out in those countries.

Also, how the hell do you undo a same-sex kiss? “The REAL, completely asexual Shatterstar was in a cocoon in the bottom of Jamaica Bay!”

Well, okay, yeah, that would totally happen in a Marvel comic.

“Also, how the hell do you undo a same-sex kiss?”

The gay Shatterstar is an imposter leftover from the Skrull Invasion who is not only delusional, but a clone of a clone of an exiled alien.

Meanwhile the real asexual one is off being a non-gay spartan and raging on his pointy, non-existent feet.

Obviously.

What about, “Rictor’s secretly a woman?” (Would it then be necessary to retcon Rahne’s lesbianism?)

No because being a lesbian is okay. No one ever bitches about their kisses.

Though Rictor being a woman in secret is just…hideous XD

Someone should tell Mister Liefeld that some of the Spartans WERE gay. Poor man, he’s in such denial…

Comic book controversy is fun. XD

Liefeld might be a crappy artist and an even crappier “writer”, but in this one case, I have to agree with him. If a writer wants more gay or bi characters in a comic, then he/she should either use existing gay/bi characters or create brand new gay/bi characters instead of turning established straight (or asexual) characters gay/bi.

And if Shatterstar is asexual, then he should have no interest in sex what so ever.

That all being said, PAD have both Northstar and Hector (from the Pantheon) join X-Factor and become a couple.

Rob Liefeld is an idiot. And I always hated his artwork. His opinion is as socially relevant as Youngblood was readable.

Unless you create a character and maintain the rights to it, you don’t have the option of saying another writers interpretation is wrong. Their is a rich subtext from previously published appearances of the character that supports PAD’s interpretation.

Liefeld may have created the character, but he created it FOR MARVEL. Whatever they publish is cannon for the character – get over it Rob.

Blade X– Shatterstar was hinted at being asexual but it was never established. They did hint that he was developing sexual feelings but was uneasy about it, as well. So he wasn’t going to stay asexual as he might have been.

He rejected the advances of several women and it was strongly hinted that he fell in love with Rictor. It was even hinted that they might have had a relationship. In one annual Rictor and Shatterstar refuse an offer to have separate bedrooms and spend the night together in the same bedroom with only one bed.

Shatterstar’s feelings toward Rictor were said to be “matters of the heart”.

In one issue when Shatterstar was upset about Rictor leaving he went to a club and rejected a woman’s advance and then went and stopped a gay bashing.

In one issue Shatterstar’s feelings toward Rictor was compared to Siryn’s feelings toward her love interest. In another issue Cable seemed to pick up on Shatterstar’s feelings toward Rictor.

There were a lot of hints and PAD is expanding the story in a very natural and organic way, imho.

Most likely Shatterstar is gay or mostly asexual but loves Rictor sexually and Rictor is bisexual.

As a gay man, I grew up collecting comics including X-Force and always felt like there was deep friendship between these two characters. I hadn’t bought a comic since the 90′s but after reading a blog about the new developments between Shatty and Rictor I found myself at the local comic book store dropping $$ on X-Factor and other X-men related titles. I have always loved Peter David’s writing even following him while he was on Supergirl and I am looking forward to seeing how this story will progress! Keep up the great work!

.
Rob Liefeld — the pinata everyone likes to whack.
.

Liefeld wrote: “And it’s all well and fine that you don’t respect a creator’s wishes or intent. I’m different like that.”

So Rob, when you butchered the likenesses of every Marvel character you “drew” and “wrote” the insipid dialogue that they said, how was that not disrespecting what the creator’s wishes and intents were?

Ethan Shuster

July 3, 2009 at 10:34 pm

Ya know, I know it’s fun and popular to bash these big 90′s artists, but they WERE popular and people DID like them. Some of the very people who now have changed their minds and decided they were awful. It’s kind of like people looking at old photos of them in outdated clothes that were fashionable at the time. You may think that looks terrible, bub, but you were the one wearing it! :)

Wasn’t this something that was hinted for a while now? I mean I remember it getting to the point where Shatterstar indirectly said that he loved Rictor. As my friend said “he said ‘double swords are awesome!!?>!?!?!” and drew some s***. I don’t think that gives him the needed gravitas to comment 20 years later.” Shatterstar just didn’t have a character with Rob.

Also, Northstar, even as a cameo, in X-factor would be awesome. Uncanny just isn’t doing him, and to be honest everyone else, justice.

The only thing that can really be said:

Cash your royalty check Rob and please be quiet.

y’know, i try not to slink into the liefield bashing, easy though it is, more out of respect for the fact that he (and others obviously) managed to keep marvel afloat in the early 90s that from respect for his abilities, but his arguement here is just idiotic… because he never never created (CO-created) the character to gay, it makes no sense? christ, has he read any comics since he drew them?

my only counter-arguement to this would be that only a gay man could have a rat-tail like ‘stars and STILL manage to be cool

Rob’s comments really seem to stem from some form of homophobia, even if he insists he has gay friends! and gay family!

Please.

If it wasn’t homophobic, I don’t see why after one-panel he’d be so quick to say it “sucks” and that “it’s not a positive move in most fans’ eyes”.

It would be as ludicrous as if I were to speak on behalf of most readers and say that, no, we don’t want Rob Liefield to ever come back to Marvel–whether to “undo” Shatterstar being gay or anything otherwise.

my only question is this. Rob, would you find it equally insulting if he were to kiss a chick? Because seeing as how he’s asexual I would say that would have to be equally as terrible. It would have to be. and all you people talking about how terrible this is….would you have the same problem? If not, then I hear there is an opening at the zoo loading up the Hippo Crates.

Patent Dragon

July 4, 2009 at 9:35 am

Hey, didn’t Shatterstar have a female mate, back-in-the-day? Someone he left behind in his native universe – Windsong, or something like that…?

As far as Liefeld is concerned, all he now has to do is say he’ll support anyone England are playing against, and his damnation is complete…

Patent Dragon

July 4, 2009 at 9:37 am

Ah, here we go…

http://www.marveldirectory.com/individuals/s/shatterstar.htm

Quote: “Shatterstar learned the arts of battle as a warrior in arenas on Mojoworld, where he was forced to participate in combats staged for Mojo’s television programs. Eventually, however, he escaped and became a rebel and joined the Cadre Alliance that sought to overthrow Mojo’s dictatorship. At some point he married his wife Windsong, who later died. ”

Thought so. Doesn’t necessarily invalidate anything, mind.

Some of the most infamous warriors and military groups in history accepted homosexuality; from the Sacred Band of Thebes, to Alexander the Great and his closest advisors, to the Bushido samurai in Edo period Japan.

And despite Frank Miller’s attempt to mock homosexuality among Athen culture in ’300′, the Fleet of Athens is what pushed back the Persians and allowed Leonidus and his Spartans their moment in history.

Even the most famous warrior, Achilles, widely argued to have an intimate relationship with his companion Patroclus. Either way, being gay would not exclude one’s battle capability. And why would it matter to an alien character not concerned or familiar with human labels and compartmentalization of individuals?

“Even the most famous warrior, Achilles, widely argued to have an intimate relationship with his companion Patroclus.”

Not to mention Heracles, who had a thing for young boys.

Which would explain Amadeus Cho…

PAD

I’d read that.

“At some point he married his wife Windsong, who later died. ””

Windsong was Shatterstar’s Katie Holmes. ;)

““Shatterstar learned the arts of battle as a warrior in arenas on Mojoworld, where he was forced to participate in combats staged for Mojo’s television programs. Eventually, however, he escaped and became a rebel and joined the Cadre Alliance that sought to overthrow Mojo’s dictatorship. At some point he married his wife Windsong, who later died. ”

Right. From X-Force 30. Where ‘Star subsequently states (to Adam X) “On my world, I should warn you the connotation is quite different than it is here.” And points out that she’s just a predetermined genetic match and that their DNA would have been used to breed future warriors for the arena. So it *really* doesn’t prove anything.

Um…saying the characters sexual orientation was intended to be homosexual does not make the guy a bigot.

Unless there is alot more written somewhere that hasn’t been quoted in this particular blog report I’m really not understanding Peter David’s interpretation of Rob’s comments in this thread other than to get people who don’t like Liefeld foaming at the mouth claiming he’s a bigot.

@Tom: No, that statement alone wouldn’t make Rob a bigot.

However, the point is that Rob didn’t say anything about other changes. He didn’t complain when Cable became Scott and Jean’s son. He didn’t speak out when Cable and Domino broke up. He didn’t say anything bad when Deadpool started working to become a nicer guy.

No, it’s only now, that Shatterstar is gay, that he’s saying something. If he has trouble with people going against his designs, all the things above should have bothered him. Yet they didn’t, or at least, he didn’t say anything quite so strong as “it sucks” or that it was “totally contrived”. Hell, on the topic of Shatterstar’s sexuality, Liefeld apparently made him to be asexual. So why wasn’t he bothered when Shatty first got felt up by a girl and apparently liked it in the X-Force run?

I do think that the comments were unpointed enough that an apology and an explanation about how he didn’t REALLY mean that gay men can’t be warriors would be enough to get him forgiven at this point. But the comments he’s made have been suspicious and on the borderline of offensive, so he needs to tread carefully.

BTW, I personally think it’s pretty funny that Liefeld doesn’t think Star is gay, because everything about his run on X-Force (and most other stuff he’s done) has been VERY gay, as was pointed out to me by a friend on another website. The bulging crotches, flowing hair, and abundance of phallic weaponry made the whole series look more like gay porn than anything else.

The problem was that it sounded like he was basing it on stereotypes. He’s a warrior so he can’t be gay and using a Greek reference just made him sound incredibly ignorant. When anyone says they aren’t a bigot because they have gay family and friends, it’s just not looking good for them.

“It would be as ludicrous as if I were to speak on behalf of most readers and say that, no, we don’t want Rob Liefield to ever come back to Marvel–whether to “undo” Shatterstar being gay or anything otherwise.”

I don’t think it’s that far fetched. I’m not going to sugarcoat this. He was a horrible writer and an even worse artist. His art is and will always be a permanent eyesore and there was nothing that he wrote that was memorable. The man deserves no praise for any of his currently used characters because the only thing he did was make them. It took much better writers (and artists) to make them something great. Seriously he should be happy that they are even USING his characters.

Michiru- You can think turning a characters sexual orientation is a poor idea without being a bigot. Making a list of changes he didn’t dislike or at least wasn’t picked up by a blogger if he did voice disagreement with a direction is not an indictment of bigotry. We throw these labels around too freely. There are real bigots out there who say and do real hateful things. Saying he (rob) disagrees with the direction of the character and would undo it given the opportunity is not one of them. If I had a nickel for everytime a former writer said he would undo a change made by the new writer of a book…well, I’d have enough money to actually pay 3.99 for a comic. ;-)

Mekhet- From what I read there he did not say gay people could not be warriors. Peter said he said that. “he’s a warrior, a spartan, not a gay one” . Shatterstar singular from Rob’s point of view. He didn’t say gay people could not be warriors. That was someones interpretation of what Rob said to paint him as a bigot and I really think it’s uncalled for. I know people love to hate Liefeld for his work and it’s popularity in the early 90′s, that all in fun. This is not.

Again, only basing my observations on what i read above.

Regarding Hercules, at least in Athenian culture, it was considered a necessary part of life to take on a boy as a sidekick, to be taught how to become a man. This did sometimes involve sex, but didn’t have to. It was considered just as necessary to get married to a woman in order to continue your family line.

Classical arguments about it indicate that some people thought having to get married to a woman was beneath them, while others felt having sex with someone they were teaching involved wrongful prurience, as well as being painful for the bottom. But in any case, women were second class citizens and primary companionship for men was other men.

Insisting that Hercules’ squire/sidekicks had to be his lovers and his three or so marriages to be faked is a ridiculous bit of modern perception.

It was really the use of the word Spartan that made me think that. Bigoted was a mistake on my part. When anyone says something like I have *insert whatever here* friends, it comes across as justification for something. Not to mention that it was irrelevant in the overall message. It was fine that he thinks that way but it was just unnecessary and childish to add that he knew people who were homosexual.
I didn’t have fun reading or looking at his work. I really do think he should never get work again because he is a hack and I’m going to say it. He never created a decent thing in his life that didn’t need a complete revamp in order to be salvageable. It might sound nasty but it’s my experience with his work that has made me come to this opinion.

“Unless there is alot more written somewhere that hasn’t been quoted in this particular blog report I’m really not understanding Peter David’s interpretation of Rob’s comments in this thread other than to get people who don’t like Liefeld foaming at the mouth claiming he’s a bigot.”

Ohhhh no. No you don’t. You don’t get to fob this one off on me. The words “arrogant,” “Ignorant,” “bigoted” and “homophobic” were being bandied about before I said one word about any of it. And I haven’t indulged in any name calling. Others have but I haven’t. You don’t get to turn this into “Peter David is stirring up the fans against Rob Liefeld.” Rob is doing a fine job of that all by himself.

PAD

Here is my original quote in context is response to a question posed to me.

“?No way. Huh-uh. Marvel is not trying to ” serve me” in any way here. This is an editor and a writer pursuing a storyline. I assure you I was not considered, good, bad, indifferent.

I have way too many iron’s in the fire with Marvel.

Not an issue….Shatterstar is akin to Maximus in Gladiator. He’s a warrior, a Spartan, and not a gay one.”

What I love is how I have made 2 relatively mild comments about Shatterstar, 2 weeks and 10 days ago……but PAD tries to play me as angry. There is no outrage here.

Second, I love how the second part of my statement, “and not a gay one.” in regards to the Spartan comment, is completely ignored.

So not interested in furthering this nonsense with any additional comments.

I forgot to add, that anyone who knows me, anyone who has followed any of my statements about comics the last 10 years, knows that I have stated repeatedly, that The Authority is one of my favorite comics ever. Especially the Millar/Quietly stuff. Two gay characters as leads…..yeah, I’m a biggot how? No way.

Yes, Spartan warrior’s may have been gay and deadly warriors. History is clear in this,

All I said was that this particular one was not intended to be. And for 19 years he has not been.

“Someone should tell Mister Liefeld that some of the Spartans WERE gay. Poor man, he’s in such denial…”

Hardly a first for Liefeld… He also thinks he’s a great artist. BWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

But seriously, he does. I think he let that Levi’s commercial, all those years ago, go to his head.

Gotta love his variation on “Some of my best friends are gay” too. As it is, I’m surprised he hasn’t started posting over here yet. He always used to over at Newsarama if someone ever said anything negative about his supposed “craft.” All his drawings of male characters seem like they’re overly exaggerated homoerotic fantasies anyhow. Maybe his evangelical beliefs are just covering for something? But that’s his business.

Regardless of all that, Liefeld should leave the comics writing to the professionals. Like PAD. In fact, he should just leave comics altogether!

Oh, hey, speak of the devil! There’s Rob Liefeld now!

I still he’s a hack.

Sorry, “I still *think* he’s a hack.”

No matter what your opinion on Liefeld is, the decision on Shatterstar’s sexuality wasn’t for the character’s benefit. It was a cheap and childish insult towards Rob.

There seems to be a lot of unconscious homophobia in these comments.

Cracker, why would you think that making a character gay is an insult to his creator unless you think that being gay is a bad thing?

Tom, you said, “You can think turning a characters sexual orientation is a poor idea without being a bigot.” So what other reason is there for thinking it’s a poor idea? He’s still the same character in every other respect. What possible *difference* does it make whether he’s straight or gay unless you’re a homophobe?

Rob;

“All I said was that this particular one was not intended to be. And for 19 years he has not been.”

That’s not all you said. Are you now retracting your statement that you “Can’t wait to someday undo this”? That’s not a ‘mild’ statement.

You created Shatterstar, sure, but Marvel owns him, and company-owned characters change beyond the remit of their creator’s original vision all the time, to keep them interesting and to keep giving them a place in stories. Shatterstar was hardly a character rich in complexity. He can’t coast by on what you gave him for the rest of his fictional existence.

You did not intend Shatterstar to be gay, but this development is not implausible or radical. On the contrary, it’s entirely consistent with the bulk of his portrayals over the course of his 19 years. He’s certainly never been clearly established as straight (though even that is not necessarily any hindrance to his developing a same-sex attraction or engaging in a same-sex relationship). Rictor’s apparent bisexuality is far more surprising.

Shatterstar has ‘come out’. However tolerant and well-intentioned you might think yourself, if you insist that you want to and intend to fix this, that sends a terrible message; the message that you cannot tolerate having your own creation turn out gay. Please look closely at your motives and understanding here, and maybe talk to some of your gay friends about this. It’s a good thing to have more gay characters among our superheroes. Please don’t try to undermine that.

Not for the character’s benefit? How does providing a character a new dimension to explore and progress with have no benefit?
What’s cheap and childish about it?
Why can’t he be different now? Now that he’s grown, gained more of an understanding of emotions and feelings and interactions with people? You want characters to always stay in a bubble, never developing into something more interesting?

No offense but nobody really gave a crap about Shatterstar before they started picking up on subtext, whether it was there intentionally or not.

If you don’t develop a character, other people can fill in the blanks. It sounds from everything I’ve read that Shatterstar was basically a blank slate. He was asexual at first and as rob himself said “unfamiliar with earth’s customs”. Therefore he was left open to development as he began to explore these feelings for the first time.
It’s not like somebody just made Spider-Man gay with 40 years of history showing Spider-Man’s thoughts and feelings and never hinting at homosexuality. It’s a character that had no meat to its bones and was developed by other writers who have decided that he’s exploring his sexuality with a male character.

If Rob wanted him to not be gay, he could have actually developed the character in a way that made that clear. He didn’t develop the character so his intent is pretty worthless beyond the fact he uses swords.

It is just a bad story. It has no bearing on whether Shatterstar is kissing Rictor or not. There is a reason this book does not sell well and that was way before this story.

Once again, let me underscore, that there is no way this was personal on anyone or any companies part. Marvel does not care.

And for the record, Marvel owns everything I created for them. Not just Shatterstar. That does not keep me from expressing my opinion.

Secondly, as to un-doing anything. Writers undo things all the time. Comics like soap opera’s change stuff regulary.

Characters go from straight, to gay, to being straight again, to being psychotic, kidnapped by aliens, dying and resurrected.

Years ago, I believe it was Jeph Loeb attempted to make Shatterstar a figment of a child’s imagination as if he did not exist. That did not stick.

I certainly applaud that being undone as THAT was truly offensive.

Shatterstar being gay has never been stated by me as being offensive. It’s not.

If he died, I’d seek to undo that as well.

I wrote the only featured mini-series this character has ever had up until now. I created the character, I never saw him as gay. Or a figment of a child’s imagination, or as a wimp, or as a serial killer…..all of which i would hope to undo.

Well, Rob, since you posted the same message both here and on your site, I’ll say here what I said there:

Didn’t say you were angry, Rob. Said you were getting “heated up.” I can see how you interpret it as angry, but I was using it in the sense that it was something you clearly felt passionate about. And I think you need to realize that when you put forward comments that begin with, essentially, “Some of my best friends are gay” and end with “I can’t wait to undo this,” you have to be screamingly naive to not realize you’re going to come across as a raging homophobe.

Speaking for myself, I never said you were a biggot (Urban dictionary spelling), or even the more common “bigot.” I just made fun of you saying something that I thought was, frankly, kind of insensitive, not to mention staggeringly insulting to anyone gay serving in the armed forces (or, for that matter, the police department, fire fighters, or any other profession commonly associated with bravery or valiant battling against physical challenges or–to be simplistic–evil). In regards to the “and not a gay one,” the problem isn’t that it was ignored. People paid attention to it. They just thought it made you look like a jerk.

Back in the old days I’d spend entire columns trying to figure out what you meant to say as opposed to what you actually said. But honestly, I don’t have that kind of time anymore. Trust me when I say that you’re not doing yourself any favors.

Thanks for the reference to “Gladiator,” though. Now I’m definitely going to have Guido ask Shatterstar if he likes gladiator movies. And when Shatterstar says, “Yes, absolutely,” Guido will say, “Figures.”

PAD

Sales are not an indicator of anything. Blue Beetle was a great run, yet people just didn’t buy it. Loeb constantly sells well for some reason, have you read ultimatum? Sales aren’t an indicator of talent. X-factor, and, X-force are the only books that have been awesome since Messiah Complex with Legacy has been fluctuating from arc to arc but I like it.

Love Ultimatum and everything that they are doing in the Ultimate universe. But I do agree that X-Force is a GREAT read.

“I wrote the only featured mini-series this character has ever had up until now. I created the character, I never saw him as gay. Or a figment of a child’s imagination, or as a wimp, or as a serial killer…..all of which i would hope to undo.”

Assuming that the latter two comments refer to my storyline–

1) He hasn’t killed anyone. He tried to kill Rictor, but was mind controlled and in any event failed.

2) A wimp? He kisses Rictor and that makes him a wimp? Gay = wimp?

Rob…no one is denying your right to express your opinion. But have you considered the possibility that, in doing so, you’re just digging a deeper and deeper hole for yourself?

Understand that I gave you literally no thought in developing the story. None. Zero. Your name never entered my mind. All I was thinking about was the fan interest in seeing the Rictor/Shatterstar relationship addressed. I could have continued to be coy about it, but in this day and age of Prop 8, that seemed gutless. I could have had Shatterstar return, have someone say, “Hey, are you guys gay for each other,” and they both say, “Oh my God, no, what gave you that idea?” Doesn’t seem to have a lot of dramatic potential.

So I did what I did.

And just a thought, Rob: people are talking about Shatterstar for the first time in years. He’s making national news. Because of me.

Maybe, just maybe, that’s the thing that’s pissing you off the most.

PAD

“Love Ultimatum and everything that they are doing in the Ultimate universe. But I do agree that X-Force is a GREAT read.”
Oh… I see.

It is making national news because you took a political issue and threw it into your story. Not because it is a good story.

I think Liefeld was pretty clearly saying that he would undo all of those things if they happened, not that they all happened.

I love the fact that PAD’s comments are aptly composed and considered, raising points and addressing them effectively.

The sad grammar, spelling and voice of the Liefeld comments makes me sad that anyone has ever paid this person to write commercially.

–I’m going to go undo Rob’s run on “New Mutants” with whiskey.
werner

Okay, NONE of my final comments were in reference to anything currently occuring with Shatterstar.

No one equated serial killer or wimp with gay except you Peter. I chose two sentiments OTHER than gay, one was a serial killer, ala, Ted Bundy or John Wayne Gacy. Wimp was an anti-warrior sentiment.

You are really, really stretching to achieve more mileage with this.

Congratulations on achieving national press, I was unaware of this.

“And just a thought, Rob: people are talking about Shatterstar for the first time in years. He’s making national news. Because of me.

Maybe, just maybe, that’s the thing that’s pissing you off the most.

PAD”

I mean….seriously?

“TGWSS
July 5, 2009 at 9:15 am

I think Liefeld was pretty clearly saying that he would undo all of those things if they happened, not that they all happened.”

Thank you.

The problem is that he actually thought you bothered reading it and all of your comments were directed at his portrayal of Shatterstar. Still this really isn’t the first time Shatterstar has been hinted in this way in the books. This really wasn’t new to the fans.

“It is making national news because you took a political issue and threw it into your story. Not because it is a good story.”

Where did I do that? How is homosexuality any more of a political issue than is heterosexuality?

If I had Shatterstar proposing marriage to Rictor, then it becomes political. And that’s only because some people believe that who someone marries is somehow their business and therefore felt the need to politicize it. But one man kissing another man? How is that any more political than if, say, I had Shatterstar kiss Val Cooper on the mouth if they should meet up?

PAD

“Okay, NONE of my final comments were in reference to anything currently occuring with Shatterstar. No one equated serial killer or wimp with gay except you Peter. I chose two sentiments OTHER than gay, one was a serial killer, ala, Ted Bundy or John Wayne Gacy. Wimp was an anti-warrior sentiment.”

Well, that’s good to know, then. Since you were combining your sentiments with your observations about how Shatterstar was portrayed in another limited series, what you were saying was–to put it mildly–unclear. Considering that you have already expressed sentiments that being gay was anathema to the notion of someone also being a warrior, I thought this was just more of the same.

“And just a thought, Rob: people are talking about Shatterstar for the first time in years. He’s making national news. Because of me.Maybe, just maybe, that’s the thing that’s pissing you off the most.”

“I mean…seriously?”

As I said, it was just a thought. Perhaps you find thoughts confusing…?

PAD

@Scott: I don’t think so. I won’t deny that the kiss is getting a lot of attention, but it’s not just a political thing.

RicStar are a popular couple, one of the most popular I’ve seen from comics. A decade after their last appearance together in X-Force Annual 99, they’ve still got webpages dedicated to them, an LJ comm dedicated to them, regular fanfic appearances and discussion. PAD himself said in an early letters page of X-Factor that one of the most common requests that he got was for Shatty to show up again and sleep with Rictor. They were mentioned on an episode of “Queer as Folk”, for pete’s sake (look it up on youtube, the clip is there).

People LIKE them together. Not everyone, obviously, but ever since Fabian wrote them as good friends, with the great banter and funny TV stories, people began to like them as characters. Then when Jeph Loeb made it obvious–not as obvious as PAD has, but the intent was there–their popularity exploded. PAD, as far as I can tell, is capitalizing less on a popular political issue and more on a popular Marvel couple, just like a writer who bought in Rogue and Gambit might do.

“No one equated serial killer or wimp with gay except you Peter. I chose two sentiments OTHER than gay, one was a serial killer, ala, Ted Bundy or John Wayne Gacy. Wimp was an anti-warrior sentiment.”

Actually, that’s what I read into your statement as well, you listed a bunch of things you see as absolutely negative that you’d love to undo as well. That makes it very clear that you see homosexuality as an incredibly bad thing to have Shatterstar linked to … which is weird since this outing actually is getting your creation attention but it’s a negative thing you ‘can’t wait to undo’ like him being a killer, a wimp or a figment of someone’s imagination.

People find your commentary outrageous and deplorable because outing Shatterstar changes _nothing_ from what he was before. He still is the exact same character that he was beforehand, it’s just that PAD expanded on the things every single writer but you did with Shatterstar. The fact that you are taking issue about what is not a change is what’s earning you heat and does make you look just a bit bigoted. I mean, the haircut is a way bigger change but we don’t see you complaining about that.

It also makes you look naive because you could have done something way back when you had your mini with him since most of this – Shatterstar sharing a bed with Rictor for one – was covered way before that miniseries.

This is a brilliant discussion. PAD, you are amazing, hands down. Rob, while I have to respect your opinion or whatever you want to call it, you are seemingly digging your grave even deeper. Stop while you have some breathing room, homegirl, since apparently you’re in a minority here.

“Actually, that’s what I read into your statement as well, you listed a bunch of things you see as absolutely negative that you’d love to undo as well. That makes it very clear that you see homosexuality as an incredibly bad thing to have Shatterstar linked to … which is weird since this outing actually is getting your creation attention but it’s a negative thing you ‘can’t wait to undo’ like him being a killer, a wimp or a figment of someone’s imagination.”

I was referencing things that I’d undo. Never said negative or bad. Just different.

“People find your commentary outrageous and deplorable because outing Shatterstar changes _nothing_ from what he was before. He still is the exact same character that he was beforehand, it’s just that PAD expanded on the things every single writer but you did with Shatterstar. The fact that you are taking issue about what is not a change is what’s earning you heat and does make you look just a bit bigoted. I mean, the haircut is a way bigger change but we don’t see you complaining about that.’

Do you honestly think that this long into my career that I’m concerned that a group of fans dislikes my opinions or my work?

Clarity is what I’m looking for here, not favor.

RicStar are a popular couple, one of the most popular I’ve seen from comics. A decade after their last appearance together in X-Force Annual 99, they’ve still got webpages dedicated to them, an LJ comm dedicated to them, regular fanfic appearances and discussion. PAD himself said in an early letters page of X-Factor that one of the most common requests that he got was for Shatty to show up again and sleep with
**** Thank you for making my point Michiru ****

“Rictor. They were mentioned on an episode of “Queer as Folk”, for pete’s sake (look it up on youtube, the clip is there).

People LIKE them together. Not everyone, obviously, but ever since Fabian wrote them as good friends, with the great banter and funny TV stories, people began to like them as characters. Then when Jeph Loeb made it obvious–not as obvious as PAD has, but the intent was there–their popularity exploded. PAD, as far as I can tell, is capitalizing less on a popular political issue and more on a popular Marvel couple, just like a writer who bought in Rogue and Gambit might do. ”

( So who is making it all about the fact that it is a gay issue) It makes no difference to us Shatterstar fans except for the fact that we don’t enjoy Peters writing or his current story.

“Writers undo things all the time. Comics like soap opera’s change stuff regulary. Characters go from straight, to gay, to being straight again, to being psychotic, kidnapped by aliens, dying and resurrected.”

Rob, being gay is not equivalent to being dead, insane, or snatched by extra-terrestrials, and neither in reality nor in comics do people go from being straight to gay to straight in anything resembling a matter of course. Being gay is not a phase or a choice or an idle fad. ‘Fixing’ a gay character is not like retconning death or madness. You should no more be talking about fixing a gay character than you should want to fix a black character. The rules do change when you’re talking about reducing minority visibility or portraying people’s core identities as something that needs to be fixed or can easily be changed.

Really, seriously; you have gay friends, right? Please get in touch with them and explain to them that your creation turned gay and you want to fix it, and see if they can explain to you why this makes you intolerant. Hopefully you’ll trust their opinion.

Hey, I may be a little late to the discussion, but I wanted to say that I wholly support references to the airplane movies PAD. Guido asking about gladiator movies would fit in with his character.

Also I’m a student of history and most books that I’ve read on the subject actually indicate that Alexander the Great was gay as were many Greek states and the Roman culture as well. However, Sparta seems to be one of the few states that weren’t. Women were actually quite valued in their society unlike other states of that time and sex was mainly for breeding because there were relatively few numbers in the “pure” spartiate class. While I am sure there were gay people in this society as well as in all societies, the Spartans did not have the male tutor that many cultures had that got them aquainted with same sex relationships.

I’m not trying to incite any arguments I just wanted to clarify what my studies and independant reading have suggested. As far as concerns over ric and shatterstar, I can’t wait to see how Mr. David handles the storyline. I truly believe that this run on X-factor from the start to the present is the best title at marvel now and the only one i would pick up if my funds were low. Keep up the good work sir because I intend to keep reading it for a long time.

“( So who is making it all about the fact that it is a gay issue) It makes no difference to us Shatterstar fans except for the fact that we don’t enjoy Peters writing or his current story.”

I am a super massive Shatterstar fan. I like the story just fine– and the fight scene too. I thought it was great.

Gil:
My point is, the people who originally pulled this went, “Hurr, Liefeld sucks! Shatterstar’s gay now!” It wasn’t done to make him a more intersting character. That’s why it’s a cheap shot at both Rob and homosexuality. It’s nothing but more irrational Liefeld hate. Don’t like the guy? Fine, then don’t read his books. The constant mud slinging has been old for years. If someone took one of Peter David’s favorite characters and took it in a direction he didn’t like, I’m sure he’d be just as upset.

“I was referencing things that I’d undo. Never said negative or bad. Just different.”

Weasel words. That’s what you compared it to and the implication is that you’d change them for the same reason.

“Do you honestly think that this long into my career that I’m concerned that a group of fans dislikes my opinions or my work?

Clarity is what I’m looking for here, not favor.”

If you truly sought clarity then you’d realise that I’m not discussing ‘favor’ but pointing out _why_ what you’ve said appears the way it does.

Kris? You like those new swords and his outfit ?

“( So who is making it all about the fact that it is a gay issue) It makes no difference to us Shatterstar fans except for the fact that we don’t enjoy Peters writing or his current story.”

Seriously? He’s been on for two issues and he’s mostly been mind controlled. That’s not enough time to say anything.

“( So who is making it all about the fact that it is a gay issue) It makes no difference to us Shatterstar fans except for the fact that we don’t enjoy Peters writing or his current story.”

I’ve been a fan of Shatterstar since his days in X-Force and I like the story just fine. If Rob has such a huge problem with the revelation he should talk to his “friend” Jeph Loeb about it. He is the one who set up the scenario where a story like this could happen. This didn’t just come out of the blue.

Bobbyp: Actually the Spartans did have the male tutor/male student relationship at the core of their society, just as many other Greek cultures did. What they didn’t have was same-sex relationships as the basis of the military unit – unlike the army that eventually trounced them!

This is the most high-profile catfight I ever had the honor of watching!!!! :D

Peter David is winning by a landslide, imho. :P

@Scott The swords and outfit are fine. I *do* miss his hair though.

@Scott: I too am a huge Shatty fan; loved him when Fabian started writing him as a dorky guy trying to figure humanity out instead of just thwopping things with his swords, and have followed him up until now. And I LOVE the new hair, swords, and costume.

You say that Shatty fans like you “don’t care” that he’s gay, and I’m making it a gay issue? You’re the one who said it was all a political issue. In my post, I said they were a very popular couple, not a popular gay couple, and then compared them to Rogue and Gambit. I didn’t say “gay” anywhere in there; the closest I mentioned was that they were spoken of on “Queer and Folk”, which I said to point out that they’d already received national attention as a couple before this kiss happened. My point: they are a popular couple, who many people thought of as a couple for a long time.

@Michiru Exactly. I don’t think they would have been featured on a queer television series as an example of ‘homoeroticism in comics’ if there was ZERO grounds to base their relationship on.

What does couple mean ? Whether you say gay or not it is referring to them in that way.

“Do you honestly think that this long into my career that I’m concerned that a group of fans dislikes my opinions or my work?”

Again with the arrogance! A long career isn’t necessarily a worthwhile one.

So anything other than, “Cool, they’re gay after 19 years and hundreds of appearancesl” in regards to Rictor and Shatterstar is unacceptable.

Yeah, I didn’t get that memo.

Maybe Jack Bauer will be next….

@Scott How does my saying they’re a couple speak to your point saying they’re a political issue?

What I gathered from your post is that you’re saying they’re getting attention because of the shock value. If I’m wrong, please correct me. My point, assuming I’ve got your point correct, is that no, the attention is because people liked them as a couple for well over a decade now and are happy to see them together again, and confirmed in canon. The shock value wore off long ago; now it’s just fans enjoying characters they love.

Jesus Christ, can’t those two just be in love?
Who gives a damn about sexuality, as long as true love is in play, as cheesy and corny as it might sound.
Give it a rest.

Although this is too good to be true right now, scratch that. *coughs*

I have a question for Rob L. and PAD. Was Shatterstar ever meant to be Dazzler’s son by either of you?

WTF Rob it is not “all of a sudden”! The implication has been going on since Jeph Loeb’s X-Force run! I can start busting out the panels if you need it spelled out for you.

‘So anything other than, “Cool, they’re gay after 19 years and hundreds of appearancesl” in regards to Rictor and Shatterstar is unacceptable.

Yeah, I didn’t get that memo.

Maybe Jack Bauer will be next….’

How about “Cool, people are actually caring about something I made”?

“So anything other than, “Cool, they’re gay after 19 years and hundreds of appearancesl” in regards to Rictor and Shatterstar is unacceptable.”

I don’t think anyone said that. ‘I’m going to fix that gay person and make them straight’ is unacceptable. ‘I don’t like gay people’ is unacceptable too. But if anyone said, ‘I’d rather see Rictor with Rahne’, that would be acceptable. If anyone said, ‘I think Shatterstar and Northstar would make a cute couple’, that would be acceptable to, though I think, as good as the sex would be, they’d be a disastrous match romantically.

“Maybe Jack Bauer will be next….”

There are gay Republicans, you know.

“So anything other than, “Cool, they’re gay after 19 years and hundreds of appearancesl” in regards to Rictor and Shatterstar is unacceptable.”

What does it contradict? That’s the question. 19 years means nothing in terms of Shatterstar. He wasn’t portrayed as sexual. Then it was hinted he was developing those feelings. Now it’s revealed. If you wanted to lay claims on defining his sexuality then you should’ve established it. Otherwise it’s blank slate for others to explore.

If Rob were to “undo” Northstar, and have him go straight, you guys would be ok with that then? Or is it only ok to turn someone from straight to gay in the world of comics?

Northstar has been clearly established as gay. Shatterstar wasn’t defined as anything.

Andrew W. Thank you for clarifying what I meant to say. And you are right of course they needed a mentor to teach them how to soldier to a point. Then the boys actually had to rely on themselves to learn how to steal which basically is setting them up for war time pillaging for supplies. If anyone here is into a good read, there are many books on how this society developed at a local book store. I highly recommend it.

“If Rob were to “undo” Northstar, and have him go straight, you guys would be ok with that then? Or is it only ok to turn someone from straight to gay in the world of comics?”

Terry, that’s a fallacious comparison. Shatterstar has never been shown as straight and his relationship with Rictor has long been established by other writers. PAD didn’t ‘turn’ anyone.

Flanuer:
“How about “Cool, people are actually caring about something I made”?”

Marvel has enjoyed success with Deadpool and Cable. Warpath and Domino are still active in X-Force. Can’t say that about The Prowler and Omega Red.

What is Jack Bauer an example of, exactly? You’re implying that Jack Bauer being gay would be some huge uncrossable line, why? Why not one of the other million straight characters in the world? It’s because he’s the archetypal ‘tough guy’ isn’t it? and that’s just unacceptable!

Seriously Rob, stop making it worse. You’re projecting internalised homophobia regardless of the fact that it isn’t your intention.

Terry: Yes, actually. Making Ultimate Nick Fury black is a good thing, because it increases diversity in the Marvel universe and helps correct an imbalance in representation grounded in the Marvel Universe’s origins in the 60s, but replacing the Black Panther – an iconic and pioneering black character – into a white guy would be an offensive back-step.

Sexuality is slightly different. You can’t generally have a white character ‘become’ another race, with the obvious exception of Psylocke. But making Pyslocke white again, and getting rid of one of the only Asian X-Men, would look terrible (and I’m relieved Matt Fraction’s recent story didn’t take us there). But most gay people started out thinking they were straight, and that self-acceptance can happen very late in life.

Some gay people do try to get ‘fixed’, usually with religious intervention, but science and experience tell us this does not work, and the idea of trying to fix homosexuality as if there were something wrong with it is inherently bigoted. If one of Marvel’s only gay stories was a story about a gay person being turned straight, when they’ve been so incredibly bad at including gay characters in their universe, would be an extraordinary gesture of contempt.

So, you are correct. Is is only OK to turn someone from straight to gay in the world of comics.

What really strikes me as odd though, is that in X-Force #56 it was said in narrative speech, and I quote:
“She has lost Warpath. He has lost Rictor. Both see these missing teammates as ‘friends’. Both too stubborn to admit they may mean more than that.”

This could not have been a more obvious display of where their relationship was going, all other hints and signs aside. Why then, Rob Liefeld, did you not decide to express your concerns back then? When there still would have been a mature way of settling things, all motivations behind the motion would not have been questioned because you would not have “had” to make it public.
It just all seems very immature to me, mouthing off about “undoing” things you could have criticised like a man long before.
I’m sorry for insulting you, but it seems to me you were waiting for it to happen just you could steal the spotlight.

AND NOW WE GO RIGHT FROM THE POLITICAL GAY SUBJECT RIGHT INTO THE RACIAL POLITICS. AMAZING !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Homosexuality isn’t a political issue though.

Rob you really need to talk to those “gay” friends and family members b4 you mouth off on something you obviously are very ignorant in, and end up looking like a phobe, and incensitive. Maybe you’re upset about this becuase you created Gaveedra in “your” image and to have him end up being gay, you are feeling as though you yourself are being called gay. Shatterstar is a fictional character in the Marvel world you are no him and he is not you.

Maybe you think of your self as a Jack Bauer just as you envisioned Shatterstar but face it you are a writer, you do art, you’re not Shatterstar, not a warrior

Gay men can be tough masculine people too, not the stereotypical hairdresser, clothing designer, vallet dancer that you maybe envision when you hear the word gay. Gays are just as diverse as straight people are.

Scott: Gay rights and representation and black rights and representation aren’t political issues. It’s when people oppose them and have to be challenged that it becomes political. If anyone doesn’t like the politics of it all, all they have to do is stop fighting against equality. Stop politicising a human issue.

“Terry: Yes, actually. Making Ultimate Nick Fury black is a good thing, because it increases diversity in the Marvel universe and helps correct an imbalance in representation grounded in the Marvel Universe’s origins in the 60s, but replacing the Black Panther – an iconic and pioneering black character – into a white guy would be an offensive back-step. ”

Don’t give me that shit. Yeah, minorities are rare in comics but if there is a valid reason for black panther mantle to be handed down to a white dude than sure go ahead. Saying only one way is possible is hypocrisy. Plan and simple. That said, Shatterstar may have started the way Rob envisioned by he his characters have been changed radically and over a period of time. What happened to Shatterstar isn’t different from Deadpool or cable except in the fact that he was made gay.

I object to the thought of Shatty as a self-inserted Gary Stu o_O Please chose another argument.

I object to the nickname Shatty. In England, it’s a fairly crude bit of slang. :P

No, Mekhet. The world is more complicated than that. What works one way doesn’t necessarily work in reverse. There is significance in certain decisions an artist can make, whether intended or otherwise.

The is certainly complicated but that doesn’t make what you are saying any less hypocritical.

*The world

Shatterstar had been first established to have zero feelings anywhere, and after a while was beginning to show affection to Siryn.

Rictor has always had a hard-on for Rahne.

And saying it’s ok to go from straight to gay but not vice-versa…….buncha heterophobes!

@Malenkym: Bummer. Sorry xD

Uhm Terry, you’re actually wrong. Shatterstar never had affection for Siryn, she had it for HIM. He rejected her more than once. And Rictor had a thing with Rahne when they were like 14 and then very briefly rekindled it like 6 or 7 years later. To say that someone can’t have a romantic fling within that time apart is extremely unrealistic.

Terry, bisexuality, have you heard of it?

Hypocrisy means false representation of an insincere belief, Mekhet. What I believe is sincere; that there are sensitivities that need to be shown to minorities that do not need to be shown to the majority, because the majority does not suffer the same history of marginalisation and misrepresentation. If you wish to argue against that, I would be happy to hear your arguments.

Haha no worries Patricia, i’m sort of getting used to it! Hahah oh dear.

“Hypocrisy means false representation of an insincere belief, Mekhet. What I believe is sincere; that there are sensitivities that need to be shown to minorities that do not need to be shown to the majority, because the majority does not suffer the same history of marginalisation and misrepresentation. If you wish to argue against that, I would be happy to hear your arguments.”

It’s hypocrisy because you are using double-standards. It’s okay for a minority to replace a majority but it’s wrong for the opposite way around.

I remember seeing some image, I believe from a Youngblood comic by Rob Liefeld, where a group of ” heroes” are sitting around in a bathtub, doing drugs and getting blowjobs from two characters that look an awful lot like Cyclops and Wolverine.

Did I imagine that?

You’re repeating yourself, Mekhet. I’ve explained why it’s not hypocrisy and why a different standard needs to be applied. I don’t want you to just keep saying the same thing over and over again. I want to know what your argument is.

“znop
July 5, 2009 at 10:54 am

I have a question for Rob L. and PAD. Was Shatterstar ever meant to be Dazzler’s son by either of you?”

Yes, back in 1990, when I pitched him in the book, he was pitched as Longshot’s son.

Thanks for asking.

rob

@Malenkym: Try being optimistic. I met an exchange student in Japan who came from New Zealand, to be precise: A little village named Papafukka. :D Try getting used to THAT. ;)

As for everyone else: that “Just let them love each other, who gives a darn about their general sexuality if they LOVE each other” argument I brought earlier just doesn’t fly with you guys, does it?

“I remember seeing some image, I believe from a Youngblood comic by Rob Liefeld, where a group of ” heroes” are sitting around in a bathtub, doing drugs and getting blowjobs from two characters that look an awful lot like Cyclops and Wolverine.

Did I imagine that?”

No you did not. That was Youngblood:Blodsport written by Mark Millar and drawn by myself. Approved and published. Mark used that scene to depict the debauchery that former Youngblood’s had fallen into.

No one, least of all me, has suggested that Shatterstar’s orientation is subject to any sort of debauchery.

It’s just prior to this X-Factor, he was not a gay man. You can say innuendo existed prior to all of this, but you can say that about many comics characters. The fact it that this is his coming out issue. He is now gay. He was not gay in New Mutants #99 or his recent mini-series.

Why can’t it just be 2 camps, one happy he’s gay, the others, not happy he’s gay and that be it.

Accusations of homophobia or bigotry are unfounded by those defending their positions in regard to Shatt.

But whoever said this discussion on these boards is akin to the “spotlight” that I’ve inserted myself into is overestimating the internet and this thread.

There is way and I mean WAAAAAAYYYYY more evidence that Batman and Robin are gay for each other than Shatterstar and Rictor.

Historically there have been many gay jokes and innuendo about the caped crusader and the boy wonder. So when they are revealed as gay, it won’t be an issue.

You’re joking, right?

I’ve gotta say, Liefeld, you’re coming off very badly here. Perhaps you should read over some of the things you’ve said and acknowledge that, in context or out of context, they sound homophobic.

As someone who has been a fan of Rictor and ‘Star as BFFs and more for most of her life, I’m confused as to how someone didn’t see this coming–I thought they were in love before I knew what “subtext” was. It seems as though the only reason this has not been explored until now is due to the bad track record Marvel has at accepting gay relationships in the canon.

And, as many have said, how does this _change_ the characters? It adds to them, but being bisexual or homosexual doesn’t make someone less than what they are, doesn’t change their basic nature or their accomplishments. The attitude that some people are expressing here seems to be the same behind DADT–that even though a soldier has been gay and accomplished many things, once everyone knows they’re gay, they’re no longer fit to be a soldier. It’s illogical and insulting.

But, it really comes back to that first comment Liefeld made–that not only could he change Shatterstar into a heterosexual/asexual character, but implying that he SHOULD do it. And, of course, the usage of “gay” in the same way as “serial killer” and “wimp” was a very bad move, along the same lines as when politicians talk about things they find “morally wrong” and lump things together….y’know, homosexuality, incest, bestiality…..

“You’re repeating yourself, Mekhet. I’ve explained why it’s not hypocrisy and why a different standard needs to be applied. I don’t want you to just keep saying the same thing over and over again. I want to know what your argument is.”
That is my argument. Regardless of marginalization, you shouldn’t ever apply a double standard. No matter how sincere it is, it’s still hypocrisy. Having minority characters because they are minorities doesn’t add anything. All characters white or black, gay or straight, minority or majority should be held in the same light. That’s what made Blue Beetle awesome. He was a superhero who happened to be Mexican. He wasn’t Mexican and a superhero.

Perhaps because the second camp feels the need to vocalise their distaste by throwing their weight around and promising to ‘fix’ the recent development of Shatterstar which, however you dress it up, suggests that there is something wrong with it.

And if you want to get political about, in the era of prop 8 this is an incredibly damaging opinion to be broadcasting

Forgive me, I think I’m confused here.

It seems like people are arguing over something involving Shatterstar? SHATTERSTAR?!!

This character defines D-list, why does anyone care if he’s gay, straight or into animals? He’s Shatterstar, for goodness sake! Is anyone other than Rob Liefield even remotely upset that the character was made gay? If Shatterstar gains some sort of notoriety because of this, that’s more than anyone ever could have hoped for with this character.

Not intending offense to PAD, but our versions of “national news” are sure different, apparently. Last I checked, comic book blogs don’t really count as a national news source.

I wonder if Rob would be throwing a fit about Shatterstar’s supposed asexuality if it had been a woman he kissed instead.

Lindsey,

Sorry that by not agreeing with you means I’m coming off badly.

Didn’t come here to win friends.

rob

@Lew it’s been all over the net. Not just comic book blogs.

Oh for god’s sake its like talking to a brick wall

Lew,

Not upset. Just engaged in debate with people who are calling me bigot.

rob

It’s not a double standard, Mekhet. Again, that term has a specific definition. What I’m talking about is showing sensitivity to minority characters that DOES NOT NEED to be shown to majority characters because they are not marginalised in the same way. IF the majority were maligned in the same way, the same standard would be applied. Calling it a double standard is like saying giving people in wheelchairs access ramps is a double standard. Making specific allowances for different circumstances is not a ‘double standard’.

Ohhhh no. No you don’t. You don’t get to fob this one off on me. The words “arrogant,” “Ignorant,” “bigoted” and “homophobic” were being bandied about before I said one word about any of it. And I haven’t indulged in any name calling. Others have but I haven’t. You don’t get to turn this into “Peter David is stirring up the fans against Rob Liefeld.” Rob is doing a fine job of that all by himself.

PAD

We all read the posts above yours and know you didn’t call Rob a bigot, you just fanned the flames by creating a subtext that wasn’t intended. I never said you engaged in name calling, you use the english language far to well to have to resort to that sort of thing. I meant you jumped right in behind those people with:

I understand that some parents have the same reaction. They were responsible for their children’s first appearances and, when informed of their sexual persuasion, firmly declare it’s impossible, they can’t be gay.

I find particularly distressing Rob’s contention that Shatterstar can’t possibly be gay because he’s a warrior. That might come as a bit of a shock to Alexander the Great. For that matter, among his assortment of gay friends, I suppose Rob has none in the military since of course gays aren’t allowed to serve unless they keep their mouths shut. Perhaps Rob would like to see “don’t ask, don’t tell” implemented in the Marvel universe.

PAD

Intresting, but again, Rob didn’t say a warrior couldn’t be gay. He was talking about his intention for Shatterstar specifically. Hardly anything that would beg the question “Perhaps Rob would like to see “don’t ask, don’t tell” implemented in the Marvel universe.”

@mekhet
why couldn’t blue beetle be mexican who happened to be a superhero? people’s ethnicity, sex, orientation, etc isn’t a ‘just happens to be’ unless they happen to live in a world void of prejudices or a uniform culture.

@Liefeld, I’m sorry you’re so close-minded.

I guess Lew is not aware of all the websites that are fans of them.

“RicStar are a popular couple, one of the most popular I’ve seen from comics. A decade after their last appearance together in X-Force Annual 99, they’ve still got webpages dedicated to them, an LJ comm dedicated to them, regular fanfic appearances and discussion. PAD himself said in an early letters page of X-Factor that one of the most common requests that he got was for Shatty to show up again and sleep with Rictor. They were mentioned on an episode of “Queer as Folk”, for pete’s sake (look it up on youtube, the clip is there).

People LIKE them together. Not everyone, obviously, but ever since Fabian wrote them as good friends, with the great banter and funny TV stories, people began to like them as characters. Then when Jeph Loeb made it obvious–not as obvious as PAD has, but the intent was there–their popularity exploded. PAD, as far as I can tell, is capitalizing less on a popular political issue and more on a popular Marvel couple, just like a writer who bought in Rogue and Gambit might do.”

Maybe you should check these out for a reference.

“But whoever said this discussion on these boards is akin to the “spotlight” that I’ve inserted myself into is overestimating the internet and this thread.”

I was not referring to this thread, if you’d be so kind to give me a little credit here.
You claimed you’d make sure, personally sure, that Shatterstar and Rictor would go no further than that little kiss. Not only that, but find a way to twist the plot so it never happened.
Naturally I expect you to act on that claim, as ridiculous as it may seem to most of us.
THAT is the spotlight I mean. Because all attention is attention after all, and in business, attention equals promotion.

And if I should be wrong, and your “threat” was empty, nothing but big words you’d like to take back, then I sincerely apologize.

But allow me one question:
Why the hell are you posting here? You MUST have something better to do with your life than getting insulted and defend yourself, don’t you?
I’m 19 and out of school, long time before college will start, so I have an actual excuse. I’m bored and find fighting for a fictional couple I greatly enjoy worth my time.
What about you I wonder?

I guess I’ll weigh in, even if it’s just to quote something I said earlier elsewhere.

I will agree with exactly one point Mr. Liefeld has made:

Shatterstar was asexual when introduced.

However:

He also didn’t know anything about things like ‘friendship’ ‘teamwork’ or amusing figures of speech. For a very long time, story lines surrounding him tended to be ones focusing on how he was adapting to his new home, how he was struggling to become something other than ‘a warrior born.’ This made him a compelling character, and it was genuinely interesting to watch him grow as a person in the pages of X-Force.

Guess what? Learning about romantic/sexual relationships is a part of that ‘becoming human’ package. Either we should throw out ALL of his growth as a character (would you really want that, Rob?) or you accept that coming to terms with intimate relationships is a perfectly viable part of his character growth. Rictor has been his closest friend for a very long time. It seems logical that he might turn to him to sort these things out. It doesn’t even rule out the possibility of him deciding that no, actually, this isn’t what he wants, in the end.

I don’t like the implication that PAD pulled this out of nowhere and that it’s not ‘credible.’ To me, that seems to indicate that Liefeld is completely unfamiliar with a lot of things that have happened in the past. Most of this stuff was written by Fabian Nicieza, who (IIRC an old interview right) refused to comment on the implications and wanted the readers to draw their own conclusions. The only thing that has changed is that PAD decided to spell it out instead of hint coyly at it. It’s not coming out of left field, it’s not something that was cooked up for a publicity stunt, it’s drawing on a lot of previous storylines, spanning a decade, at least. That’s a *lot* more ‘credible’ than most of the gay characters Marvel has now (who were mostly created TO be gay, with the exception of Northstar). Personally, I like it when writers draw on old material. It means they’re paying attention to the history of characters they’re writing–something it seems Mr. Liefeld could stand to do a little more of himself.

Back in the old days I’d spend entire columns trying to figure out what you meant to say as opposed to what you actually said. But honestly, I don’t have that kind of time anymore. Trust me when I say that you’re not doing yourself any favors.

PAD
in response to Liefeld.

Ahh…I understand now. I forgot about, but I digress….

“why couldn’t blue beetle be mexican who happened to be a superhero? people’s ethnicity, sex, orientation, etc isn’t a ‘just happens to be’ unless they happen to live in a world void of prejudices or a uniform culture.”

What I mean is that they didn’t use him like Northstar after he became gay, who got tiring after awhile. I can say that because I’m gay. You straight people can’t lol. (Btw, I don’t mean it) Blue Beetle has a personality, he is more than just a two dimensional character.

@Andrew the problem is that a minority shouldn’t be put on a pedestal. Especially in comics that I read. If the character sucks and is replaced by an equal or better character it shouldn’t matter what background the character comes from. What you are saying is still sounding like a double standard.

There was a conversation with Rictor and Madrox in a bar earlier where Madrox discussed Rictor having sex with both Shatterstar and Quicksilver.

So it’s not exactly new to my eyes.

I also don’t get _how_ you would undo it?

That would interest me.

Clone. More mind control. Shapeshifting clone transvestite from hell.

“Most of this stuff was written by Fabian Nicieza, who (IIRC an old interview right) refused to comment on the implications and wanted the readers to draw their own conclusions.”

YES. And Fabian Nicieza is SHATTERSTAR’S CO-CREATOR. Go fucking figure.

@Patricia, that’s almost exactly what I was thinking! Except maybe the “shapeshifting clone tranvestite” could be from another univese. Hell’s so overrated. It could also be used as an excuse for the hair.

There you have it.

You know, less than a month ago, I was sniffing at John Byrne and Erik Larsen whomping away on each other over on Byrne’s board, and the pointlessness–even unseamliness–of providing the equivalent of a traffic accident that provided fodder for rubberneckers. That thread is up to, I don’t know, 1800 pages or something by now probably. And yet now here I am, doing the exact same damned thing with Rob. If I don’t listen to my own advice, then how stupid am I? (That was meant to be rhetorical, by the way.)

I’m not going to keep going at this with Rob because I think a really good rule of thumb in life is to say to yourself, WWJBD? or WWELD, and then do the exact opposite. Plus in reading back over my own comments, I’m not thrilled with myself over the tone of some of them. Because, bottom line, I was trying to do nothing more than a storyline that a lot of fans wanted to see addressed, and from letters I’ve gotten, it’s too important–way too important–to let it devolve into a flame fest.

Look, Rob, final observation: I think you really believe you’re not homophobic. In fact, I’d go so far as to say you’re probably not. But there’s a lot in what you’re saying that is convincing people–both straight and gay–otherwise. That means either you’re doing a crap job in expressing yourself, which is problematic for someone who believes he’s a writer. Or else it means you have some deeper issues which you may or may not want to give some consideration to. That’s entirely up to you.

Anyway, I’m done discussing it. I think it best simply to let the stories speak for themselves henceforth.

PAD

“Personally, I like it when writers draw on old material. It means they’re paying attention to the history of characters they’re writing–something it seems Mr. Liefeld could stand to do a little more of himself.”

Which also means that the writer gives a shit about the characters they are writing. I would much rather read a story written by a writer who researches and respects all of this past continuity, rather than someone who eliminates all past character development and makes a convoluted character even more messed up than he already is.

Maybe Shatterstar would have a better chance at becoming a regular character again if he can just get some damn consistency. Liefeld eliminating character points whenever he wants doesn’t help that at all.

“I think you really believe you’re not homophobic.”
This is an epic line.

“Maybe Shatterstar would have a better chance at becoming a regular character again if he can just get some damn consistency. Liefeld eliminating character points whenever he wants doesn’t help that at all.”

Which is why he won’t. He may not be our favorite person in the world but he cannot be lacking that much common sense.

“Because, bottom line, I was trying to do nothing more than a storyline that a lot of fans wanted to see addressed, and from letters I’ve gotten, it’s too important–way too important–to let it devolve into a flame fest.”

And, again? Thank you. You still have my support.

So let’s leave it at that. As for me, I’m out. Rest of us should go catch some Zs or do the laundry too.

Come in, punch a guy’ in the reputation then decide your above it all, how nice of you all, willing to leave it at that. :D

I like the idea of leaving this thread on a level-headed note. :)

if Rob is so upset about shatterstar being gay even though he says he has nothing against gay people he should have put something stating in writting to please his ego that shatterstar is not to be potrayed as other then asexual. looks like rob ego has been rubbed the wrong way. hopefully shatterstars other creator fabien will have a better view of shatterstar and rictors relationship.

Having a romance with Rictor doesn’t make him gay. He could be bisexual. He could just be asexual but confused about feelings and appropriate social behavior, so Rictor loves him but he doesn’t love Rictor and is just confused. And Rictor only dated Rahne because she looked like Shatterstar at the time. Or something. God only knows…

PAD – I also remember you arguing in about a year’s worth of Savage Dragon letters columns with Erik Larsen. Maybe you should also ask yourself “WWPADD?”, and then do the opposite.

Malenkym- don’t see that happening :D

Terry- That’s Larry David not Peter David :D

@Rob: You say Star wasn’t gay in the mini you wrote, which brings up an interesting question. Why didn’t you take that opportunity to undo the gay hints that had been dropped all over the place by that time (Jamie saying Ric made Shatterstar “jealous” in X-Factor, for example, or everything Jeph Loeb wrote in his X-Force run).

Instead of that, you again wrote Star with no romantic intent at all; it was just Star hitting things with his sword, as he had been back in the original X-Force run you wrote. You could have taken that chance to, say, hook Star up with a girl or write a character story for him. But you didn’t put any character into him at all, sexual or otherwise; it was all action. How would anyone guess if he was or wasn’t gay from the way you’d written him?

Anyway, this thread seems to be drying up, but I just wanted to point that out.

I’m not a fan of Liefeld’s work in the least, but I have to admit he’s coming off way more intelligent, reasonable and rational than most of his politically correct self-righteous witch-hunting detractors in this comments thread. THe extent people seem to be going to to deliberately misinterpret every statement he makes so as to make him sound as homophobic and angry as possible is borderline comical.

I don’t remember Shatterstar having any personality at all back in the early X-Force days. As I recall, he was mainly there to pose and grimace behind Cable, who was also posing and grimacing.

Here is the image in question that I was talking about earlier

http://img34.imageshack.us/img34/3086/youngbloodblowjobs.jpg

I wasn’t aware that Rob Liefeld hadn’t written, that it was Mark Millar. But Mr. Liefeld seemingly had no problem, by the fact that he was the one drawing it, and it was his book, depicting two characters that were up until this point heterosexual, and had been involved in different relationships with women before as reduced to crudely giving blowjobs to two other men.

Now, now, I know this was meant to poke fun at Marvel and their characters, that this isn’t REALLY Wolverine and Cyclops, maybe in the Youngblood universe these two characters are homosexual. But the readers are supposed to infer that these are the same ones, because they are “dressing up as their girlfriends”.

I can imagine that neither Stan Lee nor Chris Claremont (who isn’t the creator of Wolverine, I know, but it was pretty much his character once he got a hold of him) were all too happy with such depictions of their characters. It’s not like they could have done anything anyway, as the characters are not referred to by their copyrighted names, and it is a clear parody.

If anything, I feel it is a bit hypocritical that Rob Liefeld is getting upset because someone grabbed one of the characters he created for Marvel and has apparently turned them homosexual, when he and Mark Millar did something much more insulting to other established characters. At least Shatterstar hasn’t been reduced to providing oral sex for Rictor while he enjoys some illegal drugs and a nice jacuzzi bath.

There’s that word again. “Upset”

Not upset.

Just gave my opinion when asked…

Ok, Rob, I will also ask your opinion. Other people have asked it rhetorically on this thread, but I would like this question answered directly, please:

Would you have had a similar reaction (i.e. want to undo it, insist that it was not what you had intended for the character) had Shatterstar kissed a woman?

>>

There’s that word again. “Upset”

Not upset.

Just gave my opinion when asked…
>>

Okay, but if you think Marvel will ever give you the keys to these characters again, you are sorely mistaken.

Rob, the only thing I’d like to know from you is whether you still want to undo this some day, now that you’ve had a chance to reflect and consider the ramifications?

Okay, but if you think Marvel will ever give you the keys to these characters again, you are sorely mistaken -THOOM

:D Joe Quesada has Q and A here on CBR. Why don’t you ask him before making editorial mandates.

The way you gave your opinion, Rob, is what made you look upset – not just by saying that if someone is a warrior, they can’t be gay, but also with how you then went on to talk about how “making” Shatterstar gay was as much a negative as killing him.

Not to mention how you keep protesting in post after post.

He does not seem upset, no matter how you try to paint him as such. He just gave his opinion.

But look at the rhetorical trick you use:

Not to mention how you keep protesting in post after post.

So he gives his opinion, and you call him upset.

If he doesn’t respond to you, you will rest on your first assertion, that he is upset.

But if he responds to you that he is not actually upset, then that too is proof that he is upset.

So you set it up in a way that he’s damned if he doesn’t respond, and damned if he does. What sense does that make?

You just made up your mind that he is upset because that is what you want him to be, so that you can paint him as the irrational, angry hate-monger you want to picture him as. But you’ve far from proven anything with your circular logic.

If anything, I feel it is a bit hypocritical that Rob Liefeld is getting upset because someone grabbed one of the characters he created for Marvel and has apparently turned them homosexual, when he and Mark Millar did something much more insulting to other established characters. At least Shatterstar hasn’t been reduced to providing oral sex for Rictor while he enjoys some illegal drugs and a nice jacuzzi bath.

Now THIS is a very good argument, and one I agree with. It is hypocritical for Liefeld to draw a scene like that and complain about what was done to Shatterstar.

THOOM
July 5, 2009 at 5:22 pm

>>

There’s that word again. “Upset”

Not upset.

Just gave my opinion when asked…
>>

Okay, but if you think Marvel will ever give you the keys to these characters again, you are sorely mistaken.”

As I’m drawing characters that I created for Marvel right now, I’d say you are seriously overstating your opinion on this matter

.

dealt with this earlier….

rob liefeld
July 5, 2009 at 12:29 pm

“I remember seeing some image, I believe from a Youngblood comic by Rob Liefeld, where a group of ” heroes” are sitting around in a bathtub, doing drugs and getting blowjobs from two characters that look an awful lot like Cyclops and Wolverine.

Did I imagine that?”

No you did not. That was Youngblood:Blodsport written by Mark Millar and drawn by myself. I approved and published. Mark used that scene to depict the debauchery that former Youngblood’s had fallen into.

No one, least of all me, has suggested that Shatterstar’s orientation is subject to any sort of debauchery.

It’s just prior to this X-Factor, he was not a gay man. You can say innuendo existed prior to all of this, but you can say that about many comics characters. The fact it that this is his coming out issue. He is now gay. He was not gay in New Mutants #99 or his recent mini-series.

Why can’t it just be 2 camps, one happy he’s gay, the others, not happy he’s gay and that be it.

Accusations of homophobia or bigotry are unfounded by those defending their positions in regard to Shatt.

But whoever said this discussion on these boards is akin to the “spotlight” that I’ve inserted myself into is overestimating the internet and this thread.

“Why can’t it just be 2 camps, one happy he’s gay, the others, not happy he’s gay and that be it.”

That would be fine, but for your statement, “Can’t wait to someday undo this”. If that’s still your position, then it’s not about one camp happy that he’s gay and one unhappy. It becomes one camp that’s happy that he’s gay and one camp that wants the gay character to be ‘fixed’. That’s a very different situation.

So, do you still stand by your statement; “Can’t wait to someday undo this”?

Hey Rob, I totally understand that my quiet, polite, little question must have gotten lost in shuffle of all the charges being laid against you. So why not take a break and answer it now? I very much want your opinion on the matter of Shatterstar’s asexuality.

Would you have had a similar reaction (i.e. want to undo it, insist that it was not what you had intended for the character) had Shatterstar kissed a woman?

Was he ever *explicitly* not-gay, though? I mean, it sounds more like his sexual orientation had not come up one way or the other, which does leave it a blank slate. Maybe Mr. Liefeld intended to present a non-gay character, but there’s intent and there’s what you actually get across on the page.

“So you set it up in a way that he’s damned if he doesn’t respond, and damned if he does.”

No, I referred to how he was writing his posts. The way he writes his posts (both here, and the original one where he was protesting how PAD “made” Shatterstar gay) make him look upset about the matter.

Rob, you are correct about this being the issue where he came out. But as has been pointed out several times so far, here and elsewhere, more then one story in the decades since his origin support him having been gay for years before he came out.

[i]If anything, I feel it is a bit hypocritical that Rob Liefeld is getting upset because someone grabbed one of the characters he created for Marvel and has apparently turned them homosexual, when he and Mark Millar did something much more insulting to other established characters. At least Shatterstar hasn’t been reduced to providing oral sex for Rictor while he enjoys some illegal drugs and a nice jacuzzi bath.

Now THIS is a very good argument, and one I agree with. It is hypocritical for Liefeld to draw a scene like that and complain about what was done to Shatterstar. [/i]

How is that hypocritical? He didn’t say he was against gay characters, he said this particular character was not meant to be gay.

“Having a romance with Rictor doesn’t make him gay. He could be bisexual. He could just be asexual but confused about feelings and appropriate social behavior, so Rictor loves him but he doesn’t love Rictor and is just confused. And Rictor only dated Rahne because she looked like Shatterstar at the time. Or something. God only knows…”

So being gay is inappropriate human behavior Felix? See people how things can be “misunderstood” when you don’t think over what you are about to post. That is un;ess you really think that being gay IS an inappropriate human behavior Felix. Clarify, and don’t say you gots sum gays friends and families cuz that’s just a sorry excuse, in order to drop some major ignorant crap. Never star with I got so blank friends and family so I knows what’s im talking bout. No you don’t, ur gonna look like a fool, and hurt people making them hate you (Rob).

“I’m not homophobic or anything, I even have some gay friends and family … then goes on to sound ignorant and phobic when maybe they didn’t mean to, but it was out of ignorance b/c he didn’t talk to his gay friends and family about what his thoughts were first to make sure he wasn’t being a tool.

So Rob never got around to answer if he would have had the same reaction had Shatterstar kissed a chick with boobs and a virginia, since his character was designed originally to be asexual, that is to say with no sexual orientation or desire whatsoever.

If he doesn’t have any problem with homosexuality then why would he have a problem with his character being gay?

Saying that it is a contrived outcome is a pretty weak outcome especially since it isn’t contrived when ther ehave not only been hints dropped but a guarantee that Peter David can back this characterization of the characters.

So really, I doubt that Liefield doesn’t have a problem with gays, he’s probably just saying that.

It’s not like this development is gonna make Shatterstar a better character. It’s still Shatterstar…I mean people…Shatterstar, he’s a running joke to all but one person before PAD took him over. If PAD can make Longshot and Shatterstar interesting, compelling and worth the 3$ a month fans put down, then he deserves a Noble. It’s pure genius. It’s just hard for me to take the character of Shatterstar serious when he’s been a complete and utter joke for the last 19 years.

Also, Jack Bauer transcends sexuality, Shatterstar…well he just transcends good taste.

I for one, think that Youngblood’s page would be offensive to many gay men. Esp if the comic’s only depiction of gay characters is them giving/receiving blowjobs in hot tubs while cross-dressing and doing drugs.

Rob Liefeld, if you are still (hopefully) reading this board, I just want to say thank you for putting that Deadpool/Siryn story in Wolverine 154&155. I really enjoyed it how you wrote DP in those issues, despite the many changes the character went through after you created him.

Deadpool changed so drastically from when you first wrote him, why aren’t you upset about him going from “The Lethal Deadpool” to his current zany, almost Looney Toonish hijinks? Were you upset about the numerous hints that he and Cable were in some kind of relationship?

PAD, I don’t usually care for how you portray women in your comics, but if Rictor/Shatterstar as a couple are on the team, then I’m sold. Just please let Siryn and M do something other than sleep around. They’re both confident, powerful, and intelligent women.

How is that hypocritical? He didn’t say he was against gay characters, he said this particular character was not meant to be gay.

It’s hypocritical because Wolverine and Scott weren’t intended to be gay either by their creators, but Liefeld still went ahead and made their characters gay in his and Millar’s storiy. It’s out of continuity though, so there’s that.

Amy, you’re 100% correct. That issue was a horrible example of tolerance of gays, and a WONDERFUL example of the mindset that being gay is something to be mocked and ridiculed by ‘real’ men.

I’ve read this issue. That scene was HORRIBLY homophobic. The two men getting blown (how sad that I have NO recollection of their names, so henceforth, I will use “Stryfe-Wannabe – which is just even sadder all on it’s own – and Other-Liefield-Guy-With-Grey-Hair…) clearly had nothing but disdain for the Wolverine/Cyclops analogues and was thrown in PURELY to show how decadent, depraved, debauched and other D-words I can’t think of right now Stryfe-Wannabe and OLGWGH were.

Dickish?

I dunno, I remember reading it when it came out and just being…really pissed. All these years later and I still react the same way.

Amy,

So I should have not drawn what Mark Millar wrote in Youngblood Bloodsport?

Are you saying i should have censored his story?

Also, have you read Deadpool’s first appearances? Deadpool started out as a jackass and has evolved to breaking the fourth wall, but a smart-ass nonetheless.

There was also a lesbian kiss I depicted in an issue of Glory 15 years ago..

The homophobic comments are misplaced. I said that I did not intend for Shatterstar to be gay when I introduced him 19 years ago.

5 years from now, If I had were to write a story where he fell in love with woman, what would I be guilty of? Shatterstar has been married to a woman in the past.

Creators have different takes on what came before, they change and make altercations from their predecessor. it’s part of the business.

Not once anywhere have I said I was offended. The color red does not offend me, I just don’t wear it. Ditto the color yellow. I wear lots of blue, brown, black and some green. Doesn’t mean I’m angry at red and yellow.

Please excuse the numerous grammatical errors above, I did not proof read.

Should say alterations not altercations.

“If I were to write a story….” the “had” is obviously a mistake.

http://blog.newsarama.com/2009/07/06/claire-to-have-girlie-fun-in-heroes/

And this morning, the negative response to Claire having a lesbian kiss on Heroes has begun….

….calling it exploitive…..wha???? who’d a thunk it?

Don’t they know that they should just get on the bus…..!

Hi Rob,

You’re avoiding my one question, but I’ll respond to a couple of your points.

“Are you saying i should have censored his story?”

If his story were clearly racist, I’d hope you would have had the balls to stand up to him about it, sure. So why not stand up to him when he’s degrading sexuality?

“Shatterstar has been married to a woman in the past.”

He was married to a woman for breeding purposes. It was not a love match. He had never met her. Shatterstar has never been romantically linked to a woman. He has never been established as heterosexual.

“And this morning, the negative response to Claire having a lesbian kiss on Heroes has begun…”

Note the way the story is reported. First it says Claire is going to kiss a girl. Then it says, “Here’s where it gets exploitative”. The idea of a same-sex relationship is not the part eliciting a negative response.

My question, once again; is it still your intention to ‘fix’ Shatterstar’s sexuality if given the chance?

i believe that based on Shatterstar’s past history that there are 2 Shatterstars.

Benjamin and the original Shatterstar. Best of both worlds for everyone.

comicBOOKchris

July 6, 2009 at 9:20 am

Didn’t Benjamin and Shatterstar end up merging, though?

comicBOOKchris

July 6, 2009 at 9:26 am

So in reality, there is still only ONE Shatterstar

For clarification, are you saying that it could be the Ben Russell side of the BR/Star merge that’s into Ric/has a sexuality at all?

While I might not mind that, I’d be extremely distressed if the solution were to undo their merge and give Ben to Ric as though it’s the same thing. They might have the same body physically, but it’s Star’s personality that the fans love, and his personality with Ric’s that makes them such a great pairing. I think I could deal with the merge staying there but it being Ben’s sexuality that has become part of Star, but not with the losing of Star and replacement of him with Ben in Star/Ric dynamic, personally.

To be fair, I don’t see that scene in Youngblood as being insulting to homosexuals. In the real world, most men who rape other men–prison is obviously the most visible example–are not gay at all, but instead acting out fantasies of power and control.

Thus, I don’t see that Youngblood scene as even suggesting that anyone’s gay. Rather, it’s powerful men humiliating “lesser” men and enjoying the feeling of power it gives them. Which, sadly, is quite realistic.

comicBOOKchris

July 6, 2009 at 10:40 am

thinkerk
July 6, 2009 at 9:56 am
“For clarification, are you saying that it could be the Ben Russell side of the BR/Star merge that’s into Ric/has a sexuality at all?”

That would be such typical comic retcon BS if thats how he goes about “undoing” this moment. Though I’m kind of expecting something along those lines if he ever writes him again.

A little quick summation of my opinions as a gay man:

1. I’ve always disliked Shatterstar and pretty much every member of X-force. Most of them (Cannonball, Cable,…) still are annoying idiots. Shatterstar suddenly being gay or bi or whatever doesn’t change that fact. Really, I’d have prefered he had stayed out of Marvel comics altogether.

2. X-factor is hardly a brilliant book either (though I guess many people seem to like it). It feels at times rather farfetched and contrived. This whole relationship does seem to be a wink to the fans of this particulair couple though and artists that listen their fans are always welcome.

3. Whether he realises it or not, Liefeld’s comments are incredibly insulting to gay people. And I’m not talking about the warrior thing, which in all fairness might have been a misunderstanding. I’m talking about his appearant eagerness to ‘fix’ the gayness. Are you going to fix all the changes writers have made to your characters over the years or just the one you appearantly have a huge problem with?

The thing about all of this that actually angers me is that Marvel’s first proper man-on-man kiss isn’t for any of its already established gay characters like Northstar or YA’s Wiccan and Hulkling, but for such a non-entity like Shatterstar.
And while we’re going to listen to fans about gay couples anyway, somebody have New X-men’s Indra come out and get together with Anole. That couple has quite a few supporters too, just so you know.

My question is then, if you were asked to draw something terribly racist or sexist, would you do it, no questions asked? Like if say, a scene depicted a character described like the African tribesmen in the old Tintin books? Or a big nosed, money hoarding Jew? “It’s in the script so I have to draw it?”

I’m not in the biz, but it seems like it should have been easy enough to speak with the writer about content that is, in the very least, in poor taste. In the best case scenario, the writer and artist(s) work as a team on a book, giving and receiving feedback. Discussing something is not the same as censoring it. Art has a huge impact on the world, and washing your hands of any responsibility for what you create is disturbing and dangerous.

I’d also like to mention there is a double standard when it comes to lesbians versus gay men. Lesbians are hot and totally acceptable to most straight men. Lesbianism has become a form of fanservice in the comic book industry.

Amy,

In my opinion, everything is about context.

I was watching Hancock on Starz last night and I was shocked that Will Smith’s CHARACTER insulted gays numerous times. He was demeaning, using the word “homo” to insult the different comic character costumes that his agent was showing him.

It wasn’t him, it was his character, who is played as a louse the entire movie, seeking redemption. So, in character, he plays an insulting character, but that does not define Will Smith personally.

Art is funny that way, it allows us to put on different faces and make different statements. Some polarizing.

I don’t think the Shatterstar thing is a big deal. I don’t think it even qualifies as polarizing. But it has struck great debate. I made my comment 2 weeks ago, and then this thread popped up and has spurred great debate, mostly respectful.

Let’s say Shatterstar is gay the rest of his comic book lifetime. I won’t be losing any sleep over it. It’s just not what I originally intended when I introduced him. I was asked, I answered.

And yes, if i could, I’d change stuff about Cable’s history as well…..it’s not just sex orientation.

T- those characters weren’t actually Scott and Logan. If quicksilver put on Batman’s costume, that would not make Batman gay.

Amy W.- .Sometimes a Brood tenticle is only a brood tenticle. In the 1950′s Dr. frederick wertham pointed to a squiggly line on supermans shoulder and convinced people it was a penis and people burned comicbooks in mass because they perverted the minds of the youth of america. And here were are in 2009 reading deep social meaning into an obviously ridiculous take on Youngblood by Mark Millar as if it were Shakesphere? You cannot seriously apply the same critical standards to ALL of fiction and expect a positive result…

Not all comicbooks are meant to be read into as having some sort of agenda. You can pick apart just about any comicbook and find genius or sickness if you work hard enough to decode the intent. Mainstream superhero comics by design are not meant to be read into but to be read. Sure, some artists use the medium brilliantly for social commentary or constructing deeper meaning into the story. But sometimes, alot of the time comicbooks are just entertainment produced ona deadline by a production team who doesn’t have the kind of time to massage the context into the work a reader brings to it. We all have different backgrounds and even the best artist cannot predict the manner in which his work will be recieved.

People grow and change during the years. When gay people have their coming out, it mostly takes a long time before they can acknowledge this for themselves. It’s still a big step, even in 2009. It took Shatterstar 19 years, that’s a long time. But finally he made his decision.

His creator (father) does not approve of his gay-ness. He’d rather would like him to be asexual than gay. It becomes even more real-life, this way. For the unlucky ones, then!

And Mr Liefeld, you don’t picture so well on this board. And I’ve just squandered through these pages quickly.

Rob, I’m confused. I was under the impression that your main point of contention with PAD’s take on Shatterstar was that it was outside your original intention with the character (i.e. he is completely asexual).

But then you say, “5 years from now, If I had were to write a story where he fell in love with woman, what would I be guilty of? Shatterstar has been married to a woman in the past.”

Here’s where the confusion sets in. First off, as has already been pointed out, Shatterstar’s first wife was a genetically assigned breeding partner– it had nothing to do with love. So for him to fall in love with a woman WOULD contradict your original conception of the character as asexual

Second, if YOU were to write that story, it would be YOUR intention for the character, so no, you would have no reason to complain that someone ELSE wrote something that contradicted your intentions. All anybody would be able to say is that you changed your mind about Shatterstar being asexual.

What I have been asking, and am still waiting for a simple, direct answer, is:

Had someone else (say, Peter David) written a story where Shatterstar kissed a woman, would you have had a similar reaction (i.e. want to undo it, insist that it was not what you had intended for the character)?

1. I, thought you might have been exaggerating a bit about “Dr. Frederick Wertham” Sad to say you weren’t… I, google the name and wow, was the public was doped by him. Talk about mob mentality.

2. Rob L. While I appreciate your response to my question it would seem you only answered half… I can see Shatterstar being introduced as the son of Longshot… Did you actually have Alison in mind at the time to be the mother? OR… Is it more along the lines that Shatterstar like his father was to have been engineered in a lab — which again would make a lot of sense based on what I have read over the years.

Thanks.

***Sorry about that TOM I don know why I put your name in lew of mine***.

1. I, thought you might have been exaggerating a bit about “Dr. Frederick Wertham” Sad to say you weren’t… I, google the name and wow, was the public was doped by him. Talk about mob mentality.

2. Rob L. While I appreciate your response to my question it would seem you only answered half… I can see Shatterstar being introduced as the son of Longshot… Did you actually have Alison in mind at the time to be the mother? OR… Is it more along the lines that Shatterstar like his father was to have been engineered in a lab — which again would make a lot of sense based on what I have read over the years.

Thanks.

I’m just displeased that my favorite character has become a puppet in some writer’s homosexual fantasies.

How many more characters are you going to turn into homosexuals, David?

Oh Jairmy, PAD is the last in a very long line of fanfiction writers to interpret Shatterstar as gay. Berate them first. Then go after Jeph Loeb, since he had intended to make them a couple years ago, and is largely responsible for the subtext PAD sprung off from.

So, you’re comparing PAD to a fanfiction writer?

I guess I can see that. That’s were he seems to be getting his material from.

Well, for all intents and purposes, that’s what work-for-hire is– authorized fanfiction.

Look at the Star Wars EU novels. Those are technically canon. However, George Lucas admits he doesn’t read them, and so many “facts” established in the EU were retconned out by the new trilogy. Lucas’s vision is given greater weight because he is the creator– just as in fandom, the canon is given greater weight than fanfiction (most of the time).

Star Wars is also a good example of how sometimes, the fanfic and the work for hire can be better than canon.

“Maybe Jack Bauer will be next….”

It’s not clear what you mean here, Rob. Are you saying that Jack Bauer realizing that he was gay would devalue or invalidate his character? You’re implying that homosexuality is incongruous with (Jack Bauer’s generally accepted as) heroic actions. Lots of people come to understand their sexual orientation well into their life, and after many of their accomplishments.

Statements like this, and your original “he’s a manly man, but not a gay one” assertion, demonstrate an inability to accept the possibility of strong, powerful men who are also homosexuals. This isn’t an unusual position (PAD was clearly correct when he suggested your support of “don’t ask, don’t tell”), but it’s a misinformed one, and I think it’s only making things more difficult for you.

I’m sure that you feel like Shatterstar is YOURS, and you know what’s best for him, but he’s spent a lot of time apart from you. He’s grown on his own.

We all know this is difficult for you. But you’re not alone. This is a difficult and surprising thing to face, but there is advice and support to help you through accepting it. Try this website:

http://www.familyacceptance.org/home.html

We know that you can come to terms with this, Rob, and once you do you’ll love Shatterstar even more.

Mr. Liefeld, would you like to explain why you’ve banned people from your forums who have never made a post? I wasn’t aware not posting was violating the TOS of your website.

Nexus is 100% right about this being unfortunate. This should have happened years ago, when Marvel first started having openly gay superheroes. Most of the MU’s homosexual heroes are gay in name only. Their love lives happen “off-panel” if they have one at all. Wasp and Giant Man can be shown engaging in sexual acts, but Northstar’s current boyfriend doesn’t even warrant a name. Anole and Karma are still single. The double standard is infuriating, especially so in the context of the X-Men books, which center around the theme of an oppressed minority.

PAD gave gay supes an important “first.” Since the feedback PAD’s getting has been mostly positive, more writers and artists should be willing to give Northstar and the others some TLC. We should hope for the best. I, for one, am going to start buying X-Factor even though I don’t care for some aspects the book. I should buy another copy of last months and board and bag it.

Tom – “A Brood tentacle is just a Brood tentacle?” Are you saying I’m picking up subtext that was placed in the book unintentionally? In Cable & Deadpool or about Rictor/Shatterstar? I don’t especially consider myself a yaoi fan. I found “Deadpool’s Darkest Fantasy” a hilarious sign of just how messed up Wade’s mind is, not proof that he and Cable were a couple. I’m not trying to be argumentative. I don’t really understand what you meant.

You are right that I did get a little high handed with the Youngblood issue. As I said, I haven’t seen it and it obviously isn’t supposed to be educational or high art. But what I have seen looks unnecessarily homophobic and the people who read it will be influenced by it one way or another.

I support any developments that will feed Liefeld’s growing frustration and make him (hopefully soon) quit the business for good. Maybe he’ll take a long sabbatical someplace where they will teach him to draw feet.

PAD makes fangirl’s dreams come true. Seriously, keep it up!

Wow. Who’d have thought that, in a debate between PAD & Rob, that PAD would be the one coming off as an antagonistic prick?

Certainly no one who’s read anything he’s written, anyhow.

Of the two, PAD certainly comes off smelling better, that’s for certain.

Are his responses snarky? Yes.
Are the things he says biting and occasionally cruel? Sure.
Is he right? You betcha.

Rob has a right to feel how he feels. By denying that other people have a right to be offended by some of what he has said, Rob comes off looking worse in this argument.

For what it’s worth, I started reading X-Force back in the beginning, in the Liefield days. He helped make Sam Guthrie into the corn-fed stud he is now and for that, I appreciate him. However, as someone who read X-Force from the VERY beginning (back when it was still New Mutants) I can say with a clear conscience that Shatterstar in those days WAS utterly asexual. All that mattered was fighting.

HOWEVER, later writers took the character and gave him some depth that was sorely lacking from the character, having him develop feelings, become human. As it turns out, every indication was that the kind of human he was becoming was a gay one. I’m sorry you’re not happy about that, Rob, but…it’s not new. It’s not forced. It’s not out of the blue. And threatening to “Fix” it if you get the chance smacks of the same kind of homophobia that parents have when they first realize their kids are gay.

Some choose to try to “fix” the gayness out of them. Others threaten to do it…and as time passes, realize that their child is growing up, has a right to self-determination…and they realize that their urge to “fix” the gayness changes to an urge to fix their own misconceptions.

Let’s hope that’s the path you eventually go down, Rob.

And PAD, if you still are reading this thread, thank you for finally addressing this issue. It’s about time someone did, and I’m glad it’s someone with a sense of humor and skill at writing.

Clegane, Sandor

July 7, 2009 at 3:31 pm

Wow PAD sure likes making fun of Liefield. Seems like he was doing an okay job of it himself, though.

PAD – you’re a good writer, certainly better than the other guy in this topic. I’m sure you’d agree that a creator has the right to voice their opinion on how their works are treated, despite no claims of ownership, yes?

And yet you act the cheap whore here: You did whatever you could to further incite local a simple-minded club of interdweebs (blog) to posse up on a VERY easy target. Is there a vendetta here? Because otherwise, didn’t making fun of Image founders go out of style a CAJILLION years ago? Are we going back to Helen Keller jokes next?

And then you (attempt to) act superior to him, talking down to him in this court of public opinion (read: self-righteous nerd-jerk). When you’re no better. Your last instinct – to leave well enough alone – probably should have been your first. I’d have thought you to be a classy dude, going into this. But…wow.

Its very simple.

Rob Liefeld didn’t make his a lot of his creations great characters. Those characters evolved into great characters when other writers got their hands on them. Characters evolve though the medium of superhero comics. Shatterstar is no different. He has evolved over time, and even if Rob Liefeld doesn’t like it he doesn’t have to much of a choice. These characters are going to be around far after where all dead.

Ok, we finally got Shatterstar out of the closet…

When will someone do the same for poor Iceman. Who’s dating people like Mystique so he can be with a man in private rather than just come clean and admit that he likes dudes. Come on Mike Carey or Matt Fraction. This is the story that has to be told. Iceman deserves to not have to hide as well.

Hell, just make Bobby bisexual, like Rictor, make everyone happy. That way, we don’t ignore that he HAS been with women, and seemed happy, but we also address his possible manlovin’ too.

I’m totally for it. There’s been plenty of hints over the years for Bobby as well.

Okay, this is a bit late but here’s an article (from this very site so it’s likely a reliable source) about comic book urban legends. The second one on the page deals with the very debate that’s going on:

http://goodcomics.comicbookresources.com/2007/10/18/comic-book-urban-legends-revealed-125/

Rob Liefield may have been happy with an asexual emotionless killing machine but no one else was because an asexual emotionless killing machine would get very boring, very quickly.

to be fair Rob Liefeld also has a problem with his characters being drawn with more realistic body proportions too.

“… I have nothing against people with noses, I have family who have noses, nuthin’ but love here,”

You know, when I came “out”, I’m sure it wasn’t part of what my folks envisioned either. It happens. They got over it and I wasn’t even a work-for-hire!

Ha ha! I think Marvel should make ALL of Liefeld’s characters gay.

I realize this thread is pretty much dead, but I have two questions, one serious and one not.
1. Is this really Marvel’s first gay kiss? That seems kind of hard to belive.
2. Does anyone else find it odd that Liefeld doesn’t wear red or yellow?

As usual Liefeld doesn’t get that he works for a corporation, and his work for said corporation remains property of said corporation – no different than the guy that worked for Pfizer that for a $10K bonus and a corner office for discovering Lipator (which makes $8 billion dollars a year for Pfizer). While Liefeld came up with the character (in a pretty ridiculous concept honestly), he has no claim on who or what the character becomes in the future (just like all of the other characters created over the years by scoes of writers). So what if Shatterstar is gay in this line? It’s not like a) there wasn’t a HUGE preexisting fanbase for a ricstar pairing, b) it’s odd or strange for the boys to be gay/bi, and c) there won’t be a dozen other lines where it never happens (in the future) – little different than Colossus/Shadowcat in some lines, Colossus/Northstar in another. *shrugs* Liefeld did nothing in many fans eyes but inspire incredible dislike in his direction for the MANY fans of the pairing. (And yes, there are scores of online sites devoted to the pairing from way back, and they have been an extremely popular slash fanfic couple for at least a decade or more.)

Nathan Dayspring

July 9, 2009 at 1:01 pm

Peter David has written boring comics for more then 20 years.

Uhmmm, Maximus wasn’t a Spartan. Spartan isn’t just a word that means gladiator, you know. Two, the Spartans enganged in more homosexual behavior than the Athenians (not that they were gay, there’s a huge difference in homosexual identity, understanding, and cultural practice than what we know today, but really bad comparison).

Rob… it’s like a kid. You create him, you raise him, you love him, then 16 years later there’s a chance he comes up to you and says he’s gay. You can’t do anything but accept it and move on.

Of course once again Rob trolls another site because people disagree with him. Grow up, Rob. No one cares what you think or have to say and frankly most, if not all, are tired of your trolling. People are not always going to like changes or opinions, but you take it to an extreme and troll the hell out of sites because your feeling and ego are hurt. Grow up. Shatterstar kissed a man, big deal. Your outraged objection makes you look like a homophobe and ignorant. Things change, progressions are made, deal with it and stop attention whoring.

Matthew Stockfarleysolomonburger

July 10, 2009 at 6:48 pm

Oh jesus. What in the hell are they doing toe X-books? Claremont should be gayt too. These people really nymphonmanics. Quesada included. Marvel is really taking it up the arse no pun intended. I’m sorry this is just too funny for words.

Dear Rob, you need to read those “proofs”, even if you will surely not like them :
http://www.geocities.com/ricshatty/proofs.html

I am a “first time reader”. I Read your New Mutants with Simonson. I Read your X-Force since #1. I Kept on reading the book since you left. And it’s been a while I figured out that Shatterstar and Rictor share love, more than friendship. It’s been something hinted many times. I am happy they were never “labeled” as gay characters. But I was happy they shared that special bond, that subtle love. So I didn’t felt that X-Factor 45 kiss was a shock, or out of characters.

Rob, you can deny all the work of other writers who took care of a character you “Created”, but don’t expect fans and long time readers, to deny it. And I can’t agree more than you may not be homphobic, but you really reacted like one. At least, thats’ the way I read your comments.

Well, I never liked much of your “writing”. And never liked your art either. But I always thought you are someone nice, which is to my eyes a real quality. Please, don’t spoil that.

By the way, I just wanted to say to PAD how much I love his plots, stories and dialogues. They’re so brillant, so clever. I never feel like you’re insulting my intelligence when I read your X-Factor. Thank you so much.

I got to read this discussion because of a Joe Quesada interview, but to be honest, i stopped reading halfway through. It got boring, the same way the story that originated this controversy probably is. It’s never a good sign, when a character sexual orientation is the only thing anyone talks about, regarding the story from where that comes from lol.

Guys (and gals) I have followed these arguments both over on the Liefeld boards and here, and you know what? The Liefeld fans and the Anti-Liefeld faction, are both guilty of the same thing.
YOu attack Liefled without rhyme or reason and the same happened with PAD when he visited Liefeld’s boards.
It really makes me sad everytime something like this happens, that so many fans of my favorite hobby are idiots, or at least behave like idiots on the ‘net.
Liefeld is always shooting his mouth of without thinking and his comments can be seen as homophobic, but I’m pretty sure he isn’t and I think as a characters creator he has every right to his opininion. He knows it won’t change anything and nobody but the brainless followers on his message boards will care about it, but he still has the right to his opinion. He did create the character and he has over the years occasionally voiced his discomfort with the way his creations were changed by Marvel, it’s just that no-one found the previous comments newsworthy (no gay connection).

That being said, I love X-Factor, I always thought of Shatterstar as gay (man, even Fabian made it quite clear he was not interested in Women sexually )and was angry when Marvel editors forced an end to the development in X-Force. So I’m very happy with PAD’s new story

Hey! I’m late! I just wanted to say that I re-confirmed my subscription to X-Factor! I love the Rictor/Shatterstar bisexual/asexual/relationship sub-plot. As a gay man I love seeing characters with fluid or specific sexual orientations. I’m encouraging my friends to buy it! Nice art too.

I bought Batwoman as well!! AMAZING ART cool story

Glad the nineties are over and everyone is talking about awareness! Good job to both publishers!

Oh and who is Cortex? Also- can’t everyone tell that PAD is going to address Longshot and Shatterstars lineage? Can’t wait!

Well i for one totally agree with Quesada’s point… that it’s Marvel’s character and not Liefield’s and that Peter David is the one doing the story. Liefield totally stepped over the line once again by stating that he can’t wait to undo what another writer is doing currently… Liefield created that character and wrote him for what?… only 12 issues before departing for his grand venture… Shatterstar’s sexuality has been hinted at for years… over a decade even and the only thing peter david established was that it was true… i do find it disheartening that so many people are against the character’s sexuality and as i read on the liefield forum one person summarized it as… by making shatterstar gay you are severing the connections that many fans had with that character… and another went on to attack quesdada and when to make the equivalent comparisson of what if spider-man was gay… being gay shouldn’t be a big deal… especially for a character that really hasn’t seen the life of day for the last decade.. . and i won’t even begin on that whole debacle of x-force and shatterstar series… which as most fans caught on that rob liefield already knew that his character was starting to be portrayed as gay and decided to change it… so pretty much get over it and move on… lets see what peter david does what shatterstar… liefield fans should be grateful even for an appearance..lol j/k.

Ehhh Rictor lost his powers and Rahne left him, good for him he deserves some happiness. Isn’t the X-Men all about diversity? What was the reaction when Black Panther first came out and he was *gasp* Black?! Comics need more strong gay and muslim characters honestly it brings a much needed extra layer to the character. I always thought there was a thing between Rictor and Shatterstar. Joey Q’s comments were nice why can’t a character be gay? As people put it and here I’m just restating it was build on for years it’s not some shock value. I wasn’t shocked when I got to that last page I had more of Strong guy’s reaction “ah okay cool”. Now to play devil’s advicate would people get as upset as if two girl characters kissed and they turned out to be gay?! As Joe Q says if it works for the story go for it.

Just to add my halfpenny’s worth of thought… I genuinely don’t know or care all that much about either Rictor or Shatterstar. I didn’t know who Rictor was until I started reading the current volume of “X-Factor,” and my only impression of Shatterstar was of typical mid-’90s “X-TREME” cheesiness. That said, I’ve enjoyed Rictor’s portrayal through the series, and think that this moment was not only well set up, but provides plenty of dramatic potential for the character. I also think that if a character is introduced with a sexual clean slate, as Shatterstar apparently was, that it’s good storytelling to use that character to explore the nuances of sexual identity. So pissing matches and “he said/he said” issues aside, count me among the fans (not sure if that’s the “most” or not) who support the development.

’nuff said (at least by me).

I’m not a huge fan of Peter David, but I thought this was handled really well. It’s been hinted at for years. I’m glad we can leave the “wink wink nudge nudge” innuendo behind one way or the other.

Rob is clearly not homophobic. I can see how a person, reading the comments as they were presented, might come to that conclusion. Especially if they were influenced by the way his comments have been mangled and misconstrued several times over during this discussion. And I should point out, Peter David may just be the most prolific troll that I’ve come across in ages.

And if you’re older than 17, you should be ashamed of yourself for using this as an excuse to call a person an idiot, bigot, and drag his work through the mud. I’m not a fan, just saying.

I know, I know, welcome to the Internet and all that.

people are idiots…

I’ve seen several comments about how PAD shouldn’t have ‘made’ Shatterstar gay, but should have used an established gay character like Northstar…

The thing is Northstar was introduced in 1979, he didn’t come out as gay until Alpha Flight #106, in the 90′s.

Karma was introduced in 1980, she wasn’t a lesbian until Mekanix came out in 2002 (And unlike many, many Claremont characters I never saw her as having bisexual tendencies, just asexual on account of her having been raped.)

Mystique might have always been intended to be bisexual, but Marvel was damn coy about it for the longest time, on account of the Comic Code which precluded open portrayals of bisexuality or homosexuality, and thus nixed the whole Destiny and Mystique are the biological parents of Nightcrawler story line of CC’s (too bad, that might have spared readers the whole Nightcrawl as the son of the Devil thing Austin wrote).

I don’t see many people saying Northstar, Karma and Mystique shouldn’t be gay because they weren’t always portrayed as such. Not anymore anyway, it’s become an accepted part of their personalities, even if it wasn’t always there. Shatterstar’s just the most recent sexually ambiguous character to come out.

Hi all,

Who wants to see me kick Rob Liefield’s ass?

Again, this falls into my WHO CARES ABOUT THE DEATH OF A GAY SUPERHERO ANYWAY?

I don’t care if it’s an ill-mannered, gun-for-hire guy who doesn’t own the rights to the character anymore who’s whining in this case. Now you know what it’s like to be on the other side of the conversation, Rob.

I’m only half-serious, but if he can write such incendiary language over a mere man on man kiss — something that’s been developed for SO MANY YEARS — then he should learn to take his medicine. Grow up, pal. This is a new century. You were working in the “NO GAYS ALLOWED ERA” when you published X=Force #1, which by the way looks like a cartoon parody.

I’m surprised women’s groups haven’t called you to the table for your unbelievably, overly- pneumatic depictions of women. Worse than Barbie, if you ask me.

But hey, if no feminist will take you on, I will. Don’t fuck with the gays. On behalf of the scant LGBT representations in comics, shut up or put up.

Comic con. Name the time and place. We can settle this once and for all. I don’t believe in violence, but I wrote a book called HERO, allegory about my father who one a bronze star in Vietnam, and sometimes you’re just stuck fighting it out.

Dad got stuck fighting it out for a bad cause. I’ll go to the fists for a good costs.

Rob, I’m waiting. Or you could just SHUT UP and let nature takes its course in the pages of X-Factor. Hell, they’ll probably turn Rictor back to girls in a matter of a few issues anyway. Have you actually read the book in the past? You should at least know what you’re talking about before you open your fat trap.

Here’s a thought: Try to put something positive out there in the universe. HERO has done wonders for a lot of people. I’d love to set each and every one of those who’ve written me onto you!

And I’m not afraid to make fun of the kiss, either. I thought Shatterstar looked even sillier than when you drew him. Between the artist and colorist of X-Factor #45, he looked like Arcade, for Pete’s sake!! Have a sense of humor.

Think about someone other than yourself. This kiss really meant a lot to a lot of people.

YOU HAD A CHOICE, YOU KNUCKLEHEAD. YOU COULD HAVE TAKEN OWNERSHIP OF PUTTING SOMETHING GOOD OUT THERE. HELPING A LOT OF PEOPLE. Why you chose the egocentric way or CHANGING “YOUR” character back to “YOUR” way 18 years later is beyond me. Imagine if you’d done the same thing with a racist character eighteen years later after the civil rights era showed us the error of discrimination.

How can you remain SO UN-ENLIGHTENED?

For these reasons, I’d love to take you down, you ignorant switch.

Any fans want to see our grudge match?

Perry Moore
perrymoorestories@gmail.com
AUTHOR of HERO

@Rob Liefeld

I’m not gonna bad mouth you or call you names. I have nothing but respect for you. You’ve accomplished a lot in the comic book industry, more than most ever will. People on these forums are freed from the restriction of facing someone they are arguing with and using a little basic courtesy, so the s#!t filters tend to come loose and people speak in a way they never would in real life. I’m as guilty as the rest…

I was really fascinated by this whole discussion. And especially to see how the whole thing degraded into the “flame-fest” (pardon the pun) it has become. I don’t know the context that your original statement was in, so I’m not going to jump on the “homophobe bandwagon” that has begun here. The difficulty with open debates like this in a forum as that the nuances of verbal conversation get lost. I got the “not a gay one” statement made about the spartans right when it was made, yet everyone launched in the air to talk about how “ignorant of history” they all thought you were. I don’t think that was fair.

The trick is to not get into a flame war like this. As Mr Miyagi in Karate Kid would say, “The best defense for a punch is NO BE THERE”. No matter what your intentions are, people are way too heated up and you will never win, or even look good in the process.

Throughout all the wailing and gnashing of teeth I’ve witnessed on here, I’ve seen one absolute PEARL of a question, that I had not seen addressed by you. Forgive me, whomever originally asked it, but there was a LOT of posts to sift through, so I can’t give credit where it is due… but here’s my framing of it. Once again, I’m trying to be very respectful. If I misquote, I apologize…

** If you intended Shatterstar to be an “asexual warrior”, would your opinion have been exactly the same if Shatterstar’s first kiss was from a woman?**

Only you can give the HONEST answer to this question.
Although you described him as asexual, your dissatisfaction does not seem to stem from him becoming a “sexual” character, but from a “homosexual” character.

This seems to be where people are getting the idea that you are “uncomfortable” with Shatterstar being gay. What most of the fans are saying is that whom Shatterstar loves does not affect the character at all. Your arguments seem to stem from how Shatterstar being in love with another man “changes” him as a character.

I think that becomes the crux of the discussion. Someone coming out as gay, is the same person they have always been. Nothing has “changed”, you simply have more information. The character has been “fleshed out”. If, when you created the character, did not intend him to be a “gay character”, that’s fine. I, as a gay man, don’t think every super team needs it’s own “token gays” (Runaways, Young Avengers, New Mutants, X-force, etc…) but this “revelation” is nothing of the kind. It’s been hinted at for a LONG time, and everyone who followed the series just wanted it to FINALLY happen and be OUT there! (so to speak), not unlike seeing Mulder and Scully get together on X-files.

The earlier question was the beginning of the “discomfort” you seemed to show (Once again, if not the case… it’s how you PRESENTED it), and what drove that show of discomfort home was you saying how you couldn’t wait to “undo it”. If you are completely comfortable with someone being gay, what would need to be undone? What is limiting Shatterstar as a character now? I can’t see anything… can you? I’d like to hear the reasoning.

There’s nothing wrong with feeling uncomfortable with something. You feel what you feel, and it’s all in how you deal with it. And it seems a lot of the fans here are a bit unnerved that you feel the character “shouldn’t be gay” and needs to be “changed”. It’s kind of difficult to reconcile those statements with “I don’t have a problem with anyone being gay”.

On a side note, I’m unbelievably impressed with the sheer number of people in support of this gay character. It wouldn’t have been too long ago that something like this would have a LOT more people pissed off that a comic book had a major gay character. We’ve truly come a long way. Bravo!

And in Rob’s defense, I personally DESPISE when an open and honest discussion degrades into cries of “Ignorance” and “Homophobia”. I think we can do better than simply slapping a label on someone and pushing them to the side. It’s a tool of small minds. (not singling anyone out)

Disagree and Debate! It’s fun and interesting, but once it get’s to the point of name calling, it’s retarded …and queer…

(Yes, that was a “Clerks” cartoon reference!)

Later all!

Jaavik
http://www.facebook.com/jaavik

I find it interesting how much clout we give sexual orientation in defining “characters” or even ourselves. Good storytelling creates conflict between characters is what drives a story foward and captures the reader’s attention and honestly sexuality in all of it’s forms, whether it be homosexual, heterosexual, or even pansexual can create emotional conflict (jealousy, romance, heartache) which can really add another element to an otherwise droll superhero slug fest.

Now take this next point with the understanding that I have very little knowledge of Shatterstar: Whether you fully support him as a homosexual or not, it is absolutely a fluid and natural progression for his character. I’m not making that statement based on reading these books for years and honestly I have made a solid effort to forget most of the 90′s (grade school wasn’t good to me). I’m making that statement mainly based on the comments that the character was intended to be “asexual” and that he did not understand humanity.

I in no way like making generalizations but in my experience when a person feels they don’t identify with what is considered normal, acceptable behavior in society, they quickly find themselves in the margins of said society and although I believe our society has come a very long way in recognizing homosexuality as a legitimate natural, dare I say even healthy, way to express oneself I don’t think anyone can argue that it is fully integrated into society as equally as it’s “god/government sanctioned” counterpart.

Finally…I believe that most people, fictional and real, have a basic sexual nature. So the movement from asexual and in my opinion sexually ambiguous, to homosexual is a natural character progression. It shouldn’t be applauded or rebuked. It’s a story about a character’s growth and it’s meant to primarily entertain and if possible challenge the reader to expand on ideas and beliefs previously believed concrete. I for one am glad to see it’s generated such a vigorous debate because that proves Peter David’s story obviously succeeded on both counts. It also means I will be out 2.99 next time I am at my shop and could possibly lead to yet another addition to my ever growing pull list.

If you think Peter David’s doing a good job with X-Factor (I’ve enjoyed his run since page one), please check out what I did with my novel HERO. A lot more pioneering than anything Marvel’s done before. And not so in your face, either. It’s all about character and story. Write back and let me know what you think.
Stan Lee and I set it up as a series at Showtime. Talk about groundbreaking!
All the best,
Perry Moore
perrymoorestories@gmail.com

Ok, digging deep in the ol’ moral reserves not to spend this entire post talking about Rob L’s shortcomings…

When wolverine was first introduced, the claws were supposed to be part of the costume. He was also supposed to be some sort of evolved wolverine turned human thing. Both of those got axed to the ground. HARD (In UXMen 98 btw for all the continuity geeks out there). Did the changes make his character unuasable? No (Altho in my opinion, it should’ve. HATE wolverine)

When Johnny Storm and Alicia Masters’s marriage was revealed as a Skrull plot to destroy the FF, and Alicia’s first words upon being released were “Where’s Ben?”, did that invalidate about a decade’s worth of emotional growth for a LOT of characters? Yes

The point? Wolverine wasn’t intended to be a char with a murky past and claws bonded to him, but when they changed him to that, a little used (2 comics before GSixed X-men 1)guy can be made better with some reimagining. Alica’s marriage was a cited refrence for growth fo a character and someone deciding she was an evil alien out to destroy us all kinda ruined the title for a LONG TIME. (When Onslaught was an UPSWING in the storytelling, it’s sad). SOmeone taking your creating in a new direction isn’t an insult, it’s character growth. Enjoy that something you created is worthy enough to be used to further a story in other places and move on.

Make it like wolverine being turned into a must read character, and not the low point of FF-ness. Accept it as a good thing and move on. Cause gay guys like me have few enough characters we’ve liked over the years to get to enjoy. Seriously, has ANYONE ever liked Northstar? He’s a prick. Wiccan and Hulkling? Couldn’t give 2 cares about. GIve us someone that can actually fight.

And to PAD, if you have Guido say that to Star, he needs to be flying a jet while doing it. Contrive the next big X-over just for that scene cause if I remember correctly, X-Factor doesn’t have a jet atm.

And as a last note about Star’s origin, everyone knows Longshot and Dazzler were preggers but her body was rejecting the hybrid DNA of a Mojoworlder and a human so they went to the only other person in the multiverse with Hybrid DNA of that type, Spiral/Ricochet Rita, to come to term with the baby and it turned out to be twins, one of which was sent to earth, the other raised in Mojoworld. It’s not that tought. Geez…

[Caroline
July 3, 2009 at 4:46 pm

Also, how the hell do you undo a same-sex kiss? “The REAL, completely asexual Shatterstar was in a cocoon in the bottom of Jamaica Bay!”

Well, okay, yeah, that would totally happen in a Marvel comic.]

Yeah, Marvel undid Spidey’s marriage to MJ.

Interestingly, no one screamed “bachelor-phobe” when some long-time readers like myself wanted Spidey to stay married.

So, if Liefeld doesn’t like Shatterstar kissing guys, then he should be free to express that opinion. It’s tyranny to imply that he doesn’t have that right.

“Some choose to try to “fix” the gayness out of them. Others threaten to do it…and as time passes, realize that their child is growing up, has a right to self-determination…and they realize that their urge to “fix” the gayness changes to an urge to fix their own misconceptions.”

Well, it is possible for a homosexual person to go straight. For example, Kerry Pacer was selected as 2005′s “Person of the Year” by The Advocate, a gay rights magazine. Now, Ms. Pacer has a boyfriend and a baby to boot:

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/tim-graham/2009/07/19/whoops-lesbian-person-year-gay-press-goes-straight-baby

Singer Donnie McClurkin is another former homosexual:

http://www.blacknews.com/pr/donnie101.html

http://www.amazon.com/Eternal-Victim-Victor-Donnie-McClurkin/product-reviews/1562291629/ref=cm_cr_dp_all_helpful?ie=UTF8&coliid=&showViewpoints=1&colid=&sortBy=bySubmissionDateDescending

So, sexual orientation isn’t immutable like skin color. Hence, parents aren’t off their rocker thinking that their once straight son might start dating girls again.

Liefeld is one of the creators of Shatterstar. So, he would know better than anyone here.

I can’t wait until Liefeld changes this abomination back.
Peter David has too many beef’s in this industry, one other is with Erik Larsen.
David is just doing this to spite Liefled and keep food in his fat belly.

Shatterstar as it stands now is a Skrull, until Liefeld changes him back.

a gay person can choose to lead a straight life but they cant CHOOSE to be straight… learn the difference… being gay is not a choice but deciding to live in or out of the closet IS… how ignorant can some of you people be? its 2009 and theres still people who thinks its not the same as skin color… right, tomorrow ill choose to be black…

why would any child choose to be picked on, ridicule, and or killed in some red neck states? the abomination here is the ignorant hicks who knows ZERO gays…

Leave the man alone. He created the Shatter Star. I think he is correct anyway. There is too many gay people in the comics. I will no longer be reading any more of this sick writing and art. PLEASE bring back the comic code. All this gay super heroes is nonsense and just publicty. When didney takes over all this will be put to rest!!!!!!

“There is too many gay people in the comics.”

Right. A couple of dozen, in a cast of thousands. Obviously, any at all is too many for you.

“I will no longer be reading any more of this sick writing and art.”

The less comic books cater to your muddled fear and loathing, the better they will be.

Hate to break it to you Liefeild but the Spartans lost to a group of gay men called the Theban Sacred Band made up of 300 men (150 couples) because Thebes belives that men fight harder with his lover by his side, so badly in fact it turned Sparta into a joke

Alternate lifestyles are determined by choice, there is no ‘gay gene’ or any particular gene that determines sexual orientation. Naturally alternate sexes are born to procreate more of their race, opposites work, sames don’t. It’s very simple.

It’s unfair to people of alternate lifestyles to say ‘their born that way’, because then it pigeon holes them as automatically ‘very dangerous people.’ Why? The ratio of Homosexual/Bi-sexual people in prisons (guilty of crimes) are far higher than Hetero. If these were all ‘born’ this way then this ‘race’ of people are the most dangerous in the world.

The above of course is ridiculous, just because a person chooses an alternate lifestyle does not mean they are more inclined to be criminal. The people in those prisons ‘adopt’ a different lifestyle by ‘choice’ to satisfy their own urges.

Alternate lifestyle is a choice. A ‘preference’. Not an inherited trait.

Yes, because there are plenty of other gender choices in prison. Great analogy.

I like a lot of Liefeld characters, but mostly because of the magic Fabian Nicieza infused into them. I’d love to hear his take on this, because despite Liefeld’s DESIGNING them, Nicieza was the one who brought them to life in the 90′s and fleshed them out.

I’d say if anyone had final say on this (besides PAD who is writing the series, obviously) it would be Fabian. And I’d put money down that he wouldn’t agree with Rob.

I have mixed feelings about this. It is not so much that they are gay/bisexual characters I’m a huge fan of Midnighter and Anole (X-men).

But I don’t like this relationship because I feel that it is fan service to gays and bi-sexual readers. The whole thing smacks of ‘political correctness’. And while David has done a much better job in outing Rictor than the hamfisted job that Winnick did with Terry in Green Lantern or Rucka did with Montoya and Batwoman.. The whole thing comes across as ‘soap boxing’ and the author trying to show how avant gard he is.

In addition I have to admit that I now find Rictor a huge turn off. I thought he liked women. And now it turns out that he doesn’t. He was being disingenuous to any of the women he was involved with. The whole thing with Shatterstar makes him a liar. And I don’t like liars.

Anyway Leifeild should just chill and take comfort that nothing is comic books is permanent. The Spider-man reboot is a fine example. It would not surprise me if after this book is cancelled or David’s run is finished. Some other creative team or even Marvel. Takes both characters and shoves them off into a corner, or even (shudder) kills one of them off. And they are never or hardly used again.

I don’t think they’ve done it out of political correct fan-service to gay/bi fans. Their relationship has been so hinted at for so long and almost definitely there that all the writers have done this time is suck it up, realise that it’s okay to have their relationship be public, and stuck it right out there. Besides, we’re not quite at a social point with gay-acceptance where it’s ridiculous to be politically correct.

All the homophobia in Liefeld’s argument aside, it’s RIDIC and arrogant that he thinks he has the right to “fix” character developments or dictate what other writers do with characters he hasn’t touched (aka butchered) for 10 years.

You don’t see Lee or Claremont having bratty hissy-fits because Beast looks like a cat now or Emma Frost is a good guy.

FreeThinker… your name is a contradiction… you’re telling gay people like myself and others who are born gay that we choose to be gay? There is absolutely a gay gene… being gay is not a choice… however being close-minded like you IS…

Alternate lifestyle is a term coined by you and many people who understands little and knows no gays… we don’t call it that… we call it our life… no next time you open your mouth to spew bigotry… do a little research…

Compairing prison sex to normal sex? (yes I dare used the word normal, because gay sex is normal to me and straight sex is normal to you) Male and females in prison have sex with eachother because they have no other choice… The people who are not incarcerated DO have a choice… if so why would anyone “choose to be gay”? So that we can’t marry, have no rights, get picked on and in the case of Matthew Shephard killed?

So please next time you speak, keep silent… don’t tell gays that they choose anything because if you even knew ONE gay person, you know it’s not a choice… go out find a gay person and ask why they would choose to do so…

Wow, a Marvel title that’s interesting? Been a long time since that happened……

I read Marvel from the early1970s for 20 years, but stopped in the 1990s because the stories and the art were appalling. Mr. Liefield was one of the worst offenders, but not the only one. Turning his characters over to competent writers can only be considered a step forward.

As for Shatterstar’s original asexuality, it makes sense in that he was created by the nutjobs of the Mojovererse with only one mission — to entertain them by killing people. It makes sense that they would make him childlike in outlook but with an adult body. All children start out asexual in outlook. He wasn’t meant to survive long enough to “grow up”. But he came to the main Marvel Universe and lived far longer than he was supposed to — long enough to discover his sexuality. Where’s the problem?

never thought i’d be defending liefeld on the internet that hates him so much, but the funny thing is, he got rich off of all us fanboys who frothed at the mouth for his latest offerings. nobody cared about body proportions or shoulder pads or pouches DURING the 90′s, its just in fashion to bash them now, probably mostly by people with boxes and boxes of old image comics.

to my point> i didn’t create shatterstar, but i sure do have a lot of comics with him in them, and never once did he strike me as having gay undertones.. ever.

now the smug PAD, who obviously thinks very highly of himself and his ideas (people who deal in imaginary worlds shouldnt have any trouble creating them for themselves), comes along and swipes a page from scott lobdell’s (i think) handbook, and makes an existing, previously un-gay character, gay.

the controversy begins.

now, who believes PAD did this in respect for the character of shatterstar, as a logical progression of his story?… ooorr

who thinks he did it to A) irk homophobes and shatterstar fans (i bought 2! action figures) and B) to get people talking and maybe increase sales?

id bet money that PAD isnt as pro-gay as he is pro-money.

as a creator of the character, no one besides liefeld has more say on what the original intention of the character should be, so to bash him for his opinion AS A CREATOR is just as foolish and silly as labeling him as a bigot and homophobe..

which brings me to what irks me the most about this entire thread..

how is it ok to be of the mindset that “gay is totally cool and everyone should love it” but its NOT ok for anyone to have any opinion that differs from that at all without name-calling ensuing?

i’ll tell you why, everyone wants to seem so “modern and progressive” and so “unhateful” and “full of diversity” that real discussion is bogged down by people jumping on the “pro-gay, all the way!” bandwagon and won’t let any comment even remotely to the contrary pass without cries of “bigot!” “homophobe!”

gays are fine, find love however you want and dont hurt anybody and i’ll do the same..

but hack writers DO piss me off.

i guess im a “hack-ophobe”

forgot to mention, on the flipside, i knew a guy that turned gay after having a really hot girlfriend, so it CAN happen i suppose.

Defender, check out http://www.shatteringtheearth.com/ThePairing.html and http://www.shatteringtheearth.com/ThePairing.html Jeff Loeb and Mark Powers were both very clear that they were having Star slowly figure out that he was in love with Ric. It may have been too slow and subtle for you, but other fans got it.

“Later he added, “Shatterstar is akin to Maximus in Gladiator. He’s a warrior, a Spartan, and not a gay one.”"

Well, this might explain the scenes that took place in Issue #200, where Rictor and Shatterstar are watching (*drumroll* you guessed it) “Gladiator.” Could just be a set up for Guido to make “Airplane” jokes, but on the other hand, I find this a wholly amusing coincidence.

My thoughts on this (as if it matters at this point):

- I didn’t get a homophobic vibe off of Liefeld’s comments at all. Seems to me that he created Shatterstar with the intention of making him some sort of organic android, with very limited emotional capabilities. Giving him any sort of sexual alignment at all would be like giving sexuality to a hand grenade. Perhaps not the most engaging character concept, but that’s what he intended. That he didn’t complain when changes were made to Cable and Deadpool doesn’t necessarily make him a homophobe either – maybe he feels that the identity of Cable’s parents doesn’t directly contradict what he’d originally imagined for Cable as a character?

- It’s pretty funny to me that comics has become a medium in which an aspect of a person’s personality (ie. sexual preference) is considered impossible to alter, while the annihilation of the person altogether could be undone without anyone raising an eyebrow. If this is meant to be Shatterstar “growing up” emotionally, couldn’t he simply “grow” out of it? Them’s fightin’ words, I know, but what I’m saying is that tons of young people experiment as a result of their pubescent confusion. I wouldn’t be surprised if many of the “rehabilitated gays” were actually just confused straights.

- Peter David be hardcore trollin’. “It was just a thought. Maybe you’ve got a thinking problem!” Do these two have a history?

- Liefeld uses “‘s” (apostrophe s) to denote both plurals and possessive nouns. This annoys me.

- As some people have said, the key issue should be whether Liefeld dislikes what’s been done because it makes Shatterstar homosexual (or maybe bi?) or because it gives him a sexuality at all.

I am not a Liefeld fan by any means (in fact I avoid his work all together), but I’m siding with him on this one. I did not find his comments homophobic at all. I think creators have a vision and feel for the characters they create and he obviously did not see Shatterstar as a gay character. Nothing wrong with that.

Granted, I’m not a Liefeld fan by any stretch, so my mindset is probably a given—but who the f$%^ does this clown think he is? Rob, you’re not Frank Miller. You didn’t begin and end this character on your own terms like Miller did with Elektra, so you don’t get to complain when someone takes him in a different direction TWENTY YEARS after you abandoned him to go make those pieces of dollar bin fodder you call comics.

And the arrogance of thinking you would be allowed anywhere NEAR a writing job for anything you aren’t publishing? The day that pouches and puffy headgear went out of vogue is the day your presence became unnecessary in popular comics.

I think that the revelation Shatterstar being gay makes much sense, because of all the hints in the past. His relationship with Rictor being open now gives a lot of story stuff now and gives more depth to Shatterstar’s character (personally I think it was about time he got more character depth).

Rob Liefeld, I can understand someone is dissapointed when a character he created turned out different than its creator originally intended. But when you work for a company who owns the characters you know that can happen all the time when you not write the character yourself anymore (I don’t say you don’t know that).

Personally I think before you attempt to undo anything you should first pay attention to the response of the readers/fans about Shatterstar being gay and as far as I know the response was mostly/overall very positive.
I don’t say a writer may not take unpopular steps, but especially by retconning or undoing something big I think you must realize a lot of readers will be very dissapointed if you do.
I don’t think disagreeing with another development of a character you created should be the major motivation to change or undo things, I think telling a good story should be. And for the moment I think Peter David is telling a good story and to me Shatterstar is not acting out of character.

I agree with Rayeye a 100%!

Please don’t lose sight of the original issue.

Liefeld said that he couldn’t wait to “undo” Shatterstar’s sexual orientation.

I’m sorry, but there is no way to interpret that other than in the negative.

As has been pointed out, if Shatterstar were a ladies’ man, or had a dedicated female relationship besides his breeding partner, I could see the point – but he’s been asexual at best, and winkingly acknowledged as Rictor’s boyfriend for a long time. PAD didn’t do anything but continue that story along logical lines.

There are a lot of gay readers who are happy to see a coule that speaks to their lives rather than the hundredth iteration of Scott and Jean – what could be negative about that?

However, the issue isn’t with homosexuality – it’s in the arrogance of a “writer” assuming that he can change something about a character that might resonate with a lot of fans simply because he doesn’t like it – and that this change is something that doesn’t change – I’m sorry, but if you think anyone “goes gay,” you are a fool. People in the real world are born that way. Deal with it.

I would never wish violence on you, Rob, but you are an even bigger douche than I imagined. I pray you don’t ever get your hands on this character again, and it just annoys this piss out of you. In fact, I hope that every character you ever created for Marvel shows up in X-Factor and begins going down on Shatterstar like there’s no tomorrow. I hope that this becomes Shatterstar’s mutant power – to make Liefeld-created characters as gay as Christmas.

Wow. Just….wow. The level of Liefeld bashing blows my mind. What exactly did he do to you guys to make you hate him so much? Sell a bunch of comics? Its pretty obvious that Peter David has issues with Rob beyond this Shatterstar thing and the Liefeld haters are making more of this than it has to be.

You guys are spouting off about Greek gods and real life Spartans when the subject at hand is A FICTIONAL COMIC BOOK CHARACTER FROM ANOTHER WORLD! Liefeld simply stated that being gay wasn’t his intent when he created the character but he quiclky recognized that he doesn’t own the character. you guys blew this up into some homophobic debate.

I have never liked David’s work. I stopped reading X-Factor when he took over with #71 of the original series. I’ve never been a fan of the Hulk so I didn’t read his run there either. But I appreciate him having an opinion. But him forcing his opinion on people is no better than this “homophobia” that many of you are accusing Liefeld of.

This wasn’t “national news”. I didn’t even know about it until this week(a year and a half later!). Mr. David may be blowing smoke up his own ass. You nerds need to get out of the basement more. National news? Tiger Wood’s divorce was national news. Lil Wayne going to jail was national news. Peter David grasping at straws to mmake people care about what he’s writing isn’t national news. Its not “all over the internet”.

This is a disagreement between Liefeld and David that the haters were soooo quick to jump in. I mean, you guys are bashing this guy over Shatterstar for crying out loud! Shatterstar!!! You same hypocrites were buying up anything Liefeld related in the early 90s and loving it. He wasn’t selling a million copies of his books to himself.

I don’t know Liefeld personally. Maybe he’s an asshole. Maybe he’s the nicest guy ever. I don’t take personality in consideration when I buy my comics. But you guys are looking for any reason to jump on the guy. And for what? Having an opinion?

Well here we are, a year later, and NO ONE IS TALKING ABOUT WHETHER SHATTERSTAR IS GAY OR NOT. National news my ass. Grow up David or PAD or whatever your fart catchers on this board call you.

ShatterStar is not show “gay” in the comic, but bisexual, and basically trying EVERYTHING, precisely because he is “struggling to understand human behavior” & apparently like the sexual aspect of the human interaction. He is also in love with Rictor, which is neither a surprise or something that is out of character in my opinion.

I seriously hope Rob Liefeld will never have his hands on ShatterStar storyline again (especially since I can stand his ridiculous style).

I’ve always been disappointed by Liefeld’s behavior regarding this. While he’s not being explicitly homophobic in his comment (after all, he’s not bashing gays, just saying the character he created wasn’t supposed to be), his stance regarding his opinion on the character does not make him look credible or fair minded. It makes him look petty.

He comes off as a child in a game of cops and robbers that screams “Nuh-Uh, You missed me”. Liefeld intends to undermine all the hard work that other artists put into these characters for 20 something years. That’s… just not not fair or right.

Yes, when he created the character he might have had his own opinions about what kind of character he was supposed to be. He left the book 20 some years ago. The character has developed for years under the pen of other writers. When he created the character he was initially asexual. That’s fine. But the character doesn’t belong to him. It belongs to Marvel and is controlled by other people. Not him. And over the years Shatterstar developed as a character.

When he wrote the book, the character demonstrated no signs of being heterosexual or homosexual. He showed confusing and interest in the idea of human social interaction and matings, but as he had no personal experience, he was a “work in progress”. Like so many gay and lesbian and bisexual teens, Shatterstar was trying to figure himself out. Turns out he’s bisexual, which makes sense for someone who was never limited by social and gender “norms”. Which honestly is a very smart approach to the character, which despite what Liefeld thinks, fans seem supportive off. And I know the LGBT community appreciates it.

So how is this not a positive move in the fans eyes? Particularly since nearly everyone is saying “you know it makes sense.”

Rather than state you’re going to cry about it and try and undo it first chance you get, why not act like a real creative mind and find away to work with that idea to tell an even better story? Although if his true intent is to just undo it first chance he gets it might be for the best he not be given the chance.

Well, as far as the “heroes” of the ’90s go, they all were hairy muscled bears that looked as if they were drawn by some gay penciler obsessed with the idea of having a dominant macho all for himself.

Being a penciler – ok, in my spare time… sh** – myself, I know quite well that your preferences often find a way to get through your hand and to the paper… and you don’t even recognize them until a friend points it out.

The ones drawn by Liefeld looked that, more so than others.

So, Rob shouldn’t be so surprised because, for me, the strange is not that Shatterstar has evolved in that direction.

The strange is that some of the other characters he created when he was at Marvel didn’t.

I think a change would do you good

June 6, 2011 at 4:04 pm

The creator of a comic hero is like a parent of a child. So if your child grows up and becomes whatever it happens to become and you don’t accept your child how it is or has turned into (by fate or other people) or however you might want to see it, then the love for your child is just not big enough. And that’s kind of sad. Because acceptance is the least thing your kids ask for.
Remember all big warriors spend a lot of time with other men, in the beginning just because they have no other choice. They form strong bonds and share intimate moments (socially, emotionally and in some cases even physically). In historical times some warriors would even inherit all their belongings to their male partner or best friend just because they had no one else or out of loyalty, trust or love. So that’s even beyond forms of love you can label in a non-warring social context.
Hard times make you grow closer in every aspect of life and binds you together in ways non-troubled civilians cannot reconstruct nor comprehend

that’s an interesting development for somebody who hasn’t seen Shatterstar since the 90s X-Force comics. It does appear to be a vehicle to stir controversy out of two unpopular, ‘throwaway’ characters, but I haven’t read the comics to be sure. Liefeld’s reaction does seem contradictory. Hasn’t the door closed on Liefeld’s creative control on the character, and wasn’t that fact the reason why Image Comics was created? This change in Shatterstar’s character proves the point of everyone who took their talents to indie publishing, but protesting an old creation from his initial Marvel tenure strikes me as superfluous.

I grew up with Rob’s Marvel books and I loved his art. I’ve followed his characters ever since (Cable, Deadpool etc). I had no problem with the intimation that Shatterstar was gay back in the 90s – it was simply moving the character forward and giving him a more interesting personality. He might have been an angry warrior type when he first showed up on Earth, but clearly the years gave him room to grow. That’s a good thing. I’ve been reading X-Factor in trades and have only just reached this “infamous” kiss scene, and having read these stories for 20 years it just feels like a natural (and overdue!) progression for the character.

Sadly, I am absolutely not surprised at Rob’s response to this. I was a member of his discussion board for a while in the mid-2000s, and I had to leave it due to the homophobic vitriol. The members of the board justified their behavior by saying it was simply their religious view. How do you respond to that? I do hope some day they will truly come to accept that there is nothing shameful or emasculating about being gay.

Wow! What is the big deal with the kiss I mean come on people it’s not even real. Personally I thought the kiss was awesome and it totally drew me in to the story. Not only is ShatterStar a bad ass on the battle field but now he’s kissing anything with a pulse. The only thing that bugs me is ShatterStars new look. He looked way cooler with the pads and long hair but now he just looks gay. Besides the very plan new look I will enjoy reading X-Factor for as long ShatterStar stays with the team. ShatterStar rocks!

Thanks Rob Liefeld for helping create one of my favorite comic book character’s and thanks to all the writers who pad tribute to ShatterStar but please let is hair grow back and give him is pads back! thanks guys you all rock in my book.

Shatterstar shouldn’t be gay. This is just another dumb idea by writers that can’t think of anything good to with characters. He was a much better character when he didn’t have human emotions at all. And now he wants to hook up with everyone? stupid. He should be more like “why do people kiss? doesn’t make any sense to me”

I personally don’t think the character should be if the creator did not intend it to be that way. I just don’t believe that (romance in general) should be the focus.

Rob Liefield should re invent the Professor that Cable used to have.

How awful, that comic characters not all be *100%* straight?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

I mean, what will ever become of my childhood fantasies, if not for exclusion of around 15% of the population? Certainly, as a 9 year-old, I was more concerned about Shatterstar’s junk than the survival of the human race. (/endsnark)

If you didn’t catch the snark above, I encourage you to spend a weekend with Cap’n Jack. He’ll set you straight (or bi-curious). Honestly, who among us is petty enough to care who puts their naughty bits in some place we determine to be “immoral?”

As far as I can tell, those who would judge Humanity for their… Well, Humanity… Are suffering all by themselves. No need for Daleks and Cybermen. These people won’t ever know happiness.

He’s got nothing against the gay community? Ok, I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt.

But he feels he’s some sort of authority on Shatterstar? Sorry Rob, but your influence was cut off more than twenty years ago when you abandoned X-Force for Youngblood. Where are you every time someone mentions how “gay” Shaft is? Go yell at them.

On the last page of New Mutants 99, the original Shatterstar appeared.
He was later on revealed to have the name Gaveedra 7.
It was also revealed he was asexual.
He has the mutant ability to channel and generate vibratory shockwaves.
That’s because he is the biological son of Alison Blaire (Dazzler)+Longshot.

In X-Force 61 a Shatterstar look-a-like is shown to be in a coma.
This guy has the name Benjamin Russel.
He is also a homosexual.
He can generate an “X” shaped portal capable of teleporting individuals to their desired locations.
This mutant ability is what send Benjamin Russel into a coma when it first manifested.
Benjamin Russel has a different mutant ability then Gaveedra 7 because he is the biological son of Rita Wayword (the future Spiral)+Longshot.

Gaveedra 7′s body dies in X-Force 61.
His soul is given to the comatose body of Benjamin Russel, who accepts it.
As of X-Force 61, Shatterstar is Benjamin Russel in BODY and Gaveedra 7 in SOUL.
Also, from this point forward, Shatterstar is bi-sexual.

Longshot is the ‘clone son’ of the Benjamin Russel BODY with the Gaveedra 7 SOUL.
The Shatterstar that was shown as of New Mutants 99 up to X-Force 61, is the biological son of Dazzler + Longshot. He is Gaveedra 7 in BODY and SOUL. He is the baby shown on the last page of X-Factor 259.

Benjamin Russel is therefor Gaveedra 7′s grandfather.

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