Monday, September 03, 2007

Okay, A Word About Didio Abuse...

(you know, at a quick glance at the title this so looks like this is an NSFW post...)

A fellow blogger passed along this link to me. It's for a site that sells "Dan Didio Must Die" T-shirts.

The "Dan Didio Must Die" meme was built off of the "Jimmy Olsen Must Die" promo line for "Countdown."

At one comic con Didio was offered a custom-made t-shirt with the parody logo and art for "Dan Didio Must Die." He enthusiastically put it on.

"Dan Didio Must Die" as opposed to "Jimmy Olsen Must Die" -- it was pretty funny.

But I'm starting to get a little squicky about this.

Look, I don't think that "Countdown" is a particularly well-conceived book or event.

I'm not crazy about a number of things that have happened during Didio's tenure at the company.

And I "get" the joke the t-shirt company is making, and I think their designs are well-done.

But there is an ocean of difference between "Dan Must Leave DC" and "Dan Must Die."

Maybe it sounds like I'm overreacting about this, but the truth of the matter is that Didio goes to these comic conventions and puts himself out there in the public. He's well-known, sort of like a "celebrity" in our neck of fandom, but certainly not a celebrity in the sense that he has anybody other than a couple of PR people with clipboards watching his back.

Using the word "die" in connection with a actual person, a first and last name, is pretty serious stuff.

Let's not joke about it. Let's properly separate out the Business (comix, crossovers, multiple cover gimmicks, Blue Devil) from the People (husband, father, friend, etc.).

This is not to diss anybody who have supported me and have been particularly anti-Didio. I appreciate the support.

But let's put a cap on this. Because in the final analysis, at the end of the day, I couldn't give a shit about comics like I give a shit about other human beings. "Countdown" is ruining DC? I don't give a shit about it enough to say that anybody should "die" because of it, even in fun. Somebody going nuts and hurting somebody else because of a goddamn comic? It would be total bullshit.

In 5-10 years all that status-quo shit with all the old characters will probably be reinstated, anyway.

Again, sorry if I seem a little "alarmist."

I used to work in comics opening mail, I have seen some goddamn scary-ass letters. And some of them were even from people other than H.E.A.T. (HUMOR, people, see, humor, let us all laugh at ourselves, hahahaha).

Ok, back to "Quizilla."


  1. Hear hear. Even with DiDio apparently finding shirts bearing death threats against him amusing, it's still creepy. It's yet another example of some fans treating fictional characters as more important than real people.

  2. I'm going to have to align myself with the "whatever" crowd. To the best of my knowledge, super-hero comics have endured nearly seventy years of hyperbole without a single assassination. In a market where fewer people are willing to shell out $3 for an actual comic book adventure, what kind of proliferation can we expect for an undoubtedly overpriced t-shirt that can't even properly tell the joke due to copyright restrictions?

  3. Hey OS,
    I couldn’t agree more with your post on “Didio abuse” and no you are absolutely NOT being alarmist on this issue.

    You are correct in noting that there is a HUGE difference between professional conduct and personal behavior—yes DD has blurred the lines somewhat by his efforts to become THE face of DC Comics, but at the end of the day, comics are entertainment and works of fiction.

    Indeed, it’s wise to nip this kind of “die” talk in the bud right now.

    Violence or the threat of violence or even the implication of violence is NEVER an acceptable response to what is in essence a policy dispute.

    For 99 percent of comics fans who are level-headed and can the real world from the multiverse, your post is unnecessary.

    However, it’s the 1 percent—the fanboy or fangirl who is a little out there and who may one morning forget to take their meds and go out to attempt a “Lee Harvey”—that need to hear the message—GET A GRIP!!!

    “Dan Didio Must Die” was funny the first time. Repeated ad nauseam—it’s at best in bad taste but at worst, a security issue. Remember that here in the “real world,” entire airports have been hastily evacuated because someone uttered the word “bomb” as a “joke”.

    Here’s the bottom line: Arrogance and incompetence isn’t a capital crime, otherwise executive suites throughout the business world would be awash in a sea of blood.

    If you want to stick it to DD and/or force change—vote with your wallet.

    But like the man said—that’s must my opinion, I could be wrong.

  4. Another vote for the "whatever" team, here.

  5. Yes, it should be clear that the only amusement in the phrase comes from its deliberate play off of "Jimmy Olsen Must Die!", and not off of any thought that it would be genuinely entertaining to murder another human being.

    And the only reason it's selling is because nobody wanted the "WWDDD?" T-shirts. :)

  6. Yes, the Didio-bashing has been vicious (I think we're at HEAT levels here), but the whole joke is that the shirt is making fun of those people who are constantly complaining about DC's direction and blaming Dan Didio for everything. I actually dug it up (it was surprisingly easy to find and I don't know why no one else had linked it yet) to poke fun at a few of my commenters.

  7. Anonymous11:49 AM

    I'd settle for "Dan Didio is the Anti-Monitor"

  8. Death threats being sent to comic book companies when one character dies or another is not an unheard of phenomena. I worked with an editor once who showed me where he kept the letters from one particular obsessed reader just in case the editor was bumped off by said reader. Of course, this was done partially in jest, but the fact remained that the letters were kept in that safe place and the letters kept coming from that reader.

  9. I think they left the "t" off the end of the phrase.

    HEY OH!

  10. Y'know, I could make another tasteless joke implying those are my letters. I'm not going to, because you're bothered so much by this, but you did leave the opening.