Following a controversy involving Marsha Cooke, the widow of the late comic book legend, Darwyn Cooke, both Jeff Lemire and Bill Sienkiewicz separately posted denunciations of the 'Comicsgate' movement.
In a recent video interview on YouTube, comic book creator Billy Tucci casually referenced the late Darywn Cooke. This led to a fan to post an old interview of Darwyn Cooke and claim that Cooke would have supported the 'Comicsgate' movement, which generally argues against what they feel is "forced diversification" of comic books. This has often led to harassment of minority creators and LGBTQ creators by a number of the supporters of Comicsgate. Marsha Cooke then reactivated her Twitter account to say that her husband was not a supporter of Comicsgate.
We don’t deserve Marsha Cooke ❤️ pic.twitter.com/bMq2SGUJtq— rosie "the dark" knight 🕸🕷🎃 (@RosieMarx) August 21, 2018
Cooke stated, "Hi guys, this is Darwyn's wife and I can guarantee he thought you comics gate idiots were a bunch of crybaby losers ruining comics. because you are."
Cooke's response quickly drew a number of harassing responses from Comicsgate supporters.
Can't hear you, too busy weaponizing my Twitter account. pic.twitter.com/SiXxq4iier— Nicest Girl Evr (@Nicest_Girl_Evr) August 22, 2018
We can all report this right? pic.twitter.com/e4Fc8jL5Wr— Nicest Girl Evr (@Nicest_Girl_Evr) August 23, 2018
Star comic book writer Jeff Lemire then chimed in on his view of Comicsgate, posting on Twitter:
Comicsgate is based on fear, intolerance, bigotry and anger. The comics creators emerging today are too talented, too smart and too loud to be beaten by these weak people. It’s time we all started standing up for one another.— Jeff Lemire (@JeffLemire) August 23, 2018
"Comicsgate is based on fear, intolerance, bigotry and anger. The comics creators emerging today are too talented, too smart and too loud to be beaten by these weak people. It’s time we all started standing up for one another."
Star comic book artist Bill Sienkiewicz then joined in on his Facebook account:
What you're each promoting individually is not some divine creative dispensation; it's just you being an asshole. Collectively, you're a gaggle, a clan,(-potentially with a k unsubtle as that shot may be)- a veritable bag's worth of douches. Whatever the name you give for your assembly, you're not the Avengers. You're still just a bunch of assholes.
Comics isn't a boys club. It's not "NO (insert ethnic group, gender, religion, sexual preference here) ALLOWED." It's a club , a meeting place a forum for creators. Of all stripes. Like a real life Legion of Super Heroes, or a Justice League. Only with pen and ink paper and Cintiqs and laptops and...
Stop being the creepy racist misogynist uncles showing up at reunions and pissing in the punchbowl to disprove your beta standing. Stop being the weird cousins the entire world points to as the definition of every "comic book nerd" stereotype. Or do it far away from us. Stop being whiny misunderstood victims bitching bout favoritism, intolerance, and sexism. You're slinging inky-black aspersions, obliviously crying racism in your Wite-Out™. You're damned right some corrections need to be made; starting with the guys in the mirror first.
A large number of other comic book creators have voiced their support for Cooke, as well as to voice their agreement with Lemire and Sienkiewicz's statements.
Writer/artist Phil Hester perhaps summed it up best by his Tweet, "I can't grasp how someone could love the Marvel universe-- one full of heroes who are in one way or another outcasts, but who still choose to fight for the world explicitly rejecting them-- and come away with even a drop of intolerance in their soul."