On the latest scriptnotes podcast, the presenters were joined by several screenwriters, including David S. Goyer (writer of Man of Steel), Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely (writers of Captain America: The Winter Soldier) and Andrea Berloff (writer of the upcoming Legend of Conan). In said podcast, the team chose to play a game wherein each writer would take a card on which the name of a fictional character was written. From here, they would each have to describe how they would reboot the character in their own upcoming film franchise.
In the back-and-forth that ensued, such ideas came up as a mentally deficient Hulk and a Seth Roger spider-hybrid.
However, what most seem to have taken away from it were Goyer’s comments about She-Hulk being the equivalent of a porn-star and the Martian Manhunter being a ‘goofy’ character.
Admittedly, Goyer was out of line in what he said; insulting two long-standing characters; accusing one of being obscure and suggesting anyone who know about him is a loser, and just being downright sexist about the other. But such a large reaction such a small little thing is getting seems a tad unnecessary. The whole podcast is the group joking around with one another, and none of it is meant to be taken so seriously, and the way I got from it, Goyer was being more demeaning to himself than anything, revealing his true misplaced thoughts on the matter.
But I don’t really want to get into the whole debate, seeing as you can find people’s opinion of it covering Google, if you just type either characters name (for instance, there’s a rather interesting article written by Alyssa Rosenberg on the Washington Post). Instead, what this really made me think about just how careful people have to be in the modern age, where someone in charge of a property like Superman can say something that to him, seems highly insignificant, but gets a highly emotionally charged outcry from fans.
As someone who wouldn’t mind becoming some sort of screenwriter myself (although I realise a lot more practice would have to come before I ever reach that goal) I find it daunting that everything you say in public can (obviously) be held against you. Of course, a lot of reporting now is done to get a bad story on whoever their article features, but it also feels disheartening to know that the career paths I want to follow could put me in a position where the public is calling for my head.
I like to think that won’t be the case however, as Goyer doesn’t seem to have the best streak in being popular with the fans, and I could never see myself throwing out unnecessary sexist comments, or purposefully belittling a fan-base.
What Does it Mean..?
(Apart from People Continuing to Think Goyer’s a Douche)
First of all, if the casting of Cyborg didn’t make it clear enough, I think this highlights that the Manhunter isn’t going to pop up in the 2017 Justice League. Kind of a shame; when I used to watch the JL cartoon (as did pretty much everyone), the Martian was probably one of my favourite characters. Apart from Batman. Because Batman.
And on the topic of Batman, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. What’s with that title? Bit of a mouthful. Another strike to an already wavering film franchise.
All-in-all, it looks like DCs quest for a cinematic universe is going to continue to go downhill in public opinion until they can prove it’s worth watching. The struggles of comic book fans, eh?