What's So Bad About Mark Millar?

Erttheking

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OrctheLorc said:
erttheking said:
OrctheLorc said:
Like all Papists (and Millar is a cryptopapist, make no mistake), he is but a wolf in sheep's clothing. He might grin and say he's just writing stories, but he's in reality a tenacious assassin, forever rubbing his hands in antecipation of his next murder. Why are those rape and child killing scenes so bad? Because theyre autobiographical.
I'm sorry, what does this have to do with religion?

OT: Eh...rape is a rather serious issue that needs to be handled delicately. If you're going to be slap dash with it then frankly I can't really say you don't deserve to be criticized.
Popery is not a religion, but a perfidious lie. And the liars are murderers, killers, cannibals, robbers, thugs, lollygaggers. And Millar is one of them.
Yeah I'm not going to lie I have no idea what you're trying to say.
 

IceForce

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OrctheLorc said:
erttheking said:
OrctheLorc said:
Like all Papists (and Millar is a cryptopapist, make no mistake), he is but a wolf in sheep's clothing. He might grin and say he's just writing stories, but he's in reality a tenacious assassin, forever rubbing his hands in antecipation of his next murder. Why are those rape and child killing scenes so bad? Because theyre autobiographical.
I'm sorry, what does this have to do with religion?

OT: Eh...rape is a rather serious issue that needs to be handled delicately. If you're going to be slap dash with it then frankly I can't really say you don't deserve to be criticized.
Popery is not a religion, but a perfidious lie. And the liars are murderers, killers, cannibals, robbers, thugs, lollygaggers. And Millar is one of them.
wut?

Are you just here to derail threads with some weird agenda?
The only person in here to mention "Popery" is you.
 

BarbaricGoose

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SanguiniusMagnificum said:
OrctheLorc said:
OrctheLorc said:
Like all Papists (and Millar is a cryptopapist, make no mistake), he is but a wolf in sheep's clothing. He might grin and say he's just writing stories, but he's in reality a tenacious assassin, forever rubbing his hands in antecipation of his next murder. Why are those rape and child killing scenes so bad? Because theyre autobiographical.
Popery is not a religion, but a perfidious lie. And the liars are murderers, killers, cannibals, robbers, thugs, lollygaggers. And Millar is one of them.

You're either using a very advanced form of humor, incomprehensible to the common man on the internet or you're just rambling your pants off. Honestly, I have no clue.
If someone is being humorous, but no one understands it, can it really be considered humor?

Anyway... on topic..

Can I see the source of that quote, please? Where are you getting that she's a "femi-supremacist"? I'm not seeing that. She's criticizing one man--one man who probably deserves criticism--and that makes her a "femi-supremacist"? I've not read any of his comics, or seen KA2, but her complaints don't seem unwarranted based on what I've read.

I think you're just seeing what you wanna see.
 

Guitarmasterx7

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I don't really know anything about him other than what I've heard secondhand, but honestly, it's kind of nice to see an artist say "so what?" instead of trying to backpedal or apologize or revise their work because it's offensive. Any criticism of his work as being offensive is probably completely valid, but I strongly believe that an artist should be able to portray anything they want. If you don't like it you have absolutely no obligation to consume that media and they won't be getting any of your money.

Also, and this is kind of on a tangent since I do realize that in this case the work itself is subject to scrutiny as well, but I honestly think that consumers of media care way too much about the creators of content as people. If you like the actual thing that they produce why the hell does it matter who it came from? So often I see the focus put on the people behind the product rather than the product itself when it really doesn't belong there. Creative minds are often weird eccentric people. If that creates something interesting and unique that I enjoy, then why should I care about judging them them as a human being? I'm never going to interact with them as a human being anyways.
 

Raikas

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Guitarmasterx7 said:
I don't really know anything about him other than what I've heard secondhand, but honestly, it's kind of nice to see an artist say "so what?" instead of trying to backpedal or apologize or revise their work because it's offensive.
I think there are plenty of artists who can response to "that's offensive!" with an explanation of meaning and intent without any need to backpedal/apologize/revise. And there are plenty of comic book writers who can and do write works that play with people's sensitivities and can easily defend themselves because what they wrote meant something. The issue with Millar isn't that he uses offensive symbols, it's that he uses them for no reason. And ultimately that's less about his stuff being offensive as it is about it being rather empty (especially in comparison with writers within the same genre who push similar limits in terms of content).

I honestly think that consumers of media care way too much about the creators of content as people. If you like the actual thing that they produce why the hell does it matter who it came from?
If you're a fan of an author (or other content creator), aren't you more likely to read interviews with them? Follow their blogs? Read a variety of their work? If they constantly talk about (or avoid) certain topics in their interviews, or constantly revisit certain themes in their writing, why wouldn't that colour the way you see their work as a whole?
 

nogitsune

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SadakoMoose said:
If he's allowed to have his opinions and express his work, then I'm allowed to criticize his work and opinions. I can't change them, and I won't try, but his flippancy alone does not substantiate a defense.

His use of rape as a story device is despicable, especially in Kick Ass 2, and he's never really defended it aside from making the very argument that the OP does. It's not so much that there are a large number of women writers and fan who are saying that men can't understand rape. What's actually going on is that women writers and fans are saying that many male writers do not treat it with the sort of tact or regard as they should. In our society there is what you might call a rape culture, wherein the issues, terminology, legal precedents and media perception of rape is often times skewed against women. Millar does nothing to fight against this, and many find that to be hideously irresponsible. It doesn't necessarily mean that he's a misogynist, just that his work needs to be questioned. A notion that he frequently hides from.

It's same the problem with his use of violence and racial stereotypes. He never defends himself and justifies the use of these tropes. He just hand waves it by telling people to "not be so PC", and goes about his merry way. Never really standing behind his work, outside of dismissing serious analysis of the sexist tropes and idioms that appear in his work.

Frankly, it's frustrating.
I find to call our society a rape culture to be gross hyperbole. If this was India, The Peoples Republic of Congo, one of the middle eastern counties that would arrest the rape victim for charges of adultery, then calling it a rape culture would be fair. But not the US, The US is very anti rape. The US considers Rape as bad as murder if not worse, sentencing is harsh on rapists and they are forced to go onto a sex offender list if they're convicted and really a person could have their life ruined by a mere accusation even if found not guilty. Rape is seen as something you cannot joke about and you can joke about murder or even torture but Rape would harm an entertainers career.

Not to say that our Society is perfect, Equality still needs to be chased but really calling our culture a rape culture is just a bit much. There are many things that need to be done, the law could be better. Rape with male victims only recently are acknowledged as possible and women perpetrators are still not(unless there's a bit of news that I missed). Too many rapes do happen and too many rapists can get away but the culture isn't a rape culture. I guess it could be subjective but I think trying to put western society on the level of the horrors of the congo or India (it took a massive protest to get one rape/murder to trial) I think is just a little too much.
 

Launcelot111

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All I've read of Mark Millar is the first run of Kickass, where the violence is nowhere near Garth Ennis in terms of shock value. Except for a couple Hitgirl scenes, most of the violence was at least connected to the story and wasn't particularly gratuitous.

According to Wikipedia, in the second volume of Kickass, Katie (Kickass's girlfriend) is brutally gang-raped by ************ and friends, and skimming the plot summary, the whole plot of the comic is far more violent and in line with a psychotic villain than the movie. The movie's rape scene (whose target wasn't Katie) was definitely uncomfortable, but a portion of that for me was that ************ wavered between awkward kid and violent criminal pretty often, which made the decision of rape seem out of character and more creepy for it.

And also, Mark Millar isn't even credited with writing the screenplay (he's only given credit for the source work), so we can't point fingers at him for the movie's weird rape scene unless he had some sort of veto power I'm unaware of.
 

Vausch

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Considering Millar did write one of my favourite comics, Superman: Red Son, I have to say he is more than capable of writing some well thought-out stories with great alternatives to the current ones.

That said, I don't have much to compare it to. I don't honestly have any of his other books nor have I read others he's written because often I don't actively look, I just take recommendations or find something that looks interesting.
 

chinangel

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well...how do I put this.

This is a delicate topic and i guess I have some slight insight. I haven't been raped, but i have been molested, and it makes you feel..vulnerable, scared, angry.

THis said I am still goign to see kickass 2, because I enjoyed kickass 1 and I know what i'mg etting when i go in there. This said Mark Millar isn't unique in his use of rape as a motivator. The comic industry in general has used rape purely for motivational reasons and without really addressing the issue,the same way that making a character a pedophile is the lazy way to make a character evil.

It's tiring, annoying and really now that I think about it, something that has been a problem in all forms of media regardless of the gender behind the pen.

Simply put, it's a subject that people want to tackle or use for their own purpose but everyone seems to lack the proper toolset to discuss it, even rape victims them selves.

So, really I don't see why anyone would blast Mark Millar about this, if the scene makes someone uncomfortable? Then GOOD! It's supposed to make you uncomfortable, and if it motivates the main character to do something,then at least it has served it's purpose.

It's not good, but it's no worse than basically every other depiction in media.
 

RhombusHatesYou

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My only issue with Millar is that he's a bit of a hack who puts shock value well above context. Essentially he tries to Out-Ennis Garth Ennis, except that Ennis has more talent and is much, much, MUCH less of a pretentious fuckhead about it all.
 

Hoplon

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RhombusHatesYou said:
My only issue with Millar is that he's a bit of a hack who puts shock value well above context. Essentially he tries to Out-Ennis Garth Ennis, except that Ennis has more talent and is much, much, MUCH less of a pretentious fuckhead about it all.
And to put this in context Garth Ennis is a pretentious fuck wit with delusions of being Alan Moore who is himself a wizard... no really, worships a "pagan" goddess and everything.

Comic writers are not the most stable bunch to begin with and Mark Millar is well on his way to Frank Miller-dom.
 

Winnosh

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Oh yeah Millar is crazy but the rape thing is only part of it, and part of it is that he Loooves to use it in his stories.

There are two rape scenes in Kickass 2 one of an underage girl, and the other of the main character's father.
 

Puzzlenaut

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I had no idea Mark Millar wrote Kick Ass. I loved a lot of his work on the Ultimates and thought that when he dealt with serious issues there (I primarily refer to Hank Pym beating his wife Janet and their torturous relationship thereafter) it was done well despite the goofiness of the superhero-comic background.

Although I've never read Kick Ass, I know a lot about it from wiki and talking to people who have, and what I will say is that, insofar as I can tell, a large part of the premise is the juxtaposition of the light-hearted whimsy of becoming a superhero compared to the ultra-violent reality of getting the crap beaten out of you by drug lords. It is all about the shock value. Horrific violence and murder is a terrible thing, just as terrible as rape, and the use of it in Kick Ass is exploitative, sure, but it isn't something to get angry about.

It is an ultraviolent parody of the sickening things the comic book market crave. You can tell just from the cover.

What I'm saying is that people are taking fiction too seriously.
 

Tanis

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It's not that MEN can't write about rape, and have it something other than a plot device to make the male more heroic while treating the women as nothing more but a plot device (like a piece of the tri-force)....

But, well, MARK MILLAR can't because he seems to lack the ability to.
 

SonicWaffle

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Jacco said:
The rape scene you talk about in the comic was, for all intents and purposes, only there to be there. There were numerous ways he could have handled it that would have been more acceptable than how it turned out.
Not really. I see the purpose as twofold, one within the narrative and one meta;

Firstly, within the story the purpose of the rape scene is to strike deliberately at Kick-Ass. It plays right into the idea of the book, as characters follow common comic book tropes because they're common comic book tropes [http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/StuffedIntoTheFridge]. It's done because it's a more graphic version of what a comic book supervillain might do, and ************ is actively trying to be a comic book supervillain. That isn't to say it's a great artistic decision, but from a character perspective it does make sense.

Secondly, it reinforces to the audience that ************ isn't the goofy kid playing at being a bad guy that he was in the first book. He's deliberately turning himself into a horrible ****. The first Kick-Ass, hyperviolence aside, was basically a tale of kids playing at being heroes and villains. ************'s rampage is the signal that he's not playing anymore, even if Kick-Ass is.

Please note that this is not a defense of Millar or Kick-Ass 2, as I didn't really enjoy the book, and I found the rape scene in particular extremely disturbing. I'm just saying that the scene was hardly thrown in just for the sake of having a rape scene; it's included as part of a character arc for the villain. Whether or not there were better ways for it to be done is up for debate, but to call the scene gratuitous isn't really accurate.
 

Terminal Blue

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I'm going to start using this every time it's appropriate, and it's appropriate now.



Showing rape in media at all is always going to be controversial, for several reasons.

1) It's basically giving the middle finger to a surprisingly large section of the female population (and a small but statistically significant proportion of the male population). You can bleat on about how murder is so much worse, but there aren't going to be murder victims in your audience.

2) A large proportion of the population is demonstrable incapable of reacting to rape with any kind of empathy, because they have no experience and no genuine understanding of it. For most men and a few women, rape is something which happens to other people and will never significantly affect them. People do not react to rape like they react to murder, they are not capable of understanding its effect on the victim because they have never imagined themselves as victims and will never have to.

3) Depictions of rape which are overly graphic and violent to try and appeal to or provoke reaction from a male audience also misrepresent the crime and thus function to spread a mythology about it which makes it harder to prevent and harder to detect. The vast majority of people who are raped are not raped by strangers who have broken into their houses with guns, they are raped by people they know, usually current or former sexual partners, many of whom don't see what they do as rape because it doesn't fit the mythology perpetuated in popular culture. You know, like this popular culture.

This notion that rape is about other guys trying to steal yo' bitches is a pure fantasy concocted to absolve male audiences of responsibility. In reality you are more likely to rape your girlfriend than anyone else is, and that should something that informs your actions.

4) This is not a debate about "censorship" or free speech. There are plenty of movies and media with horrific rape scenes. Boys Don't Cry, Irreversible, even Showgirls. All these depictions were controversial, because that's just how it is, but in these cases the creators were prepared to stand up and explain their decisions in terms other than "lol, edgy". In this case, that hasn't happened.

When a film as godawful as Showgirls can genuinely treat a serious subject with more humanity than you can, you need to give up.

mrblakemiller said:
So, two questions: Can someone point me to anything particularly nasty, by any definition, he's said in an interview regarding this kind of stuff?
Well, there's this.

In the comic ... in the comic they are not real people so you can put a rape in there and you?re not like feeling emotion towards it it?s just people on a piece of paper.
This is not the kind of person who is fit to write about rape. If you are writing it and find you have no emotional response to it, put the pen down. Noone else, particularly the people who actually understand what you're talking about, wants to have to deal with your low-empathy bullshit.
 

Lieju

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SonicWaffle said:
Jacco said:
The rape scene you talk about in the comic was, for all intents and purposes, only there to be there. There were numerous ways he could have handled it that would have been more acceptable than how it turned out.
Not really. I see the purpose as twofold, one within the narrative and one meta;

Firstly, within the story the purpose of the rape scene is to strike deliberately at Kick-Ass. It plays right into the idea of the book, as characters follow common comic book tropes because they're common comic book tropes [http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/StuffedIntoTheFridge]. It's done because it's a more graphic version of what a comic book supervillain might do, and ************ is actively trying to be a comic book supervillain. That isn't to say it's a great artistic decision, but from a character perspective it does make sense.

Secondly, it reinforces to the audience that ************ isn't the goofy kid playing at being a bad guy that he was in the first book. He's deliberately turning himself into a horrible ****. The first Kick-Ass, hyperviolence aside, was basically a tale of kids playing at being heroes and villains. ************'s rampage is the signal that he's not playing anymore, even if Kick-Ass is.

Please note that this is not a defense of Millar or Kick-Ass 2, as I didn't really enjoy the book, and I found the rape scene in particular extremely disturbing. I'm just saying that the scene was hardly thrown in just for the sake of having a rape scene; it's included as part of a character arc for the villain. Whether or not there were better ways for it to be done is up for debate, but to call the scene gratuitous isn't really accurate.
I haven't read the book in question, so tell me, how is the victim's point of view handled? Because wouldn't showing what being rape is like for the victim realistically and focusing on her point of view taking the common trope and bringing it to the real world, showing the real consequences?

Because wasn't the point of the comic to show what superheroes and those tropes would be in real life? Handling the rape like that is not commenting on the trope, it's just using it.