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Can We Get Disney To Pre-emptively Cancel Whedon's New Marvelverse TV Show Before It Begins?

Can We Get Disney To Pre-emptively Cancel Whedon’s New Marvelverse TV Show Before It Begins?

Earlier this week news came down that Joss Whedon will again write and direct the second Avengers movie. This is no huge surprise, despite every geek news site and blog exploding in ALL CAPS GLEE OVER THIS EXCITING AND COMPLETELY UNEXPECTED NEWS, RAAAAAWWWWRRRR! Calm down, people.

What is actually news is that Whedon will also helm a new TV show set in the Marvel universe. There aren’t many details, but given that there are a ton of characters and storylines to play with, the possibilities are intriguing.

Let’s face it, though: this is a Joss Whedon show we’re talking about. And while the prospect of that fills other fannish hearts with glee, I still remember Dollhouse.

Even before Dollhouse I had no illusions about Whedon. I liked Buffy just like everyone else and find the least fault in that show compared to the others. I never could get into Angel in part because every time I poked my head in I saw problematic shit around the character of Gunn. I never did watch Firefly (I did see Serenity) because from the very beginning I read the criticism around the lack of Chinese characters and the handling of Inara.

In the end, I don’t trust Joss Whedon. And nothing he’s said or done — including the Avengers movie — has given me a reason to change my mind on that. I know I’m not the only one.

And thus, in the spirit of this petition to save Whedon’s Marvel TV show1 from being cancelled2, I’m starting a petition to cancel the show right now in the hopes that we’ll have enough signatures by the time something racist or misogynistic or in any other way problematic3 happens to actually get Whedon tossed back to the movie side of things where he belongs.

Seriously, he’s better off cranking out big screen stuff where he only has 2 hours and thus less screen time for fuckery.

Click here to sign the petition and give Disney a smokescreen for the real reason they intend to cancel the show prematurely and also run the episodes out of order: to become besties with Fox and get the rights to Silver Surfer and Galactus back. It’s a fair trade.

Given the general reaction to my post celebrating the cancellation of Dollhouse with champagne and confetti, the reaction from this one ought to be priceless4.

Footnotes

  1. That site is down temporarily. Possibly because angry anti-Whedon fans did not appreciate the petition. However, the Google cache of that post is here.  []
  2. Yes, I know that is satire. It is funny satire. What I’m about to propose is satirical as well. Keep that in mind. []
  3. Like casting Eliza Dushku []
  4. And I bet no one will get the joke. []

12 comments to Can We Get Disney To Pre-emptively Cancel Whedon’s New Marvelverse TV Show Before It Begins?

  • I totally agree with you here. Petition Signed!

  • Dan

    Really? You didn’t like Dollhouse? I thought it was extremely underrated. Additionally, reading commentary about something (Firefly) and not actually seeing it isn’t exactly helping you here. Angel sucked. I never liked Buffy. Sarah Connor Chronicles ruled. In short, you’re wrong.

    • I usually stay away from TV shows when I see enough deep criticism that makes me think watching the show will make me angry. Perhaps the crits you read are just along the lines of: liked it/didn’t like it. The stuff I read is in depth analysis by smart people I trust. Therefore, I feel completely comfortable criticizing Whedon on those points.

      In short, you’re the one who is wrong. Thanks for playing.

  • Isabel

    I do not give Whedon a pass on race (Firefly) just because he did some things right on Buffy. All of which things were undone by the Dollhouse, anyway.

  • Whatsername

    I always thought Buffy was only ok, honestly. I don’t quite “get it” I suppose, why so many hold it up as so great. Firefly was actually his best work IMO, with the best race politics (and the hatred of Inara’s role as a Companion always seemed really anti-sex worker to me…) even as those race politics were still fucked up in some glaring places (in other words: he actually had people of color, several of them!, in the main cast! But you know forgot all about representing people from one of the major ethnic origins of his universe…). And Dr Horrible was really pretty great (wherein his Asian sister in law kind of called him out for lack of representing Asian characters which was beautiful and kinda awkward). But anyway, Dollhouse was mostly disappointing, so I totally see where you’re coming from.

    That said, i was really happy with the Avengers movie, in that I thought it was far from perfect but my gods was I happier than I usually am coming out of one of those movies!! So I dunno, I think maybe he’s ready for a new TV show and I’m cautiously optimistic.

  • I signed, and did so in all seriousness. I remember Dollhouse all too well, and what Whedon did on that show is unforgivable.

  • Joe

    What do you think the chances are that whatever they put on will be less problematic than what JW does? I’m going to give that a 1 in 10 chance. Less if it’s a comic book show. But you keep on letting the perfect be the enemy of the good.

    • I never understood why people will go onto a social justice website and say something to the effect of “Why even bother? You should be grateful that’s it’s only a little racist/sexist/homophobic/etc.”

      Really, Joe, what is your point?

  • James Davis Nicoll

    Wasn’t Whedon’s sister-in-law’s song kept safely sequestered in the extras? And wasn’t she relegated to a role like Extra Number Three in the actual show? What daring self criticism it was for Whedon to include that song.

    Still, all it took for Whedon to notice an Asian actor and cast them in a minor role was for them to marry his sibling. That’s much easier than e.g. requiring them to save his life during a chaotic battle.

    Prior to Dollhouse, how many Asians had he cast in recurring roles? Daniel Dae Kim and who else?

  • I think you need to see Firefly for yourself.

    Yes, Dollhouse was deeply problematic and pretty disappointing. But Firefly contains one of my favourite female action heroes in the form of Zoe (played by Gina Torres).

    The only criticism I’ve ever seen of Firefly for racism came from this bizarre blogger who claimed that because her husband was white it MUST be an abusive relationship (regardless of how the actual relationship is depicted in the show). (The same blogger also criticised the, admittedly awful, Buffy Season Eight comics on the grounds that ‘lesbians don’t look like that’ which I thought was a bit of a dodgy way of putting the criticism.) Admittedly I haven’t been seeking out criticisms of Firefly, but I agree with the other commenter that criticising the character of Inara BECAUSE she is a sex worker feels off to me.

    Basically I think watching Firefly could be a win-win for you. On the one hand, you could be surprised and discover that it’s up there with “Avengers Assemble” (which you clearly enjoyed) as some of Whedon’s best work. Alternatively you could post some pretty interesting stuff criticising it and plenty of people would be interested in getting your opinion.

    Not sure what you have against Eliza Dushku. I don’t think she was a strong enough actress to head up a tv show, but she was certainly not the main problem with Dollhouse. I’d be happy to see her in more minor roles.

  • James Davis Nicoll

    Because Whedon was open about being inspired by a book about the failed Slaver’s Uprising of 1861–1865, and because I hung out of fora frequently infested by Confederacy sympathizers*, it’s really hard to ignore the parts of Firefly that sound like they were lifted directly from Lost Cause propaganda.

    * soc.history.what-if. Think about what periods of history attract the angriest collections of If Onlyizers.