Popular YouTuber Zach, who runs the channel Diversity & Comics, a channel that reviews many of the latest comics from various major publishers has found himself becoming public enemy #1 within the industry. So much so that comic book writers are not only blocking him on Twitter, they are blocking ANYONE who dare follows him on Twitter as well…including me.
How and why we got to this point, I’ll explain. Over the last 3 years or so, Marvel Comics have taken a drastic change in writing and character legacy of their mainstream heroes. Many staples Marvel characters were replaced with ‘diverse’ versions of the originals. For example, Captain America is now black, Thor is now a woman, Hulk is now Asian, Ms. Marvel is now Muslim, Ironman is now a black woman, Iron Patriot is now Asian & lesbian, etc. Marvel assumed this move would lead to a more inclusive fan base instead, the move divided and chased away many of their loyal fans. The fact that the characters were radically changed wasn’t the core of their issues. The problem is many of the ‘new writers’ that Marvel has hired over the years have turned the Marvel Comics brand into an outlet to push their political views into the readers. Instead of reading comics with strong characters and cunning villains, readers are now being lectured on the issues of feminism, white privilege, and Islamophobia. While some publishers have also followed suit with this trend, the epicenter of this content seems to be plaguing Marvel the most.
The reaction to this change of direction has led many loyal comic book fans to turn their backs on the company they once held in high regard and label it ‘SJW Marvel’. Enter Diversity & Comics. A YouTuber and Comic Book fan from New York City decided to create a channel to highlight the many issues of modern comic book writers. This has included being very critical of writers and the divisive material written in the books. As of this article, Zach has gathered over 41,000 subscribers on YouTube with a channel that has become more popular than the comics he critiques. This has upset many comic book professionals who are now fighting back against him in more ways than one. Zack has claimed the industry professionals who are fans of his work have been targeted to disavow him, many have threatened to dox him for his work and others have created block lists to ban anyone who is a fan of his.
So imagine my shock when, after doing a video where he called out Sophie Campbell, a transgender writer of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comic for going on Twitter and making a post calling for the death of all Republicans before deleting it. I discovered that I had been blocked from her twitter page when trying to read the tweet in question. Someone who I had never spoken to or even heard of before the video blocked me and she wasn’t the only one. Industry pros like G.I. JOE writer Aubrey Sitterson, Marvel’s Maggs Visaggio, and Heather Antos have all blocked D&C and mostly anyone associated with him.
There are many layers to this story that can’t all be addressed in one post, but to put this in perspective, Marvel and other prominent comic book publishers have created an atmosphere in which they are going after their former fan base and alienating any future fans in a time where comic book sales have plummeted to embarrassing levels. At this point, Diversity & Comics has more fans on YouTube and Twitter by a significant margin than Marvel and IDW are actually selling comics to. The publishers aren’t doing themselves any favors by having writers representing their brand make sure that number only continues to go down. Is there light at the end of the tunnel? We don’t know, but much like the NFL, comic books are no longer tools for escape, but the epicenter of a political tug of war between fans and companies.