In an attempt to secure victory in The Outhouse's Comic Industrialist of the Year Award, Bleeding Cool's Rich Johnston has claimed that he knows a secret about a Marvel or DC executive that could shut the company down if revealed.
Yeah, you read the headline right. No, this isn't a "joke" story. Let us explain...
No, it is too much. Let us sum up.
Last weekend, we reported on the controversy created when Rich Johnston posted a letter from a nine-year-old cancer patient in order to
exploit his plight to gain unique hits and shame Marvel and Dan Slott warm people's hearts. Slott and writer Ron Marz took extreme offense on Twitter, with the former telling all of his followers to unfollow Bleeding Cool.
Discussion apparently continued on the message boards for superstar writer "The Great One" Brian Bendis. This reporter hates to visit other message boards, so I was glad to find that /r/comicbooks poster IAmTheWalkingDead summed up the events of the thread for us.
It seems that Johnston, a man who cannot afford to be made to look ridiculous, learned of the disparagment going on at the Bendis Boards and showed up to defend himself. You see, Johnston took issue with the claims that he will post anything for unique hits, because, he said, he holds a secret about an executive for one of the big two comics companies that, if revealed, would shut down the company for good.
There are many stories that I don't and haven't run for [because I'm trying to do good]. . . . For example, I have one story that could completely and utterly doom one of the Big Two because of the actions of a senior executive many years ago before they came to the company. But if I ran it, that company would have to be shut down, it would be completely tainted, like the News Of The World. If I was a proper journalist, I'd run it. But it would cripple the comics industry and put hundreds out of work. So it stays hidden.
So what the hell does Johnston know? Well, he went on to make an even bolder claim:
Also, reporting it without risk of being litigated against into my grave would be a pig. I can't even risk telling anyone this one because of slander law. The people I heard it from as well risked the same. Basically, like Jimmy Savile, I have to wait for him to die. BTW, it's worse than Jimmy Savile.
Jimmy Savile was a British TV star who, after his death, was the subject of a shitload of child molestation accusations. No, seriously, like, over 450 of them.
So what is a Marvel or DC executive doing that is worse than molesting a shitload of children? What? No, it's not "ruining Spider-Man." What's wrong with you people?
Johnston, who routinely reveals confidential information about Marvel and DC storylines and announcements, is afraid to post the rumors because he could be sued for slander. So we're sure as hell not going to speculate. However, there's nothing stopping all of you from doing so in the forum thread or Facebook comments below, so have at it. Bonus points if you get Johnston to show up to defend his honor. :)
Note: The comments of Outhouse message board posters or Facebook commentators do not represent the opinions of The Outhouse or its staff. We'd sell any of these people out in a minute, so feel free to contact us. No, really. We could even tip you off on a few of these weirdos.
If nothing else, this all but assures Johnston's victory in the Comic Industrialist of the Year Awards here at The Outhouse. After all, without Johnston's silence, the comic industry would be utterly destroyed.
UPDATE: An hour after the initial Reddit posting, Johnston announced his intention to try out for the 2014 British Olympic Backpedaling team with the following statement:
I may have not considered the way corporations can survive outside of scandal, I was probably reacting in the light of News Of The World. This particular case if true is bad, but the worse than Savile was more about the impact on the organisation. And considering the BBC of late that might have been mistaken either. The initial point was that I was being accused of running any story without thinking of the consequences and I picked the biggest example on my head of why that wasn't true. That context seems to have been lost.
UPDATE: Rich Johnston is still refusing to reveal his secret. However, Outhouse forum poster and U.K. Youth Correspondent Jubilee has created a fun game you can play to create your own Rich Johnston Worse Than Pedophilia rumor:
Enjoy, and please post your rumor in the forum thread or Facebook comments below.