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Comics Smackdown: Is CBR in the Dog House with DC Comics After Teen Titans Hit Piece? (UPDATED)

Written by Jude Terror on Friday, April 11 2014 and posted in News with Benefits

Comics Smackdown: Is CBR in the Dog House with DC Comics After Teen Titans Hit Piece? (UPDATED)

Rogue blogger Janelle Asselin ripped the upcoming Teen Titans reboot cover a new one in a CBR article, prompting a quick response from DC stock artist Brett Booth.

Source: Social Media

Earlier today, Janelle Asselin, a longtime comics editor and critic who currently writes the "Hire This Woman" column at Comics Alliance, published a guest article on popular corporate megasite Comic Book Resources decrying the horrendous cover to Teen Titans #1 by Kenneth Rocafort. Asselin criticized the use of ginormous boob implants on teenaged character Wonder Girl, amongst other crappy design choices. Here's an excerpt:

Let's start with the elephant in the room: Wonder Girl's rack. Perhaps I'm alone in having an issue with an underaged teen girl being drawn with breasts the size of her head (seriously, line that stuff up, each breast is the same size as her face) popping out of her top. Anatomy-wise, there are other issues -- her thigh is bigger around than her waist, for one -- but let's be real. The worst part of this image, by far, are her breasts. The problem is not that she's a teen girl with large breasts, because those certainly exist. The main problem is that this is not the natural chest of a large-breasted woman. Those are implants. On a teenaged superheroine. Natural breasts don't have that round shape (sorry, boys). If you don't believe me, check out this excellent tutorial from artist Meghan Hetrick.

A secondary problem is that no girl with breasts that large is going to wear a strapless top for anything, much less a career that involves a lot of physical activity. In previous New 52 "Teen Titans" covers and issues, we've seen this same costume, but more often than not, WG's breasts are drawn smaller, or the top is pulled up higher. The way Rocafort has drawn her here, we're one bounce away from a nipslip. On a teenager. In case you forgot that entirely relevant point.


It's unusual for CBR, which frequently features full page paid advertisements from Marvel and DC and is frequently the recipient of EXCLUSIVE content deals with the big two, to publish negative commentary on Big Two comics, so the article naturally ruffled some feathers. It didn't take long for DC stock artist Brett Booth to complain about the criticism on Twitter:



That's right, according to Brett Booth, suggesting that teenagers shouldn't be depicted as surgically enhanced sex objects is both biased and nitpicking. Of course, Booth has a job in comics, so he is naturally followed on social media by dim-witted starfuckers ready to come to his defense at a moment's notice. So it didn't take long for the misogyny to kick in:

@Demonpuppy It was written by some self-professed "comics journalist" chick @gimpnelly. #bitethehandthatfeedsyou

— RyanJoseph (@RyanAJoseph) April 11, 2014



Asselin responded, noting her long and well-known career in comics:



To which Booth countered:



Asselin responded:




Luckily, Booth was happy to explain:







Ah, it's the old Smarm vs. Snark argument. One of our favorites. If you don't have something nice to say, you shouldn't say anything at all - a dangerous and nonsensical platitude.

Here's the cover Asselin took apart:

Go over to CBR (a phrase you rarely hear us utter) and check out her critique. Do you think she's on the money? It'll be interesting to see how CBR responds. Will they continue to publish "negative" criticism, or will they be cowed by the backlash from DC employees? We'll have to see, but hopefully someone over there is listening to our thoughts on comics journalism, and if so, good for them.


UPDATE: The fun went on for a while while Ol' Jude Terror was off cooking dinner (a delicious vegetarian coconut curry with peanuts, potatoes, peppers and onions - thanks for asking), and you can read the whole thread here, but I wanted to highlight this final bit, where it turned into outright paranoia as Booth and his fans decided that this was just part of an ongoing media bias against DC Comics:








By impartial, they mean kiss corporate ass, of course.









You see, comics media, if you would just only say nice things about DC, they would give you more exclusive news and access! Why can't you understand the simple concept of payola?!



Remember, this article was posted at CBR, which is normally (overly) positive about Big Two comics. But all of a sudden, they are the love child of Bleeding Cool and The Outhouse.



Oh noes! It's a conspiracy!


A conspiracy involving... stuffy noses?




Apparently they've never read The Outhouse. :)

Look... for us to come to the defense of CBR, who we usually like to make fun of for being TOO NICE to Marvel and DC, you know something has got to be really off the wall. This wasn't a conspiracy to disparage DC because of... sinus problems... for fuck's sake. It was a measured piece that you may agree or disagree with. Trying to silence criticism under the guise of civility is far more insidious than any art critique.

EDIT: In all the hubbub last night, we missed one other comment from Booth.  Read it below and chew on it for a bit.  


MONDAY UPDATE: Following up on the events of the weekend, Janelle Asselin posted an update on Tumblr, in which she reflects on some of the responses she received, including the old internet standby of rape threats. Nice job being terrible, fanboys. Read that here.

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