While everyone was paying attention to the "big game" this weekend, another decades-old tradition was on full display: Rob Liefeld's ego. As anyone who follows the superstar artist on Twitter knows, Rob Liefeld has no problem letting everyone know how great Rob Liefeld believes Rob Liefeld to be, and how lucky anyone who gets the honor of working with Rob Liefeld is. There was the time Liefeld insulted DC Comics' entire roster of creators. There was the time he called everyone who ever worked on Deadpool "D-Listers." There was the time he said that anyone who works with him "hit the lottery." There was the time, hilariously, Liefeld said that people should stop making fun of him for never drawing feet because Marc Silvestri and Mike Mignola don't draw them either. But for some reason, when the New York Times quoted Liefeld on similar statements in an article this weekend, Rob Liefeld felt they was taken entirely out of context:
"I have not and will not link to the hit piece that needed my son to take a photo for their deluxe operation," Liefeld tweeted. "Smeared me. Not reflective."
So who was it at the New York Times smearing Rob Liefeld? Well, mostly, it was Rob Liefeld himself. Here's the quotes the Times printed:
Give me a celebrity, I'll give you your haters. Some people shine, and some people don't like when they shine. Ask Barack Obama, he'll tell you.
Comparing himself to the president? Typical Liefeld fare. He also, according to the article, compares himself to Kobe Bryant, Britney Spears, and The Eagles, which is all par for the Liefeld wacky golf course. What else?
Speaking about his rapid rise to fame in the 90s, Liefeld said:
I got the target on my back. Some of the old guys in the business were like, 'Oh, how unfortunate that Rob Liefeld is the spokesman for our craft.' Sour grapes much?
Sour grapes indeed. But the comments that really got buzz this weekend were the ones addressing Liefeld's role in creating Deadpool, and their seemingly insulting tone toward co-creator Fabian Nicieza:
If a janitor scripted New Mutants 98, he'd be the co-creator — that's how it works, buddy. Deadpool does not exist in any way, shape or form without me.
I wrote the stories. Like Jim Lee and others, I worked with a scripter who helped facilitate. I chose Fabian, and he got the benefit of the Rob Liefeld lottery ticket. Those are good coattails to ride.
Ouch! Of course, Liefeld claims he was taken out of context, and even Nicieza himself has jumped to Liefeld's defense, but the fact is, looking at all the past times Liefeld has talked about this subject, these comments are not out of the ordinary. It's the same sort of thing he always says. Just look at the similar disagreement over the role of Louise Simonson in the creation of Cable.
Whatever your opinion of Rob Liefeld, and personally, we enjoy his art, it's hard to deny that he has a major ego and a chip on his shoulder to go with it, likely the result of decades of criticism for his exaggerated style, and multiplied by the abrasive way in which he conducts himself online. At the heart of all of this, however, is a fundamental misunderstanding. Like the New York Times, a lot of people view Liefeld's comments as a bad thing. But in fact, without Rob Liefeld's bombastic personality, comics would be a much more boring place, with far fewer click baiting articles for us to write. And for that, we thank you, Rob Liefeld. Truly, it's we who have hit the Liefeld lottery.
Deadpool, featuring pouches and costume created by Rob Liefeld, and personality created by a bunch of D-Listers, hits theaters this Friday.