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Writer Mark Russell Reimagines Snagglepuss As A Gay Southern Playwright

Written by Tim Midura on Tuesday, October 17 2017 and posted in News with Benefits
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ComicsDC

Writer Mark Russell Reimagines Snagglepuss As A Gay Southern Playwright

The six-issue mini-series launches in January.


Source: The Hollywood Reporter

DC first announced writer Mark Russell would be reinventing the Hanna-Barbera character Snagglepuss as a gay Southern playwright last January. Now with the release of the first issue of the six-issue mini-series approaching, DC has been ramping up the campaign behind it.

Snagglepuss is was a pink anthropomorphic mountain lion sporting an upturned collar, shirt cuffs and a string tie with a great desire to be a stage actor. Once writer Mark Russell gets his paws on him, he'll be a gay Southern Gothic playwright. Snagglepuss's adventures in New York will bring him to Broadway, where he'll deal with issues of his sexuality and the place of homosexuals in the repressed culture of the 50s.

Russell gave an interview to The Hollywood Reporter, of which we'll cherry pick quotes below.

It just kind of happened by accident. I was just tweeting funny lines I thought Snagglepuss would say, if he were Tennessee Williams — some kind of Southern Gothic playwright — and Marie Javins, my editor, thought they were funny and she talked to Dan [Didio, DC co-publisher] about turning that into a comic. That's how it started. It was really just funny tweets and it just ballooned from there.

 

I feel like most people judge people by their hearts, by their intentions, more than what they actually say. I wanted to make Snagglepuss a heroic figure, and make him kind of lovable so that when he does say something kind of controversial, you assume it comes from a place of dignity and love for people. It shouldn't come across as mean or acerbic.

 

I think that's right. Snagglepuss in this story is having to live a double life as a gay playwright living in New York, and he's closeted. But he has values and integrity as an artist, and he's trying to stand up for people who otherwise would be shoved under the stairs in this time of great national paranoia in the Red Scare mentality. It's very easy in a time of national catastrophe — of perceived national catastrophe — to throw people under the sink and forget about them, and Snagglepuss is unwilling to let them do that to people he knows and loves. He's willing to stand up for people when the rest of the country is not.

In a lot of ways, that frees me up to say what I think about what's going on in the world now, just putting it in the context of 1953 America.

 

Somebody once said that history never repeats itself, it just rhymes an awful lot. Unfortunately, there are these themes in history — particularly American history — that never really seem to go away. Themes like marginalizing minorities and immigrants, using fear of military threats to make people go along with abuse. These themes quiet down every now and again, but they never seem to go away, so unfortunately, when you're writing about these things, they will always be timely or relevant.

 

The six-issue mini-series is set to release in January.







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About the Author - Tim Midura


Born in the frozen tundra of Massachusetts, Tim Midura has long possessed a love for comic books and records. After stealing the beard of Zeus and inventing the pizza bagel, a much more heavily tattooed and bearded Tim Midura has finally settled in San Diego. He's the world's first comics journalist who doesn't want to become a comics writer. Find him on twitter, facebook or by email.


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