Mindy Newell: Sometimes A Great Notion Gets Beat

Mindy Newell

These days Mindy Newell knows that if she could do it all over again she’d have gone to college for screenwriting and film editing. Instead she became a nurse to please her parents and pleasing your parents was what it was all about for nice Jewish girls who graduated from high school in 1971. But the creative larva was in her soul, and when the cocoon broke and the butterfly emerged, it flew to DC’s New Talent Showcase program. Under the auspices of legendary editors Karen Berger, Len Wein, Julius Schwartz, Paul Levitz, and ComicMix’s own Robert Greenberger, Mindy learned the craft and art of writing comics, including Tales Of The Legion, V, Legionnaires 3, Amethyst, Lois Lane: When It Rains God Is Crying, and numerous other comics, including a Superman story based on a dream Mindy had as a child. She also worked on Howard Chaykin’s American Flagg! and other independent comics. All this time Mindy continued to work as a nurse while being a single mom to her daughter Alixandra, until the late and dear Mark Gruenwald hired her as an assistant editor at Marvel, while writing stories of the Black Widow and Daredevil. She edited NFL Pro Action, a licensed kid’s magazine about football with the NFL until Marvel imploded in 1996. Returning to full-time nursing, she she also co-wrote a story for 2000 A.D. with her then-husband, British artist John Higgins. A few years ago Mike Gold called and asked her to join the team of columnists here at ComicMix, where her topics freely range from comics to pop culture to politics; she even wrote a piece about the great American thoroughbred Secretariat, which caused editor Mike to tell her that she had won the prize for the most off-topic column ever written ComicMix.

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73 Responses

  1. Bill Mulligan says:

    “Repugnanticans”, wow, please don’t ever, ever complain about the high degree of childishness in our political discourse.

    • Mindy Newell says:

      Bill, I don’t think I’m being “childish.” I truly find the current Republican party totally repugnant in their attitudes towards women, their striving to disenfranchise millions of voters who don’t agree with them, their barely hidden racism towards President Obama, and their brazen lying at the Republican convention, which even FOX NEWS reported on.

      I am not “anti-Republican.” I am, however, proudly “anti-Repugnantican.”

  2. Bill Mulligan says:

    On another note, while it’s not unreasonable that WW would explore a same sex relationship, I’d hope any writer would save that for another character–it plays straight (ha!) into the hands of those who would like to have us believe that being raised by gay parents (or even gay-tolerant parents) will make kids gay. If, as I think, it is far more nature than nurture, it should not matter if she were raised on Paradise Island, Fire Island, Monster Island or Long island.

    • George Haberberger says:

      Thank you Bill Mulligan.

    • Mindy Newell says:

      Regarding Wonder Woman–I’m not saying that she MUST BE GAY. I’m saying that I believe her first inclination, given her upbringing, would be to seek love with her own sex. And, in fact, I think it would be interesting for Diana to discover that she is drawn to men–and feel like there’s something wrong with her. This would parallel what so many young people who know they are gay go through in this society–although I do think its getting better out there.

      And just so you know, I believe that it’s “nature,” not “nuture” that decides an individual’s sexual preferences.

      • Bill Mulligan says:

        And I think you would be attacked without mercy if you tried to do a story like what you describe–the homophobes would, of course, lose their shit over you making WW gay in the first place AND you would catch holy hot hell when you had her become attracted to a man. There is no doubt in my mind. You can hear the complaints now–“Newell chickened out!” “Oh right, that’s what every lesbian secretly wants, the right man to show here the true path!” “I finally found a character that I could identify with and now you’ve WEE-OOH, WEE-OOH!”

        It would be brutal. The worst part about creating groundbreaking characters, it seems to me, is that you lose control of them. Joss Whedon makes Willow gay and from that point on every time something bad happens to her (and it’s a Joss Whedon show, BAD STUFF HAPPENS TO YOU!) people start bitching and bitching; “Oh right, another gay relationship that ends badly.” as though ANYONE on Buffy was likely to have a happy ending, relationship-wise.

        • Mindy Newell says:

          I was going to bring up Willow and Tara on BUFFY–you know how I LOVVVVVE that show!–and the bullshit Wheedon got for killing Tara…which was a necessary dramatic action for where Wheedon was going. And yes, it was Wheedon show, and BAD STUFF HAPPENS TO PEOPLE on Wheedon shows, so we agree again, Bill!

          But like Wheedon, I don’t give a shit. If it serves the character(s) and his/her/their story, I write it.

          Not that DC would EVER let me do something like that.

    • Mindy Newell says:

      And btw, thanks for giving me the subject of this week’s column.

      I owe you, Bill!!!!!

      • Bill Mulligan says:

        Uh oh…I think I’ve really done it now….(anxiously keeps checking back to see what he hath wrought…)

        • Mindy Newell says:

          Can I quote you in the column? I mean about the point that “people” would give me shit and raise holy hell.

          • Bill Mulligan says:

            Ms. Newell, you may quote me any time you wish. I am genuinely flattered. And despite any disagreements we may have on politics I must say I like the cut of your jib.

            (And I have never gone out of mourning from the loss of Buffy and Angel. Nothing else on the tube has been able to replace my affections for all those characters in Joss’ universe.)

  3. Mindy Newell says:

    @ Bill…and you can certainly call me Mindy, Bill. :-)

    Yep, BUFFY and ANGEL. I’ve been rewatching the shows (again) this summer. We are together on this, bro!

    • Mindy Newell says:

      And thanks for the permission, Bill!

    • Bill Mulligan says:

      BUFFY had some trouble toward the end, though it went out strong. ANGEL….ANGEL had at least two more seasons it it. At least. I suppose there is something to going out on top before people get bored and begin to hate you, but…now, with Andy Hallett gone from us I don’t even want to think about a reunion show or movie. And according to wikipedia it was just some stupid power play on the part of a now-former studio exec that caused the show to get cancelled when it did.

      Honestly,Mindy, I don’t know how you creative types deal with some of the suits in charge. I make ultra low budget movies with my friends and that’s about as far as I intend to take it, partly because that’s probably as far as my talent deserves and partly because I have a fairly good inkling that it would rapidly stop being fun if it went anywhere above the level of a Troma production.

      • Mindy Newell says:

        Bill, are you on Facebook? I’d like to friend you.

        Read this in EW way back when SMG made the cover by the announcement that BUFFY was ending–the cast didn’t know about it UNTIL it hit EW!!!!! Which implies…and I’ve heard this, although it’s scuttlebutt and not backed up as truth, that the last season of BUFFY, with her war against the First, was cut short by SMG’s decision–it was supposed to continue into the eighth season. Whedon was gob-smacked by her announcement, which is why the last season was somewhat muddled as he rushed to end to it well.

        As for ANGEL–yeah, I knew it was some dumb suit’s decision to end the show. Also accounting for the “rushed” air of the last season. And I LOVED that show, too.

        • Bill Mulligan says:

          I didn’t know or had forgotten about that. Hmmm…I wonder if some of the possible bad feelings toward SMG accounted for how badly Buffy the character was treated. Frankly, toward the end of the show she was not even close to being one of my favorite characters on the show.

          (Just sent a facebook friend request :)

  4. Michael Poole says:

    All Republicans are the same too right? Just like all Democrats are exactly like Michael Moore, Keith Olbermann, and Bill Maher. Or senator Robert Byrd who actually was a KKK leader. It was Democrats who actually fought against de-segregation. Abraham Lincoln, who actually freed the damn slaves, was a Republican! I’ve been a Republican my whole adult life and my 2 best friends in the world are black guys. The notion that Republicans all hate minorities and women is a recent ploy by Democrats started back in the 60’s and it has largely worked. Or at least it has worked on the people who are mindless twits who blindly accept the words of the media and left-wing radicals as truth without doing any actual fact checking. Which you apparently are judging by the fact that you put off doing you’re article until the last minute and then wrote an article about not having written an article…moron.

    • Michael Poole says:

      The point is that representatives on both sides say extremely stupid and misguided things. But only the truly uninformed and biased people assume they are all the same from hearing from only a few.

    • Bill Mulligan says:

      Michael, Mindy’s remarks may have been intemperate but she has shown quite clearly that she does not consider all republicans and/or conservatives to be unworthy of her friendship.

      And you don’t make a very persuasive argument in complaining about name calling and then call someone a moron. Which she very very clearly is not. An apology would be in order.

      • Michael Poole says:

        What part of “They only prove that the Repugnanticans have become truly asinine, ignorant, bigoted enemies of truth, justice, and the American way.” can be interpreted as her not including every Republican? She doesnt say only those individuals. She as a matter of fact says that those 3 people prove…yes PROVE, that all “repugnanticans” are those hateful things she mentions. If she was only talking about those people i would agree whole heartedly. I dont know how you or anybody else could possibly read that in any other way unless you agree with her. Which im sure you do. And yes an apology is in order. From Mindy to all republicans who arent “truly asinine, ignorant, bigoted enemies of truth, justice, and the American way.” Which very much includes myself. And an apology from me as well. Im sorry that I made the erroneous assumption that I could click on a comic book based website to read about something im interested in without getting slapped in the face, called names, and reading yet another left-wing diatribe dripping with hate speech. It wont happen again I promise.

        • Michael Poole says:

          Oh and lets not forget the 3rd line of the article “Damn those Republicans!” which clearly means only 3 people…

          • Bill Mulligan says:

            I can only assume you have not read a single reply of mine in this thread. Otherwise I would have to look at your statement “I dont know how you or anybody else could possibly read that in any other way unless you agree with her. Which im sure you do” along with your calling her a “moron” and chuckle at the irony contained therein.

            Ms Newell can engage in a pleasant conversion with someone whose politics are largely 180 degrees in opposition to her own. You seem to have trouble dealing with any hint of dissent even from a fellow conservative. Advantage hers.

            And I actually agree with you that it’s too bad that people–particularly on the left, in my opinion–are so quick to sully otherwise perfectly good posts with not just politics but badly thought out bumpersticker level politics that are to actual rational discourse what rival chants at a high school volleyball game are to debate. But boy, are you so NOT the one to make that point. Here’s my tip o’ the day; if someone is engaging in over the top rhetoric, the more effective response is not whiny butthurt and tit for tat name calling. Conservative ought to reach for a higher standard. (Fortunately, that is not difficult). Nobody could read anything I’ve written on this thread and legitimately make the argument that I’m one with the Todd Akins of the world. Have you drawn as clear a distinction for yourself? It ain’t hard! And it’s a lot more likely to move hearts and minds if, instead of playing by the rules of partisan bickering, you point out that the game is not one really worth playing.

          • Michael Poole says:

            Yeah nothing says pleasant conversation like calling the other people asinine, ignorant, bigoted enemies of truth, justice, and the American way. But ive had my say and its pointless to continue since you’re obviously just sniffing after her in hopes of getting an add on Facebook or some boob pics in an email. Good luck with that. And I will seek out less political comic sites.

          • Bill Mulligan says:

            “But ive had my say and its pointless to continue since you’re obviously just sniffing after her in hopes of getting an add on Facebook”

            Already got it, so, no, not so much. I genuinely think you’re acting like a dick.

            “–or some boob pics in an email.”

            Wow. Just wow. Ladies and gentlemen, Michael Poole, Class Act.

            “And I will seek out less political comic sites.”

            One hopes you will learn to conduct yourself in a way that indicates a modicum of dignity or they will be much diminished by your presence there.

            At least try to put on the big boy pants when arguing politics. Conservatives have enough trouble with unfair characterizations from the other side, don’t need someone claiming to represent our values simply behaving like a left wing cliche of what a conservative is like. If, as I suspect, this is beyond you, at least try to be good at trolling. Hint–mentioning boob shots paints a mental picture of you that, well, let us just say it does not exactly conjure up the sort of fellow who would make Ayn Rand weak in the knees. If you don’t believe me, ask a girl or have a friend do it for you.

          • Michael Poole says:

            Ahhh so I was right then. You’re just some pathetic loser panting after some lefty cunt who attempts to write articles for some low end comic review site. I figured as much. And somehow im the one who needs to have my friends ask a girl something lol. Im happily married so I have actually gotten to touch a girl. Hopefully you will get the chance with this democratic whore once you kiss her ass for long enough. And since you have the facebook thing already maybe itll happen in a year or so. As for trolling how about this…go fuck yourself. Until “ms. Newell” finally gives in to your masterful advances that is.

  5. Michael Poole says:

    And after reading the post, I think you should have went with cutting open the vein.

  6. Mindy Newell says:


    I’m a left cunt?

    Whatever floats your boat….

  7. Mindy Newell says:


    Thanks for defending me, but don’t waste anymore time with Michael.

    You’re the best!

    • Bill Mulligan says:

      Nothing I could possibly say would be half as effective in making him look bad as what he has done to himself. I hope he used his real name so that anyone bothering to look him up–unlikely as that is–will get an eyeful.

      Sorry to have egged on the troll. Such ugliness is offensive to anyone of any political persuasion, if they were raised right.

      • Mindy Newell says:

        Actually, over at THE LEAGUE OF WOMAN BLOGGERS we had been having a conversation about these trolls, and I kinda felt left out because it had never happened to me. Now I don’t! :-D! LOL!

        • Michael Poole says:

          Yeah all you had to do is call people hateful names and then act like you didnt do anything when they get offended by your hateful political spewings. Now you can act all offended along with them. Genius. Thats actually a common practice by leftist nut jobs like you. You actually insulted half the country by what you said. And one of those people you insulted calls you on it, you act victimized. Its pathetic.

          • Michael Poole says:

            You people are like kids when they fight. One kid punches another in the face. The other kid hits back. Then the first kid starts crying and runs and tells his mommy that he got hit. Completely leaving put the small fact that he started the whole thing. If you cant take being talked back to then dont spout off insults to people in your pathetic attempts to write articles, or your articles about not writing articles. Whatever.

          • Michael Poole says:

            And im sure when you talk to the other lefty whores at your blog site you will leave out the fact that in your article you said those vile things and insulted %50 of the country three sentences in. And yes Bill thats my real name. Ill give you my info if you feel the need to butch up and question my raising again.

          • Michael Poole says:

            And I actually wasn’t trolling nor do I ever troll, but seriously, I know you cant see it but what you put in your article really is very offensive. You even questioned my love for my country. All I was doing was reading about comics and I come across your filthy, needlessly offensive hate speech. And it wasn’t something I could leave unanswered.

  8. Bill Myers says:

    Mindy, my good friend Bill Mulligan sent me this link as he thought I might find the fireworks amusing. He was right.

    Bill is a wonderful guy to know, by the way. I can say that with authority as he is one of my closest friends. We actually “met” at PeterDavid.net. (By the way, there’s nothing like saying “I met this guy online” to raise a few eyebrows.) My girlfriend and I have since been to his house and I can tell you that if you want a friend who will have your back no matter the circumstances, Mulligan is the guy.

    That being said, if I cause trouble for you here you have Mulligan to blame. That is in fact my default position for many things that happen: it’s Mulligan’s fault.

    “But ive had my say and its pointless to continue since you’re obviously just sniffing after her in hopes of getting an add on Facebook or some boob pics in an email. Good luck with that. And I will seek out less political comic sites.”

    Wow, that satisfied my US RDA for irony for about a month. You’ve posted how many times since announcing you would go elsewhere? Also, holy crap, I think you’re having a psychotic break.

    “And I actually wasn’t trolling nor do I ever troll”

    Uhm… of course you’re not a troll. You just act exactly like one. Except for that, you’re completely not troll-like.

    “And it wasn’t something I could leave unanswered.”

    Oh, you so could have. Here’s how it’s done: the next time you think of typing stuff into the comment box and hitting the “Post It” button… don’t do that. It’s very easy.

    OK, now that I’ve thoroughly proven myself to be a reprobate trouble-making troll-baiter…

    Bill Mulligan, I have to take issue with your characterization of liberals as being the ones more likely to act like Michael Poole. I think this is coming from entirely personal experiences of yours that you’ve shared with me from which you’ve grossly overgeneralized. In my experience it’s been conservatives who are more likely to act like that. I think both of our personal experiences represent too small of a sample size from which to draw conclusions. Liberalism and conservatism are ideologies — i.e., systems of ideas — and have nothing to do with anyone’s intellectual abilities, character, etc. Ideas are simply “out there” in the… uhm, the place where you can get ideas. We all decide what to do with them. As we’ve seen in this thread, some people handle them better than others.

    Ms. Newell, it’s been a few years since I’ve been able to follow comic-books. Given how central comic-books used to be to my existence, it’s a miracle I’ve survived. I was THE comic-book geek in my neighborhood. Which, let me tell you, is why I also had every pretty girl within a seven-county area lined up at my front doorstep begging for a date with me.

    (Part of that statement is true. Part of it is very much a flight of fancy. You strike me as being a very sharp person, Ms. Newell, so I’ll leave it to you to sort out fact from fiction.)

    I’ll simply say that I think from a creative standpoint your idea about Wonder Woman discovering an attraction to men and struggling with her sexual identity as a result would be something I’d read in a hearbeat. It reminds me of a ST:TNG episode where Riker discovers that among a race of androgynous aliens there are some who lean toward one gender or another. Riker of course falls for one who leans toward being female.

    Another example of that kind of turning of the tables was the issue of religion on the Battlestar Galactica remake. The colonists, with whom the audience naturally identified as they were the protagonists, were polytheists. The malevolent Cylons were monotheists. At one point in the series the colonists had settled on an earthlike planet but were tracked down by the Cylons and forced to surrender to them. The colonists were forced to become insurgents, much like the people we’ve been fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. I can’t imagine that was accidental.

    As an aside, I loved Battlestar Galactica’s habit of raising questions without answering them for the audience. It forced people to think for themselves and grapple with issues for which there are no pat answers.

    Anyway, I think the whole turn-the-tables way of approaching social issues is something you can only do well in genres like sci-fi and superheroic fiction. That’s one of their strengths. The X-Men are a wonderful example. When handled well, they force readers to think about prejudice and bigotry because after all the ones with whom you most identify in the story are an oppressed minority.

    I realize DC comics would never let you get away with such a great story. I do agree thought that if you had the creative freedom to do it, it would be worth doing despite the violent reaction you’d get. For every anti-gay numbskull who would pillory you over the idea that Wonder Woman’s first romantic experiences were with women and every politically correct numbskull who would call you anti-gay, you’d have numbskulls like me who would love to read such a story to see where you’d go with it. Definitely dangerous material, but what the hell fun are stories that always play it safe?

    Sigh… I do like to go on, don’t I? Again… default position: Mulligan’s fault.

  9. Bill Myers says:

    Ms. Newell, you are going to hate me for this but I have a devil inside of me…

    “Im happily married so I have actually gotten to touch a girl.”

    Michael, as Walter Peyton used to say, “Act like you’ve been there before.”

    I am now officially the worst person in the universe. Ms. Newell, you may now ban me. Good day, everyone.

  10. Mindy Newell says:

    Bill (Mulligan), thanks for bringing Bill Myers into the discussion!

    • Bill Myers says:

      Wait — what? This was a good thing? Then Mulligan gets no credit whatsoever. Hey, it’s not up to me, OK? I don’t make the rules.

      Also you will have to get used to identifying us by our last names. Although I do think it is hilarious when I say something awful and Mulligan gets blamed… or when he says something smart and people erroneously attribute it to me.

      Would you mind if I also sent a FB friend request your way? Mulligan and I are so very competitive, I’d hate for him to be one up on me.

      Jokes aside, thank you for your warm welcome. I’ll try to contribute to future discussions in a positive way. I may be full-on crazy but in an adorable sort of way. At least that’s what my girlfriend tells me.

      • Bill Mulligan says:

        Remarkably, Bill Myer’s girlfriend actually exists. She’s way too good for him, of course, obviously, it goes without saying, I won’t belabor the point.

        Bill, I wasn’t arguing that liberals as being the ones more likely to act like Michael Poole…though I think I might have an easier time finding published semi legit liberal pundits and writers who went after Sarah Palin in an overtly sexual way as opposed to the same kind of conservative douche nozzles who have done so against Hillary or Michelle Obama or, may God have mercy on us all, Helen Thomas. But cast the net wide enough and it’s a less sure thing, there are many pooles of ignorance out there on the right (see what I did there? Eh? Eh? Never mind.)

        I was saying there are more on the left who act as the lovely Ms Newell did, bringing politics, partisan politics, into venues where they are unwelcome. If I go to a classical music concert I really should not have the conductor snarking some weak political humor. Shut up and twirl your wand, Harry Potter. Sports columnists are especially egregious at this, they evidently want people to know that they could be the next Woodward and Bernstein and not just the guy who tells you which team moved the ball further in the desired direction. If this sort of unwelcome and unrequested public proselytizing happens as often from the right as it does the left I would be surprised, though I know of no way to really settle the debate.

        Though, upon reflection, while I still find her original statement not conducive to reasoned discourse , Mindy is not at all guilty of doing what I just described. IT’S HER COLUMN!!! She can write about whatever she wants. She can give us her recipe for Rat Souffle* if it floats her boat.

        * 1. Clean and debone a medium sized rat
        2. Then, make it into a souffle.

        (Actually, rereading what I actually wrote, I only said “quick to sully otherwise perfectly good posts with not just politics but badly thought out bumpersticker level politics” so I didn’t even make the point I wanted to. I have absolutely no idea which side is worse in needlessly provocative internet posts. I must have been dazzled by his rhetorical brilliance, derpity derp.)

        • Michael Poole says:

          I dont give a fuck what any of you dumbasses say, this stupid cunt threw out some insults in her article and she just begged someone to reply. I did and here comes the tail sniffing geek squad to the rescue. And ill keep right on replying as long as you stupid mother fuckers want to keep responding yourselves. So by all means lets continue. The point still is that that dunmb bitch started some shit and now cant handle it when someone actually calls her on her bullshit. I know she probably assumed that like most of her articles on this low rent shit site that nobody was actually going to read it except her number one fan Bill the douchebag.

        • Michael Poole says:

          Yeah its her column and it also has a comments section. So if shes going to be all butt hurt when someone replies to being insulted and called a racist and all kinds of other shit maybe she should disable the comments.

          • Glenn Hauman says:

            Mr. Poole, you can critique political POV all you want, but be respectful about it.

            I’ve already removed your vowels from your offending comments. Keep it up and I’ll remove the consonants as well.

          • Michael Poole says:

            Was what she said in any way respectful? The current republican party is asinine, bigoted, enemies of the american way blah blah so on and so forth. Even called a racist. Very respectful yes? She called me and every other conservative leaning person a whole string of vile things and in my first response i did call her a moron. So I answered probably ten names I was called with one name in response…and im expected to be respectful? And I was fine with that one response but here comes Bill the mindy fanboy and tells me I owe HER an apology! I think not.

          • Glenn Hauman says:

            Mr. Poole, you used unacceptable language in a personal attack making your point. If you cannot figure out which of the words you used caused offense, I suggest a refresher course on George Carlin’s Seven Words.

            Find another approach, or find another venue.

          • Bill Mulligan says:

            Glenn, the only bad part about disemvowling him is that we miss out on such bon mots as “The point still is that that dunmb bitch started some shit…” I’m no genius in the spelling department but even I would be very very careful not to misspell “dumb” when applying it to someone else.

  11. Bill Mulligan says:

    And clearly, my trollish friend, you do indeed “gv fck”. You’re still here, long after you said you would leave and never darken our towels again. This has more endings than RETURN OF THE KING. The sun rises, the birds sing and Michael Poole sends at least on or two posts showing him totally losing it. You could set your watch to it. It’s really humbling to see just how many fks you gv.

    • Michael Poole says:

      Like I said, as long as you people want to keep fanning the flames ill keep throwing on the logs. Im sure you guys could be called “truly asinine, ignorant, bigoted enemies of truth, justice, and the American way.” and told that you are “totally repugnant in their attitudes towards women, their striving to disenfranchise millions of voters who don’t agree with them, their barely hidden racism towards President Obama, and their brazen lying at the Republican convention” and just keep on surfing. Which I could have as well if I had stumbled accidentally into say The daily KOS or Bill Mahers fansite where you can expect to see such nasty hate speech from liberals. But I didnt. Google sent me to a random comic site after i searched for something and here it was. And Glenn I assume you are somehow responsible for the site so a little advice. If you want your site to get a larger audience and grow and expand maybe you should edit the articles from people who call half the country racists, lying, asinine, bigots. I certainly have never been called a racist bigot over at any of the other 20 comics sites I’ve been to. And very clever Bill. Point out one misspelled word where I hit an extra character that was right next to the one I was typing lol. A stroke of brilliance.

      • Michael Poole says:

        How was that? I made sure to spell check so Bill wasn’t offended and I used nice clean language, well except for the quotes from Mindy that is.

        • Glenn Hauman says:

          No, Mr. Poole, you used a vulgar term generally used about female anatomy. Repeatedly.

          And for the record, I happen to be a registered Republican as well.

      • Michael Poole says:

        Well unless you’re trying to be this sort of website that is Glenn. I guess I shouldn’t have assumed you were trying to appeal to everyone.

  12. Bill Myers says:

    Bill Mulligan, this godawful troll is implying that if we ignore him he will go away. I don’t believe him for an instant but let’s take him up on his offer nevertheless. There are three excellent reasons. First, I think Mindy deserves better than to see one of her columns devolve into a session of whack-a-troll. Second, if Michael Poole is sincere (and again I am not betting on it) then by ignoring him we will be rid of him. Third, if he keeps coming back our ignoring him will fuel his impotent rage, a richly deserved punishment he will inflict upon himself.

    I’d much rather talk about Mindy’s thoughts vis-a-vis her spin on using iconic superhero/sci-fi/fantasy characters to explore social issues in a unique way. I think we had a good discussion going about the flak that Joss Whedon took for killing off Tara. As you both said, Whedon puts all of his characters through the wringer and Tara’s death served the story well.

    My recollection of that storyline is that the writers did an excellent job of making Tara a three-dimensional character. She was sweet, and a little quiet. But she was likable. I understood why Willow would fall for her. They seemed like a real couple because their personalities complemented one another.

    That’s why it was so heart-wrenching when Tara was murdered. I don’t remember if she was targeted or collateral damage but either way I raged at the unfairness of it even though Tara was a fictitious character. I understood Willow’s rage, and empathized with her even as she went over the edge.

    The knee-jerk accusation that Whedon simply bumped off the lesbian because she was a lesbian is stupid (and it amazed me that the usually incisive Cracked.com featured an article that repeated that accusation). Whedon puts all of his characters through the wringer. I mean, Jesus Christ, look what he did to Charisma and Fred in the course of the Angel series! Tara’s death hurt so much precisely because Whedon and his writers invested so much in making Tara so human and so understandable. How is that anti-lesbian???

    I think writers should follow their muse and write the best stories they can within the parameters set by the editor or producer for whom they work. Obviously if a work is creator-owned and exists outside of an iconic “universe” there’s a lot more room for experimentation and risk-taking. On the other hand, sometimes making a statement with an iconic character like WW has more impact, but the owners of such iconic characters tend to resist that kind of risk-taking.

    Sometimes any publicity is good publicity. If Mindy were to write a story that sets off a bunch of knuckleheads who as a result set about to make a lot of loud noise that gets media coverage, I think she’d find a significant number of people who would check out the story to see what all of the sturm and drang is about. Whether she would hold the readers’ attention from there would depend on the quality of her story. I think that’s a playing field good writers are comfortable competing on, though.

    When you take chances creatively you do risk failure. But I suspect for a professional writer that’s a risk so very worth taking, because when a creative risk pays off, damn is it worthwhile.

    Don’tcha like this better than talking to Michael “look at me I touched a woman” Poole?

    (By the way, that’s still creepy. Also the fact that it was offered leads me to suspect the opposite may be true. But I think that should be the last I speak of him.)

    • Bill Mulligan says:

      No, no, he actually has a lovely looking wife. I hope for her sake this macho posturing BS is just an online persona and he’s a decent guy when he’s away from the keyboard. Some people are mean drunks and some are Internet Douchebags. I’m guessing he was a high school bully and, as is the sad fate of all such bullies, they get out in the real world where nobody cares about their phony alpha male play acting.

      (How do I know he has a lovely wife? He has her picture on his profile at youtube. I typed his name and the word “troll” and found him. At least I think it’s him. An angry race-baiting post full of dumb logic and a refusal to understand the difference between the word “your” and “you’re”, yep, probably our guy.)

      (It’s a curious thing that in high school it seemed like the biggest deal in the world when someone threatened to punch your lights out and now it’s like “Hey, whatever, Leonidas, do what you have to do. I’ll get over it, as opposed to the memories you’ll have as the Sweetheart of cell Block C.”

      ” But ive had my say and its pointless to continue” and “as long as you people want to keep fanning the flames ill keep throwing on the logs.” He’s two, two, two losers in one!

      • Michael Poole says:

        See you got it wrong again. No my wife isnt used as any avatar I have. And see now you’re doing the same thing Mindy did. Like I said earlier, my 2 best friends in the world are black guys. I even dated a black girl for almost 2 years. One of the most wonderful and beautiful women I have ever known. That’s why when Mindy implies i’m a racist, as you are now, just because i’m a Republican I got very offended. And that’s what none of you are acknowledging here. That Mindy actually did the race baiting in the original post and in following comments. No I wasn’t the bully in school. I understand completely the difference between you’re and your as I was a straight A student throughout school, was on the honor role all of high school and on quiz bowl teams and competed in academic contests at the state and national level. I could go on and on but please, by all means, keep judging me by my political party. I am not a racist just because i’m a Republican.

        • Bill Mulligan says:

          Wel, Michael, I genuinely apologize for thinking you were THIS Michael Poole: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_AKQrdZfg7o&feature=plcp has a comment by a Michael Poole that goes “Sweet butter sugar this is just what the white America needs to see, that no matter what we do people like you are still going to hide behind races comments like these I think the only reason your voting for him is because your black or its because your on welfare and your scarred a white man is going to take it away from you.”

          Figured it was the same sort of bad logic and unfocussed anger on display here AND the same name but hey it’s a big world. I’m glad that, what ever your other flaws, you are not THAT Michael Poole. I’m sure it’s no fun sharing a name with a jackass like that. In fairness, he might one day read what you’ve written here and feel much the same.

          If you’ve read all this and think that I believe republicans are automatically racist, all those academic gifts have apparently not lasted as long as hoped. I’m a co

          • Bill Mulligan says:

            Got cut off.

            I’m a conservative, ya dope ya. So I end up voting for the GOP candidate more often than not, even though most of the “conservative politicians” I’m stuck with are more politicians than conservative. They are just more conservative than the alternative. It’s like if you like bears and the choice is between a Red Panda and a raccoon you go with the Panda but inside you know it’s not really a bear at all but whatcha gonna do?

          • Michael Poole says:

            No it was actually Mindy who said “the current Republican party” were bigots and racists. And I don’t see how anything I have said is “bad logic”. Mindy said hateful things about people that included me and I responded. Simple as that. And my anger is very focused. I’ve read some of her other articles and a majority include similar political ramblings. And in one she complained about being treated wrongly just because shes jewish. Which I found very ironic and quite hypocritical since shes grouping all Republicans together and calling them racist bigots ya dope.

          • Michael Poole says:

            And no, that isn’t me. Sorry to dash your hopes that you found proof of my overt racism lol.

    • Bill Mulligan says:

      What Whedon did to Fred was unforgivable. Ok, sure, kill off people we care about, bad stuff happens. But with Fred he killed her, destroyed her soul, put her on double secret probation, basically just crushed all of our hopes. I guess it was because after having killed and brought back so many characters–Angel and Spike being the two most obvious ones–he wanted to make it clear that Winifred was no more. She had kicked the bucket, shuffled off this mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the choir invisible. Which is a shame since I was hoping she was merely pining for the fjords.

    • Mindy Newell says:

      Bill (Myers), Tara was collateral damage. Warren shot Buffy, and one of his shots went wild, went through the window of Willow and Tara’s bedroom (which was Joyce’s), and through the chest of Tara, who was standing in front of the window.

      • Bill Myers says:

        Wow, you have a good memory. I remember that sequence now. It was heart-wrenching. Given that it was a Joss Whedon production it’s something I should have expected. Number one rule when watching a Whedon show: if someone is happy, expect something to blow it up all to hell. See: Serenity and deaths that pissed me off.

  13. Bill Mulligan says:

    BUT…here’s the reason I would not make Wonder Woman gay and it’s the same reason I wish it hadn’t been Willow who they made gay. It’s too obvious. If they had said “hey we’re gonna have a character turn gay, you’ll never gue–” “It’s Willow, right?” “Uh…yeah.”

    I mean, a gay wiccan, wow, big break with stereotyping there. Also, when ever creators want to show how edgy they are, they make an attractive female character gay. That’s not edgy, that’s just making real what half the fanboys are thinking anyway. Now if Xander had come out…THAT would have shaken things up.

    Supergirl gay, that would be interesting from a character’s standpoint. Though Mindy’s take is a good one for WW and would be well worth doing. Never happen in a million years. The folks at DC would have coronaries when she suggested WW be gay and then they would have embolisms when she had her go straight. Mindy would have to go into the same witness protection program Dan Slott might be needing after Amazing Spiderman 698.

    • Mindy Newell says:

      Supergirl gay? Wow, what a concept, Bill (Mulligan!) And that could be very interesting, too. (But what about Dick Malverne? LOL!)

      The best thing, the most wonderful about Willow and Tara wasn’t that they were gay…it was, simply put, their RELATIONSHIP. It was so loving, so real, so honest.

      As for what happened to Fred…I think I read an article where Wheedon said that he felt that Fred was done as a character, so he went to Amy Ackerman (whom he thought–thinks!–is a great actress and asked her how she would feel about killing Fred and becoming a character so very different. Winifred Burkle (spelling?) was Ackerman’s first role after school, and I think, as an actress, she totally loved being given the opportunity to stretch her wings.

      And the scene in which Fred dies in Wesley’s arms was so totally heartbreaking…so beautifully done…so beautifully written…

      I loved where they took Wesley after that…and I loved his death scene, too.

      Wheedon does love to put his characters–and his fans–through the wringer, but let’s face it…he’s a Master at it!

      • Bill Mulligan says:

        I know it’s silly to go all sciency with a idea as unlikely as Superman, but given that both Supes and Kara are an entirely different species than human, pretty much any sex they have is classified as deviant in most states and the stories where Superman and Lois have children has as much likelihood as a mating of Michael Moore and a rutabaga producing a viable progeny. But all that aside…kara being gay (and I know I’m doing the EXACT SAME THING I busted Wedon on, but ain’t no way they would make superman gay, so that leaves Kara and Jimmy Olson. Jimmy coming out would be about as surprising as when Clay Aiken shocked the nation with his revelation, so Kara it must be) would make for some interesting stories from one standpoint–I’ve known some gay Jewish folks who got grief and guilt (shocking but true) from their parents because Jews are in relatively short supply and I guess they were expected to do their part to keep the bloodline going. Well, it’s way worse for Kara. Kryptonians are the Spix’s Macaws of the comics world, if you don;t count the Bottle City of Kandor. And I don’t count the Bottle City of Kandor. Also, the Phantom Zone prisoners. And teh Daxamites. Good lord, maybe the only people who died when Krypton exploded were Superman’s paren…

        I have just been handed a note informing me that actually Superman’s parents survived the explosion of krypton, as revealed in Superboy #158. I give up.

        • Mindy Newell says:

          Love your take on Kara being gay, Mulligan! (Bill Myers told me to call you that, LOL!)

          I know the Hasidic Jews in general believe that the Messiah will not come until there is a certain amount of Jews living by God’s precepts in the world. Also, the Holocaust had a huge impact (of course) and it became very important to many Hasidic sects (and the ultra-Orthodox and maybe many other Jews, too, i.e., “regular” Orthodox, Conservative, Reform) to “repopulate the species,” so to speak. Do you know if this person’s parents/family were destroyed during the Holocaust?

    • Bill Myers says:

      “Though Mindy’s take is a good one for WW and would be well worth doing. Never happen in a million years.”

      Bill Mulligan, that point’s been made. Repeatedly. Train’s left the station. The ship has sailed. Elvis left the building paragraphs ago. We get it. It was still an idea worth batting around for the fun of it.

    • Bill Myers says:

      “Also, when ever creators want to show how edgy they are, they make an attractive female character gay. That’s not edgy, that’s just making real what half the fanboys are thinking anyway.”

      Bill Mulligan, it is amazing to me the lengths to which you’ll sometimes go to spin a positive into a negative. I don’t care how drooling fanboys reacted to Willow’s evolving sexuality on Buffy. The Willow-Tara relationship was beautifully written. It wasn’t some masturbatory fantasy. It was about love. The emotions portrayed were ones I could understand and have felt myself.

      There was a time when a relationship like that could never have been portrayed on television. Rather than look at the progress we haven’t made, I prefer to look at what progress we have made and see if we can build on it.

      Also, I have no idea how a gay Supergirl would be any different than a gay Willow. An attractive super-babe being revealed as lesbian? That’s different from what you criticized about the Willow-Tara relationship… how?

      A truly gutsy move would be to retcon Superman and portray him as gay. Never happen, you say? I’m sure there was a time when retconning Alan Scott into a gay guy would have been in the “never happen” category. Except it happened. I don’t think the positive portrayal of homosexuals in the media will happen with a big explosion or something. I think it will continue to unfold the way it is: it’ll keep sneaking up on us.

      Anyway, I stand by my point that genres like superheroes and sci-fi, while often looked down upon by the mainstream (while the flock to movies like The Avengers — can you say “irony”?), are uniquely suited to provide storytellers with an opportunity to turn things on their head and make us look at things from a different angle. DC would never let Mindy “gay up” Wonder Woman… today. Who the hell knows what the future holds? Again, it was a fun creative exercise to bat the idea around.

      • Bill Mulligan says:

        Wait I totally MENTIONED that having Kara be gay was the exact same thing I was complaining about. I said it was either her, Supes or Jimmy Olson and Jimmy is already so far in the closet he is just an empty shoebox away from Narnia, so that pretty much leaves Kara. (I now will probably hear from members of the Jimmy Olson Appreciation Society (NAMBLA)).

        • Bill Myers says:

          “Wait I totally MENTIONED that having Kara be gay was the exact same thing I was complaining about.”

          OK. Fine. You win on a technicality. This time. But I live to fight again. DAMN YOU BILL MULLIGAN!

  14. Bill Myers says:

    Crazy busy, have to be quick. Bill Mulligan, I love you man but these endless battles you wage with trolls are pointless and tiresome. One or two go-rounds can be funny. Anything more and you jump the shark. I’m gonna unsubscribe. Too much clutter in my email inbox as it is. Nice chatting you up, Mindy.

    • Bill Mulligan says:

      I suppose. tell you what, Michael, you can have the last word. Try not to use all those words that would have gotten you kicked off the quiz bowl and disemvowled here. And please consider switching to the other side politically. The OWS loves classy guys like you.

      • Michael Poole says:

        Was never kicked off. But thanks for continuing to try and insult me however. Amusing. And I don’t have time for the OWS as i’m actually employed and enjoy showering. I’ll use my last word to say “g fck yrslf”.

      • Bill Myers says:

        Bill, I was unduly harsh. You ain’t the one who needs admonishing here. Check yer Facebook.