Things have gone beyond crazy in the comics world. I’ve been on the receiving end of a lot of comics Twitter hate, and I have to tell you, it’s about the least fun thing you can ever experience. For perspective, this is about people making 22 page cartoon books, and grown adults lose their minds over the smallest things, and once they do, they never stop.
It just continually escalates with this crowd. I don’t know if it’s part of the psychology of adults reading comics or what, but it keeps seeming to escalate to worse and worse problems, and it’s heartbreaking to watch as good people like Peter Simeti are dehumanized.
For a little background, Simeti and Alterna Comics came under fire last summer because they used a hashtag #MoveTheNeedle — a hashtag designed to positively talk about comic books and to “move the needle” for books fans wanted to see do better. Several people started tweeting about Alterna Comics (a company I’ve been supporting by buying every book they put out since early 2017), to try to get people to check out their books. SJWs lost their minds because Peter refused to denounce paying customers.
The usual outrage mob occurred. Industry people started attacking him. He was libeled Alt-Right, racist, white supremacist (he’s not white), the dangerous theme as we’ve always seen.
The left likes to say these labels don’t do anything, and it’s just some heated words that don’t matter… but at the same time they turn around and attempt to ruin people’s lives with them. And people do take them seriously. The whole “punch a Nazi” movement from the radical left has escalated to a point where they think it’s totally okay to utterly destroy someone just because they won’t help them attack the right at this point.
And that’s what we have with Peter. He’s just been keeping his head down, making comics, shipping comics. He hasn’t “taken sides” and because of that, his side was declared for him by people who want to force a war on every front.
Last night, when Peter was doing his Alterna Comics livestream, which is just dedicated to comics and creators in a positive way, someone called the police on him and accused him of a violent crime. Peter says, “According to the police, an anonymous caller pretending to be me, called up and said that I had ‘stabbed my girlfriend and that I was suicidal’.”
A pretty crazy accusation, and one police have to take seriously. He also says they came to his door with guns drawn and pointed in his face. If Peter would have panicked or reacted wrong, he could have been killed.
Over producing comic books. And he does so at a really cheap price point, he’s not getting rich off of this. He’s doing this out of the love of the genre, and this is what he gets for just trying to sell books to EVERYONE rather than sniping at a side over politics.
It’s gone too far. All this stuff needs to deescalate before someone actually gets hurt. This is just about making comic books, and the pain, the harassment, the heartburn, the death threats, the actual dangerous scenarios creators get put in because of politics (we’re not even influencing government policy at all with these books!) is beyond insane.
Let’s stand together and stop this nonsense.
Support Peter and Alterna Comics here: https://www.etsy.com/shop/alternacomics or order from your local comic shop.
Marvel writer Donny Cates made a statement on the subject saying: ‘This should be obvious but: disagreements about comics are not worth threatening someone’s life. Whoever did this is disgusting and I hope they are found out. This shit is NOT okay.” Because of this he’s coming under heat being called an asshole and worse.
Cates has the right of it. It needs to stop and we’re only going to show it can stop to the fans who are hanging on our words as creators if we show that left and right can find a way out of this and interact with one another in a friendly way. Our actions show the signals to the people who are overly-passionate about this stuff that it’s time to calm down. It’s up to us. Will you join me?
I’ve been making and producing my own comics for months, and taken a lot of heat for just doing that. Check it out and support the blog and independent creators: