The Battle Continues Over "Childish Things"

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Ubiquitous

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Feb 10, 2019, 9:32:32 AM2/10/19
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The recent kerfuffle between Bill Maher and comic fans mourning Stan
Lee's passing has illustrated an ugly truth that geeks everywhere
continue to face: geekdom is still viewed by some as a sign that
society has failed to "grow up."

It Started with Stan

The death of comics legend Stan Lee prompted an outpouring of grief and
comedian Bill Maher took his passing as an opportunity to take a shot
at fandom with an essay titled "Adulting":

"...the assumption everyone had back then, both the adults
and the kids, was that comics were for kids, and when you
grew up you moved on to big-boy books without the pictures.
But then twenty years or so ago, something happened – adults
decided they didn’t have to give up kid stuff. And so they
pretended comic books were actually sophisticated literature."

The response was swift. Maher admitted the lost 40,000 Twitter
followers after his post and that he's still followed by paparazzi
asking him about "the Stan Lee thing." In response, Maher doubled down
in a scathing attack on geekdom everywhere with a video titled, "New
Rule: Grow Up":

"...the point of my blog is that I'm not glad Stan Lee is
dead I'm sad you're alive...my shot wasn't at Stan Lee it
was at, you know, grown men who still dress like kids...I'm
sorry but if you are an adult playing with superhero
dolls--I'm sorry, I mean collectible action figures!--why
not go all the way and drive to work on a big wheel? Grown-ups
these days, they cling so desperately to their childhood that
when they do attempt to act their age they have a special
word for it now, 'adulting'."

If those statements make your blood boil, you're not alone. The comic
book industry's condemnation of Maher's comments were swift and wide-
reaching. Stan Lee's estate responded directly to Maher:

Mr. Maher: Comic books, like all literature, are storytelling
devices. When written well by great creators such as Stan Lee,
they make us feel, make us think and teach us lessons that
hopefully make us better human beings. One lesson Stan taught
so many of us was tolerance and respect, and thanks to that
message, we are grateful that we can say you have a right to
your opinion that comics are childish and unsophisticated.
Many said the same about Dickens, Steinbeck, Melville and
even Shakespeare. But to say that Stan merely inspired people
to “watch a movie” is in our opinion frankly disgusting.
Countless people can attest to how Stan inspired them to read,
taught them that the world is not made up of absolutes, that
heroes can have flaws and even villains can show humanity
within their souls.

The same criticism has been leveled at all things geeky, including
role-playing games.

Are Role-Playing Games Childish?

Maher's attack on comics is essentially an attack on geekdom itself;
the defense from Stan Lee's estate is an argument for the kind of
imaginative storytelling that is at the heart of role-playing games.

In a lengthy response to a Quora question if D&D is "too immature and
childish," Jake Harris explained:

D&D is a great game that brings people of all kinds together,
for those willing to actually try and enjoy it. It's far from
childish. Same with other forms of science fiction and fantasy.
I strongly believe that these are lowkey pillars of society,
which endure when pop culture constantly waxes and wanes with
new trends and interpretations of “pop”. Dungeons & Dragons
might have 6 Editions (I'm counting 3rd and 3.5 Editions) and
Pathfinder, but its playerbase and rules remain largely the
same: sit around a table, and travel to far-off lands, doing
what no one else in the world is able to. Maybe you think
that's childish. Maybe you could even argue that it is. Fine.
I submit that maybe our world needs a little childishness.
Maybe if we learn to fight less and play more we might actually
get somewhere. If we choose to let the children inside of us
inspire ourselves and those around us, we might not be stuck
with all the problems we have.

Comedian and actor Patton Oswalt doesn't see a difference between pop
culture and geek culture:

...I've got news for you—pop culture is nerd culture. The
fans of Real Housewives of Hoboken watch, discuss, and absorb
their show the same way a geek watched Dark Shadows or obsessed
over his eighth-level half-elf ranger character in Dungeons &
Dragons. It's the method of consumption, not what's on the
plate.

That times have changed is perhaps best exemplified by the Collins
online dictionary, which signified a shift away from Maher's
perspective:

Once a slur reserved for eggheads and an insult aimed at
lovers of computer programming, geek has been deemed the
word of the year by the Collins online dictionary. Less
brazen than selfie – which topped the Oxford Dictionaries
poll last month – geek was chosen as a reminder of how an
insult can be transformed into a badge of honour, according
to Collins. In September the dictionary changed the main
definition of geek from someone preoccupied with computing
to "a person who is very knowledgeable and enthusiastic
about a specific subject'', adding geekery, geek chic and
geekdom to the fold.

Part of geekdom is maintaining the passion for things we enjoyed as
children into adulthood, but it does not necessarily mean that we
aren't effectively "adulting." Although geekdom seems to have taken
over popular culture, comedians like Maher are there to remind us that
not everyone is okay with the takeover.

--
Trump: A president so great that Democrats who said they would leave
America if he won decided to stay!




JimP

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Feb 10, 2019, 9:47:38 AM2/10/19
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On Fri, 08 Feb 2019 21:05:04 -0400, Ubiquitous <web...@polaris.net>
wrote:
>The recent kerfuffle between Bill Maher and comic fans mourning Stan
>Lee's passing has illustrated an ugly truth that geeks everywhere
>continue to face: geekdom is still viewed by some as a sign that
>society has failed to "grow up."

I'll just say that Maher is wrong on this one. Probably can't get
anyone to let him read their comics or play in their game sessions.


--
Jim

anim8rfsk

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Feb 10, 2019, 12:04:18 PM2/10/19
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Maher's been continuously wrong since he cheered Christopher Reeve becoming a
quadriplegic because horseback riding is animal abuse.

--
Join your old RAT friends at
https://www.facebook.com/groups/1688985234647266/

Ninapenda Jibini

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Feb 10, 2019, 3:57:38 PM2/10/19
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anim8rfsk <anim...@cox.net> wrote in
news:0001HW.2210911103...@NEWS.EASYNEWS.COM:

> Sun, 10 Feb 2019 07:47:06 -0700 JimP<solo...@gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
>> On Fri, 08 Feb 2019 21:05:04 -0400,
>> Ubiquitous<web...@polaris.net> wrote:
>> > The recent kerfuffle between Bill Maher and comic fans
>> > mourning Stan Lee's passing has illustrated an ugly truth
>> > that geeks everywhere continue to face: geekdom is still
>> > viewed by some as a sign that society has failed to "grow
>> > up."
>>
>> I'll just say that Maher is wrong on this one. Probably can't
>> get anyone to let him read their comics or play in their game
>> sessions.
>
> Maher's been continuously wrong since he cheered Christopher
> Reeve becoming a quadriplegic because horseback riding is animal
> abuse.
>
Maher is about what one would expect when a liberal moonbat
discovers that liberal moonbats, overall, are gullible enough to
make one rich if one caters to their liberal moonbat-ness. Yawn.

The failing of "geekdom" here is in not ignoring someone who
doesn't matter.

--
Terry Austin

"Terry Austin: like the polio vaccine, only with more asshole."
-- David Bilek

Jesus forgives sinners, not criminals.

Jim G.

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Feb 10, 2019, 4:03:16 PM2/10/19
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Ubiquitous sent the following on 2/8/19 at 7:05 PM:
> The recent kerfuffle between Bill Maher and comic fans mourning Stan
> Lee's passing has illustrated an ugly truth that geeks everywhere
> continue to face: geekdom is still viewed by some as a sign that
> society has failed to "grow up."

Maher's not worth my time to read in depth, but if he was referring to
superhero comics, then I can kinda see his point -- even though I have a
few guilty pleasures on that front.

OTOH, if he's lumping all comics together, then he's just being
ignorant. Kieron Gillen has two good indies out right now in THE WICKED
+ THE DIVINE and DIE. (Ironically, the latter centers around a D&D-type
game.) Vertigo's relaunch has four mostly good new Sandman Universe
titles based on Neil Gaiman's past work: THE DREAMING; BOOKS OF MAGIC;
HOUSE OF WHISPERS; and LUCIFER. Jeff Lemire's GIDEON FALLS is great, as
is Sean McKeever's OUTPOST ZERO. And Warren Ellis is being the usual
Warren Ellis with the terrific THE WILD STORM. Greg Rucka, Brian K.
Vaughan, Ed Brubaker and Jonathan Hickman are all doing great
non-superhero stuff, too. (Although Hickman is typically sporadic,
especially since he started doing a bunch more Marvel work.) And that's
just off the top of my head with regard to the skiffy stuff that I read.

Is there a lot of crap out there? Yes, of course. But that's true when
it comes to novels and nonfiction, as well. Maher should broaden his
horizons, but I'm sure that he's convinced that he's already an expert
on the subject.

--
Jim G. | A fan of the good and the bad, but not the mediocre
"We are up to our peaches with magical creatures and about to kick some
ass." -- Siren of Space-Time Sara Lance, DC'S LEGENDS OF TOMORROW

JimP

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Feb 10, 2019, 4:33:43 PM2/10/19
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On Sun, 10 Feb 2019 10:04:17 -0700, anim8rfsk <anim...@cox.net>
wrote:

>Sun, 10 Feb 2019 07:47:06 -0700 JimP<solo...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> On Fri, 08 Feb 2019 21:05:04 -0400, Ubiquitous<web...@polaris.net>
>> wrote:
>> > The recent kerfuffle between Bill Maher and comic fans mourning Stan
>> > Lee's passing has illustrated an ugly truth that geeks everywhere
>> > continue to face: geekdom is still viewed by some as a sign that
>> > society has failed to "grow up."
>>
>> I'll just say that Maher is wrong on this one. Probably can't get
>> anyone to let him read their comics or play in their game sessions.
>
>Maher's been continuously wrong since he cheered Christopher Reeve becoming a
>quadriplegic because horseback riding is animal abuse.

Yeah, its terrible. He expects politicians to do their job. Not
destroy America.

--
Jim

anim8rfsk

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Feb 10, 2019, 4:35:24 PM2/10/19
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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 14:03:14 -0700 Jim G.<jimg...@geemail.com.invalid> wrote:

> The Battle Continues Over "Childish Things"
> Jim G.<jimg...@geemail.com.invalid>
> February 10, 2019 at 2:03:14 PM MST
>
> Ubiquitous sent the following on 2/8/19 at 7:05 PM:
> > The recent kerfuffle between Bill Maher and comic fans mourning Stan
> > Lee's passing has illustrated an ugly truth that geeks everywhere
> > continue to face: geekdom is still viewed by some as a sign that
> > society has failed to "grow up."
>
> Maher's not worth my time to read in depth, but if he was referring to
> superhero comics, then I can kinda see his point -- even though I have a
> few guilty pleasures on that front.

He starts out by saying he's not happy Stan Lee is dead, he's sad fans of Lee
are alive.

It's pretty hard to fanwank that.

Jim G.

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Feb 10, 2019, 6:16:29 PM2/10/19
to
anim8rfsk sent the following on 2/10/19 at 3:35 PM:
So he's being his usual dick self. But did he limit it to the superhero
stuff? Not that that justifies him being a dick, but at least it'd be a
little more understandable.

shawn

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Feb 10, 2019, 7:48:49 PM2/10/19
to
On Sun, 10 Feb 2019 15:03:14 -0600, "Jim G."
<jimg...@geemail.com.invalid> wrote:

>Ubiquitous sent the following on 2/8/19 at 7:05 PM:
>> The recent kerfuffle between Bill Maher and comic fans mourning Stan
>> Lee's passing has illustrated an ugly truth that geeks everywhere
>> continue to face: geekdom is still viewed by some as a sign that
>> society has failed to "grow up."
>
>Maher's not worth my time to read in depth, but if he was referring to
>superhero comics, then I can kinda see his point -- even though I have a
>few guilty pleasures on that front.

I'm sure he's referrring to superhero comics as that's likely all he's
aware of. He clearly doesn't care for the product so he's not going to
look for the wheat among the chaf. The same can be said for anime or
practically anything. He isn't "in to" comics so therefore it's not
worthy of anyone's attention in his estimation.

anim8rfsk

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Feb 10, 2019, 7:51:46 PM2/10/19
to
Sun, 10 Feb 2019 16:16:28 -0700 Jim G.<jimg...@geemail.com.invalid> wrote:

> anim8rfsk sent the following on 2/10/19 at 3:35 PM:
> > Sun, 10 Feb 2019 14:03:14 -0700 Jim G.<jimg...@geemail.com.invalid> wrote:
> >
> > > The Battle Continues Over "Childish Things"
> > > Jim G.<jimg...@geemail.com.invalid>
> > > February 10, 2019 at 2:03:14 PM MST
> > >
> > > Ubiquitous sent the following on 2/8/19 at 7:05 PM:
> > > > The recent kerfuffle between Bill Maher and comic fans mourning Stan
> > > > Lee's passing has illustrated an ugly truth that geeks everywhere
> > > > continue to face: geekdom is still viewed by some as a sign that
> > > > society has failed to "grow up."
> > >
> > > Maher's not worth my time to read in depth, but if he was referring to
> > > superhero comics, then I can kinda see his point -- even though I have a
> > > few guilty pleasures on that front.
> >
> > He starts out by saying he's not happy Stan Lee is dead, he's sad fans of
> > Lee
> > are alive.
> >
> > It's pretty hard to fanwank that.
>
> So he's being his usual dick self. But did he limit it to the superhero
> stuff? Not that that justifies him being a dick, but at least it'd be a
> little more understandable.

I think he's sad that anyone who liked Stan Lee is alive. Not sure he cares
*why* you liked Stan.

Ninapenda Jibini

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Feb 10, 2019, 10:58:42 PM2/10/19
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JimP <solo...@gmail.com> wrote in
news:d3616elosrta37e10...@4ax.com:
Anybody who celebrates someing being crippled should be beaten
until he's not an asshole. So should his supporters.

Jim G.

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Feb 10, 2019, 11:57:47 PM2/10/19
to
shawn sent the following on 2/10/19 at 6:48 PM:
> On Sun, 10 Feb 2019 15:03:14 -0600, "Jim G."
> <jimg...@geemail.com.invalid> wrote:
>
>> Ubiquitous sent the following on 2/8/19 at 7:05 PM:
>>> The recent kerfuffle between Bill Maher and comic fans mourning Stan
>>> Lee's passing has illustrated an ugly truth that geeks everywhere
>>> continue to face: geekdom is still viewed by some as a sign that
>>> society has failed to "grow up."
>>
>> Maher's not worth my time to read in depth, but if he was referring to
>> superhero comics, then I can kinda see his point -- even though I have a
>> few guilty pleasures on that front.
>
> I'm sure he's referrring to superhero comics as that's likely all he's
> aware of. He clearly doesn't care for the product so he's not going to
> look for the wheat among the chaf. The same can be said for anime or
> practically anything. He isn't "in to" comics so therefore it's not
> worthy of anyone's attention in his estimation.

You're probably right. It wouldn't be the first time that he basked in
his own cluelessness or pontificated from a position of ignorance.

Jim G.

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Feb 10, 2019, 11:59:53 PM2/10/19
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anim8rfsk sent the following on 2/10/19 at 6:51 PM:
> Sun, 10 Feb 2019 16:16:28 -0700 Jim G.<jimg...@geemail.com.invalid> wrote:
>
>> anim8rfsk sent the following on 2/10/19 at 3:35 PM:
>>> Sun, 10 Feb 2019 14:03:14 -0700 Jim G.<jimg...@geemail.com.invalid> wrote:
>>>
>>>> The Battle Continues Over "Childish Things"
>>>> Jim G.<jimg...@geemail.com.invalid>
>>>> February 10, 2019 at 2:03:14 PM MST
>>>>
>>>> Maher's not worth my time to read in depth, but if he was referring to
>>>> superhero comics, then I can kinda see his point -- even though I have a
>>>> few guilty pleasures on that front.
>>>
>>> He starts out by saying he's not happy Stan Lee is dead, he's sad fans of
>>> Lee
>>> are alive.
>>>
>>> It's pretty hard to fanwank that.
>>
>> So he's being his usual dick self. But did he limit it to the superhero
>> stuff? Not that that justifies him being a dick, but at least it'd be a
>> little more understandable.
>
> I think he's sad that anyone who liked Stan Lee is alive. Not sure he cares
> *why* you liked Stan.

When the Enlightened Ones want you dead, it's because they care.

Dimensional Traveler

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Feb 11, 2019, 2:17:37 AM2/11/19
to
On 2/10/2019 8:57 PM, Jim G. wrote:
> shawn sent the following on 2/10/19 at 6:48 PM:
>> On Sun, 10 Feb 2019 15:03:14 -0600, "Jim G."
>> <jimg...@geemail.com.invalid> wrote:
>>
>>> Ubiquitous sent the following on 2/8/19 at 7:05 PM:
>>>> The recent kerfuffle between Bill Maher and comic fans mourning Stan
>>>> Lee's passing has illustrated an ugly truth that geeks everywhere
>>>> continue to face: geekdom is still viewed by some as a sign that
>>>> society has failed to "grow up."
>>>
>>> Maher's not worth my time to read in depth, but if he was referring to
>>> superhero comics, then I can kinda see his point -- even though I have a
>>> few guilty pleasures on that front.
>>
>> I'm sure he's referrring to superhero comics as that's likely all he's
>> aware of. He clearly doesn't care for the product so he's not going to
>> look for the wheat among the chaf. The same can be said for anime or
>> practically anything. He isn't "in to" comics so therefore it's not
>> worthy of anyone's attention in his estimation.
>
> You're probably right. It wouldn't be the first time that he basked in
> his own cluelessness or pontificated from a position of ignorance.
>
Utter ignorance is usually a prerequisite for pontification.

--
Inquiring minds want to know while minds with a self-preservation
instinct are running screaming.

JimP

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Feb 11, 2019, 11:22:30 AM2/11/19
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Well, I have never heard him say that.

Do you have some proof ? Other than Fox news that is.

--
Jim

anim8rfsk

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Feb 11, 2019, 12:17:58 PM2/11/19
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Shut up Seamus.

JimP

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Feb 11, 2019, 2:30:04 PM2/11/19
to
On Mon, 11 Feb 2019 10:17:57 -0700, anim8rfsk <anim...@cox.net>
wrote:
Who ?

--
Jim

Jim G.

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Feb 11, 2019, 6:51:18 PM2/11/19
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Dimensional Traveler sent the following on 2/11/19 at 1:17 AM:
Which would explain why he's been so good at pontificating over the years.

LL

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Feb 12, 2019, 6:49:06 AM2/12/19
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> comedian Bill Maher took his passing as an opportunity to take a shot
> at fandom with an essay titled "Adulting":

Who the fuck is Bill Maher, had to look him up.
Man, is he bad at reasoning or what?

> "...the assumption everyone had back then, both the adults
> and the kids, was that comics were for kids, and when you

No assumption, most comic books simply were for kids "back then".
(Back then being 20 years ago!?)
Kids today (with responsible parents) still read kids comics.
That's not establishing that all comics are for children.
Comics for adults exist for much longer than 20 years.
Try a few centuries.

> grew up you moved on to big-boy books without the pictures.

Many books feature illustrations (from latin: enlightening),
because people actually like pictures. The absence of pictures is not
a sign of quality or maturity. (And what about the big girls?)
He tries to offend the people who disagree, so they don't see
how weak his argument is.

> But then twenty years or so ago, something happened adults
> decided they didn t have to give up kid stuff. And so they

Nice try again. Poor guy Maher is obviously no expert in contemporary
history or economics. The comic industry developed. Expanded its
audience. Gained customers. And hat about comic films like the original
Jungle Book from 1967? Art or not? O_o

> pretended comic books were actually sophisticated literature."

Silly. No need to pretend anything.
Some comics are sophisticated art, some are trash.
In the most restrictive sense they are not literature,
but neither is Beethoven's 8th symphony.
Again, he failed to make a point.

Any form of art uses a medium to transport its content.
To argue a certain medium (comics) could be exclusive to
a certain audience (children) is extremely idiotic.

Why do I rant about this?
Because Maher actually makes people dumber and more narrow-minded
with this kind of drivel. Its not even funny.

To me this habit of some comedians, commenters and debaters to replace
a valid line of argument with loose thinking and cheap or derisive jokes
is abhorrent. Make a good point and /then/ a joke, please.
/That/ helps to remember a point worthy of being remembered.

LL

Ninapenda Jibini

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Feb 12, 2019, 7:32:34 PM2/12/19
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JimP <solo...@gmail.com> wrote in
news:q7836e50ei6mjhth7...@4ax.com:
I haven't either, but he's certianly been a left-wing moonbat for
a long, long time. (And, technically, *I* didn't say he did, just
that anyone who does should be beaten until he's not an asshole.
So accuse me of sexism - I suppose women could be an asshole in
that way, too - but details matter.)
>
> Do you have some proof ? Other than Fox news that is.
>
There are quite a few sources for some of his other sings. He's
apparently quite fond of the n-word, but gets a pass on that
because he's a moonbat. They pretend it's because he's a comedian,
but comedians are funny, so that's just more liberal delusion.

Ninapenda Jibini

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Feb 12, 2019, 7:33:10 PM2/12/19
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JimP <solo...@gmail.com> wrote in
news:v8j36el1tbh0fbv19...@4ax.com:
Somebody refill Seamus' bag of dicks. He's still hungry.
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