- Fans call out Madonna for edited Eurovision video Tuesday 9:36 PM
- Partnered Twitch streamer temporarily banned for airing troll’s racist message Tuesday 8:45 PM
- Reddit theory says fans are wrong about who won ‘Game of Thrones’ Tuesday 6:52 PM
- Elon Musk hires ‘absolute unit’ sheep meme creator to be Tesla’s social media manager Tuesday 6:12 PM
- Jason Momoa stands by his Khaleesi after the ‘Game of Thrones’ finale Tuesday 4:05 PM
- Airbnb, 23andMe partner for creepy heritage travel recommendations Tuesday 3:26 PM
- Rep. Katie Porter goes viral again for trouncing Ben Carson (updated) Tuesday 3:26 PM
- This deepfake takes Bill Hader’s Schwarzenegger impression to the next level Tuesday 2:58 PM
- Wanda Sykes rails against Trump and offers much-needed perspective in ‘Not Normal’ Tuesday 2:41 PM
- Man arrested after allegedly threatening to shoot YouTube employees Tuesday 2:13 PM
- Some House Dems are backing away from the Save the Internet Act Tuesday 1:40 PM
- Thousands sign petition calling for Danny DeVito to play Wolverine Tuesday 1:02 PM
- Jason Mitchell fired from ‘Desperados’ and ‘The Chi’ after misconduct allegations Tuesday 12:36 PM
- Police raid Black woman’s house after white neighbor complains about loud Malcolm X speeches Tuesday 12:20 PM
- ‘Transfixed’ says it’s a ‘breakthrough’ series, but it still fetishizes trans bodies Tuesday 11:04 AM
DC cancels satirical comic about Jesus Christ after Change.org petition
Drawn by Richard Pace and written by Mark Russell (who is known for making offbeat satirical comics like DC’s unexpectedly dark Flintstones reboot), Second Coming is about Jesus Christ returning to present-day Earth.
“Witness the return of Jesus Christ, as He is sent on a most holy mission by God to learn what it takes to be the true messiah of mankind by becoming roommates with the world’s favorite savior: the all-powerful super hero Sun-Man, the Last Son of Krispex! But when Christ returns to Earth, he’s shocked to discover what has become of his gospel—and now, he aims to set the record straight.”
The first issue was due out on March 6, so no one has actually read it yet. It’s one of seven new comics in DC’s newly relaunched Vertigo imprint, aimed at mature readers.
It’s very rare for publishers to cancel a comic this close to publication, with DC and Marvel both routinely ignoring public backlash like the response to 2017’s fascist Captain America storyline. This is, however, the second strike against DC’s Vertigo relaunch. Last December, the acclaimed series Border Town was abruptly canceled after the writer was accused of sexual and emotional abuse.
DC relaunched Vertigo last year, with plans to publish “modern, socially relevant, high-concept” new comics for adults, calling back to the imprint’s heyday of titles like Sandman and Preacher. There was no particular objection to Second Coming when it was announced last summer, with the Change.org petition only appearing in January. The petition cites a Fox News post, which may be where the backlash took hold. Describing the comic as blasphemous, the petition asks, “Can you imagine the media and political uproar if DC Comics was altering and poking fun at the story of Muhammad… or Buddha?”
Since that message received over a quarter of a million signatures, it’s safe to say most of the protests do not come from the comic’s target audience – kind of like when the American Family Association decides to boycott a TV show for including gay characters. For context, the November issue of Border Town sold about 8,500 copies in stores. These comics are not playing to a mainstream audience. However, the sheer number of signatures was evidently enough to make DC worried, and Second Coming has been pulled from publication.
Writer Mark Russell announced on Twitter that DC had given him the rights to the title, leaving the door open for Second Coming to be published elsewhere.
The: DC/Vertigo’s cancellation of the orders for Second Coming, just so you know, DC did not do anything untoward to me. I asked for the rights back and they gracefully agreed. They’ve been a pleasure to work with and it will still be released, albeit with a different publisher.
— Mark Russell (@Manruss) February 13, 2019
So don’t be surprised if Second Coming resurfaces somewhere like Image Comics, now benefiting from extra publicity thanks to all the backlash.
Gavia Baker-Whitelaw is a staff writer at the Daily Dot, covering geek culture and fandom. Specializing in sci-fi movies and superheroes, she also appears as a film and TV critic on BBC radio. Elsewhere, she co-hosts the pop culture podcast Overinvested. Follow her on Twitter: @Hello_Tailor