A couple of days ago, Joss Whedon left Twitter. Packed up his bags and went, leaving us with this final tweet:
That’s kind of a shame. Joss has long been a writer/producer/dreamer of some of my favorite ideas and I really enjoyed his little corner of my Twitter feed. But what is much more important than that is why he left. After Age of Ultron was released, Joss received a non-trivial amount of Twitter vitriol, which you can investigate here, about the portrayal of Black Widow in the film. I had some issues, but nothing I want to get into here, and certainly nothing I want to scream into Twitter about. But what’s remarkable was the assumption that these tweets were the reason that Joss left Twitter. The article I just linked above, at time of writing, assumes that to be true, it seems.
More importantly, it was lent credibility by Patton Oswalt tweeting:
Yep. There is a “Tea Party” equivalent of progressivism/liberalism. And they just chased Joss Whedon off Twitter. Good job, guys. Ugh.
—Patton Oswalt (@pattonoswalt) May 4, 2015
You know, I was really bothered by Black Widow’s characterization in Age of Ultron. I thought she was simpering and her on-screen time was wasted. I thought that attempts to show a softer side of her just made her feel a little less relevant, and made me wonder if Joss Whedon really understands the word “feminism”. The prima nocta joke just wasn’t funny, much less in good taste or appropriate anywhere, really. But does it make me want Joss Whedon to rot in hell?
Does it make me want to curse him out on Twitter, to fill his feed with profanities so that he knows that he’ll never work again in this business?
Eh. Probably not. But just the same, all people who respect free speech on the Internet should be ashamed that Joss Whedon was driven off Twitter.
There is just a single solitary problem with that: he wasn’t. In Whedon’s own words: “That is horseshit.” Continue reading