Thought for the day: Frank Darabont

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201010291611 Thought for the day: Frank Darabont


How nervous are you about upsetting the comic’s hard-core fans? Fans of Watchmen were simultaneously upset about how faithful the movie was and about the changes Zack Snyder made …

The funny thing about the Internet nerds is — and I say this with love and a certain amount of suspicion and caution — no matter what you do, there’s a certain type of Internet dweller that’s going to piss and moan about it. You could hand them a check for a million dollars and they could find fault with it. Something like Watchmen was in development for decades, and I think Zack was almost in a no-win situation. If you’re absolutely true to the material, they’ll bitch about that. If you go ahead and change some stuff, they’ll bitch about that — oh no, it’s sacred, why didn’t you stick to the letter of it? You think about this too much and your head can spin in circles. I’m much more pleased not reading that kind of feedback.

 

Via Vulture

Comments

  1. What always kills me is how people want two completely different mediums to provide the exact same experience and result. Anyone who dares to compare the two will always miss the definition of the word; adaptation.

  2. Serhend Sirkecioglu says:

    what he said

  3. Mikael says:

    So if this is “same old, same old”/”damned if you do, damned if you don’t” – why even bring it up in the first place? Because it’s “news”? Because it’s one more elitist attack on fandom? Why even post something like this when the first ep hasn’t even been released? So you can later say “I told you so”?

    Seriously – I really have to question the point of this post.

  4. Caged Wisdom says:

    Mikael – the only thing worse than finding fault with a comics-related post on a comics blog is taking the time to write a fifty-word comment on a post you don’t like. You’ve just turned yourself into a troll Ouroboros.

  5. In other words, Mikael just proved the point….

  6. Mikael says:

    So I ask an honest question and I’m the troll?

    Again – what’s the point of the posting? I’ve seen this a lot on the Beat – and others have commented on it – that there’s this new underlying disdain for fandom/nerds/whatever the word of the day is being used.

    There’s no commentary. Just a title “Thought of the day”. Okay – what’s the thought? That one more non-comics person has a generalized viewpoint of an entire demographic? Is that the agenda the Beat wants to further? Is that the thought we’re supposed to think of?

    Because I’ve seen the pilot. And it’s great.

    So – anyone care to actually address the question instead of acting like you’re above all this?

  7. Serhend Sirkecioglu says:

    @ caged wisdom, you actually took the time to count the amount words of Mikael’s comment!? Pot calling the kettle black much.

  8. seth hollander says:

    I HATE it when I make a perfectly valid and perceptive comment passionately and with conviction, and it fails to bring a chorus of huzzahs (i.e. “what he said” as used above). I feel for you Mikael, and wish this comment stream had gone differently.
    I like to say: “in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is considered loony”.
    In response to what you were saying:
    It’s Heidi’s page! (She should create an icon that links to an audio recording of someone singing that. Then deploy the icon in comment threads like this…) Not everything that shows up on this page is Comics News We Want To Read. I pretty much agree with your comment, though it’s not an issue that draws any passionate feelings from myself. And I think this comment thread is a fine place for your comment.
    AND:
    We might actually get to discussing something here, since your (Mikael’s) comment cause Caged Wisdom to throw this idea in the ring: “the only thing worse than finding fault with a comics-related post on a comics blog…”. Mr. Caged Wisdom, you probably were caught up in your own moment and don’t really mean that there is something inherently negative about making critical comments on comics blogs. If you really do mean that, THAT’s dangerous talk, there, pardner!
    (passing baton to next commenter…)

  9. @Mikael: It’s something to think about. For some people those thoughts will run along the lines of considering that perhaps they should try to be more open-minded than they have been in the past. For others those thoughts will be that this TV series is probably going to suck if he’s already trying to make excuses for it. For others those thoughts will be insecure defensiveness that the quote was posted at all… but you can’t expect everyone to be a deep thinker, now can you?

  10. Drew Hart says:

    I’ve been excited about the “penetration” (non-marketing person talking so may not be using the right terminology here) that TWD is getting. Commercials all over the place, lots of coverage in USA Today and because of insomnia and the magic of a dual channel recording TiVo, I stumbled across Frank Darabont being interviewed by Carson Daly on his show last evening.

    It’s also been very refreshing to see most of them mention that it’s an adaptation of the Comic Book series as opposed to the more “traditional” it’s okay for non-comic “nerds” term “Graphic Novel” (which “Watchmen” became but did not start out as despite what seemingly everyone else would have you believe). That’s a very nice shift in tone from the media in my estimation.

    Of course, similar “penetration” meant sod all to “Scott Pilgrim” but that required people to leave their houses and pay to see it vs. sitting on their couches, provided they have the channel on satellite/cable, so here’s hoping that it’s successful and will lead to other respectful adapations of things down the line. (Can’t wait for the “Scott Pilgrim” Blu Ray btw!!)

    It’s nice to be able to “share” TWD with other people who will most likely never set foot in a comic store and may still not give the Comic/Graphic Novel section at the bookstore a second look, and have them maybe understand a small sliver of why I so much enjoy heading to the LCS on Wednesday to be entertained!

  11. I have to agree with Mikael here.

    The condescending, insulting jabs at the audience never makes a creator look cool nor does it gain them any brownie points, wwhether you are as Mr. Darabont says, an internet ‘nerd’ or any other prospective consumer a creator lumps into a group.

    Creators insulting and complaining about the audience (by calling them complainers) doesn’t make them any better or prettier than the very thing they condemn.

    Note to all creators:

    Making fun of and insulting your audience isn’t going to make them want to run out and spend money on your product.

    You want new customers? Stop complaining about the ones you have. Because when a prospective new customer sees you making fun of an insulting other customers by calling them fanboys, whiners, complainers or internet nerds isn’t going to make someone want to buy your product.

    It’s like, “Oh yeah, I read that interview by the creator who referred to his or her audience as whiney, complaining fanboy internet nerds. Let me go run out and buy that product so they can insult and make fun of me too!’

    Hurray!

  12. Personally, I understand Mikael and the others’ point–but you’re overlooking that he made the comments because //he was asked during the interview//

    He didn’t just line up his shot and launch an attack on the fans, the interviewer asked “how nervous are you about upsetting the comic’s hard-core fans?” He could have said “I’m not worried about it at all,” and people still would have said “HE DOESN’T EVEN *CARE* ABOUT ‘THE WALKING DEAD!!'” Just like the man indicates–there’s no winning, only multiple ways to lose. Just go with it.

  13. Matthew Southworth says:

    @ Mikael: what’s a “non-comics person”? I see Frank Darabont walking around at every San Diego Comicon, saw him get all excited to show a piece of original art he’d bought to another attendee, and he’s directing a show based on a comic book.

    Are you a “comics person”? What do you do for a living?

    Should people outside the fashion industry be allowed to have an opinion on it?

    His point, after all, was that no matter what you do there’s a faction of internet folks who’ll find fault with it, and so it’s useless to think too much about that.

    Do you actually disagree? Should he put more energy into worrying what you or I think, or should he just do the best he can and hope we like it?

  14. Nurf? says:

    Mr. Darabont, however, is ducking the actual issue in his comment/thought, which is that many, oh so many times things from the original creation are not changed because certain mediums require certain stylistic and/or storytelling structures.

    Most of the times, a director, a studio, a producer changes things to (a) make things dumber (b) sell more merchandise (c) get a PG or PG13 rating or (d) because they want to do a story, cannot write it themselves and/or get funding for the story they want to get done, so they latch onto a “property”, then proceed to extensively rewrite it and then claim that it somehow improves on the original creation.

    And then they are shocked, shocked, I say, to find that nobody cares, or that the fans of the original creation go mental.

    Now, Darabont’s adaptation of TWD is extremely good, after what I have seen in the pilot. He doesn’t hesistate. He doesn’t make it dumber. He makes it gut-wrenching, and the two scenes that are in my head now forever are the “Bycicle Zombie” and its subsequent use to show how much easier it is to put a stranger out of his/her misery as opposed to somebody you have known, and the shot of Rick Grimes riding on the horse towards Atlanta.

    If you are respectful to the original, you can add scenes, you can add characters, yes, I don’t find that to be the issue.

    And I’m sorry, that is the difference between Darabont (who did the second-best Stephen King adaptation with “The Shawshank Redemption”, which I consider to be even better than the original novella) and Zach Snyder.

    Snyder in Watchmen understood the visuals. He humped the visuals. He didn’t make sweet love to them, he humped them to death. He had no clue as to what the book was about. He did not understand e.g that the whole pirate sequence in the book is completely meaningless, unless you know that the guy who wrote that comic, Max Shea, was used to fill the “psychic bomb” that was the now infamous squid and to drive the ones surviving the “blast” insane. Without that piece of the puzzle, that entire bit of Watchmen (the book) would be useless navel-gazing.

    He also changed Adrian from a guy who tried to save the world by very, very bad means into exactly what he claimed he was not. A serial villain. A gay pedophile (look for the BOYS folder on Adrian’s PC) who – obviously, really – also came from a German background.

    Thos are the choices that made me despise the movie, not to mention that – while Snyder kept some of Moore’s dialogue – he often used it out of context, e.g. the line “Nothing ever ends”… is only powerful in the book, because it is “God” (Jon) telling it to Adrian as he parts, and Adrian asks him, pleads with him, “But it worked out, didn’t it? In the end…”

    If you have that same sentiment spoken by Laurie and Dan, it loses its meaning. It’s there, but it is just stupid and isn’t used within its intented purpose.

    Also, the actual “squid bomb” in the book, just that splash page, is still one of the most disturbing images I have ever seen. All the dead bodies, all those “normal” people we came to care about, all the insane…

    … and in the movie? It was one most sanitised images ever. Look. It’s a hole in the ground. Let’s go to Antarctica. It was ridiculous.

    Snyder just didn’t “get” the book. He “got” the visuals, but neither the themes nor the conceptuals of the book.

    He did a great 300, because there, you didn’t have any complex story, it was largely a beautifully stylised canvas of a big battle. But he should have never been allowed near Watchmen. Unlike Darabont, he not proven that he can actually tell a story.

    I’m willing to give him a shot, though.

    I will watch his insane asylum movie (the title eludes me right now). I want to see if the bugger can write or simply put together live-action anime sequences (easy if you have the budget, really)

  15. Matthew Southworth says:

    I’ve never seen anything where Zack Snyder claimed to have “improved upon” Alan Moore’s work in WATCHMEN; quite the contrary–he seems very humble, as though he was working in service to something he admired.

    The point Darabont is making is not whether anyone has a right to criticize, it’s that he doesn’t need to search out the various points of criticism. If he does the work with as pure an intention as he can, tries to do the best work he can (as I’m sure Zack Snyder did–and by the way, I agree with some of your criticisms of that film, I have mixed feelings about it, think it’s partially brilliant and partially weak), then to hear the complaints of some people who utilize the anonymous cover of the internet in order to add negative commentary instead of positive criticism–there’s a BIG difference, a difference a lot of internet posters don’t seem to understand–doesn’t help him to do better work.

  16. Richard says:

    Nurf, did you ever get the feeling that when Jon leaves at the end of the book that the world he creates is ours? I thought it was a cool way to look at his exit.

  17. Nurf? says:

    Richard –

    – no, I personally didn’t have that particular feeling, but I think it is also a valid interpretation of what happens at the end of the book (very meta intepretation, but a good one)

    Me, I always thought that the final conversation between Adrian and Jon is like God and Lucifer talking. Adrian tried to bring enlightenment and peace to the world, and he did in in such a morally reprehensible way that he wants from Jon what we all want. He wants God to tell him he is a good man.

    “Adrian, the world’s smartest man is to me nothing more than the world’s smartest ant”

    And yet – I think, – Alan Moore wrote something that is much more positiviely religious in these scenes than everything you hear from the Christian/Islamic/Jewish/Did I leave somebody out? crispies.

    He states, in a way, that you can only be god, that you can only be a divine being if you have empathy.

    Empathy is one of the very big themes of the book. Adrian tells Jon that “I made myself feel it, the death of every single one of them”, Jon realises that – out of all the infinite transmutations of realities – the fact that she is the daughter of the man who once had raped her mother … must be part of a cosmic design. And if that is so, it is worth feeling for.

    Even Rorchach’s character is grounded in empathy. It is taken away from him when he sees what has happened to the girl, and once your ability to empathise is gone, the only way to function is by adhering to a very strict “moral” code that does not allow for exceptions.

    It’s these layers that make Watchmen still a great piece of literature, the ability to interpret and to adapt the larger themes to our modern world.

    The movie has none of that. And to be fair, I don’t think a movie – that isn’t 16 hours long – is capable of doing that, but that is just the point. If you adapt something to a different medium, the first question should always be, “can I do it justice? Can I bring forth the themes of the original creation?”

    Let us assume – for just a moment – that The Walking Dead would have become a movie. There then would be nothing there that would distinguish it from Dawn of the Dead, 28 Days Later, 28 Days of the Dawn of the Dead etc.

    The point of Kirkman’s series is… that it’s a series. Not a property. It is a story. It’s not All Star Batman’s Dark Knight Family Reunion, where a character has been written by so many people over so many decades that only remnants of the original creation remain, whereas the character has become mythical and malleable and subject to a re-interpretation/rebranding/rebooting/booting it out every ten years.

    Kirkman wrote the comic series as a series. As a TV show, if you like, in comic book form. And it remains to be seen if AMC and Darabont have the balls (I hope so) to follow in Kirkman’s footsteps. And not go, “well, we can’t kill [REDACTED], because people really like the actor/actress, and we have her booked for next season”.

    If they do that at some point, if they allow branding to overtake story, the show will become just another piece of Hollywood hooker-y.

    And that is the difference between adapting a “property” and adapting a “story”. Properties are easy. Stories are hard.

  18. Nurf? says:

    Matthew –

    – the internet doesn’t really provide any cover when it comes to commentary, it provides protection. Are some people going to abuse that? Of course they are. There is no freedom without abuse.

    But nothing, and I mean literally nothing that you can find on the intertubes is different from what people used to gripe and complain about when the came out of a movie, sat down with their friends and had a drink or two and took that movie apart.

    The only difference now?

    Now the creatives can be a fly on the wall and listen in. They are no longer insulated. They are no longer protected by a wall of yes-sayers and personal assistants and other folks who suck up, or simply suck.

    The internet drags them out of the ivory towers, out of their bunker mentality and does something that other producers of “stuff” had to learn to deal with to: “hi guys, it’s us, the consumers. Thought we were a cipher, did you now?”

    That doesn’t mean, obviously, that the internet is a genuine reflection (yet, and it may never be) of what is thought out there, what is felt and articulated. In fact, if we apply scientific measurements to it, it becomes clear that the web serves as a giant echo chamber that allows the loudest to be heard, even if they are a minority.

    This cuts both ways, by the way.

    While the loud shouts of the web – then picked up and amplified once more by the mainstream media – proclaimed movies like Kick-Ass, Snakes on a Plane and even Scott Pilgrim as the second, third and fourth comings, all of these movies more or less failed to connect to a larger audience.

    And no, I am not stating here that these movies were bad. What all three of them were, though, was that they were all self-referential. And especially in the case of Scott Pilgrim (which I kind of love), the use of video game images (which again I loved) left the majority of them normal folks out there cold. You’d have to have an understanding of both the imagery and its use in story-telling to understand what the movie was trying to tell you.

    And most people who might have shown up, if it had been a bit more conventional, didn’t bother, because they felt they had nothing to latch onto after seeing the trailer.

    So, in a paradoxical way the internet commentary can both reflect reality and seriously distort it.

    It then becomes a question for the creative on how to utilise it in a good way for their own creative process.

    And yes, there it does become a thing of mutual respect. As the Scott Lieber 4chan experience shows e.g. with regards to “piracy”, the thing is that most internet voices (note that I say “most”) are totally happy when an author, a creative comes to them and has the internet version of a sit-down at a coffee shop and goes, “hey, guys and girls. Whassup?”

    And that means creatives are in a new era, kind of. It used to be that you could see your audience as a blob, identified primarily through sales numbers. Now you see that these are people out there, and they love or hate your work, but even when they hate you, you can even sway them by being respectful, by treating them as people…

    … and they will react as people. If you don’t call them stupid or lazy or basement dwellers (by the way, Mr. Darabont, “internet dwellers” is only marginally better than “basement dwellers” and only one more step above “gollum”), they will respond to you with politeness, maybe not kindness, but definitely with respect.

  19. I’ve been on the Internet since 1992. Were I in Mr. Drabont’s shoes, I probably would not read online comments either.

    The professional critiques would be read, the ratings would be scanned, and I would pay an intern or PR person to scan the various Zeitgeists and threads and aggregate the opinions.

    Sort of like a general in a war. You don’t hear that Pvt. J.Q.Public was killed near Schloss-am-Fluss, you hear that Company M took some casualties but advanced 7 miles yesterday.

    Are there too many Jack Albertsons typing on the Internet? Oh yeah…

  20. Nurf? says:

    Thorsten –

    The professional critiques would be read, the ratings would be scanned, and I would pay an intern or PR person to scan the various Zeitgeists and threads and aggregate the opinions.

    Which professionals? I am not being sarcastic, but which “professionals” are you talking about? The “reviewers” on television, more often than not bought or swayed by swag coming from the studios? Roger Ebert? Todd McCarthy? The professional reviewer is a dying breed, and the well-researched professional critique even more so.

    It has been replaced by opinions.

    If you remember, Todd McCarthy was dumped by Variety in March, Roger Ebert actually considers the non-professional reviewers to be something worthy of acclaim, as he repeatedly points out on his blog, and most of the other “professional” reviewers these days are usually freelancers, so “professionalism” can in this context only be defined as “he who is published by a mainstream media outlet”.

    Outlets like the New York Times? That would be the same paper that had Judith Miller running around lying her ass off, that had Jayson Blair doing the same? You mean those mainstream media outlets that replace original reporting with either PR rewrites or newswires?

    Again, I am not being sarcastic. I just would like to have a definition of what constitutes “professionalism” in this regard. Can a reviewer who gets invited to all kinds of crap, to swag parties and shit, can that reviewer be still called a professional? Can you trust his review?

    It’s not just movies, it’s music and tech stuff as well (and we don’t even want to go into politics, where “professionals” are showing behaviour consistently worse than anything you see on the web). Who is writing it? What are their motives? How close are they to the PR people?

    The reason these professionals have less and less influence is that they been caught with their hands in the cookie jar once too often.

    And no, I don’t claim that a creative needs/should/has to read what is written by “Joe Q. Public” on the web. I am sure it can be creatively very stifling, but if they enter said domain, they must know that they are no longer on their own turf.

    And the usual rules apply. Be polite. Be nice. The person out there having an opinion is just having that, an opinion. You don’t have to agree with it. But be polite. You are in a room with people who – like it or not – have the same right to voice their opinion as you do have to voice yours. In this environment, you are not better than them. Don’t present yourself as if you are. Don’t talk down to them. Even the most angry ranter will suddenly go “ooops, uh, yeah, sorry, I didn’t mean it that way” when you identify yourself and say, “hey, no reason to piss on me personally.”

    Or in other words, don’t be Don Murphy.

    And with that, I wish everybody a Happy Hallo-weenie!

  21. Ashland says:

    I can’t believe anyone would be so naive as to promote the opinion that being nice on the internet gets you nice results. That’s demonstrably untrue.

    Bullying online is endemic, and even the kindest, most polite creators like Walt Simonson get brutalized by strangers online for no valid reason except someone doesn’t like the way they draw.

    If the treatment Kate Beaton got lately doesn’t prove it, nothing does. She was the subject of hideous, vulgar sexist attacks because she twittered one sentence about the sexist backhanded compliments directed toward her.

  22. Nurf? says:

    AShland –

    and Miss Beaton was vigorously defended on numerous web threads as well, as this http://tinyurl.com/354bm3l shows, and it started a debate, back and forth, about the nature of that “compliment”, such as it were. That alone … is a good thing. One should never be afraid of a debate.

    Bullying is bullying. The question then becomes whether others step into the breach and start to stand up, be it in real life or on the interwebs.

    Dan Savage did it by starting the “It gets better” campaign in the wake of the relentless bullying, cyber or otherwise, against gay teens.

    But this is not the issue Darabont is addressing. He is addressing the notion that somebody somewhere is going to hate your creation, no matter what.

    Guess what? That’s life. You are – as a creator – never going to get the full 100, and as long as you criticise the work and not the man or woman who has done it, it is everybody’s right to fully hate your stuff and say so. I e.g. hate Glee. Completely loathe it. So what? A lot of people love it, and more power to them.

    If e.g. Snyder’s Superman will be beloved and I hate it (which I consider to be rather likely at this point), so what? If other peope love it, more power to them.

    And incidentally, I am not naive. I have been on the other side of this equation. And there is always somebody who loathes what you have done.

    Know what? You have to live with it.

    And yes, some will attack you personally, but they are a tiny minority. If you had read what I have written before, you would have noticed that I said the internet is an echo chamber that allows tiny minorities to shout the loudest, you know, kind of like Fox News, and it then gets picked up and heightened, because the thing is, the so-called “professional” media these days thrives on antagonism, so one snippet then gets replayed over and over until it becomes a monster of its own.

    The democratic nature of the web can both be a good foundation for civilised debate. It also can – and especially in the political arena – create a mob mentality.

    Again, proper reviews and analysis these days barely exist, a deconstruction of literary themes and/or structural and stylistic influences.

    What is then left is… the opinion.

    Something to lament? Surely.

  23. Matthew Southworth says:

    Nurf–nonsense. Your perspective on this issue is apparently coming from a belief that “creatives” who live in “ivory towers” would find the magical key to making better work if only they would solicit more opinion from the public.

    Nonsense.

    First of all, there are no ivory towers. I’ve never met Frank Darabont, but I’d guess he probably has a nice house, maybe a nice car, might be able to put his kids through college, etc. But I’ve seen him walking around with a friend at SDCC, wearing a Hawaiian shirt and a goofy smile, talking freely to whoever came his way. No ivory tower.

    Second, the creation of art is not improved by public debate and democratic vote. It’s not a bridge or a public causeway or liquor law. It’s (at its best, anyway) an expression of a personal point of view, whether that be about overcoming the trials of adolescence, how to be of service to humans when you’re from a dead planet, or how to kill zombies.

    It seems that your perspective is saying two things, one of which I agree with: that the public has a right to express its opinion, to review and debate, and that the creator is not only able to listen in but is required to listen in or to otherwise retreat to his “ivory tower”.

    You have every right to say that a comic artist is a drunken pedophile who should never have picked up a pencil and that you hope he dies of cancer. People say odious shit like that all the time, and lighter shades of it, too (like the time I saw someone call Mike Mignola “lazy” because he doesn’t draw all the BPRD books–MM writes more books and draws more covers than 95% of the people working in comics, and occasionally he’s able to draw full books, too). You can say whatever you want.

    But that doesn’t mean that the above cartoonist would get anything of value from your commentary.

  24. Ashland says:

    All you’ve done with all your posts is prove everything Darabont has said: if he wants to got on with his life and do good work, it doesn’t matter how good that work is there will always be a percentage of people who will loathe it and treat him like crap for doing it.

    And you made it a moratorium on the fan’s value as human beings as if he’s addressing ALL fans. He isn’t.

    Just because some people were nice enough to step up to the plate and defend Kate Beaton, it would be an exercise in masochism for her to sit around and read some of the crap that gets posted.

    You admit to the mob mentality, you admit to the bad behavior. All Darabont did was acknowledge that it exists and he wants to avoid it.

    He wants to avoid the 150 sock puppets who do nothing but post crap on the internet all day. The “opinions” are often nothing more than bullying.

    Darabont is absolutely right about that class of fan.

    This circular argument is done for me.

    The crassness, the sociopathic lack of concern for others, and the cheap power some people get by being vile in public. It’s not just about “opinions”.

    And you just toss off a “deal with it”, while making a blithe post about “stepping up” to bullying. “That’s life”.

    Sure.

    Frankly, attitudes like yours scare me more than anything this fine Hallowe’en.

  25. Nurf? says:

    It seems that your perspective is saying two things, one of which I agree with: that the public has a right to express its opinion, to review and debate, and that the creator is not only able to listen in but is required to listen in or to otherwise retreat to his “ivory tower”.

    Actually, Matthew, I didn’t state the second part at all. Please refrain from infering your own opinion and putting words into my mouth.

    What i said, very explicitly, is this –

    But nothing, and I mean literally nothing that you can find on the intertubes is different from what people used to gripe and complain about when the came out of a movie, sat down with their friends and had a drink or two and took that movie apart.

    The only difference now?

    Now the creatives can be a fly on the wall and listen in. They are no longer insulated.

    As a creative you don’t have to listen to it. Nor do you have to address the ones criticising your work. But what you have to do is that if you do enter the fray, if you come to a web board e.g., you have to acknowledge that you are not longer on your turf. You are in “message board land”. I also said that there will always be a minority of people who will ttack you ad hominem.

    Again, I’m sorry, but such is life. Is it mean? Yes. Is it hurtful? Of course it is. Can you change it? No.

    You have every right to say that a comic artist is a drunken pedophile who should never have picked up a pencil and that you hope he dies of cancer. [...] You can say whatever you want.

    Yes, you can. You don’t like it. I don’t like it. But it’s called the First Amendment, and while I never said that I like or condone ad hominem attacks, you seem to be doing a good job on me here, just as Ashland is. The First Amendment means you have to live with assholes. Again. Is it hurtful? Is it offensive? Of course it is. But the only difference between now and before the internet? Now people piss more in public.

    I wouldn’t attack somebody like Paul Anderson, the Resident Evil Anderson, not the other one, on a personal level. Nor do I think anybody else should, even though I cannot think highly of Anderson’s work.

    Ad hominem attacks are childish, and I believe there was a rally yesterday in Washington that essentially told Americans to “turn it down a notch”.

    But it is the nature of the beast, and it isn’t merely web trolls who do it. Birds do it, bees do it, educated Bill O’Reillys do it. There is are entire industries that is founded on ad hominem attacks, including e.g. the entire tabloid gossip celebrity industry.

    All of which I for example find highly offensive, but at the same time, they are protected by the First Amendment.

    So, if there is somebody being bullied, you stand up for them. You let them know they are not alone. You tell the asshole to “turn it down a notch”.

    And others will stand up, too.

    Do you really, I mean really have so little faith in people? Do you really want to amplify the importance of an asshole here or there who attacks somebody personally by focusing on that person and not the 10, the 50, the 100 who refute that person?

    You cannot stop single people from being assholes. Or would you like to institute a law that bans everything that you personally find offensive?

    Because like it or not, that’s where this argumentation is headed.

    It’s life.

    Life has bullies.

  26. Bob Mitchum says:

    What Ashland said. Way to prove Darabont’s point, guys. Reading these tirades is liking sitting in on an Asperger’s support group.

  27. The Beat says:

    My little tarbaby succeeded quite well.

  28. Synsidar says:

    I have no problem with Darabont’s quoted remarks. Translating a story from one format to another inevitably involves changes. What matters is staying true to the meaning(s) of the source material. If the director talks about dramatic license as a way of justifying changes, though, that’s a sign that he’s trying to reach an audience that the creators of the original work didn’t have in mind.

    What I have a problem with is Darabont’s focus on gore. He talks about zombie fiction being a sub-subgenre, but that doesn’t equate with being ripe for exploitation. Zombie movies have been done to death and beyond (!). Darabont was pleased with grossing out Stephen King, but once viewers have seen that material, how does he top himself? Unless viewers are intrigued by the character-driven material, the gore will become familiar, and then boring.

    It will be interesting to see how The Walking Dead does in the ratings after three or four episodes.

    SRS

  29. “Troll Ouroboros” is a fantastic phrase.

  30. Millie says:

    Darabont’s descriptive answer here is a reflection of the crazy, super-destructive way of thinking that can dominate among certain groups in these situations. It’s creepy.

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