The internet exploded with the news that J.H. Williams III and W. Haden Blackman, the editorial team behind the current Batwoman book, are leaving DC Comics over the publisher’s editorial interference and last minute changes, and especially DC’s refusal to allow characters Batwoman (Kate Kane) and her partner [Gotham City police officer] Maggie Sawyer to get married.
Kate Kane has proposed to Maggie Sawyer twice, but the publisher still refuses to allow them to get married. However, I have a couple of theories of why this is not so much “anti-gay” as many blogs are trying to make it sound.
This is what writers J.H. Williams and W. Haden Blackman, who have been on the comic for three years, wrote in a blog post last night:
Unfortunately, in recent months, DC has asked us to alter or completely discard many long-standing storylines in ways that we feel compromise the character and the series. We were told to ditch plans for Killer Croc’s origins; forced to drastically alter the original ending of our current arc, which would have defined Batwoman’s heroic future in bold new ways; and, most crushingly, prohibited from ever showing Kate and Maggie actually getting married. All of these editorial decisions came at the last minute, and always after a year or more of planning and plotting on our end.
We’ve always understood that, as much as we love the character, Batwoman ultimately belongs to DC. However, the eleventh-hour nature of these changes left us frustrated and angry — because they prevent us from telling the best stories we can. So, after a lot of soul-searching, we’ve decided to leave the book after Issue 26.
We’re both heartbroken over leaving, but we feel strongly that you all deserve stories that push the character and the series forward. We can’t reliably do our best work if our plans are scrapped at the last minute, so we’re stepping aside. We are committed to bringing our run to a satisfying conclusion and we think that Issue 26 will leave a lasting impression.
As you can see, this goes beyond an “anti-gay agenda.” The way I see it, many blogs and websites are putting too much emphasis on the gay marriage part, even using it as a title, but as you just read, it goes a little deeper than that. In all honesty, I would be pissed if my editor in chief suddenly comes up trying to enforce last minute changes that pretty much destroys a story a year in the making.
@andykhouri But must clarify- was never put to us as being anti-gay marriage.
— J.H. Williams III (@JHWilliamsIII) September 5, 2013
There are also rumors Batwoman was about to put Batman in a stalemate, so I see why DC would react that way. It’s a dick move, but I see where this is going.
I also have two theories about why DCC decided not to allow the wedding, you may or may not agree with me, but I have a feeling this goes beyond a political agenda.
- Most of the iconic superheroes are not married in the New 52. Given that fact it stands to reason Batwoman’s popularity has put her in a position where the publisher would rather have her stay single.
- Superheroes based on Batman (as in the Batman family) are single. I don’t know if you have noticed this, but all crime fighters based on Batman are single, starting with the dark knight himself. Nightwing, Robin, Red Robin, Batgirl, etc, have all stayed single.
While it is true that not allowing the characters to marry seems like a really insensitive move at this moment, I believe the publisher’s refusal goes on a different direction, or at least that’s what I’m telling myself.