The man has everything a screenwriting and comic writer could possibly want: wealth, fame, power. Given the keys to Warner Brothers and DC Comic's cinematic universe, filmmaker David S. Goyer has tremendous pull in the how a lot of your favorite superheroes are portrayed. He can basically say whatever he wants, or so he thinks.
In a podcast earlier this week, Goyer had some interesting thoughts on the creation of the Marvel character, She-Hulk.
I have a theory about She-Hulk. Which was created by a man, right? And at the time in particular I think 95 percent of comic-book readers were men and certainly almost all of the comic-book writers were men. So The Hulk was this classic male power fantasy. It’s, like, most of the people reading comic books were these people like me who were just these little kids getting the s— kicked out of them every day. … And so then they created She-Hulk, right? Who was still smart. … I think She-Hulk is the chick that you could [sexually explicit verb] if you were Hulk, you know what I’m saying?… She-Hulk was the extension of the male power fantasy. So it’s, like, if I’m going to be this geek who becomes the Hulk, then let’s create a giant, green porn star who, as a character, serves to service the Hulk.
Naturally this upset many listening for several reasons. The first one being that Hulk and She-Hulk are cousins. They've never been portrayed in any adaptation to have any sexual interactions. Although Goyer only used Hulk as a metaphor for readers of comic books, the inappropriateness of his statement made it sound worse than it actually should have been.
The infuriating statement that set off a storm of Twitter comments directed at Goyer was that he mockingly made a comment about the creator of She-Hulk as if he didn't know who created her. He's teamed up with Christopher Nolan to create the Dark Knight trilogy, "Man of Steel," "Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice," "Sandman," and "Justice League." He's also written Justice Society of America comics and "Blade" for Marvel. That's a lot of superhero content with huge fan bases and long histories.
How in the world can one of the most successful comic book writers today not know that the character he was criticizing was co-created by Stan Lee?
"Which was created by a man, right? So The Hulk was this classic male power fantasy" said Goyer.
That's Stan the man to you Mr. Goyer.
That man was responsible for crafting the silver-age and rejuvenating the comic book industry. It doesn't matter if you appreciate DC properties, Marvel properties or any other publishers, Stan Lee has always been one of the most beloved figures in the industry.
That statement was pretty offensive to Stan Lee and he responded to Goyer's outrageous claims in the only way he knew how.
I know I was looking for a new female superhero, and the idea of an intelligent Hulk-type grabbed me. Never for an instant did I want her as a love interest for Hulk. Only a nut would even think of that.
Goyer has received plenty of criticism over the years for his departure from writing conventional comic characters for the big screen, instead opting to craft his own spin in adapting backstories, some remarkably unrecognizable to the source material. Its a good thing he never got his hands on writing a Hulk script.
In 2013, he famously made comments about how he disliked Marvel Studios and their module for setting up a connecting universe through one film to another. He referred to it as "sequel bait." Ironically his next film, "Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice" is beginning to sound a lot like sequel bait for "Justice League."
Granted David S. Goyer may have been joking and his theory could have merit as the 1980's (The decade She-Hulk debuted) was full of steroids and sex. But as a public figure, we as consumers react to everything fed to us and the responses garnered by the delivery of his statements are valid as well.
How did you interpret Goyer's statements? Let me know in the comments and on Twitter!