The self-appointed art censors have struck again

Lionhead Studios, the studio responsible for the popular Fable game series, came under fire for an image they posted to Twitter. It’s art taken from the Fable video game franchise and shows an ample-breasted woman holding a tray of what looks to be mugs of oatmeal. The words “The Foaming Jugs” appear at the top of the artwork. Evidently this is a tavern in the game.

The image was posted in honor of #NationalCleavageDay, which according to Wikipedia, is a real thing.

This is what they posted to Twitter:


They later removed it from Twitter and then issued a Twitter apology.

The obnoxious, self-appointed art censors from their ivory towers on Twitter and Tumblr, have struck again. They’ve once again successfully gotten a piece of art removed because they did not like it.

They were successful in getting a variant cover for an upcoming issue of Batgirl canceled because they didn’t like it and didn’t want anyone to be able to buy it, and now they’ve got a company to remove art and apologize for that art simply because they did not like it.

When I come across art I don’t like, which coincidentally enough, very much includes the above image, it doesn’t even occur to me to try to get it removed. Mostly because I’m not rude or obnoxious and I very much realize not everything is created for me or my specific artistic tastes.

People should be free to create and share art they enjoy without censorship from the self-appointed art police.

DC Comics caves, will not publish 'Batgirl' #41 variant cover

A variant cover for Batgirl #41 has some Twitter-people up in arms over the depiction of the Joker with Batgirl. The Joker has his arm around her with a rather large gun in his hand and he’s painting a joker smile on her face. Barbara Gordon, the woman behind the Batgirl mask, looks understandably scared.

It’s a powerful image. It’s an homage to Batman: The Killing Joke, written by Alan Moore and illustrated by enemy of free speech, Brian Bolland.

This cover was commissioned from Brazilian artist Rafael Albuquerque.

To say this cover triggered some Twitter and Tumblr outrage is perhaps an understatement. People outraged by the art even created their own hashtag, #changethecover.

DC Comics has canceled the cover, supposedly at the artist’s request in response to the outrage.

Non-variant cover artwork for “Batgirl” #41.

I can’t imagine demanding that something I don’t like be canceled or changed. If I don’t like the cover to a book or what’s inside the book, I simply don’t buy the book. It wouldn’t even occur to me to demand that it not be published so that other people can’t have it.

That seems like censorship.

Now that DC Comics has bowed to the whim of an angry hashtag, you can expect this type of crap to happen more often. People who want to censor art, thanks to DC Comics, now have the false-perception of power.

If I were in charge at DC Comics, I would have made the Joker artwork the regular, non-variant cover. I would have made the regular cover the variant cover.

That’s how you respond to people who want to censor art: you politely listen to their demands, then do the complete opposite.

Magic: The Counterfeiting

Evidently there is a custom playing card company in China, Shenzhen Wangjing Printing Co., that is producing and selling high-quality Magic: The Gathering counterfeit cards. The company was selling them on their website, but has since removed all traces of them. The fakes are different from any of the other previous counterfeit Magic: The Gathering cards produced in that they are very hard to identify; they look almost identical to legitimate cards.

The only real noticeable difference between a counterfeit and a real card is at the bottom where the copyright information is printed. How ironic that the one flaw the fake cards have is where it displays the copyright information. The counterfeit cards seem to have a lighter font used for the copyright information when compared to real cards. Here is a photo posted on Tumblr by Polish Tamales:


I don’t see how a normal human being is supposed to be able to distinguish a fake card from a real card, especially if they can’t physically look at the card with a magnifying glass or a jeweler’s loupe. With the introduction of these high-quality fakes into the marketplace, I don’t see how anyone can safely purchase Magic: The Gathering cards on eBay or any other online, Internet-based retailer. The blog ICv2 spoke to a spokesman from Wizards of the Coast, the makers of real Magic: The Gathering cards about this issue. Here is one of the questions posed by ICv2 and the answer from Wizards of the Coast:

Any advice for retailers on distinguishing counterfeit singles from the real thing?

For retailers, we recommend that you pay attention to your business and character instincts and to use your best judgment when dealing with unfamiliar sellers. You may want to ask questions about the card source before buying, verify seller ID, and carefully examine each card before concluding the deal.

What’s a “character instinct” and how does one pay attention to it? They might as well be recommending people use The Force.