Thursday, 17 November 2016

Morbid Detection and the Tide of Homophobia

Article By
Patrick Scattergood

Hello Dark Ponders,

I just thought, with our newest title Morbid Detection: Part One now being available digitally from here, that I would take a few moments to talk about both the comic itself and also some of the problems that have arisen from that too.

We'll start with the downside of it all.

With the announcement of the release of the comic itself, we were expecting to get a little bit of a backlash as it is a very different (in style) release to the ones that we are perhaps best known for.  While The Meek and Flesh Tones are best known for being dark, stark and slightly disturbing, Morbid Detection: Part One is the complete opposite art wise.  The story starts off with bright art and then slowly gets darker as the story progresses.  I love that approach with the art because it's almost as if it lures you in with a bit of a false sense of security.

However, that's not the thing that we have found to have been the problem.  A lot of the backlash has been circling around our two main characters of David Fredericks and Jensen.  Two Detection Specialists, as Fredericks calls them, who are looking in to a brutal series of murders in the city of Charn.  They are also a same sex married couple.  This appears to have angered quite a few people and has lead to a long series of abusive and offensive trolling comments from a series of people.  The thing is, it's not only been on the page but also to my personal Facebook page as well.

The thing that really bugs me have been some of the comments saying that there would never be such a character in real life as if the fact that someone is in a gay relationship would stop them from being a detective.  Personally I thought we were in 2016 not the 1940's but there we are.  Some of the messages have even said that we, here at Dark Pond Creations, are pushing some sort of 'gay agenda' on our readers.  Personally, I don't think there is such a thing.  I take great pride in writing characters that are realistic and could / should exist in the real world and that is the case here.  We have also done it in a subtle way too, with a photograph of them together here and a comment there as I don't believe that a persons religion, sexuality, gender etc should be a defining thing about their character.  It should be the personality and whether or not that person can be related to, which I hope I have managed here.

I suppose the thing that I am pointing out here is that all of us here at Dark Pond Creations firmly believe in equality of all kinds and we will continue to include that in our work.  We want our stories to be as varied as possible and for us to have as many different characters as possible, just like in the real world.  Everybody is different in their own unique way and long may that continue.

One of the things that I am most proud of with Morbid Detection, is the way myself and Stephane have collaborated.  He just got the themes and the moments that I had tried to get in to my writing and his art really brought that to life.  Another thing that I like about the art is that he is able to work in any kind of style that is needed and can be either as 'in your face' or as subtle as the story asks for without either side clashing with one another.  You may know him best for his superb graphic novel Fantasmagoria: Volume One, that you will have either seen online or on our table at the conventions we've appeared at.

All in all, despite the homophobic backlash, there will be a part two of Morbid Detection and that we hope that you will enjoy reading it as much as we enjoy writing and illustrating it.

Sorry for such a long post but we hope that these words find you all in high spirits and good times.

So, for now, I leave you with some very kind and wise words from my fellow creator, Stephane Cote.

"When Patrick Scattergood first sent me the script last year, it was not until the 2nd read that I realized Jensen and Fredricks were two men. Perhaps because I happen to be gay, I didn't even figure that was possible because I am just used to seeing heterosexual couples featured. When I finally realized they were two men, it completely warmed my heart and I felt even more connected to the story. I also felt that it was a pretty ballsy move from Pat's perspective. As an author and artist, I have always felt that my story matters, that my perspective matters, especially in 2016. More than ever, it needs to be ok to tell stories that represent all types of people, lives and loves. Unfortunately, there will always be those who have small minds and loud voices."
Be safe, be kind, be creative.

If you like Stephane Cote's Art then check out his web site here.

Morbid Detection: Part One is available digitally from here.

1 comment:

  1. Morbid Detection is a deliciously dark tale. Looking forward to seeing the next installment