James Robinson's hypocrisy with He-Man and DCU
Newsarama: James, since this is a licensed property, is your approach a little different? And are you working with Mattel at all?For someone who's telling everybody he doesn't want to turn off fans of the toy line, cartoons and comics that first began in the early 1980s (and there was even one guest appearance made in DC Comics Presents #47 with Superman), how odd he sees the MOTU franchise this way, but not the DCU that he took to destroying along with Dan DiDio, Geoff Johns and other overrated writers and editors. He slays Lian Harper in Cry for Justice, shows no remorse to fans of her young hero father Roy Harper over this, and then says he's going to respect He-Man and company in his new story?
James Robinson: Yes, and I've been trying to come up with a story that suits my writing style and has a kind of new, creative approach to the story, but at the same time, is something Mattel can get behind, something that's not so crazy and off-the-wall that it changes the franchise in any way. So I do work with DC in Burbank, and also with people at Mattel. [...]
Nrama: Were you familiar with He-Man before, or was this something where you heard about the project and started researching?
Robinson: I was not familiar with He-Man, but that was part of why I was attracted to it as a challenge, to familiarize myself with these characters. The one thing I'm very keen on doing is to not insult or offend people who have enjoyed that series in the past. You know, there are children's shows that I remember that, to me, are a vivid and cherished part of my upbringing. And I hate it when people make fun of them and say how corny they are or how dumb they are. And I know for certain people of a certain age, He-Man is a huge part of their past. People who have communicated with me via Twitter or in other ways have basically been very supportive and are very excited that I'm doing this for them. And I don't want to let them down and disrespect the core of these characters.
But at the same time, I feel like this project is also a challenge to write a story that will entertain them as adults, and I think we've done that.
No, the reason why he says he wants to avoid offending fans of these famous childhood pastimes is because Mattel must have more of a head on their shoulders than Time Warner does if they're going to let the staff in charge of DC Comics get away with only so much alienating material that can even harm the success of their own toy and cartoon productions if sensible parents catch on to their dirty tricks. That's one of the reasons why the Saturday morning matinees don't build themselves on gorefests; it wouldn't be profitable when your main audience is children. That's why Skeletor may not be depicted as a true savage in Robinson's take, unlike some of the villains Robinson, Johns and other writers there have sullied in the DCU proper by turning them into vile, alienating horrors (Dr. Light, Prometheus, Inertia, to name but some).
In the end, all Robinson's done is suggest he's got more respect for one company's line of toys than he does for another company's whole universe of comic book heroes.