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And That's Terrible

One Million Moms Asking Toys R Us To Pull Archie’s Gay Marriage Comic [UPDATED]

Remember when the group One Million Moms decided to go up against JC Penny and Ellen DeGeneres and failed miserably? Well this time they’re going after Toys R Us and Archie Comics. Shall we start placing bets? [UPDATE: Archie's CEO responds.]

Archie Comics issue Life With Archie #16, features this plot summary: Kevin returns from battle a war hero and the whole gang have assembled to watch him tie the knot!

They’re speaking of course, of Kevin Keller, the openly gay Archie character who’s been in the news for a while now. And wow! Isn’t it a fascinating story? Sure sounds like it to me. Well, One Million Moms don’t agree and they don’t want it anywhere near children. So they don’t want a lesbian spokewoman, they don’t want a single comic about gay marriage in a store filled with items. What’s next? Asking companies to fire their homosexual employees so their kids won’t be exposed to them either? In the immortal words of Charlie Brown: Good grief!

Here’s what they’ve posted on their website:

Select Toys ‘R’ Us stores are now selling ‘Archie’ comic books with a same-sex wedding displayed on the front cover. The front cover reads “Just Married” with two men marrying and one is wearing a service uniform. This comic book is being sold in select stores across the country. One example is the Queensbury, NY location in the upstate New York area.

Toys ‘R’ Us employees do not actually set up the displays; they leave this up to the vendor, but they should be aware of the merchandise being sold in their stores nonetheless. These comic books are sold at the front checkout counters so they are highly visible to employees, managers, customers and children. Unfortunately, children are now being exposed to same-sex marriage in a toy store. This is the last place a parent would expect to be confronted with questions from their children on topics that are too complicated for them to understand. Issues of this nature are being introduced too early and too soon, which is becoming extremely common and unnecessary.

A trip to the toy store turns into a premature discussion on sexual orientation and is completely uncalled for. Toys ‘R’ Us should be more responsible in the products they carry.


Please send Toys ‘R’ Us an email letter requesting they remove all the same-sex “Just Married – Archie” comic books immediately from their shelves.

Side note before we continue: the One Million Moms Facebook page has around 44,000 members. Just sayin’

The organization also has a form letter written up for those who can’t take the time to write their own hateful thoughts to the toy company. It reads, “Unfortunately, children are now being exposed to same-sex marriage in your toy store. This is the last place a parent would expect to be confronted with questions from their children on topics that are too complicated for them to understand. Issues of this nature are being introduced too early and too soon, which is becoming extremely common and unnecessary. A trip to the toy store turns into a premature discussion on sexual orientation and is completely uncalled for.”

Now, I can understand not wanting to have the discussion with your child if it makes you uncomfortable but I’m not sure exactly what age they believe discussions on sexual orientation are necessary, seeing as how children of all ages shop at the store with their parents. One wonders if there would be a problem with a comic with a marriage between a man and a woman on the cover? After all, a depiction of marraige is an obvious allusion to the sexual act, not an obvious allusion to a community’s suport for two people in love dedicating themselves publicly to their love. But I digress. At least Kevin lives in Riverdale where this sort of prejudice and hate don’t exist and where real-world discussions aren’t shied away from. Other good news to point out? Kevin is getting a new series soon! I encourage you to show positivity by supporting the comic if you disagree with One Million Moms rather than spending time being angry at them. Just a thought.

I’ll leave you with DeGeneres’ words in response to the group from a few weeks ago: “Here are the values I stand for: ‎I stand for honesty, equality, kindness, compassion, treating people the way you want to be treated and helping those in need. To me, those are traditional values.”

UPDATE: Archie Comics Co-CEO Jon Goldwater has released the following statement on the matter:

We stand by Life with Archie #16. As I’ve said before, Riverdale is a safe, welcoming place that does not judge anyone. It’s an idealized version of America that will hopefully become reality someday.

We’re sorry the American Family Association/ feels so negatively about our product, but they have every right to their opinion, just like we have the right to stand by ours. Kevin Keller will forever be a part of Riverdale, and he will live a happy, long life free of prejudice, hate and narrow-minded people.

(via The Beat)

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  • Joanna

    Unfortunately, children are now being exposed to same-sex marriage in a toy store. ”

    Oh noes!  The children are ruined foreverz!!!!

  • HannahW

    One Million Moms = several thousand women flaunting their heterosexual privilege. 

  • Frodo Baggins

    I didn’t know Malcolm X was gay.

  • Glenn Simpson

    I was actually thinking about something like this the other day.  When dealing with heterosexual couples, there are three areas you can discuss – love, committment, and sex.  Any one of those is a viable topic.  Two out of three of them are suitable for small children to understand – Mr. Jones loves Mrs. Jones, and Mr. Jones is committed/married to Mrs. Jones.  At no time do you have to discuss what Mr. Jones does with Mrs. Jones behind closed doors, until you’re ready.  You can discuss the other two all day long.

    And yet, when one discusses homosexuality, the opponents seem to zero in on just the sex.  It’s like you can’t discuss Mr. Smith loving Mr. Davis, and that Mr. Smith and Mr. Davis are committed to each other, without discussing what Mr. Smith and Mr. Davis do behind closed doors.

  • Elizabeth-Amber Delaney

    I love that censorship has replaced parenting. /sarcasm

  • Joanna

    That is so true and so, so sad.

  • Bradley W

    Why don’t they make the Republican party kick out all gay constituents instead of worrying about fictional gays.

  • Anonymous


    As a mum my opinion on this is who cares?  There are much bigger problems in this world than worrying about a comic book where two people who love each other are getting married. 

  • Brad Hart

    You mean anti-sex of any kind, except the at night for baby making only lights out missionary position sex that should never be pleasurable between white middle class protestant married couples they encourage women to have when their husband wants it so he can help build a stronger right wing base for the future.

  • Brad Hart

    I am surprised they aren’t pissed this is a biracial couple.

  • Taste_is_Sweet

    “Mommy, why are there two men getting married in that comic?”
    “Because sometimes girls are born who only fall in love with other girls, and boys are born who only fall in love with other boys. We call that being homosexual. So in this comic, a man fell in love with another man and they’re getting married. Just like your Mommy and Daddy.”

    Yeah, that’d be incredibly complicated and difficult to explain. Took me a whole two minutes. Whew!

  • Jinxy Blastwave

    That’s why the man killed him.  Black radical is one thing, but GAY black radical… that’s too much.

    One Million Moms, the PTC, all this stuff, don’t people have better shit to do?  Let the imaginary characters get married, so what?  We should be dealing with the real menace out there right now… WITCHES.  They’ve been biding their time for centuries, waiting for the perfect moment to strike.  They engineered the Salem trials, so that when they showed up for real, we’d all say, “Nah, can’t be witches, that isn’t a thing, remember those trials they had?  That was bullshit.”  Witches.  Bad ones.  And they will steal all the pudding.  ALL THE PUDDING.

  • Derek O’Brien

    The thing that struck me the most about this farcical debacle is that growing up around comics, Archie was considered the epitome of blandness and anodyne storytelling. Who wants to read about Archie and Jughead when there’s Wolverine and the Punisher out there? But now that I’m older, I’m seeing Archie comics taking a stronger, more mature stance regarding its characters and issues it feels genuinely strong about, than the bigger companies have done. And I’m glad I’m able to appreciate that now.

  • SusanHey

    Their plan of action seems to consist of covering both their and their children’s ears and screaming, “ALALALALALALALA I CAN’T SEE YOU I CAN’T HEAR YOU ALALALALALA”. My parents never taught me about sexual orientation, but they never hid me away. I really don’t understand what trying to hide yourself and your kids is supposed to accomplish. 

  • JoAnna Luffman

    I think the bigger issue is not the character’s orientation, but his partner is… ethnic. Such a nice, white boy and such a dark man. /end sarcasm

    Seriously, I have 3 kids, and none of them have asked. They just accept – Aunt Mary has a girlfriend, Aunt Heather’s boyfriend is black, and it doens’t matter. Kids won’t bat an eye at situations that are slightly different from theirs if the parent doesn’t make hay out of it.OMM is more likely to “create” gays than the so-called gay agenda ever could! (note I do not believe one’s orientation is a choice).Honestly, there’s nothing to explain. Kids see grownups holding hands, they shrug and move on. When the talk happens, eventually, you can mention hetero- and homosexual basics, and let them grow into whatever they are going to.If more people would mind their own lives, the world would be a lot better off. I’m thinking OMM is a pile of the same irritating chicks that would stand in the hall in high school ans whisper about people that walked by. Now they have the money to throw at being twats.

  • Anna B

    “Unfortunately, children are now being exposed to same-sex marriage in a
    toy store. This is the last place a parent would expect to be confronted
    with questions from their children on topics that are too complicated
    for them to understand.”

    I don’t understand what they think is so complicated. 

    They must think their children stupid as hell.

  • Terence Ng

    Better return them and get a new one.

  • Anonymous

    I think I’m offended that ‘One Million Moms’ are giving Moms a bad name…

  • Maxwell LaChance

    I like the irony that I just used 1millionmoms email form to compliment TRU on having this book on display.

  • Carmen Sandiego

    Aren’t some of the shoppers at Toys R Us families parented by same-sex couples? Yes, they are.  Parents are uncomfortable approaching these topics?  Too bad.  You can try and pretend these relationships don’t exist, but your child’s schoolmates may just be picked up after school by their two moms or two dads.  That’s reality.  It’s really not that hard to explain, no matter how old your child is.

  • georgeolds

    Could they at least be HONEST and call themselves the “Forty Thousand Moms”? That’s how many Facepuke members they have.

  • georgeolds

    They probably ARE, but that would be so ‘UN-PC’ of them to admit.

  • Anonymous

    “One wonders if there would be a problem with a comic with a marriage between a man and a woman on the cover?”

    You don’t need to be obtuse.  Heterosexual marriages have been considered the norm in Western society for a long time, while homosexual marriages are a matter of debate.  Of course there wouldn’t be a problem, because most people accept heterosexual marriage and are comfortable talking to their children about it.  They are not willing to do the same for homosexual marriage.

    It sure would be nice if the mothers actually made the effort to learn about the things they don’t understand rather than attempt to shield their children from imagined danger.  If nothing else, it wastes energy they could be putting into more productive pursuits.

  • ZenPoseur

    Oh, but they really are ruined forever!

    What you don’t seem to understand is that, when little kids learn about gay marriage, they don’t see what all the fuss is about.  They just figure, if two people love each other, they should be allowed to marry.  The next thing you know, you’ve got five-year-olds embracing tolerance and empathy.  Disaster!

    Do you know how hard it is to get a kid back on the right path, after they’ve got crazy ideas like that in their head?

    You’d understand these things if you were a parent (who wants to raise hateful children.)

  • Eric Stettmeier

    One Million Moms should really focus on the true degradation in comic books today: Rob Leifield’s art.

  • Anonymous

    I haven’t bought a comic in ages. Looks like I need to go buy a copy of Life with Archie #16.

  • Adam R. Charpentier

    So, not only does Kevin marry a dude while wearing his service uniform, he marries a black dude, under a “Just Married” banner, and people are surprised that some asshole group got angry over this?

  • Flapjack Smith

    And the best part is your example is still more complex than it needs to be: “Usually a mommy and a daddy get married, but sometimes two daddies get married because they love each other.”

    Then the kid goes back to not giving a crap. (I’m going to ignore the part where I’m doing childless marriages a disservice with my phrasing, but younger kids tend to relate to adults as mommies or daddies more than husbands and wives.)

  • Kath

    People aren’t surprised. I’m more surprised it’s taken them over a month to finally get around to attacking it. Hello, AFA, it released in January. It is the end of February now. Get your shit together!

    As for the Just Married banner – it’s only the cover. Kevin actually gets married twice in that issue, and I believe neither time involves them standing under a banner.

  • Anonymous

    how about one mil moms against war mongering by obama on iran, or for jail time for banksters and fraudsters, or not shredding the constitution by obama and congress.
    cheers, joe mustich, ct usa, marriage officiators…
    onward to full civil and marriage equality rights in america. period. case closed

  • Life Lessons

    That’s it! I’m gonna buy Archie!! And shop at JCPenny. :)

  • Anonymous

    I’ve been to the NY Toys R Us mentioned.
    I may just have to take a road trip there just to buy the comic from there.

  • Anna B

    Exactly. I’ve watched tens of episodes of the Fabulous Beekman Boys with my son and he never wondered why Josh and Brent would kiss. He just thought it was completely normal. He was basically more curious about the difference of the Llamas and goats on the show. And why the pigs needed to be cleaned.

  • glazed mcguffin

    I don’t think you guys understand; if a fundie Christian mom smells gay comic books on her child, she won’t recognize that child as her own and accept it back into the nest made out of bibles.

  • Brad Hart

    They hope children are stupid.  This is the only way you can get them to down enough religious koolaid to drown in.  If you were to tell a smart child, “Mommy and daddy talk to an invisible man in the sky so we can live forever in a place better than this, where they don’t have anyone different from us, and we telepathically accept his bastard son born to a Jewish woman who died and became a zombie before he was taken up to the better place where we are going to go, and Mommy and Daddy’s Gramma and Grammpa are already, but not daddie’s gay uncle Al who we are sure wanted to molest little white girls even though he liked tall show tune singing black men dressed in vinyl,” they would look at you and think you are the ones who are stupid.

  • Nelly Dreadful

     I know. Good grief ladies, it takes five minutes. Seriously. It took five minutes for MY mom to explain what
    the word “gay” meant after I heard it used on the playground when I was
    three. (With nary a gay themed comic book in sight, mind. This subject
    IS going to come up, no matter who you boycott.)

    It only took THAT long because mom had to get some stammering and blushing out of the way, but once that was done:

    “Usually boys fall in love with girls and girls fall in love with boys.
    But sometimes there are girls who fall in love with girls and boys who
    fall in love with boys. We call those people ‘gay,’ or homosexual.”

    THERE! DONE! What the hell is “complicated” about that?

    Unless the part they’re worried about is the part where they have to explain WHY it’s so goshdarn evil and unacceptable. That part is definitely a lot more confusing and difficult to explain. My mom skipped that bit, and left me to wander off and ponder it and make up my own mind (Which boiled down to me deciding it was weird, but since fairy tales like Sleeping Beauty would be a bazillion times cooler with two princesses or two princes now that I thought about it, it was probably okay.)

    And THAT is probably exactly what the ‘million moms’ are afraid of. Not that their kids will be confused or upset, but that they WON’T be.

  • Ginny Garza Pérez

    One Million Mons should be more concerned about all the sexualized Barbie and Bratz dolls in ToysRUs.

  • Emily Hill

    Oh no I ruined my nieces and Nephews by dating a woman I’m bi-sexual but still wtf I applaud the people who make Archie they realize you can’t choose to be gay straight or somewhere in between Avery Aiden and Abby still love me and they love my girl they call her aunty I’m just Aunt Emily XD

  • Taste_is_Sweet

     Yeah, that’s an even better way to put it. Well said. :)