comScore Bill Maher Continues to Bash Comic Book Fans in New Rant | The Mary Sue

Bill Maher Continues to Bash Comic Book Fans in the Wake of Stan Lee’s Death

Excuse us if we don't agree with the same man who continually gives Ann Coulter a platform.

Grumpy old man Bill Maher is at it again, doubling down on his insensitive comments following the death of comics legend Stan Lee. Maher drew intense criticism when he wrote a blog post saying, “The guy who created Spider-Man and the Hulk has died, and America is in mourning. Deep, deep mourning for a man who inspired millions to, I don’t know, watch a movie, I guess.”

After facing epic online backlash and losing 40,000 Twitter followers, Maher decided to dig his heels in with a rant in last night’s episode of Real Time with Bill Maher. Maher said that he wasn’t bashing Lee as much as he was bashing his followers, who he repeatedly urges to “grow up.” Maher says in his rant, “I’m not glad Stan Lee is dead, I’m sad you’re alive.”

Maher then displays that his knowledge of comic books and graphic novels is stuck in a dime-store in the ’70s, and shows off his willful ignorance of the entire genre as an art form. It’s easy to make fun of something if you refuse to learn anything about it, I guess. Maher then links his complaints back to his real target: millennials and the concept of “adulting”.

Maher, like other white male comics of his generation, shows us that the quickest path to irrelevance is through bashing or mocking the generations that have come after him. There is an ignorance to this argument that easily crosses party lines: the same men who mock millennials for liking comics are akin to the old conservative men on Fox News holding cans of soup and crowing that a health insurance plan costs the same as an iPhone. It only exacerbates the disconnect between millennials who are facing economic hardships and instability that Maher’s generation never did.

Perhaps what is most frustrating about Maher’s rant is that he refuses to acknowledge any depth or nuance. People who read comics also read literature, appreciate fine art, and can be highly educated. This isn’t a zero-sum game. And frankly, don’t we, as a nation and as liberals, have bigger fish to fry?

I find it laughable that Maher draws a parallel between comic book fans and Trump’s victory, when he regularly has noted bigot Ann Coulter on as a guest. In fact, Coulter appeared in the same episode as this rant. Isn’t normalizing hatred and bigotry more problematic than liking a Marvel movie?

What is most galling is the fact that men like Maher continue to classify comics as “childish things”, yet laud other childish pursuits like grown men hitting balls with sticks. The same bros coming for comics have zero problem lionizing the sports industry, which continues to be more damaging than any comic book ever could. After all, when was the last time an issue of Spider-Man gave someone CTE?

(via Huffington Post, image: Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

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Chelsea was born and raised in New Orleans, which explains her affinity for cheesy grits and Britney Spears. She currently lives in sunny Los Angeles, with her husband and two poorly behaved rescue dogs. She is a former roller derby girl and a black belt in Judo, so she is not to be trifled with. She loves the word “Jewess” and wishes more people used it to describe her.