Friday, July 17, 2009

Fun with letters columns!

Stay tuned tomorrow for the review of Captain America #339, but in the meantime...enjoy a look at some of the letters that were printed in this issue.

First up is a letter from the unfortunately named Jeff Jeffcoat.

Tell me that this could not have been ripped from the Internet within the last two years.

Swap out "turns in his uniform and shield" with "is assassinated," and then swap out "Spidey's red-and-blues" with "Spidey's secret identity" and you have the embodiment of fanboy rage around the time of Marvel's Civil War!

The more things change, the more they stay the same, I guess.

And as nifty as that letter was, this next one has to be one of the best fanboy rage letters of all time. Take it away Jeff...

Just reading through this letter, you can tell that it is well crafted, and it makes it points very deftly.

It opens up with a nice dig at Mark Gruenwald's past issues, before claiming him the worst writer working at Marvel. Not only is this the worst issues ever, it's even worse than the last issue (which I'm assuming was the previous worst issue ever).

I've never read much more than a few issues of Gruenwald's run, but the ones I have read were the old armored Cap issues, so maybe Jeff was more prescient than I would have credited him with at the time.

The second paragraph in, and we go from insults on the quality of the writing to personal insults about the sanity of the creators...not to mention the fact that they are ignorant and incompetent.

In the next paragraph, Jeff may actually have a point. Relying on bad characterizations and stereotypes makes for lazy writing. I have no idea if his accusations are on the mark, however, as I've never the aforementioned issues. The rant about southern stereotypes ends with my favorite line of the letter.

I fail to see, however, how anyone can be as stupid as you showed Super-Patriot here, but I suppose that such fools exist in the world, as your existence illustrates.

Jeff is then in a generous mood and dishes out the closest thing to a compliment. Thank you for killing off that "clod" of a character, Ethan. Even his praise has backhanded insults!
Fools deserve no pity.

Mr. T called, and he wants you to stop mangling his catchphrase.

The last paragraph is a real tour-de-force that has to be read to be believed. He starts by calling the book trash, and warns the editors that he will continue to write in with each and every issue and continue to tell them how horrible this book is.

But even if he's successful, and the editors bend to his demands, he complains that even that won't make up for all of the torture that Mark Gruenwald has unleashed on the reading public.

In the end, he demands that Mark Gruenwald leave the book so that someone competent might take over. And in one final dig...

No one will miss you.

That's harsh.

To his credit, Jeff signs the letter with his full name and address, and to Marvel's credit, they printed it. The editors also mention how they had to trim some of the more abusive parts of the letter for publication. Considering what they left in, that must have been some nasty stuff.

I wonder if either Jeff or Mr. Jeffcoat stuck to their guns and never picked up another Captain America book. Or if they didn't, what they thought about Civil War and the recent death of Cap. If you're out there Jeffs, let us know!

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