An open letter to Joss Whedon:
Dear Mr. Whedon,
Hey, it’s me, Scott.
First off, I need to apologize. I’ve been an absentee fan.
We both remember how addicted I was to Buffy the Vampire Slayer back in my younger days. That was when I would have given anything to be a hilarious smart-ass like your characters were, especially Oz and Xander. Although, if I’m being honest, I would still give anything to be a hilarious smart-ass like your characters.
Those days my devotion to the fledgling Whedonverse was unswerving.
Spike was the first instance I can recall where a villain was my favorite character in a show or movie. Angel was the first spin-off show I actually watched. And damn was I glad when Cordelia went from the vapid bitch to the clueless heroine so that I didn’t have to feel bad for thinking she was so damned hot. Although, I was still in love with Willow, even after she came out of the closet and made it clear I didn’t have a chance.
I loved every minute of it all.
But then, something happened. Somehow, we drifted apart, and we both know it was all my fault.
I missed Firefly and Serenity until 2009… 2009, Joss!! What’s wrong with me? I can’t really explain my actions because I don’t understand them myself. I’m ashamed, really.
I still haven’t seen Dollhouse. I know, not having cable is no excuse, neither is my mild aversion to the acting of Eliza Dushku. There is really nothing I can do to make it up to you.
Yet, that’s not why I am writing to you, but we will get to that in a moment.
First, I need to apologize for one more thing. Remember back in 2004, when you relaunched Astonishing X-Men for Marvel? That brilliant story arc where you resurrect Colossus, kill one X-Man (whose name I shouldn’t mention so I won’t spoil it for anyone else), and shoot another off into space with little hope of return? Well, I actually got to that party late too, and by late to the party, I mean I just read them last week.
Take some solace in the fact that no one has suffered from my neglect more than myself. I lived for six wasted, useless, futile years without reading your take on the X-Men… I was an idiot.
Yet now, oh Joss, now I have seen the light. It is so glorious! How is it possible to make the X-Men even better than they were before? By making them talk like fucking Joss Whedon characters, that’s how! Even with a fairly small cast of characters, you really turned out a shiny X-Men yarn. You let Wolvie be Wolvie, you offered the very best possible incarnation of Beast, you introduced some great new characters, and you never let us get comfortable, mostly by proving you were willing to kill off innocent kids and such.
Every last bit of it is solid gold!
However, I think your greatest achievement was what you did with Cyclops. How did you do it?
You turned the biggest pussy in the history of comic books into an honest to goodness super-hero. Most of the time, Cyclops is just a flat, boring, vanilla lump who works as a contrast to keep reminding everyone just how badass and unpredictable Wolverine is. And sure, that is how he started out with you, but by the end, Gorram. Joss, by the end he was a real character. He had depth, he was flesh and blood. I ached with him, I felt what it was like to wonder if you’re just a punch-line, to assume Xavier put you in charge of the X-Men because he felt sorry for you.
I believed it when it turned out none of that was true, when it was clear the Cyclops is exactly the sort of man who should be leading by order and example.
By the end of your arc there wasn’t anyone else I wanted leading the X-Men. I would follow your Cyclops into battle any day. Joss, that is nothing short of a miracle.
So, that is why I am writing you this letter. Please, please, please write some more X-Men titles. I promise, this time I wouldn’t be late to the party.
Of course, I am damned sure looking forward to the Shepherd Book comics, whenever they finally come out. But Joss, if you write some more X-Men titles, hell, any comic title for that matter, I will be in on it from day one. I don’t care if it is a fucking Wonder Man comic, I will be in a rutting tent outside Zanadu, here in Seattle, waiting to get my hands on a copy.
I know, there is no way I should be asking you for something, not after how I have failed you as a fan. Yet, I would be remiss if I didn’t try.
Please Joss, do it for the kids, so that they might grow up in a world filled with astonishing Whedon X-men goodness.
Thank you for your time.
With equal parts remorse and pleading,