by Chris Tobias
I’m a huge fan of science-fiction, and my first love is Firefly, but there’s more to this geek than my coat of a brownish color. For example, I’m also an avid reader and collector of comic books. I have been since I was a little kid. My personal comics collection numbers in the thousands and I read dozens of titles regularly, both from the big publishers, DC and Marvel, and the smaller independent companies. I’ve often said that if my wife knew what my monthly comics budget really amounted to, I’d probably be in some very big trouble!
So, of course I was very interested in something that caught my eye last week online. In a January 3 post on the website Bleeding Cool, Rich Johnston reported that DC Comics admitted in a late-2015 blog post that fan protests on social media had, in fact, affected DC’s decisions on how to move forward with certain characters.
When hundreds, perhaps thousands of fans (including this guy, incidentally) used the #PoisonIvyLeague hashtag on Twitter last year to call attention to the fact that the character of Poison Ivy hadn’t yet been given her own comics series like her cohorts Catwoman and Harley Quinn, DC Comics took notice:
“have you looked at the #DCYou hashtag lately? Nearly half of what appears in it is Poison Ivy-related. Fans love the character, and you’d better believe that’s one of the reasons Poison Ivy will be getting her own comic next year.”
Well, “next year” has arrived, and first issue of the Poison Ivy mini-series Poison Ivy: Cycle of Life and Death is available at your local comics shop now!
DC Comics also admitted that the fan-led social media campaign to #SaveConstantine, while it wasn’t able to convince NBC not to cancel the TV series, nevertheless played a role in the decision to have the character of John Constantine (played by Matt Ryan) make a guest appearance on the current season of the CW series Arrow. On top of that, there have been rumors that Constantine could appear on DC’s Legends of Tomorrow if that show, which debuts later this month on the CW, is renewed for a second season. (It’s worth noting that I was also heavily involved in that campaign, since Constantine is one of my favorite DC characters going back to his days as the star of the Hellblazer series that DC published as part of its Vertigo line. Ladies and menfolk, I was two-for-two last year! I reckon that should make us all feel at least a little more confident about what we’re doing here at Take Back the Sky.)
DC concluded their blog post by saying:
“…if we learned anything this year, it’s that if fans are loud enough and organized enough, plans have a way of changing.”
Though I think it would be fair to argue that the work SpaceX does is far more important to mankind than the work of any media and entertainment conglomerate, I doubt anyone is going to argue the fact that Time Warner, the company that owns Warner Brothers, of which DC Comics is a division, is a far more massive company than SpaceX at this point in time. Therefore, if fan-led campaigns can sway the decisions of a company as large and as lucrative as Time Warner, it’s very reasonable to assume they could work with SpaceX as well. All we need to do is go about it the right way.
Take Back the Sky has had a social media presence since 2012, but in the cases of Poison Ivy and Constantine, it was a specific hashtag that really got things rolling. That’s why I’m proposing we try a similar tactic to get SpaceX to take notice.
If you’d like to see SpaceX name their first Crew Dragon Serenity, then please spread the word to all the Browncoats and SpaceX supporters you know that we want them to use the hashtag #SpaceXSerenityCrew when tweeting to or about SpaceX or posting anything on Facebook or Instagram that is related to SpaceX or the Crew Dragon. If we can get the hashtag to “trend,” or at least to appear in significant enough numbers, there is practically no way that SpaceX could fail to take notice.
And of course, we’ll be encouraging folk to do the same at every opportunity, starting with our appearance at “Rocket Science Night” at the Carnegie Science Center of Pittsburgh next weekend in advance of SpaceX’s next Falcon 9 launch on January 17.
Let’s make sure the ‘verse gets the signal: the #SpaceXSerenityCrew wants a SpaceX Crew Dragon named Serenity!
Peace, love and rockets…