Last night, I saw a column at Newsarama that infuriated me. It's been taken offline, so I can't quote it, but the basic premise was that Wesley Crusher was playing Ted Kord, so Ted Kord was a Redshirt, because Wesley was a Redshirt, so now you know how lame that episode is going to be ha ha ha.
I tried to post a comment on the article, but it wouldn't let me. Here's what I wanted to say. It applies not only to this article, but to all the articles that start from the same premise. I'm putting it here because it's the most successful I've ever been in attempting to explain why I'm so fed up with this sort of thing:
Wow, this is so profoundly insulting and so profoundly wrong, I don't even know where to begin. You know that Wesley Crusher is a fictional character and I'm a professional actor, right? And do you even know what a Redshirt is? They don't survive more than one episode, and rarely have any dialog. So ... yeah, you're pretty much as wrong as you can be about that.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion, of course, but this whole thing is based on a premise that couldn't be more ignorant of my work, Star Trek history, and the work we've all done together on Batman: the Brave and the Bold. I am offended on behalf of all of us who worked on Fall of the Blue Beetle, but what I find so personally insulting is your belittling suggestion that any work that I do now - as a 36 year-old actor - should just be discarded and disparaged because of some badly-written episodes and a sometimes-badly-written character that I played two decades ago.
I am not Wesley Crusher, and when someone says, "Wesley Crusher is playing [Some Character], so, you know, go hate [That Character] without even watching him," it is both unfair and profoundly insulting to me. Imagine having something you've worked so hard to create being dismissed out of hand, because of completely unrelated work you did when you were a teenager - work that you had no control over - and you may understand why this is so upsetting to me. This has happened to me for years, and when I read it tonight - especially related to something like Batman, that I'm so proud of, that I know has a big crossover audience - It infuriated me. I've been subjected to this same tired line for 15 years, and I've really had enough of it. Live in the now, man!
I think we can all agree that Wesley wasn't always badly-written, but my whole point isn't to defend Wesley anyway - as I said, people are entitled to their own opinions - but to point out that Wesley is pretend and I am real. Wesley is forever a nerdy teenager, and I am an adult. If you didn't like Wesley, that's fine, but just give me a chance to disappoint you on my own merits, now, instead of deciding that my current work is not even worth watching, because of something you didn't like twenty years ago.
On Twitter, I said: Urge to kill ... rising. Someone needs to tell this guy that his "joke" is about 15 years out of date.
Apparently, some very stupid people thought I was suggesting that someone should hurt the guy who wrote the lame post. People: are you serious? Ever watch The Simpsons? Check out Treehouse of Horror V, particularly The Shinning, which gave us such memorable lines as "No TV and no beer make Homer something something ..." and "Urge to kill ... rising." A different segment also has one of my favorite moments in Simpsons history, where Homer keeps getting his hand stuck in the toaster, but that's not really relevant to this post.
Anyway, a lot of people spoke up on my behalf before they yanked the article, which was very kind, and not something I was expecting, but I guess should have been. Not everyone was polite and civil, though, so I also learned something about unintended consequences last night: choose your words carefully, because someone in the 30000 people who follow you on Twitter may be missing a d6 or two in their mental dice bag.
To be absolutely clear about the whole thing, I also said: Final thought before sleepy-time, where I am a viking: "urge to kill..." is a Simpsons reference, not an actual threat. Sheesh.
While I obviously can't control what people decide to do on their own, I wanted to publicly apologize to the guy who wrote the column, even though he insulted the hell out of me. I didn't intend to do anything more than speak up on my own behalf, but that's why they call it unintended consequences.
Now, let us all bask in television's warm, glowing, warming glow...