Gunns and Roses

james_gunn_marvel_studios_rehireI try to keep this column a “politics-free zone”, mainly because there’s so many awful things out in the world lately that I like to think of this column as an escape. But with the recent firing of James Gunn from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3, I feel like I need to put my two cents in. Were Gunn’s tweets, which, while written ten years ago, offensive and unfunny? Absolutely. But his firing for his past actions sets a dangerous precedent for not only Hollywood, but our modern culture as well.

Make no mistake, I’m not defending James Gunn’s previous tweets. He’s owned up to the fact that he wrote them and has apologized numerous times. And that’s the thing, he’s already apologized for them. They were brought up when he was first hired for the original Guardians, and guess what? They were brought up before Guardians Vol 2 as well, and again, he apologized. Regardless of who up the Disney ladder knew about these tweets, the fact that there was seemingly little to no investigation into the fact that he had previously apologized is pretty sad, in my opinion. While I don’t know James Gunn personally, by all accounts he seems like a really genuine person who has learned a lot in the ten years since those poorly worded “jokes” were written. If we condemn someone who has not only owned up to their mistakes, but also changed from them into a better person, then what is the point in changing or learning from past deeds?

Think about yourself ten years ago. Regardless of how old you are now, you were younger, and that means that you didn’t have the life experience that you have now. With experience comes learning, and learning means growth. I myself know that I’ve grown in many ways from when I was ten years younger, and I shudder to think of some of the stupid crap I may have said or done when I was in my early twenties.

I think the best way I can convey my thoughts on this matter is this: ten years ago, I was in a college improv comedy troupe. The great thing about improv is that you have to think on your feet. The bad thing about improv is also that you have to think on your feet. I’m positive I made some jokes that were in poor taste (although NOTHING like what Gunn tweeted), and if someone brought them up to me now I would feel uncomfortable or even embarrassed by them. Should I be held accountable for my actions? Absolutely. But should there also be context for the person I am today, and the differences in that than the person I was? Yes, because I’ve experienced more life events, people, and situations in the ten years that I’ve been in college. As opposed to someone like Roseanne Barr, who continued to post hateful and racist tweets and opinions well after she was told to stop, Gunn has shown that his current day self has grown up from he one that wrote those tweets ten years ago.

In all honesty, the entire situation revolving around James Gunn sucks. The fact that he was fired sucks. The fact that Disney didn’t do enough research into his tweets, and who was calling for him to be fired, sucks. The fact that Gunn wrote those tweets in the first place, and didn’t delete them after the first time he was called out for them, sucks. Do I hope Gunn is reinstated? Absolutely. Do I think it’ll actually happen? No way. The best case scenario is that this opens the door for a new creative mind to enter the Guardians universe, and get to add a new perspective to it.

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Posted on August 13, 2018, in Comic Books, Movie and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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