Supergirl's Comic-Con Controversy

Supergirl's Comic-Con Controversy

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Updated Jul 31, 2017 at 01:17PM EDT by Adam.

Added Jul 31, 2017 at 12:14PM EDT by Adam.

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Supergirl's Comic-Con Controversy refers to controversial interview in which the cast of CBS/CW television show Supergirl belittled a popular ship circulated among the show’s fan base.


Online, Supergirl gained a significant fandom within LGBT communities following the inclusion of an openly gay main character.[1] In the Supergirl fandom, a popular ship features the characters Supergirl and Lena Luthor, two characters who begin as enemies but become friends as the show progresses. The ship is known as "Supercorp" among fans. During an interview with MTV at San Diego Comic-Con on July 22nd, 2017, the cast of Supergirl gave an improvised musical performance recapping the events of Season 2. During the performance, actor Jeremy Jordan went out of his way to exclaim that Supergirl and Luthor were "only friends" (shown below). Jordan went on to say that he "just debunked Supercorp," and that he was sure he would receive backlash from fans. Melissa Benoist, who plays Supergirl, endorsed Jordan, jokingly saying it was "very brave."


The quip immediately angered fans of the ship, who felt disrespected by the joke.[1] This led to harsh social media backlash that day, which caused Jordan to give a defensive response on Instagram to fans in which he decried people spewing "so much hate"[2] (shown below, left). This did not satisfy fans as they found his apology to be insincere. Later that night, Jordan gave a second, more heartfelt response[3] (shown below, right).

Dear kids I've just got back from a GREAT day at Comic Con to some real s----- comments on my social media. In one interview, I made a silly joke about Kara and Lena being just friends. Now I apologize to anyone who took this the wrong way, but the fact that hundreds of ppl are calling my comment homophobic or putting down the lgtbq community, you are so off the mark. My track record for years has PROVEN my love and utter devotion to the lgtbq community. So please understand that my comment was simply one part of a silly recap of the show. We love ALL of our fans and encourage you to enjoy the characters and relationships in WHATEVER way u choose. My interpretation of our story is one of many, and you know what? It's just as valid. Sadly, there are a select few people I have seen in the comments section over the years spewing SO MUCH HATE, and a lot of it related to this very issue. Why? Guys, this world is too small and life too short to try and find hidden meanings in silly jokes. Yes, fight for what you believe with all your heart, but understand that we are all human. And we all deserve respect. That being said, I know now that I made some of you feel pretty s-----, and I'm really sorry for that. I think you can guess you've succeeded in making me feel the same. The difference, however, is mine was unintentional.So enough with the hate. Let us live our lives with love (and humor). We are all Super. - Xo JJ Saturday, July 22, 2017 8:26 PM Hey kids, Ok, part two. I don't know what else to say now other than to speak how I feel. All your comments are breaking my heart. I'm gonna try to be better. I'nm gonna make mistakes. I want to tell every one of you I'm sorry I hurt you. I would go back in time and redo my recap if I could. I would. I realize the issue of homophobia is bigger than any note l could ever write and many of you will never be satisfied. I didn't do anything in that interview to champion the cause. I will do more. All I can do is be better. It's all anyone can do. Again, I love you. I hear you. Please know we at Supergirl are on your side 1000%, whoever you are. We love you. And we'll try to keep proving it to you. Keep fighting and please please please put love and positivity into the world any chance u get. - xo JJ

Glee Defense

On July 23rd, 2017, Tumblr user @chloeniccole[4] emailed the publicist of Melissa Benoist expressing her disappointment in the interview. She posted the text of her email on Tumblr in a post that would gain over 10,000 notes. The same day, she reblogged her post updated with the publicist's response[5] (copied below; relevant quotes bolded for emphasis).

“Hi Chloe,
Thank you for your email.
As someone who was present in the room yesterday during the impromptu, musical recap of S2 during MTV’s live stream with the cast of SUPERGIRL, I can speak as a voice of reason and with objectivity as this situation requires. It’s entirely up to you to accept or deny the following…
I will not undermine your feelings or those of anyone who took issue with what you’ve perceived to be offensive. However, as an activist, it’s very important that you take a step back before inflicting public scorn. As a role model, it’s incumbent upon you to shape your understanding and engage in meaningful and respectful dialogue based on fact and motivation, and not just on whether your feelings were bruised.
You cannot fairly denounce Melissa or Jeremy or the cast for what they DIDN’T say. You cannot fairly characterize their verbiage or actions as “aggressive,” on the contrary. They were having fun in a riff session and hardly at the expense of the LGBT community. You cannot fairly assume or rationalize why David Harewood or Katie McGraff didn’t participate so to substantiate your argument. To enter into a sensitive debate, you have to be really careful about making baseless claims based solely on emotion.
Chloe: neither Melissa or Jeremy or any of the cast members marginalized any individual, regardless of orientation, by saying “Kara and Lena” are just friends. They didn’t say “can’t be friends” or “shouldn’t be friends” OR remotely imply that “two female characters would never see each other in a romantic light in their whole lives.” Then you take it one step further to accuse them of declaring “the incomprehensibility of a woman loving another woman” and “blatantly made a mockery of non-heterosexual women.” It’s wholly irresponsible to publicly admonish anyone, as you have on your social media platforms, and I mean anyone, for such a broad and unsubstantiated interpretation of the S2 recap.
That, Chloe, is actually the definition of defamation.

Allow me to also clarify for you that other than Melissa who MTV brass placed next to host Josh Horowitz, the cast seated themselves. As did all 13 casts of films and television shows that I guided through MTV. Unless David and Katie said they felt “isolated” in their positions in the back, I would recommend you walk back these statements as well.
There are gross injustices globally of the LGBT community. This was not one of those occasions. You may feel slighted because the creatives behind the SG series didn’t lead the Kara-Lena relationship in a direction that would have made you happy and proud in S2. You cannot therefore accuse them of being anti-gay. If Josh Horowitz instead engaged in a serious Q&A with the cast as to why they didn’t take that path and Melissa, Jeremy and the cast responded “Kara cannot be in a relationship with Lena because she’s SUPERGIRL” then I invite you to protest loudly and with far more aggression and passion than what you perceived from the cast yesterday.
You’ve indicted people who are genuine ambassadors of acceptance, compassion and equality and have proven as much, not on only Glee but on SUPERGIRL and in their own personal lives.
As you continue your mission to right the wrongs in society and especially those inflicted on the LGBT community, I highly recommend you postulate your arguments soundly.

Thank you Chloe for reaching out.

Later that day, chloeniccole posted a chat she had received from her friend in which the friend heard that the publicist actually was considering suing chloeniccole for defamation.[6] In the following days, the post inspired parody text posts in which users made fun of the publicist's defense that Benoist had proven her alliance to the LGBT community by being a cast member on Glee, a Fox musical television show that prominently features gay and other marginalized individuals and relationships (examples shown below). This would be dubbed the "Glee Defense Meme" by memedocumentation, [7] who posted an explainer on the meme on July 29th, 2017.

That woman you just called an homophobe? lenasmixedgf She was on glee. So think before you speak you can't be homophobic if you were on glee agenthaught the g in Igbt stands for glee cast member melissa benoist: has anyone seen my publicist? chris wood: hold on, i got this. melissa benoist is homophobic melissa's publicist crashes through the door* melissa's publicist: shE WAS ON GLEE!!!

Search Interest


External References

[1] Daily Dot – "‘Supergirl’ actor angers fans at San Diego Comic-Con"

[2] Instagram – Jeremy Jordan Response 1

[3] Instagram – Jeremy Jordan Response 2

[4] Tumblr – chloeniccole post

[5] Tumblr – Publicist's Response

[6] Tumblr – chloeniccole sued for defamation post

[7] Meme Documentation – Glee Defense meme

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