One day after the BuzzFeed story came out detailing a history of sexual assault allegations against group editor Eddie Berganza, DC Comics has issued a statement that he’s been suspended from his duties.
There has been a firestorm of attention to the issue since the article came out, with a number of people calling for DC Comics to do something more than issue a boilerplate statement like they did yesterday, as detailed HERE. Not long ago, though, outlets began reporting that the company took added measures. From the statement released earlier tonight:
DC Entertainment has immediately suspended Mr. Berganza and has removed him from performing his duties as Group Editor at DC Comics. There will be a prompt and yet careful review into next steps as it relates to the allegations against him, and the concerns our talent, employees and fans have shared. DC continues to be extremely committed to creating a safe and secure working environment for our employees and everyone involved in the creation of our comic books.
While I’m disappointed that it took this long to take action like this – and seeing that he’s only suspended will rile a lot of people up – at least it’s more of a step towards contrition than DC Comics has been willing to take over the last couple of decades. The follow-up will be most important, and all eyes will be on them to see how it’s handled going forward. If Berganza is allowed back at his old job, with the same responsibilities, it could cause a lot of problems not just for DC Comics, but for Warner Bros.
After an item was reported earlier that Wonder Woman star Gal Gadot said she would walk from the franchise unless Warner Bros. cut ties with accused abuser Bret Ratner, it’s clear that the company will be held to a higher standard than it has, lest it lose out on a lot of potential money going forward.
I also hope that, in the future, reports of these actions aren’t swept under the rug and the victims feel more empowered to step forward to make sure it’s clearly unacceptable. I’ve seen too many comic book creators tweeting today that they’ve known about Berganza’s actions and that it made them sick. That’s great. Why didn’t you do something about it before now? It’s been mentioned that writer Greg Rucka would only come back to Wonder Woman with Rebirth if the book was taken away from Berganza. And so it was. But it feels like more should have been done. Knowing this was happening and turning a blind eye does nothing to the victims, and I hope that anyone who sat on their thumbs and did nothing while talented female creators willingly left their dreams behind to hopefully avoid more mistreatment would, at the very least, offer an apology for their inaction.