DNA Podcast 028 – The Nature of Nerdliness


In this episode, Rob and Don sit down with guest Jack Ward to discuss what it means to be a nerd. The trio discuss exactly what nerds are, where they came from, and whether nerds as a concept is even still relevant in modern culture.  All this, and why The Nutty Professor was the great nerd hero of the 20th century are waiting for you in this episode of the Department of Nerdly Affairs.

Nerd Rage Scale

My friend Don C. recently posted this, and I thought I’d share it for consideration:

Given how often I’ve seen debate and discussion of redos in established comics and how little cohesion said debates often have, I think it’s time for some sort of standardized scale. This one refers SPECIFICALLY to the indignation that arises from changes to a book and seeks to rate them in terms of overall impact.

To that end, there’s gonna be some debate as to where a specific event registers on the scale. That’s fine and normal; the classifications are meant to facilitate exchange by providing a common measurement and language for the debate.

With that in mind, here we go:

1: Meh.: Any small change that doesn’t affect the character or story in any real way. Hardly noticeable unless pointed out. Only bothers the most stalwart purists.

EX: Spidey with gold eyes. Most characters after an artist change.

2: Why?!?: Noticeable change that doesn’t affect the character, story or themes in any real way. Will probably irk long term fans.

EX: Superman with no red panties. SpiderMan is a black dude.

3: Oh, Please No….!: Noticeable changes that affect the character and/or story, but not necessarily the underlying themes of the comic. Will bother long term fans, but will likely be accepted by newer ones.

EX: The Vision is really the original Human Torch. Wolverine is a ninja. Green Arrow is a ninja.

4: What Are They Thinking?!?!?: A severe retcon of a character that changes the character, story and/or underlying themes of the book in a way that’s almost irreconcilable to the older story. Will likely offend long term fans, and may also confuse new ones: especially those with a passing knowledge of the character.

EX: Identity Crisis. One More Day. Supergirl isn’t Superman’s cousin/isn’t Kryptonian/is a clone. Son of Satan isn’t. Patsy Walker is a spy. Patsy Walker is a superhero. Was Patsy Walker ever a ninja….?

5: YOU’RE RAPING MY CHILDHOOD!!!: Major change that directly contradicts the established underlying themes and ideas of a character, story or book. Offends most fans, confuses or puts off casual fans, makes haters giggle.

EX: Batman wets himself. Superman: porn star. The Watchmen, if Moore had been allowed to use the Charlton characters.

Please note: It’s tempting for a lot of folks to make EVERY change a #5, but I’d say despite the indignation fans might feel a lot of the most egregious events are still a #4.

Don C.