Joss Whedon felt ‘powerless’ to resist abusing his power to sleep with actresses

Joss Whedon’s fall from nerd-god to toxic POS happened over the course of the past six years or so. Before 2017, the bad stories about Whedon were mostly unverified rumors. Then his ex-wife wrote that he was a “fake feminist” and a compulsive cheater who used women and discarded them. Then Ray Fisher accused Whedon of racism and toxicity while they worked together on Justice League. Then Charisma Carpenter and Michelle Trachtenberg told their (haunting) stories about working with Whedon, and the floodgates were open. Even Gal Gadot had an issue with him: he tried to threaten her and her career when they worked together on Justice League. Now Joss Whedon feels it’s his time to tell his side of the story, to New York Magazine. This interview is so bad – he’s lived inside his own ass for so long, he doesn’t even understand how badly he comes across. You can read the full piece here. Here are some of the worst parts:

Affairs on ‘Buffy’: A high-level member of the Buffy production team recalled Whedon’s habit of “writing really nasty notes,” but that wasn’t what disturbed her most about working with him. Whedon was rumored to be having affairs with two young actresses on the show. One day, he and one of the actresses came into her office while she was working. She heard a noise behind her. They were rolling around on the floor, making out. “They would bang into my chair,” she said. “How can you concentrate? It was gross.” This happened more than once, she said.

On Michelle Trachtenberg. Michelle claimed there had been a rule forbidding Whedon from being alone in a room with her on set. Whedon told me he had no idea what she was talking about, and Trachtenberg didn’t want to elaborate. One person who worked closely with her on Buffy told me an informal rule did exist, though it was possible Whedon was not aware of it. During the seventh season, when Trachtenberg was 16, Whedon called her into his office for a closed-door meeting. The person does not know what happened, but recalled Trachtenberg was “shaken” afterward. An adult in Trachtenberg’s circle created the rule in response.

On Charisma Carpenter: “I was not mannerly,” he said. Still, he was bewildered by her account of their relationship. “Most of my experiences with Charisma were delightful and charming. She struggled sometimes with her lines, but nobody could hit a punch line harder than her.” I asked if he had called her fat when she was pregnant. “I did not call her fat,” he quickly replied. “Of course I didn’t.”

Whedon on his ‘Buffy’ affairs: “I feel f–king terrible about them,” he said. When I pressed him on why, he noted “it messes up the power dynamic,” but he didn’t expand on that thought. Instead, he quickly added that he had felt he “had” to sleep with them, that he was “powerless” to resist. I laughed. “I’m not actually joking,” he said. He had been surrounded by beautiful young women — the sort of women who had ignored him when he was younger — and he feared if he didn’t have sex with them, he would “always regret it.” Looking back, he feels shame and “horror,” he said.

On Gal Gadot: Gadot didn’t care for Whedon’s style either. Last year, she told reporters Whedon “threatened” her and said he would make her “career miserable.” Whedon told me he did no such thing: “I don’t threaten people. Who does that?” He concluded she had misunderstood him. “English is not her first language, and I tend to be annoyingly flowery in my speech.” He recalled arguing over a scene she wanted to cut. He told her jokingly that if she wanted to get rid of it, she would have to tie him to a railroad track and do it over his dead body. “Then I was told that I had said something about her dead body and tying her to the railroad track,” he said. (Gadot did not agree with Whedon’s version of events. “I understood perfectly,” she told New York in an email.)

On Ray Fisher: Whedon says he cut down Cyborg’s role for two reasons. The story line “logically made no sense,” and he felt the acting was bad. According to a source familiar with the project, Whedon wasn’t alone in feeling that way; at test screenings, viewers deemed Cyborg “the worst of all the characters in the film.” Despite that, Whedon insists he spent hours discussing the changes with Fisher and that their conversations were friendly and respectful. None of the claims Fisher made in the media were “either true or merited discussing,” Whedon told me. He could think of only one way to explain Fisher’s motives. “We’re talking about a malevolent force,” he said. “We’re talking about a bad actor in both senses.”

[From Vulture]

He also said words about his ex-wife, and he denied specific incidents and stories of him berating writers, acting sleazy towards young actresses and digging his fingers into a costume designer’s arm because she disagreed with him. The NY Magazine fact-checks him throughout the piece, noting that many of the general claims – he makes women cry, he gets off humiliating women, he likes to play power games with sexual partners, he threatens actresses’ careers – have multiple people verifying them. It’s bonkers that his denials are basically: Ray Fisher is a bad actor and he sucks; Gal Gadot’s English is bad; I didn’t know I wasn’t allowed to be alone with a 16-year-old actress because I did something to terrify her; I had to cheat on my wife with young women because I was bullied as a kid. This dude is a f–king psycho.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, cover courtesy of New York.

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94 Responses to “Joss Whedon felt ‘powerless’ to resist abusing his power to sleep with actresses”

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  1. MerlinsMom1018 says:

    Excuse me???? What an insufferable ass.
    Weinstein him…

    • Me says:

      F-cling psycho is right—if he hadn’t had success as a writer etc., he’d probably be in jail right now.

    • Lexilla says:

      At least it sounds like NY Mag didn’t let the BS slide, starting with the word “struggle” on the cover.

  2. BusyLizzy says:

    He is utter trash. Human garbage.

    I have a hard reconciling my love for some of the content he created (Buffy was my favorite tv show when I was a teenager) and the disgust I have for this turd man.

    • Indica says:

      I haven’t been able to watch Buffy since… I adored that show.

      • steph says:

        Even without the behind the scenes knowledge of Whedon’s abuse, the show has multiple disturbing instances. The male characters are always awful to Buffy, yet she goes back to them. The worst example was the Buffy-Spike relationship. Spike almost r*ped Buffy ffs!
        Also, I remember reading that the character Xander was a representation of Whedon and I thought that explains a lot. Xander was always sexually harassing Buffy in the early seasons.
        I can’t bring myself to watch it anymore even though I love the female characters.

  3. OSTONE says:

    This dude is an incel who cannot take responsibility for any of his misdeeds. He can stay canceled forever.

  4. Eurydice says:

    Why is he rearing his head now? Is he trying to sell a project? I think the only possible way he could maybe rehabilitate/explain himself is to say, “Yes, I was a horrible, horrible creep. I’ve been in therapy for the last 6 years and I hope I’ve gotten better.”

    • Mama says:

      He went to rehab so he is all cured from having a feminist mother now… and wants to clear his “good” name from the things said about him. Gal Gadot can’t understand English? What? Language barrier? He is straight up trash.

      • Eurydice says:

        He’s just stupid. English is mandatory in Israeli schools and you have to pass a proficiency test to graduate.

      • Mia4s says:

        Well in fairness if I were Gal and I had to deal with this a**hole? I’d probably pretend I couldn’t speak or understand English.

        There’s no way he has a publicist. I just…who does this?!?

  5. KBeth says:

    He’s disgusting.

  6. Rapunzel says:

    He clearly has nobody advising him. Or is ignoring their advice. This guy has been in Hollywood his whole life (his Dad wrote screenplays for big shows). It’s unbelievable he could give such a dumpster fire interview.

    Gal’s English isn’t good? Puh-leze.
    Ray’s a bad actor? Um…the Synder Cut of Justice League proves that wrong. It’s much better mostly because it’s centered on his character.

    • Deering24 says:

      Rapunzel—given how so, so many “Hollywood dynasty” heirs turn out, Whedon’s entitlement and sociopathic lack of sense is no surprise whatsoever. Such folks never face consequences or reality, so they never see how objectively awful they are. They also figure they can brazen things out with whatever tricks keep them at the top. In Whedon’s case, his “eloquence” deftly knotted the noose round his neck here.

  7. Ctgirl says:

    Wow. So much deflection must mean that he thinks that he’s made of Teflon.

  8. CherHorowitz says:

    This is kinda like the written version of prince andrews newsnight interview. Did he think he was doing himself any favours with this interview?!

    • Bunny says:

      Yes, he thinks he’s helping himself. Just like Prince Andrew, Louis CK, Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, etc.

      They all think they’re entitled to harm others for their own pleasure. They don’t see others as deserving safety or autonomy.

      They all think they’re smarter than everyone else, to the point that they don’t even care if they tell cohesive lies. They truly think that you’ll believe them because they’re just that special.

      • Dutch says:

        Agreed. He’s likely explained his way around his misdeeds behind the scenes his whole career and he just can’t come to grips that he’s not speaking to just the good ol boys network any more.

      • E.B. Mann says:

        He’s likely never had to explain away anything his whole career. His actions have only recently been reclassified as misdeeds (thank you, MeToo). The reason these douchebags sound so out of touch is because they ARE out of touch. When you’re given carte blanche for decades because you make $ (or are actual royalty), it must be difficult to comprehend that your godlike status has been revoked.

  9. milliemollie says:

    You can really tell that he was mad at Charisma Carpenter for getting pregnant by the storyline he gave her in Angel season 4.

    And of course Gal Gadot is the dumb foreigner who does not understand the American’s genius vocabulary…

    And of course Ray Fisher is a bad actor, and it’s not the white genius’ racist motivation.

    He’s really a giant sexist and racist asshole.

  10. Izzy says:

    He should have stayed quiet.

  11. Miranda says:

    Oh, well if you just absolutely HAD to, it’s fine then! /s

    His head is so far up his own ass that he could give himself a colonoscopy without a camera.

  12. Thatsnotokay says:

    We know who the actresses were he was favoring/f*cking—he created division on set with his favoritism and gave them better storylines as rewards. It was toxic and made some actresses dislike the others who were “winning” via this access, when in reality, all the ire should have been pointed his way. Not sure those relationships can ever be repaired. The man is the worst kind of “liberal”—the kind who uses progressive ideas to exert self-serving, demoralizing, gaslighting power over others.

    • Lisette says:

      Who were the affairs with?

      • Harper says:

        Nothing has ever been confirmed, so this would just be pure speculation based on storylines, which is gross and unfair to the actresses involved…but the temptation to speculate is soooo strong.

      • Gigi says:

        I don’t know about identifying the other women, though it’s easy to speculate if you were a hardcore Buffyverse fan AND participated in the online fandom. But I do know that Alyson Hannigan, Alexis Denisof, and Amy Acker are/were part of his inner circle. Furthermore, I would read about his favoritism creating so much toxicity on set– James Marsters didn’t even have a chair to sit on between takes until SMG got one for him. Now that I know that Joss hemmed him up out of jealousy of Spike’s popularity, the blatant refusal of a chair makes sense.

  13. Songs (or it didn't happen) says:

    Joss Whedon was such a force of good for women around my age at one time. Buffy was a hugely influential show that featured not just one, but an embarrassment of strong female characters who were three dimensional and well written. He was beloved. So it might sound pissy but we deserved better from him. His fans, and everyone that worked with him. We all deserved better. What a f-ing let down.

    • BaronSamedi says:

      Yeah, that’s my feeling too. Like, Buffy was groundbreaking in so many ways and to have it all come from the brain of a sexually frustrated nerd who takes his mommy issues out on the world is just SUCH a let-down.

      I do feel like there is a more nuanced take on this than the (deserved) trashing he is getting in the comments here but I feel too exhausted by his bs to go look for it.

      Like, he obviously did some therapy and unearthed his mommy issues but also basically learned zero accountability? I kind of even ‘get’ what he is saying about having to sleep with the actresses – he was like a kid in a candy store! But that he doesn’t realize how embarassing that actually sounds coming from a grown man. Then again it’s absolutely in line with male behaviour the world over.

      The one thing I really wish they had gotten deeper into the Ray Fisher thing. Because I kind of agree on the bad actor thing? Like, he *was* the weakest link in that cast. I fully believe that he also experienced bad treatment by Warner in general and was disappointed in losing his champion in Zack Snyder – I would love to see what that investigation unearthed.

    • Eurydice says:

      I know, I was a huge fan and participated in all the fan boards (well, not so much Dollhouse). Everybody deserved better – he deserves to stay in oblivion.

      • Jess says:

        Eurydice, me too! And speaking of Dollhouse – it felt very pervy to watch Dollhouse at the time even though I did because I loved a lot of the actors in it (especially Eliza Dushku) and it was part of the Whedonverse. I justified watching it by saying that Joss Whedon did it so it couldn’t just be about sexual exploitation. In hindsight, it’s obviously the creepiest of all of his shows and shame on me for using his reputation to dismiss my own instincts and watch it anyway.

  14. AA says:

    Ah the classic language gaslight! English is not your native language so you, an uncouth foreigner, must have misunderstood what I, an intellectual of florid speech, said while I was threatening / harrassing / abusing you.

    • detritus says:

      As an accomplished writer one would assume Joss could communicate clearly. Even if there were language barriers (which is ridiculous) it’s up to him as the superior to clear them up.

  15. K says:

    Wow how stupid. He sounds like every other man in Hollywood.

  16. Jess says:

    Barf. I used to love him so much. I was a huge Buffy fan and I’d hear about the parties w the cast and crew at his place and thought he was amazing. I always wondered why SMG didn’t seem to be a big fan of his but now I get it – she saw the real him. And the real him is a psychopath – how can he be so awful while being so clueless about how awful he is? If people are willing to do the work on themselves, apologize, and really change, I’m willing to give most people a second chance. But he just seems to be getting worse so I hope he stays canceled forever.

  17. Tee says:

    I read this yesterday and wanted to vomit. He is the poster boy for privilege and entitlement. Not only has he been up his own ass, too many others took up residence there and validated him. The fact that he could say this sh-t unironically is wild.

    And did he forget that he’s saying this BS about Ray Fisher AFTER the Snyder Cut was released, and Fisher was almost unanimously haled as the heart of the movie?? PLEASE. Get f—ed.

  18. Brittney+L+B says:

    An adult stepped in and enforced that boundary for Michelle… thank god this
    actually happens sometimes.

    Every child actor deserves that kind of protection. Few get it. If I somehow had a child in entertainment, “helicopter mom” would be an understatement.

  19. Jan says:

    Have you guys notice that Meghan is not using Markle anymore?

  20. BothSidesNow says:

    What an absolutely awful disgusting man. He was denied the pretty girls in high school so he thinks that should excuse his predatory behaviour towards minors? And Ray Fishers character of Cyborg was scapegoat because he didn’t fit the story line and he is a bad actor? Gal Gadot is foreign so he didn’t understand statement with this response from a Weinstein-esq predator, “ and I tend to be annoyingly flowery in my speech.” That’s your reply? My gawd Weedon, you are a sexual predator, as well as a racist and a misogynistic man.

    I hope that the women, girls actually, bring forth their stories as this guy needs to be held accountable for his despicable actions. He is not only a rapist, but also a bully and a racist.

    • kerfuffles says:

      He is absolutely loathsome, I agree, but where are you getting that he is a rapist? He abused power dynamics on his shows, for sure, by having affairs with young actresses on his shows. But I’ve never heard an allegation that he actually *raped* someone, even in the statutory sense.

  21. OzJennifer says:

    Once upon a time I was a full-on committed Whedon fangirl. I remember when news of Kai Cole’s article hit the Whedonesque site – it was devastating. It sounds stupid now, but I was heartbroken and felt personally betrayed by this man that I had never met but admired so much. Everything that has come out about him since… I have no words other than to say: Ugh – he just sickens me now.

    • Borris says:

      I feel you 100%. My username on all platforms where I have participated in fandom culture for over twenty years has his name in it. I worshipped the man as a teenager/young adult. I am so disheartened by this.

  22. AppleCart says:

    He also remarried in Feb 2021 it’s sad no matter how horrible a man. There is some woman more than happy to marry them. The upside of this story is he is pretty miserable being shunned from Hollywood just sitting in his house all day. Reminds me of the end of Dangerous Liaisons with Glenn Close character who lived to mess with people was exposed and shunned from society. This article did him no favors and even doubles down thinking he was a good guy in the end as a showrunner.

    • Mtec says:

      Ewww! Who would marry him now!? 🤮

      Edit: oh god and she’s 35yrs younger. Ofc. Poor girl she’s in for an awful time.

      • Songs (or it didn't happen) says:

        She’s 47. There’s been a few weird and very inaccurate reports about her age. Maybe because there are a few people loosely connected with Hollywood that have the same name.

  23. Merricat says:

    That he continues to try to justify what he can’t outright deny is astonishing. What an ego. It is no longer a surprise that he’s awful.

  24. LaUnicaAngelina says:

    I’m so glad you covered this because I tried to start it a couple of times yesterday and couldn’t. He’s a mess! Ever since all the information about him started coming out, it’s been hard to watch Buffy the same way. There are some storyline/character directions (beyond the horrible Cordelia storyline when she became pregnant) that give insight into Joss.

    One person on Buffy and one person on Angel stand out in my mind that he may have had affairs with but I’m curious about who else?

    • milliemollie says:

      I loved Buffy during the time it orginally aired and never saw any faults with it, but I stumbled across a blog (it seems to be deleted by now) years ago that pointed out all the sexist and racist things on the show that completely changed my view about the show and Whedon.

      • oolongteadrinker says:

        I loved the show at the time, but Whedon didn’t even need to be exposed as a monster to ruin his work for me. Time did that on his own. Looking back without the rose-colored glasses, his writing was not all that clever. He just played loose with using the words “Thing” and “Thingy” in sentenses lot in a way we were WAY too tickled by in the 90s and early 2000s. Sadly that’s become a permanent part of our culture now, so gee thanks Whedon

      • milliemollie says:

        Yes,Whedon’s writing is not as good as he thinks it is. His projects are overrated. Looking back, especially Buffy isn’t as great and ground-breaking as people claim(ed).

    • reef says:

      Who are the actresses? It can’t be Aly or Amy. Aly/Alexis are godparents to his kid and I don’t see his ex-wife being cool with that and Amy was either married or in a LTR with her now husband.

    • detritus says:

      I have suspicions too, but as much as I want to know saying names doesn’t help any women who don’t want to come forward.

      The sad part is that he most likely victimized many of the young women around him to varying degrees. This wouldn’t have been a one off, and I cannot imagine how many women he left feeling worse. Being victimized through a statutory or unethical power dynamic creates so much self doubt and confusion for most targets.

  25. girl_ninja says:

    He’s a terrible, terrible person who has done so much damage to so many. There will probably be more people who will come out and share their experiences.

  26. Otaku fairy says:

    There are a lot of incels out there who don’t take accountability for their misdeeds, which is another reason why it’s so unhelpful when people make excuses and ask young women and girls to be responsible for it with rants about how “girls and women are confusing our Nigels.” People intentionally spreading that message publicly should not be rewarded and encouraged, and many will not stop with just a temporary slap on the wrist.

    It’s good that Michelle had an adult looking out for her. Initially when Whedon’s wife complained about him, there was concern about her needing to protect his image for their grown and nearly grown children. But it looks like he should have been making better choices for the sake of the kids long before that. This was going to come out whether his wife shared her experience or not.

  27. Kristin says:

    I’m sorry, did I just have a stroke or did I just actually read that he said Gal Gadot doesn’t speak English well enough to understand what he really said? What the holy fuck??!!

  28. Jennifer says:

    Nobody will ever want to marry me, but Joss can get remarried after this?! Ewwww.
    I am surprised that we’ve never heard who he slept with on shows after all these years. God knows some people are more likely than others with him.
    This all just ruins being a fan of his work. You can’t talk about it or recommend it now.

  29. salmonpuff says:

    In addition to all the appalling things listed here, there was another brief story in the article that creeped me the f out about him luring a four-year-old family friend to a pond on his parents property when he was five. The child went missing and his body was later found in the pond. Whedon said he wandered off and left the child alone and felt guilty about it later. I’m NOT accusing him of anything, but the whole anecdote definitely read like a sociopath origin story.

    • Deering24 says:

      salmonpuff—seriously. That really sounded off. Time for some cold-case bloggers to start digging…

    • Lou says:

      I don’t think we can make assumptions about his motives at the age of five. Clearly both kids had neglectful parents though. Letting the kids play unsupervised by a pond? Big yikes.

  30. Angela says:

    In the letter to his ex-wife put out, he said the exact same thing to her about being unable to turn down women on the set of Buffy. The way he worded it and the way his wife put it in the letter or almost the same. He has not changed. I hope we never have to see his name again

    • Chickinvic says:

      Turn them down? lolol As if any woman was propositioning him. I’m pretty sure he was the aggressor in every instance.

  31. Chantal says:

    He’s disgusting! I became a fan after Firefly, and loved Buffy and Angel. How disappointing that he’s such an utter piece of garbage. I watched both Justice League movies. His was so boring I almost didn’t want to watch Zach Snyder’s movie. I’m glad I did because despite being 4 hrs long, Snyder’s was 1000% better and Ray Fisher was excellent in it. Its upsetting and very unfair that Fisher’s career seems to have been derailed because he dared to speak up. This interview makes him sound worse and raises more concerning questions. I know he’s a part of a Hollywood dynasty but how long will people continue to protect him?

  32. Katiekate says:

    He’s awful and that whole interview is masterful in letting Whedon use his own “genius” words to hoist him with his own petard.

    One thing I found fascinating in the interview is a thing lacking in it: he doesn’t mention his children at all. Absent mommy and daddy, mean older brothers, younger half-brother gets a mention along with, of course, his ex-wife but not a single “as a father of a daughter” thrown in, no mention of being a better parent than his parents were. I guess children aren’t important even as potential props if your whole essence is all narcissistic woe is me bulls*it.

  33. Case says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone come across so badly in an interview. Calling Ray Fisher a “malevolent force” and saying Gal Gadot doesn’t speak English well enough to understand him? Wtf???

    He is out of is damn mind if he thinks what he’s saying makes him seem less guilty in any way. What an a-hole and horrible, horrible man.

  34. Ai says:

    Eww. Another man that is completely in denial of their own responsibilities and accountability; he just played the victim card and deflect to blame the women in his life. There is like zero respect of women through his words and action. I hope this ends his career.

  35. Nuks says:

    Well this was not a successful step in his redemption campaign. Only a mea culpa would have satisfied the public, but I guess he couldn’t confess to everything without opening bad legal doors.

    Lassiter got reinstated in the industry but he’ll probably never be the same golden boy persona again. Joss doesn’t have the option because he was so in front and connected to the fan base. I want to say these too-big-to-fail brand talents can be tossed out, but I bet his image rehab team is trying to land him in the graces of angry white male nerddom. Sad to say I don’t think we’re going to get rid of him.

  36. Robert Phillips says:

    I know every one is going to jump on me for this. But He is a creative type. He lives mostly in his head creating his stories. He would be better strictly as a writer. So when actors and other come in and say they can’t do something as he sees it in his head he doesn’t know how to deal with it. Yes he is an ass. And doesn’t know how to deal with other people. But probably 80% of all bosses in the country act just the same. I’m not saying don’t be mad at him I’m just saying I understand how he reacts. I paint and have cut up and thrown many paintings across the room because they wouldn’t come out how I envisioned it in my head. He sounds a lot like the directors and producers from the 20’s. The were also ass’ but they produced great movies.

    • MrsBanjo says:

      You’re working awfully hard to defend Whedon’s bad behaviour. Since you say you understand him, does that also include grabbing a woman’s arm so hard you leave nail marks, or preying upon a 16 year-old to the point that someone above you had to make a rule that you weren’t allowed to be in a room alone with her?

      There are millions of “creatives” in this world who don’t display the toxicity that you’re excusing. Good job showing us what you’re like, though.

    • “But probably 80% of all bosses in the country act just the same.”

      I doubt that’s true–but even if it was, that wouldn’t make it right. Bigots often like to claim that they’re just saying what everybody else is thinking. Convicted rapists believe other men rape too, they (the convicts) are just the ones that get caught. “Everyone else does it/everyone else is just as bad” is not only often untrue, it’s a rationalization for shitty behaviour.

      “I paint and have cut up and thrown many paintings across the room because they wouldn’t come out how I envisioned it in my head.”

      But did you throw them at others, while screaming at them and/or making them cry? Repeatedly? Without any sincere apology or attempt to do better?

    • Eurydice says:

      Being an ass isn’t a necessity for creativity and it’s not a necessity for doing business. That’s what Hollywood is – entertainment business. And that means interacting and working with other people. It’s one thing to throw your paintings across the room because you’re frustrated, that can happen to any of us – but do you throw them at other people? Does your frustration make you cheat on your loved ones, do you threaten people with losing their jobs, does it turn you into a sexual predator? In any case, from his own words, Whedon is not explaining his behavior as that of a “creative type,” he’s saying he’d been brooding about all the beautiful girls who wouldn’t go out with him when he didn’t have power – that’s creepy stalker behavior, not creative frustration.

    • salmonpuff says:

      I’m a “creative type” working as a creative and am often frustrated when what I’m envisioning in my head doesn’t translate into creative output the way I intended. That is normal and a healthy part of creativity. What I don’t do is throw fits or work out my childhood traumas on those around me. It is perfectly possible to be kind and respectful and to treat other people with the dignity and autonomy they deserve while also striving for creative heights.

      It is a dangerous and destructive myth that “creative types” must be a-social jerks because they live on a higher plane of creativity and Art. That myth has been used to excuse a whole lot of atrocious behavior, primarily by men. Women are almost never afforded the kind of leeway that would let them get away with assaulting a coworker, sexually misbehaving in the workplace, and punishing subordinates for the “crime” of flubbing dialogue while pregnant.

    • Chickinvic says:

      I’ve had a lot of bosses over the course of my career, and none have been sexual with me, nor threatened me like that. I would not agree with your “probably 80%” figure.

    • Deering24 says:

      Fuck that “great artist” noise. Sexism/racism invariably stunts creative talent and makes artists less than they could be. If good art is about reflecting life, how can someone who lacks empathy or understanding see past their flaws to be a truly effective artist—or grow into one? Hitchcock never got past his hang ups about women, and it’s arguably one of the many reasons his later movies declined so badly in quality—and female stars shied off working with him. This “genius justifies anything” myth always ignores the fact that too many artists get silenced or destroyed by folks like Whedon. Where’s the acclaim and justice for the masterpieces those creators never get to do?

  37. TheOriginalMia says:

    This man is seriously disturbed. And his description/defense of his proclivities made me ill. No wonder he identified so strongly with Xander. No wonder I despised the character so much. Incel thinking just because he’s a “good guy” women should want him and if they don’t, they are to be destroyed. Creep.

  38. Jezzebeelzebub says:

    Joss whedon is a sack of assholes. Full stop. He also made some really cool TV and some cool movies. I wish he was a decent person so that nobody has to feel conflicted about liking his products, but he’s not. But he didn’t make all those cool shows and movies by himself- a lot of other people worked hard on his shit, too. So personally, I’ll watch Firefly, Buffy, Angel, and whatever else not as a show of support for Whedon (bc fuck that guy) but because everyone else who acted and did all the behind-the-scenes shit did a really great job and they deserve to have their efforts appreciated. That’s just how I feel about it.

    • Eurydice says:

      That’s a great attitude and so true about all the other people who brought those stories to life.

  39. ItReallyIsYouNotMe says:

    *Spoiler alert for The Morning Show*.

    During the first part of this interview, I thought he came off like Steve Carell‘s character in being someone who was genuinely being introspective about the things he did and trying to understand himself. TMS and this interview have me grappling with the question of whether is there anything that someone like Joss Whedon or Steve Carell’s character could say or do to truly be forgiven for gaslighting, abuse and sexual assault. But after reading the second half of the piece, I’m convinced that Joss Whedon is a straight-up sociopath. He is centering his entire “healing“ on his own childhood and SHOCKER his problems stem from the idea that his mommy was too strong and didn’t nurture him enough. He hasn’t done any of the work to understand how awful he was to the women he dated, to the women he worked with, and to black actors. He basically denied anything that made him look bad-aka Gal Gaston doesn’t understand English enough to understand my Shakespearean-influenced monologues. He is an arrogant intellectual who believes everyone is beneath him. Really he’s just another mediocre middle-aged white man with mommy’s clear that his power went to his head and he was a jerk to everyone. While you can be an equal opportunity jerk, it’s also clear that he targeted more abuse on those he saw as weak and vulnerable a.k.a. women and minorities. So yeah even IF there is space for healing and forgiveness for these behaviors, Joss Whedon is not a candidate and he should continue to be canceled until the end of time.

  40. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I’m guessing it’s too much to ask this criminal never work again. Anywhere.

  41. AppleCart says:

    I hope people remember Ray Fisher took a giant hit to his career standing up to Joss Whedon and WB. And in retaliation for whistle blowing they canceled his Cyborg movie that was being planned. He did the right thing so others can have better treatment on set. He’s a hero and I hope WB gets their heads out of their butts and make the movie.

  42. Emma says:

    Sorry I just don’t have the time to consider the “nuances” of sexual and racial harassment in the workplace. I think it’s pretty clear from multiple, multiple sources who this guy is and I don’t need to expend more energy on it and will now get back to trying to lead a healthy and productive and happy life after I actually personally was the survivor of a toxic workplace that led to me losing a job I loved. There is no NUANCE. He’s a bully. We got it.

  43. detritus says:

    If he was powerless to not do it then it would have happened with women on the street. With women writers, directors, producers, fiancers, casting directors, moms in his kids play group.

    But it didn’t. Not with women his own age, not with women who could say no.

    He wasn’t powerless. He knew exactly what he was doing and the reason it worked was because he was in control.

    This isn’t accidentally letting out a fart. This is a cascade of actions that starts with his gross ass intent and moral decrepitude.

    • Chickinvic says:

      I love his “powerless to resist them” – as if they were the ones approaching him for sex lol. Who would come on to that maggot? He isn’t exactly a babe magnet…

  44. Vesper Nite says:

    Just stick him on the same ice flow as Louis C.K., these dudes don’t learn and are dangers to society. I’m done.

  45. Deering24 says:

    Oh, for the love of Mike. I. Am. So. Fucking. Tired. of these scumbags blaming their “too-strong” mommies for their misogyny. Or any mommies. Back when submissive women were regarded as the feminine ideal, guys like this swore their “smothering” moms screwed them up. Therapy is only giving this guy people to blame. He is never going to take responsibilty for being entitled and evil.

  46. Lonnietinks says:

    He’s a classic narcissistic. He sees himself as the hero or victim in all situations, he is always the main character in his mind, and he views other people as resources, so he lacks empathy for them.

  47. Jenn says:

    The interview opens with his quote about going to therapy because he “had nothing else going on,” then he goes right on to justify his abhorrent behavior as a result of this thing he just learned about, “complex PTSD.” (I have an ACE score of 9; I wanted to scream.) He is a narcissist who went to therapy to learn new words so he could use them as a shield against accountability, and I hope he falls off the face of the Earth.

  48. Rea says:

    I hate how he is involved in the show The Nevers. It’s such a good show. I hope his ego & draconian style for directing don’t mess up the show like he did in Angel by killing off Cordelia.

  49. JRenee says:

    Human trash..

  50. Bdog says:

    “Wedone” with you. Or “Hedone”. 🙂