After a couple of days of dissembling, defensiveness and saying he did nothing wrong, artist Ardian Syaf has posted an apology/farewell note on his FB page, which is now visible again. As you may recall Syaf surreptitiously put messages referring to an anti-Semitic, anti-Christian organization in the are of X-Men Gold #1. On his FB page he wrote::

Hello, Worlds…
My career is over now.
It’s the consequence what I did, and I take it.
Please no more mockery, debat, no more hate. I hope all in peace.
In this last chance, I want to tell you the true meaning of the numbers, 212 and QS 5:51.
It is number of JUSTICE. It is number of LOVE. My love to Holy Qur’an…my love to the last prophet, the Messenger…my love to ALLAH, The One God.
My apologize for all the noise. Good bye, May God bless you all. I love all of you.
-Ardian Syaf-

While there’s been no official word on Syaf’s “discipline” from Marvel…sneaking things into the background is usually a fast lane to getting removed from a position. 

There are more than a thousand replies to Syaf’s post, most written in Indonesian. If any bilingual Beat readers want to offer insights, you know where to reach me, or hit the comments below.


  1. What can we learn from Ardian Syaf’s mistake putting in anti-Christian and anti-Semitic messages in his X-Men comic art? A lot, really:

    1) Getting there is only part of the battle. Once you get to where you want to be, treat it the same as you did on your way up.
    2) As Aretha Franklin sang in “The Blues Brothers”: Think! Make sure that you are willing to answer for what you put in EVERYTHING to you. In the zombie novel I am writing now, a child is going to die in a pretty horrify way, and I didn’t just DO it, I thought about how it fit into the story, WHY I am doing it, and what is the best way to write it. Is that “inside joke” worth it if the meaning gets out?
    People walking around everyday, playing games, taking scores
    Trying to make other people lose their minds.
    Well be careful, you’re gonna lose yours.

    3) Don’t lie about what you’ve done. Mr. Syaf said that he didn’t do it, then that it didn’t mean what it meant. In doing so, he made it so his employer can’t trust him. If you have a franchise you are trying to rebuild, you want people on your team you can trust.
    4) Do NOT cost your employer more money than they can make off of you. A hard, cold fact fo life in the capitalist world is that your employer needs to make money off of you. If you cost more than you possibly bring in, you’ll be gone in a gnat’s heartbeat.
    5) THINK!
    6) Are your political beliefs worth losing your job over? Social Media, interviews and the like are powerful promotional tools, but putting out controversial statements will alienate parts of your audience. Just ask the Dixie Chicks, Bill Maher, the ghost of Bill Hicks, various comics creators and others who put their politics front and center and saw audiences turn on them. I do not believe in the “shut up and sing” crap, but I DO believe that if you are going to be controversial, pick the time, place, audience and venue.

  2. I in no way support what Adrian Syaf did but does disparaging people’s religion or calling people names aim to fix any part of what is wrong here? I know it’s ultimately a bigger problem than simply what Syaf expressed here in his artwork, but we get nowhere closer to understanding differences of opinions and trying to work to change those that may be harmful and even bigoted towards others through reactions like “Religion is a mental disease” and “religious freak.”

    Let me follow this up with the fact that I absolutely think what Syaf did was inappropriate and he should be reprimanded and have consequences from his actions, but some of the reaction I’ve seen not only from other fans but also professionals is disheartening and in many cases as bad (or at least close to as bad) as what Syaf did himself.

  3. Had Syaf settled for putting ‘212’ on a New York billboard, no-one would ever have suspected. He might even have gotten away with the juxtaposition of ‘Jewelry’ next to Kitty Pryde’s head. But extremists will always overreach — it’s a feature, not a bug — and sow the seeds of their own downfall.

  4. Calling religion a ‘Disease’ is one of those most egregious forms of Hipster Bigotry out there. Just Stop. That’s why you lose. That’s why you don’t have all the rights and respect you want. You put hate into the world, don’t be surprised when you’re treated like garbage for whatever off center things you’re into.

    That being said, it seems more and more like this guy sabotaged his career. So quick to decalre his career over, when all he had to do was apologize and do a sob story about how frustrated he is with the state of things in his homeland etc etc.

    I’m sure there are some C-list publishers that will gladly take him in to draw their T&A fairytale books, 80s TV Licenses or Unauthorized Biography books.

  5. Mr. Syaf’s silly preening cost Marvel a bundle. If they don’t fire him, I’d be surprised. The bottom line is … the bottom line.

  6. @Joe: “That’s why you don’t have all the rights and respect you want.”

    I’m with you on respect, but are you seriously suggesting that people should be denied rights because they were rude on the internet?

    “I’m sure there are some C-list publishers that will gladly take him in to draw their T&A fairytale books, 80s TV Licenses or Unauthorized Biography books.”

    Hey now, some of the best comics I’ve read in years are ’80s TV licenses. Transformers: Lost Light is way better than a comic based on a toy line should be.

  7. @thad. no. I’m talking about the weird accepted bigotry in the comics community (and others) targeted towards organized religion specifically. The same people soap boxing about equality, diversity and tolerance spew a lot of targeted hate out of the other sides of their mouths. Can’t have it both ways. Yes stand up to specific instances of hate and racism. Yes, call out terrible individuals. But don’t paint millions with the same brush. The terrible actions of 1 or two people is not an entire faith system. Bigotry starts with stereotypes and blanket statements about large groups of people.

  8. @Joe, It’s a tenet of most religions that all Atheists are damned—and they preach such hate towards Atheists from the pulpit on a regular basis. But let an Atheist say _anything_ negative about religion and the “faithful” get the vapors.

  9. Typical Muslim racist Jew hating women hating gay hating etc sneaky and deceptive. Get caught lie about it then admitt it and tell everyone it’s about love and justice finally say something nice about the book of Kerrang and the paedophile leader of his death cult !! what more can you expect ?! Trump is right keep them out even the so called educated ones are maniacal haters,

  10. Wowee, Mike Smith tries to call out Syaf, yet manages to be even more offensive than anything he did. How gross.

  11. @jim at least you helped reinforce my point by throwing down a false blanket stereotype about tens of millions of people in dozens of faith systems throughout the world.

    Thanks for playing.

  12. @Joe, You seem to be under the mistaken impression that most religions celebrate Atheism. Yet in your first post, you declared with much self-righteousness that Atheists “lose” and don’t have “rights”. Is that supposed to show us what religious tolerance looks like?

  13. “That’s why you don’t have all the rights and respect you want.”

    What rights don’t atheists have that we want?
    Always seems to me it’s the religious who get jelly about the atheists natural cool as opposed to atheists foot stomping to get respect.

    Jacob- I went into it in one of the other comment threads about this, but I think Syaf got caught up in a political scene that overlapped with religion. ie. this is more about opposing the govoner that it is putting down other religions.

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