The Water Cooler – Superman Logo Barred from Memorial Statue of Starved Boy

July 8, 2014 · 25 comments

The “Water Cooler” is a feature on Claycord.com where we ask you a question or provide a topic, and you talk about it! The “Water Cooler” will be up Monday-Friday at noon!

Today’s question:

A memorial statue of a little boy in Toronto who was starved to death by his grandparents is being constructed, and the plans were to build the statue of the boy wearing a Superman outfit. However, DC Comics (the company who owns the rights to Superman) stepped in and said they don’t want the Superman logo on the statue, because they don’t want their product associated with child abuse.

What’s your opinion on this? Do you think they should allow the Superman logo to be on the statue, or do you think they have a point?

Talk about it….

1 Anon777 July 8, 2014 at 12:20 PM

It’s their right, but a damn stupid excuse!

2 DC Comics July 8, 2014 at 12:22 PM

can decide where and when it wants its products displayed. It’s up to them.

3 Bruce July 8, 2014 at 12:26 PM

DC Comics has the right to decide how its property is used. The boy is dead… the statue’s attire does not change this fact.

4 Incognito July 8, 2014 at 12:27 PM

I don’t even remember this story back in 2002 when this little boy died. So I don’t think if I came across a memorial statue of the boy wearing a Superman outfit I would connect it in any way with child abuse. Rather, I would smile and think this little boy must have really loved this super hero.

Was Make a Wish Foundation around back then? If so, it would have been nice for this little boy to “meet” Superman, but then again, perhaps DC Comics would have been paranoid about a child abuse association.

5 The Mamba July 8, 2014 at 12:27 PM

What a terrible story, all the way around.

6 Enfield303 July 8, 2014 at 12:28 PM

It’s a copyrighted image and they own it. They have the sayso. Just make the statue with a cape but no logo. People will get the message without infringing on DCs rights.

7 Incognito July 8, 2014 at 12:28 PM

But then again, Make a Wish Foundation is for those who are terminally ill, isn’t it, and not meant for scenarios like this one…. Sad story.

8 Dorothy July 8, 2014 at 12:54 PM

I think they have a valid point. One, they own the rights to the logo and must give permission or not for its use. Two, it makes sense that they don’t want their logo tied to child abuse in any way.

The statue could still have the stance, the cape, the outfit that resembles Superman, just not the logo.

9 Silva July 8, 2014 at 1:09 PM

While I can certainly understand their point and it’s their right to object, I think they could be missing an opportunity to show some compassion in memory of a little boy. When my boy was very small my MIL made him the most adorable plain black flowing cape w/o any emblems or logos, and he spent many happy hours of make believe being Zorro, Batman, Superman, and whatever else he thought up, which was tons.

10 Actually.. (to # 7 Incognito) July 8, 2014 at 1:09 PM

Make a Wish is for those with life threatening diseases, though not necessarily “terminal.”

11 SKS July 8, 2014 at 1:11 PM

Lame question… It’s copyrighted and is not to be used without permission of the owner.

Moving on….

12 Concord Guy July 8, 2014 at 1:15 PM

The memorial idea is tacky. DC Comics if fully within reason to object.

13 Marianne July 8, 2014 at 1:27 PM

DC has the rights to the image, it’s up to them.

14 unknown July 8, 2014 at 1:39 PM

Maybe holding a superman doll would be OK!

15 Jim Shoes July 8, 2014 at 2:08 PM

I think their refusal puts them in a bad light. I also think it would be an excellent opportunity to allow the costume to be used and use this as an opportunity to DONATE to the prevention of child abuse. That way their logo is in support of prevention. And what’s so wrong w/ being associated with that?

16 RealityCheck July 8, 2014 at 2:50 PM

Time for a reality check. This is not difficult.
DC owns the symbol. They may approve or deny its use as they wish. No one.. not me, or you, or anyone else has any say in the matter.
…. Next?

17 Pyrrhus July 8, 2014 at 3:07 PM

DC Comics has every right to allow or deny the use of the Superman logo. However, they are missing a PR opportunity with this. They should allow it with the caveat that they get the final say on how the statue looks. DC would prob not want a statue which has the child looking beaten, starved, crying, or some other way of looking distressed while in the Superman outfit.

18 Atticus Thraxx July 8, 2014 at 5:45 PM

I’m not even gonna click on the link. I don’t want to know the details, but starving a child to death is f**king beyond evil. Too bad there really isn’t a Superman. Or at least one that could have saved this child.

19 Anon July 8, 2014 at 8:38 PM

While their right they could have stepped up and helped and been real heros

20 JW July 8, 2014 at 9:45 PM

I have been a comic book reader for most of my natural life so I am not going to say something preposterous like “I will boycott DC.” Sure, they have a right to not allow Superman’s likeness used. However, they should have just let this one slide. Saying that it is because they don’t want want Superman associated with child abuse is complete bull. During the late 80’s and early 90’s DC was more geared towards a more mature audience. The characters were violent and truly conflicted by a plethora of modern problems. Heck, a couple of years ago Superman renounced his American citizenship. I could go through my box and probably find something where one of their popular characters was in a story line where some sort of horrible violent act occurred.

21 Antler July 9, 2014 at 1:53 AM

Such a statue seems not only tacky….but almost as macabre as the heinous murder itself. Even if the law were not solidly on the side of DC Comics, the other people’s attempt to sugarcoat a child’s death is despicable.

22 PhilthyPHRESH July 9, 2014 at 10:11 AM

Blame canada….

23 tired of taxes July 9, 2014 at 10:31 AM

DC should have just said, “We did not give permission for the Superman logo to be used” and left out the reason why. They should reprimand their PR guy for this.

But without the logo, why even have the statue up? It would just be any other kid who’d have been starved to death by grandparents. A lot of kids die from hunger and neglect by parents/guardians. You’d just be paying someone to put up a statue about something that everybody should always know and be aware of. Not just the people milling around the vicinity of the statue.

24 Kirkwood July 9, 2014 at 3:52 PM

If the situation were different, it would have been nice if the kid were allowed wear a Superman outfit like Bat Kid, but in this case it does nothing for the kid and the public, and little for his loved ones in the long run. The story doesn’t mention where the statue is to be placed but I don’t think the public should burdened with a daily reminder of one person’s misfortune.
I feel the same about roadside memorials, and naming highways, bridges and every public structure after dead people. The country is beginning to look like a cemetery.

25 caskydiver July 9, 2014 at 10:13 PM

It is their property (rights to the logo), so it is up to them pure and simple.

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