Is ‘The Ayer Cut’ Proof This is Becoming the Next ‘Issue-gate’?

Every time something deemed controversial by the public or receives a harangue of hate in the press and social media, there is usually a term that accompanies it to brand the thing on the cerebral cortex of everyone worldwide — [whatever the saga]-GATE.

In most cases when that media trope is concocted blood starts to subsequently trickle from the earhole of anyone within listening range. Regardless the industry, -gate becomes the brand du jour for scandal and salaciousness. And it is repeated until you are ready to pull a Van Gogh. On both ears.

Credit: Augusta Chronicle, 2015

It has become a suffix of sinister implications. For the early political fans, President Reagan suffered ‘Debategate‘ in 1983 and three years later, ‘Iran-Contragate.’ From ‘Bridgegate‘ for all you Gov. Chris Christie fans to ‘Nipplegate‘ happening to Janet Jackson’s appearance during Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show to maybe the most overused brand, we’ve always enjoyed the lack of originality = “gate”.

Perhaps the most famous (or infamous) was ‘DeflateGate,’ the “alleged” cheating scandal of the New England Patriots to make the footballs just right for TB12’s mitts. Whatever the problem, a gate was left open for the media horde to abuse relentlessly.

However, there seems a new trendy tactic for grassroots, butthurt campaigns that looks just as promising (he said with tongue firmly planted in cheek). While it’s great that -gate may be done, it doesn’t look like the next one will be any less overused for the next decade. And, oddly enough, we have HBO Max and the lovely news about releasing the Snyder Cut for this one.

Let’s discuss the next common struggle and middle finger to the man: Snyder- and now, a demand to Release the Ayer Cut.


release the ayer cut

Releasing the Snyder Cut begat releasing the Ayer Cut
Credits: Mike Marsland/WireImage (Ayer), Warner Bros. (Snyder)

Here we go again.

The common man takes courage in the collective voice of the disgruntled. This is a group of revved-up geckaphiles and they want justice. However, they need a catchy tagline. Something that is memorable and “hashtagable.” Why worry about deriving some new term where we need to discover etymology when we can just trivialize our cause and “borrow” someone else’s?

Ergo, #ReleaseTheAyerCut was born…and, quite possibly, the next dreaded suffix or catchphrase.

A couple of years ago, during the height of the now successful Snyder Cut protest, there was another DC-related dust up. (Seriously. Will they ever learn?) Apparently, there was an original, director’s cut of Suicide Squad David Ayer used to show test audiences.

Then, we all got the version of the Squad that we got. Reviews panned. Audiences were flummoxed. And DC/WB was left holding yet another steaming bag of crap. You’d think this was getting old, but evidently Walter Hamada and crew don’t read the trades.

Ayer is no slouch. The guy wrote Training Day. He believes ardently in his craft to the point where he told Marvel what’s up:

Naturally, audiences knowing and adoring Ayer’s pedigree were slightly stunned by the cattle-prod to the nether regions we all received in theaters, and so… the protest began to “Release the Ayer Cut.

Cut the SH*t

Source: Atlas Entertainment/Warner Bros.

So, now we have the geek community up-in-arms because — yet again — DC Comics and Warner Bros. are holding hostage another director’s vision of their original movie. Why are we demanding WB to release the Ayer Cut? How do we know there’s a difference and this happened…again? How else?! The director told us so through his acrimonious version of “Mr. J”:

Then, he follows it up with an even more subtle approach.

Needless to say, David Ayer isn’t one for mincing words and has no problem with a protest in his favor. Today, Ayer is still in the nurturing bosom of DC Comics and its evil twin sister, Warner Bros. as we wait patiently for another spinoff from this movie called Gotham City Sirens where Harley Quinn finds more friends — Poison Ivy and Catwoman.

So, did Ayer get bamboozled like Zack Snyder, which is why fans are now pulling the same punches to release the Ayer Cut? Knowing the track of the bureaucrats in WB… possibly.

Like Snyder, Ayer did shoot extended scenes that very much may have yanked this film out of the incinerator and into the homes of every geckaphile like he and WB intended. Not for nothing, but it looks like if WB were to release the Ayer cut, we may have a completely different film.

So? Should WB eat even more crow, bite down, swallow hard, and release the Ayer cut? Of course they should, namely since there has been a precedent already set (props to the SnyderCut posse) and there has been another precedent set (why in the blue hell can’t Warner Bros get anything right in the DC Films universe).

The Unkindest Cut of All

Source: Atlas Entertainment/Warner Bros.

I was searching for an image to convey what we should be thinking as “Release the Ayer Cut” goes viral in the geckaphile and cinephile community. Instead, there’s this GIF that was perfect:

Yes, Warner Bros. is thinking that — and they should. But, the rest of the world may be getting a little worn over the “cut” protests as well. I mean, what’s next?

  • You have a problem with The Last Jedi and think J.J. Abrams was foreced to kowtow to fans in The Rise of Skywalker with a response, so #ReleaseTheJJCut“?
  • Pissed off that Midsommar wasn’t nearly twisted and demented enough, so #ReleaseTheAsterCut?
  • Herbert fans are still waiting for the version of Dune they were promised by him, studios, and even David Lynch, but since folk have a hard time spelling on Twitter, #ReleaseTheJodorowskyCut was never a thing (even though there is a sweet documentary).
  • Bryan Singer didn’t include what happened to Kal-El when he hightailed it back to Krypton (even though the rumor was that it blew the eff up way back in 1948) , so where was #ReleaseTheSingerCut?
  • Martial Arts fans? There has been an age-old conspiracy theory over Bruce Lee’s classic The Big Boss and second director (who wanted Lee as the star because duh!) Lo Wei deleted a swath of tape that even Bruce Lee wanted in the release. So, #ReleaseTheWeiCut?
  • Not that Josh Trank’s reboot of Fantastic Four could get any worse, but he insisted early on there was “a fantastic version” of this film (and yes, that awful pun was intended). #ReleaseTheTrankCut?

No More Shortcuts

Credit: Clay Enos/Atlas Entertainment

It worked with Ridley Scott and Blade Runner, but there wasn’t a #ReleaseTheScottCut, even though if that film was released now, there would have been. And don’t even get people started over Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut. That definitely needed a #ReleaseTheDonnerCut. Sometimes, people do the right thing anyway. Other times, they need a three-year-long nudge

The point is this: Not everything needs a protest in movies and TV just because you hated the outcome or believe deep down the fate of your particular film or TV series deserved better. Some things in film and television are just incomplete or done. That’s that.

[Editor’s Note: I will be on the #SaveDaredevil train until the wheels fall off! Stupid that thing was canceled and that cast doesn’t get to finish that story.]
Courtesy: @ReleaseAyerCut

Hey, DC? There’s a trend here. Maybe give Universal a call? All their cuts are accounted for in the marketplace, right?

Seriously: It does seem Warner Bros. has a track record of putting the kibosh on stellar storytelling. Regardless, this needs to stop with CBMs on the DC side of the fence. We’ll soon find out in 2021 if that happens when HBO Max brings a conclusion to the #ReleaseTheSnyderCut three-year kerfuffle.

That’s about how long it will take another gifted storyteller in David Ayer to see if this thing has the steam required to force the big bully in a corner and eventually release another stifled director’s cut. Another DC Comic property. Another massive disappointment.

Release this WB and make this the last time we ask. Fans deserve better. Studios want better. And for God’s sake, catch phrases need better. Movie and TV production houses, work better with your directors and allow this “Cut” protest to be the last, please? We can’t take another…eh, MovieGate?

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