Green Day, apparently still around and making music, announced Wednesday that it’s issuing its first “graphic novel,” a “handbook” for the modern American woman and “every woman who refuses to capitulate” — and feminists aren’t amused.
The graphic novel, titled “Last of the American Girls,” will hit store shelves in October and is billing itself as an indispensible guide for women looking to maintain and cultivate that punk rock edge in a decreasingly punk rock world, according to the novel’s publisher, Harper Collins. It is “a rallying cry for all rebel girls.”
The team behind the novel is, of course, entirely male. Green Day’s lead vocalist and guitarist is Billie Joe Armstrong, joined on bass by Mike Dirnt, and drums by the aptly named Tre Cool, who has been with the band since the early 1990s, before they hit it big with their 1994 rock-and-punk album, “Dookie.” The band hired a male illustrator, cartoonist Frank Caruso, to do the inkwork.
It’s not clear exactly what “advice” the book will give today’s liberated woman, but “Last of the American Girls” is the title of one of the band’s songs, off their most recent album, “21st Century Breakdown.” It could just be the song lyrics with illustrations, or it could be a comprehensive guide to third wave feminism written by a team of men.
Feminists, of course, not typically ones to give the benefit of the doubt, immediately assumed “Last of the American Girls” will be the latter, and, accordingly, took to social media to voice their concern.
“What rebellious everywoman among us has not longed for an inspiring handbook authored and illustrated by four men and zero women,” wrote one.
What rebellious everywoman among us has not longed for an inspiring handbook authored and illustrated by <checks notes> four men and zero women https://t.co/tWNHpnpZZK
— andi zeisler (@andizeisler) April 2, 2019
“Yeah that’s what we need, a handbook for female rebellion…written by men,” wrote another.
Yeah that’s what we need, a handbook for female rebellion…written by men.
— Maddy Rizzo (@maddydrizzo) April 2, 2019
“boys i love u with all of my heart and would happily take SEVERAL bullets for you but dont you think the main ”rule” to being an independent woman in punk should be to, well, not be told how to live their lives by men who have no experience in what its like to live as a woman??”
boys i love u with all of my heart and would happily take SEVERAL bullets for you but dont you think the main ”rule” to being an independent woman in punk should be to, well, not be told how to live their lives by men who have no experience in what its like to live as a woman??
— lina (@wedrovenorth) April 2, 2019
Although several outlets reached out to Green Day for clarification on the subject of whether they are dropping a graphc novel about feminism written entirely by men, neither the band nor their publicist have responded.
Being on the wrong side of the “woke” is likely a new experience for Green Day, whether the criticism is warranted or not. The band has hailed itself as something of a punk rock protest band in recent years, after penning their “rock opera” titled “American Idiot” as a way of fighting back against the Afghanistan and Iraq wars back during the George W. Bush years.
The trio eventually turned “American Idiot” into a successful Broadway musical, and after staying largely silent during the Obama Administration, which continued to prosecute both the Afghanistan and Iraq war and expand the American role in conflict across the globe, often turning to questionably ethical drone warfare, resurfaced recently to protest President Donald Trump.
At one point, lead singer Armstrong even demanded that Trump supporters stop listening to Green Day’s music after a fan noted that Armstrong’s virulent anti-Trump tweets would do little to change the mind of fans who support the president. They even included an anti-Trump protest song, “Back in the USA,” as a bonus feature on their 2017 greatest hits album.
But even the wokest among us are not wokest for long.