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Dark Horse Comics has cut ties with writer and editor Scott Allie (Hellboy, The Umbrella Academy) after another former Dark Horse employee accused him of sexual harassment and sexual assault across a period lasting more than a decade.
Former Dark Horse publicist and editor Shawna Gore shared her experiences in an extensive thread on Twitter on Wednesday afternoon, chronicling what she described as “a pattern of chronic, escalating, unchecked abuse that was not related to his alcohol use” across a 14-year period, beginning in 1999.
“I am speaking up about this now because there is an endless stream of stories about this kind of predatory behavior and abuse in the comics industry,” Gore wrote. “His actions over the long span of his career have deeply and gravely impacted the work of industry professionals who deserved better and deserve to be believed.”
Multiple creators and former Dark Horse employees responded to Gore’s tweets, including those who offered confirmation of Allie’s abusive tendencies. One former employee described Allie as “far and away the most despicable, abusive, and awful person I’ve ever worked with,” adding, “the amount of trauma he’s caused the people who have worked with him is extreme.” Another wrote, “While head of editorial, he was not allowed to have women in his office w/his door closed bc he repeatedly shouted or otherwise harassed staff to tears.”
Perhaps most importantly for the purposes of the larger story, Hellboy creator and longtime Allie collaborator Mike Mignola tweeted, “I believe Shawna Gore. Given what I have read today, I will be discontinuing working with Scott Allie.” Not long afterwards, the official Dark Horse Twitter account retweeted Mignola’s message, adding, “Dark Horse supports Mike Mignola and this decision. More to come.”
Within an hour, Dark Horse Comics released the following official statement: “Effective immediately, Dark Horse Comics will not be working with Scott Allie now or in the future. We apologize to fans, creators and employees for all the damage and hurt Scott has caused. His removal from every Dark Horse project will be followed by sincere and active change. We believe Shawna Gore. It is critical that employees feel safe, secure and supported in the workplace. They should feel safe in making these inexcusable actions known without fear of reprisal. Creators must be proud to call us their publisher. Dark Horse Comics will dedicate itself to ensuring that this will not ever happen again. We can and will do better.”
Scott Allie joined Dark Horse Comics in 1994 as an editor, working his way up to become editor-in-chief of the company by 2012, a position he held while also working as a writer at the publisher. In 2015, it was reported that Allie had sexually assaulted creator Joe Harris at San Diego Comic-Con, grabbing his crotch and biting his ear at a party during the convention; in response, Allie issued an apology, saying that he was “completely embarrassed by my actions and how my behavior reflects on Dark Horse Comics, my friends and family.”
At that point, Allie stepped down from the role of editor-in-chief of Dark Horse, assuming the position of executive editor and maintaining his role on the Hellboy titles as well as a number of other high-profile projects. At the time, Dark Horse Comics president and founder Mike Richardson released a statement, saying in part, “In cases such as these, we have been proactive in our response, with a variety of professional services involved, all with the goal of changing behavior. Additionally, a number of internal responses are acted upon, including termination if such behavior continues. Under no circumstance is any individual ‘harbored.’ In this particular case, action was taken immediately, though we did not, and cannot, perform a public flogging, as some might wish.”
Allie maintained his position as executive editor through 2017, when he left the company without explanation, although he continued to work on a number of Dark Horse projects as a freelance editor and consultant, a role he continued to play until this latest development.
Allie did not respond to a request for comment.
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Lisa Marie Presley