Fans campaign for Jonathan Majors’ Marvel comeback after actor avoids prison in domestic violence case

By Abby Amoakuh

Published Apr 9, 2024 at 12:56 PM

Reading time: 2 minutes

On Monday 8 April 2024, a New York judge sentenced Jonathan Majors to a year of probation for assaulting his ex-girlfriend Grace Jabbari during an altercation in March 2023.

The sentence was widely regarded as a surprise, considering the high-profile nature of the case and the fact that the rising star could have faced up to a year in prison after a jury in Manhattan convicted him of a misdemeanour assault in December.

However, the Manhattan district attorney’s office decided not to seek any jail time. Instead, the prosecutor, Kelli Galaway, stated that 52 weeks of domestic violence programming along with an order of protection against Jabbari would suffice.

That being said, if Majors fails to complete the program or violate any of the sentencing terms, he could face jail time, according to Deadline.

In the domestic violence case, Majors’ former girlfriend Jabbari accused the actor of attacking her in the backseat of a chauffeured car in March 2023. The actor and dancer detailed that Majors hit her head with his open hand, twisted her arm behind her back and squeezed her middle finger until it fractured.

In a tearful testimony, Jabbari also stated that she believed that Majors would continue to hurt other women if not convicted: “He believes he is above the law,” she warned.

The Barbie and Mission Impossible dancer painted the picture of an abusive relationship, in which Majors isolated her from her friends and family until she became completely emotionally dependent on him. “I became a different person around him—small, scared and vulnerable,” Jabbari recounted.

The guilty verdict in December derailed the career of Majors, who was immediately dropped by Marvel Studios after the decision was announced.

The actor was once hailed as one of Hollywood’s most promising rising stars, knabbing projects such as Kang the Conqueror in phase 5 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Creed III as Damian Anderson, and Montgomery Allen in The Last Black Man in San Francisco.

 

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Now, following the recent verdict, some loyal Marvel stans started to campaign for Majors to be rehired by the superhero film-maker, considering the prosecutor’s decision not to press for a jail term. Consequently, the hashtag #bringbackkang started trending on X, formerly Twitter.

The majority of fans alleged unfair treatment considering that a number of stars that Marvel is still in good relationships with have undergone court cases. Notable names include Iron Man actor Robert Downey Jr and Josh Brolin, who has starred as Thanos in a number of Marvel projects.

Outside of the Marvel Universe, fans also started to cite actors such as Ezra Miller, who has been embroiled in multiple legal issues and pleaded guilty to trespassing in a burglary case in Vermont in January 2023 as part of a deal to drop other charges. The actor, controversially, starred as superhero The Flash in the titular movie released in the same year.

Yet, a lot of Major’s defenders also displayed some overt misogyny.

Still, a another fraction of netizens kept insisting that the sentence signified a failure of the court system. Emphasising that Majors would have deserved a jail sentence for his actions, they noted that the case showed how violence against women was still largely excused and bypassed.

In an interview with Jezebel, domestic violence experts expressed concern with Majors’ legal team’s strategy and treatment of Jabbari throughout the trial. Sexual violence researcher Dr Nicole Bedera, for instance, told the publications that last year Majors’ lawyers deployed “DARVO” (deny, attack, reverse victim and offender) techniques against Jabbari. This further obscured and complicated the details of this case, contributing to the confusing narratives unfolding online.

As the discourse expands, it serves as a sobering reminder of the nuances of justice and the complexities of navigating legal proceedings in cases of domestic abuse.

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