The Atlantic

The Secret Identity of Marvel Comics’ Editor

C.B. Cebulski admitted he once used a Japanese pseudonym and fake backstory in order to write comics. Why his actions—and the company’s muted response—are troubling
Source: Suhaimi Abdullah / Getty Images

In late November, C.B. Cebulski lost his secret identity. The longtime editor and talent scout for Marvel Comics had just arrived in the United States to become editor in chief, after spending years working for the company in Shanghai. But the start of his tenure was quickly marred by the resurfacing of an issue he had long tried to conceal. A day before Cebulski’s plane landed in New York, a branding manager at Image Comics named David Brothers tweeted a request: that someone should ask Cebulski why he had written “a bunch of ‘Japanese-y’ books” for Marvel in the early 2000s under the name Akira Yoshida.

Cebulski, a white American man, had repeatedly denied the rumor that he’d ever published using a Japanese pseudonym. But the social-media interest in the issue as he began his new job forced him to come clean. “I stopped writing under the pseudonym Akira Yoshida after about a year,” Cebulski told Rich Johnston of, on November 28. “It wasn’t transparent, but it taught me a lot about writing, communication, and pressure. I was young and naïve and had a lot to learn back then. But this is all old news that has been dealt with, and now as Marvel’s new Editor-in-Chief, I’m turning a new page and am excited to start sharing all my Marvel experiences with up andaddressing the pseudonym; his comments are included below.

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Atlantic

The Atlantic5 min read
Living In California Is Living On The Edge
For residents, the recent earthquakes are a reminder that the state is always poised on the brink of disaster.
The Atlantic3 min readPolitics
Qatar Responds: Don’t Cancel the 2022 World Cup
The tournament’s host country pushes back on Franklin Foer’s proposal that FIFA change course and reallocate funds to women’s soccer.
The Atlantic6 min readPolitics
Malta’s Fledgling Movement for Abortion Rights
The country is the only one in Europe that outright bans abortion, but public perception is slowly shifting.