A Chinese fan artist has taken down a piece of art which jokingly referenced the ‘Deus Vult’ meme and issued an apology to fans who were offended by what they perceived as a use of a racist meme.

MiLK (@jokanhiyou) is a popular Chinese artist best known for creating the popular Emoting Mokou meme, which features a chibi version of the Touhou character Fujiwara no Mokou reacting in a manner described by accompanying English and Chinese captions. Since creating the first Emoting Mokou image in 2015, MiLK has drawn over 300 separate memes featuring the character, with the meme gaining widespread popularity among both Western and Eastern audiences.

On January 22nd, MiLK posted an image of Mokou clad in the armor of a medieval knight, wielding a sword and a shield bearing Saint George’s Cross, the large red cross symbol used historically by the Knights Templar, with the simple caption ‘Deus Vult’ (Archive: http://archive.is/w87Ct)

Soon after posting the meme, MiLK was met with a wave of criticism from fans who believed the Deus Vult meme, which gained popularity from the use of the phrase in the game Crusader Kings II, was inherently racist due to the use of the historical phrase by pro-Christian, anti-Muslim hate groups.

Related: Crusader Kings III Director Clears Up “Deus Vult” Controversy: “We Have Not Specifically Considered Which Terms are Used in the Game”

In response to the various complaints, MiLK deleted the original tweet featuring the image from her Twitter account and apologized for the “hurt and offense my meme has caused,” stating that she “thought it was from a video game.”

While some have said that MiLK was outright harassed and bullied into issuing her apology,evidence to support these claims has yet to be produced.

Related: Comic Artist Pablo Romero Insulted and Accused of Sexism for ‘Sexy’ Captain Marvel Fan Redesign

MiLK’s decision to remove the meme was subsequently praised by those who believed that the phrase was inherently racist, regardless of the context of its use, and considered MiLK’s creation of the meme to be a “mistake.”

Related: Star Wars Fan Artist Criticized for Drawing ‘Busty’ Rey, Doubles Down in Response

Related: Japanese Artist najuco Harassed and Accused of Racism Due to Fan Art of Pokémon’s Nessa

However, MiLK also received support from fans who believed that she had done nothing wrong in creating the original meme and encouraged her to ignore their alleged bad faith criticisms:

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What do you make of MiLK’s decision to delete the meme?

  • About The Author

    Spencer Baculi

    Spencer is the Editor for Bounding Into Comics. A life-long anime fan, comic book reader, and video game player, Spencer believes in supporting every claim with evidence and that Ben Reilly is the best version of Spider-Man. He can be found on Twitter @kabutoridermav.