If Donald Glover can’t be Spider-Man, then he should be the Flash! Willis has spoken.
Shame the costumes aren’t in FOBO colors, but you can’t have everything.
FUBU, not “FOBO”, you (expletive deleted).
I’m just enjoying afro Aqua Man.
Though really he should have his hair done in waves.
Aquaman in a do-rag. I like it!
Is it just me, or does Aqua Man kind of look like Lionel Richie?
Is it just me, or does batman look like the dude who played Teal’c on Stargate SG1?
But no, BlackBatman’s arms are waaaaay too skinny.
YOU’RE PLAYING WITH FIRE WILLIS
THINK OF THE DANGERS
Wouldn’t one of ‘em have to be not-black to produce tokenism?
I believe you are missing some important context for that joke, sir. :p
An all African American superhero team? I don’t read comics but isn’t there already said team? I wanted to say blacks but that would be racist now would it?
You do realise that makes it sound like you’re saying there should only be one team of African-American superheroes, right?
Really? I should really think before I say anything. What I meant to say that there’s a African- American super team, isn’t it? BTW, thank you for pointing it out for me.
Superman isn’t African-American. He’s Kryptonian-American. And that’s why hyphenated labels are stupid – because skin color is a terrible indication of ancestry, and when Americans travel abroad and try to call black people in England African-Americans, it makes us look damned goofy.
I remember a while ago there was an interview between an American reporter and an English Black sports star. She kept referring to him as “African-American” and he got more annoyed at that than anything else.
So yeah, “African-American” can be far more racist and ignorant than “Black”.
Really? Darn it, it’s hard not to offend anyone these days.
Not really. You just need to exercise a little judgement.
It sounds like you’ve saying that what people are offended by can be easily determined by logic.
As any man who has ever had a wife will tell you…
As any married woman would tell you: seriously, it’s not that difficult to understand what you should say in any situations. It’s a proof that we truly believe you’re not stupid.
but hey, I just learned this week that we [i]really[/i] need to explain everything in simple terms if we want men to understand -__-
It really isn’t that hard. Also, Smith and dralou are bigots. Just because YOUR partners are dumb doesn’t mean the rest of us are.
Well I think the real offence was that she kept calling him African-”American” when he wasn’t from America.
Its like calling a Person From China, Japanese. Some one from Spain, Mexican. She should have just said, Brittish superstar.
no, see, the problem is that people get offended when you try too hard not to offend them. You were avoiding the term ‘black’ to avoid being offensive, even though you yourself don’t feel ‘black’ is a bad thing. So forget trying not to offend people and just call it like you see it. If you think ‘black person’ when you see someone with a whole ton of melanin who probably had ancestors in Africa, say black. If it doesn’t matter to you, don’t use the qualifier.
No matter what you say, someone somewhere is gonna get offended. So check your motives, not your words. If you’re not feeling hate towards a person, and you respect a person, and you think they’re awesome for who you are, that’ll come out, no matter what words you use. If you actually deep down hate black people, or are afraid of them, it won’t matter that you don’t use the n-word. If you’re honest and genuine, people will know how you feel about them, and they will appreciate it. And it’s okay to be honest about what you don’t know, too–just ask questions about the person, not about the race. Not, “do black people do this” but “do YOU like this.” In your heart if you know stereotypes are false, you’ll pay attention to the individual and all this comes naturally.
So ignore all the people who want to censor your language. It’s your heart you need to check at the door.
I tend to go with this theory- if you were born/raised in the US, you’re black. If you were born in Nigeria or Egypt and immigrated to the US, you’re African-American. (Only applies to whites and blacks)
I agree, names should be based on immediate birthplace, parental heritage, immigration status. I don’t think there should be anything wrong with the term “white” or “black.” Its the simplest way of describing someone with ease…. hyphenated names/labels are often based on assumption (we don’t always know what the person’s actual heritage is) and are themselves also based on stereotypes…how many people realize Charlize Theron is herself African-American? And there are lots of black people in England that go back generations….they’re not British-Africans, they call themselves “Black British.”
Just call ‘em British, African, American et al. You don’t see people saying “woman-Japanese” or “man-Mexican”, and that’s the other most noticable trait. People have eyes.
The problem wasn’t that you said “black”, but that saying that there’s already an all-black superhero team implies that there shouldn’t be more than one all-black superhero team.
Maybe the logic behind that thinking is “there’s already a black super team, so it’s not an original idea”. This would mean that you look at making a team consist entirely of black people as a gimmick. But if the comic book universe is a reflection of our own with the addition of super powers, then it makes sense that there would be multiple subcultures, some of which would be divided along racial lines. Think of it like musical groups. Some are all white, all black, all women, all men, and some are mixtures of various genders and ethnicities. The same way, it makes sense that there would be multiple superhero teams with similar memberships.
Maybe the thinking is “”there’s already a black super team, that should satisfy them.” That would be tokenism, and kind of obviously wrong.
Maybe the statement is a result of misunderstanding the context of the comic. Recently, an alternate-universe Spiderman died, and a new Spiderman took his place. This new Spiderman is black, and there’s been a whole lot of racist commentary about it, just as there was when a Batman “franchisee” was a muslim, and when a black guy was cast as part of the Norse pantheon in the Thor movie. So she’s pissing off racists not by creating an all-black superteam, but by changing the established skin color of several superheros.
Or maybe the thinking was something else entirely, I have no idea since I’m not in your head. But those are the things that other people could be reading into what you wrote.
Oh yeah, the All-Blacks. That’s New Zealand, they’re a pretty good team (or so my Kiwi buds proclaim loudly at any point where it may come up).
Actually, the statement kind of reminds me of the way people were whining when Dwayne McDuffie was writing Justice League and suddenly there was more than one black person on the team in major roles! Gasp!
Given that not all of us black people are American, no, it wouldn’t have been racist to say “blacks.” It would have been possibly more accurate.
If blacks get to call whites “Whites” then whites get to call blacks “Blacks”. I happen to be black, though I cannot prove this so you will have to take my word for it. I, for one, hate being called “African-American”, I actually prefer Negro. Not to mention “African-American” is actually demeaning in some ways. For instance, I’m not an African, I do not have dual citizenship in both Africa and America, I am, on the other hand, an American.
They don’t all look African, Aquaman looks like he might be Middle Eastern while Superman looks kinda Latino to me.
i didn’t even think they were anything other than normal/slightly tanned til i read robins lien
Before I read what Robin said, only WW and AM looked different to what I would normally expect from Willis’s artstyle.
And Wonder Woman being Greek and all, should at least have a nice golden tain and flowing curly hair, and get a little darker during the summer anyway.
Same here. None of them are very dark skinned, and I mistook the “african lips” for Superman shouting and Batman sticking his tongue out
My kingdom for a medium brown marker!
Another brilliant satirical comic laid low by limited color options…
Damn you Staples!
You could have just photoshopped the colours if that was the problem you know.
I think he chose to illustrate it with markers for a reason, though.
Have you seen? Crayola Washable Markers now has an “Ethnic” set with what they’re calling various skin tones. I find it vaguely offensive, but it is a good variety of beiges-to-browns.
I was wondering why Batman was wearing lipstick…
I thought the EXACT same thing! Those are LIPS? Sheesh.
Hah I saw that too! I didn’t even think they where suposed to be lips.
Those are lips? I can kinda see it I guess but it snaps back to shouting and tongue sticking out.
the Superman does end up looking like lips when you get used to the colors, especially since that isn’t really how Willis draws an open mouth. But man, Batman totally just looks like he’s givin the razz
..until you said that I still thought they had their mouths open. Now I feel bad.
Now there‘s a racist statement if I ever read one.
It’s racist to consider white “normal”, but it isn’t racist to consider Superman’s appearance “normal”. It’s normal for him. If I showed up tomorrow being recast as an Asian it would be exceeding abnormal.
All Lord of Dance said was that he didn’t immediately notice the difference that Willis was trying to show.
Aaah, and now I realize Batman’s mask has asian-looking eyes.
Batman usually has his eyes narrowed at someone, helps him look menacing
That would still achieve Robins’ objective.
denzel should be batman
Man, I love that Superman design. The simpler logo is great, as well as the fact Robin didn’t throw a white guy’s hairdo on him. As long as he doesn’t turn out to be Barack Obama (with a Beyonce Wonder Woman sidekick) again, we’re golden.
Donald Glover as the Flash would be amazing! He has the perfect wit to pull off the role.
Wasn’t there a world once that had minority superheroes (it was in a collection of the original crisis and the creator said that he had hoped that was the road they would take after the crisis) It was Earth 4 or D or E or something.
Yeah, I wanna say that was Wolfman’s doing, but I’m not sure.
I’ve never read that, but it would be so funny if those superheroes referred to OUR universe as “oh yeah, you’re from that weird parallell dimension where every superhero is white.”
Apparently Batman was a well adjusted family man in that dimension, or so I’ve heard.
I think I have that one. Earth 6 I think? It was pretty cool as I recall.
Earth D. I don’t know what comic it’s in. But I want it. So bad. I want it more than I want to pee. And I really want to pee.
Earth-D. from a one-shot “Tales from the Crisis on Infinite Earths” (it may have been an annual or something). It wasn’t bad. It’s pretty much just the established characters showing up and meeting Earth-D’s JLA, then IIRC some stuff happens with Lady Quark and the universe gets wiped out by the antimatter wave. Supposedly the more diverse JLA was the plan for the post-Crisis JLA at one point.
And on the subject of black versions of Superman, there was Sunshine Superman from the “Second Crisis” story arc in Grant Morrison’s run on Animal Man.
Wasn’t this, like, last year?
Is Wonder Woman supposed to look like Sarah? ‘Cause now I kinda want to see her dressed up like that for Halloween.
Yeah, I saw her first and wondered why Willis was drawing fanart of his characters as the justice league for today’s comic.
Not only that, batman looks a little like Ken and superman could be Jacob. …If you can stretch your imaginations.
I thought she looked more like Sydney Yus…
That was totally my first thought, and then I tried to figure out who everyone else was. Superman kind of looks like, Jacob, but the lips are too full.
Screw making Superman black. Just give Steel more love. Steel deserves everyone’s love and respect dammit. I blame Shaq for this.
Also Steel, Batwing, Blaqualad, XS, and John Stewart team up book. Make it happen DC. MAKE IT HAPPEN.
PS: I much prefer Superman to be half-Asian myself. And played by Dean Cain.
Man, I remember those early Adventures of Lois & Clark days when folks were maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad that Superman didn’t look white enough!
Wow. So, okay, then in the pilot or what when Lois was describing Superman to a sketch artist and said his eyes were like, more almond-shaped, more exotic, that was actually a poke at the actor’s ancestry? Sheeeeesh…
How do you get a blonde to laugh on Wednesday? Tell her a joke on Monday– in freaking 1991, good gods. That may be a world record for longest delay before getting an in-joke.
Also, so he’s half-Asian. Who cares? He plays a good Superman. Does anything else matter?
Steel’s in the first arc of the new Action Comics, I am psyched! Here’s hoping they use him more.
Hurrah for steel!!!! I love that guy
“Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman” still remains my only true exposure to Superman for any prolonged time. It’s still what I think of when people mention Superman.
Steel? What about ICON?
On the other claw, whenever they do something with the Milestone characters these days, I’m always torn between “they’re finally giving McDuffie’s creations the respect they deserve” and “the bastards are exploiting his creations now that he’s dead and can’t complain or profit from it”.
Bringing Milestone into the DC Universe proper was done with McDuffie’s blessing (and it was actually his idea). He wrote the first of it, the JLA/Shadow Cabinet crossover when he was still writing the book. So it’s not “he’s dead, we can do what we want!” by any means.
I bet the next time DC kills a Flash, the new one will be a half black half Brazillian kid that DC will claim is TOTALLY different from what Marvel did with Ultimate Spider-Man.
Please, they’ve got 4 different Flashes in reserve. You want to know where the advancement opportunities in DC superheroism are? Apply to be the Atom! Switches nationalities with no real backlash and there’s only a slight chance of being brutally murdered as a method to give Deathstroke a terrible comic book.
Or become Blue Beetle. That way you get to appear in cartoons too.
At least Ryan Choi is back (though Deathstroke will still have a comic book while he won’t)
They’re bringing back Ryan Choi? Okay, that’s the best thing I’ve heard about the reboot!
And Jaime Reyes is getting a new series! This is pretty much the only thing about the reboot that doesn’t fill me with dread.
Is Batman sticking out his tongue under a porn-stache?
Cannot unsee now!
I take it this is about Marvel’s Ultimate Spider-Obama? Personally, I think THAT was one of the most interesting and intelligent decisions Marvel has made in a while.
I actually liked the John Stewart Green Lantern from the JLU and JL cartoons when I was younger. Although… He seemed a lil too awkward in social situations sometimes… Which may be why I liked him because he reminded me of me. *thumbs up for social awkwardness!*
That’s probably why he isn’t in the picture, though on the flip side, he coulda used a black Hal Jordan in his place.
And by the way, this wouldn’t have anything to do with that on comment a few comics ago with that one guy was raging about racism, would it?
There was a guy? If there was a guy I missed him.
I’m mostly referring to the big brouhaha over Ultimate Spider-Man not being a white dude.
Awesome stuff, and yeah, he was raging for a long time, but all of his posts and and replies (his and others to his) were erased pretty quickly.
Oh, THAT guy! I remember that guy. No, this isn’t about him.
That Aquaman is disgusting.
Imagine all the offended fish who’d be traumitised after years of seeing there family brutally killed by hooks.
Those guys aren’t black. They’re just really well-tanned.
It’s not a racist thing to expect an established character to stay the race they became popular as being. Several friends of different ethnic backgrounds all agree that it goes both ways. Most people do not want to see a black Spiderman, a white Black Panther, a Chinese Power Man, a Russian Kato, etc. When a character is created, most expect what they saw when these characters were presented. If they want a new ethnic character, they shouldn’t be such horrible writers to not be able to create one. Don’t shoe horn something already established.
Black Panther’s race is important to his character. “Black Panther” is the ceremonial title given to the chief of the Panther Tribe which rules the African nation of Wakanda. Spider-Man’s race is not important. He’s a kid from Queens who was bitten by a radioactive spider. Changing Spider-Man’s race doesn’t change what’s important to Spider-Man.
This reminds me of a Joss Whedon quote from an interview. The interviewer asked something like “why do you write such strong female characters?”and Joss Whedon was like “Because reporters keep asking me that question.”
For him, the fact that a character is female is a detail, not a defining trait. In the same way, Spider-Man could be a black kid just as easily as Toby McGuire or whatever. Nothing saying Aunt May can’t be Aunt May even when she looks a little more like Aunt Jemima.
Aunt May as a black woman would actually really jive with what I associate with her character.
I don’t have a problem with a character of a different race adopting an existing identity. (Other then the inherent lameness of “legacy” heroes as a whole.) But I do have a problem when someone wants to reimagine an already established character as something else.
For example: When Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster created Superman/ Clark Kent they decided to model him on a white guy. They did ALL the work in creating the character, stories and situations. They pitched the idea to various companies. Who are we to say they are wrong (or bad) because they didn’t make him black? I’m Roma Gypsy (and I challenge you to find any positive portrayals of MY race in fiction, we’re almost always mystics and criminals. In comics we got Dr. Doom; a tyrant and the Scarlet Witch; bat-shit crazy woman) But I’m not going to bitch and moan until Bruce Wayne or whoever is redesigned to have a darker Indian skin color. I didn’t do any of the work involved in creating Batman, so why should I feel entitled to a Romani depiction of the character?
If you feel there’s a void in some aspect of comics (race, sexual orientation, etc.) why not step up to the plate and fill that void by creating a NEW character yourself? If others out there are looking for the same missing things you are, you may very well get rich in doing so!
Dick Grayson is Roma, I think. It doesn’t get nearly as much play as it should, but I’m pretty sure it’s come up once or twice.
I don’t think there’s any inherent “lameness” to legacy characters. I dunno, it’s more a personal preference thing, but I like most legacies. Ted Kord was a great legacy character as was his successor Jaime. With Wally West following in Barry Allen’s footsteps, we got a fantastic and complex character arc that continued over several years.
The “just create NEW” heroes argument gets bandied around a lot. Part of the problem is that the superhero ranks are pretty saturated. People don’t always pick up the “new” characters, especially if they’re not in some way tied into the old familiar characters. And try as you might, no new character is ever going to be as iconic as one of the original players to define the whole Spandex genre. They do create new characters, of course. But it doesn’t mean legacies don’t have their place.
Things like Ben 10 and Avatar the Last Airbender come to mind as recent superheroes that are new and extremely popular, the media they’re presented in may be different, but print as a whole is dying anyways. The whole, “no new guy’s ever gonna be as iconic as so-and-so, so why bother” attitude just sounds like laziness to me.
My problem with legacy characters is it destroys the uniqueness of the circumstances that created the original. It takes away from the “chosen one” aspect by suggesting anyone else can fill that role. It’s the difference between being destined by fate to become a hero (the hero’s journey) and answering a “help wanted” ad on Craig’s list.
Dick Grayson stepping out from Batman’s shadow and forging his own identity as Nightwing makes a much more powerful statement then Dick just putting on the cowl and getting Bruce’s “hand me down” weapons and villains as the next Batman.
Also when a company decides to put someone else in the suit it kind’ve sends the message that they didn’t really value the original character all that much (they’ve run out of ideas and need to shake it up, or feel something’s not working with the original version.) There’s been 3 or 4 different Spiderwomen; none of which ever became that popular. If you keep switching around the identities like that, readers will never be able to get that invested in the character. So that’s why I’m not too keen on the whole “legacy” character concept.
Dick has been fantastic as Batman, though. I’ve really been enjoying him in the role, and I’m depressed that this era for him is ending. I won’t be reading him when he returns to being Nightwing. Tumblr is right.
Never passing the mantle means losing these amazing experiments that can yield fantastic new stories.
Does that mean you’ll stop reading Batman as well since Bruce is back in the suit?
Different strokes. I like legacies because they show time passing, things changing, but not changing too much. To me a legacy done well is less a matter of “we don’t care who’s in the costume” as it is a matter of a certain character has run his course, even temporarily, and needs a break. Legacies also breed “families” and I do love me some acquired-family tropes.
As for the “never as iconic” attitude being laziness…I think you’re misreading me. I didn’t say popular. I didn’t say good. I said iconic. Avatar is an amazing series, very much looking forward to the next one. But if I walk up to a random person on the street and hold up a picture of Aang, odds are good they won’t have a clue who that is.
There are three iconic superheroes: Superman, Batman, Spiderman. Everybody in the US who does not live in a rural Amish town knows those costumes on sight. They know the Bat-symbol, they know the Superman symbol. Those aren’t even names they’re going to get a little bit wrong. It doesn’t matter if they read comics or watch the movies. They know those characters on sight. They are a part of our culture and have been for the past fifty/sixty-odd years.
No foreseeable quality of writing is going to create a superhero on a cultural equal with those three. Especially Superman and Batman. It’s not even a matter of quality. It’s the fact that even our grandparents were listening to Superman’s adventures on the radio and reading them in the Sunday paper. That’s something you just can’t touch, you can’t create the same kind of iconic force because that’s simply not the way the media works anymore. There’s something for everyone in ever sort of entertainment medium these days and comics are a niche market that occasionally make it to a big screen adaptation–the internet means we can share ideas at a rapid pace, but it also means that there’s less a chance of any single new thing, especially something new in a market as very small as that of superhero comics, becoming culturally recognized on as many levels as Superman, Batman, and Spiderman.
But ANYTHING can become iconic if done well, Darth Vader is probably the MOST famous villain in the world (an ICON dare I say…) and he’s only been around for about 30 years. It’s just a matter of being creative and cultivating that character over the years. In a few more years, you could probably add TMNT and Optimus Prime to the “icons” list
You’ll notice also that none of the iconic characters you mentioned are regarded as legacy characters. Bruce Watne IS the Batman (not Az-Bat or Dick-Bat) and the one true Superman is Clark Kent. Technically, the Flash SHOULD be an iconic character (Simple but well designed costume, cool rogues gallery, easy to summarize superpower) but no one knows who the hell he is! (Is it Jay? Barry? Wally? maybe Bart???) Swapping around your characters identity is going to hurt that.
Well you brought it yourself: the costume is iconic. For me, the person within is somewhat unimportant. Flash is a character I know, but I don’t remember who is hidden behind this identity. I know Darth Vader as well, but seriously, I don’t know his history (yup, sorry, I don’t like Star Wars. It tends to make me fall asleep). The only way I remember Clark Kent’s name is because of “Lois and Clark”, my only durable exposition to this myth. For me, Robin is Batman’s sidekick, and I’m not sure it really matters for most people to know there were different boys to impersonate him.
The only notable exception is Batman. Batman is Bruce Wayne, a millionaire orphan, blah, blah, blah… And it’s really sad, ’cause he’s the one to say that he wears a costume to prevent the disappearance of the symbol when the person fighting crime dies.
By the way, I do know Avatar and Ben10, even if I don’t watch the shows.
Actually, Flash is still pretty iconic. Maybe not on the level of Superman or Batman (possibly because he didn’t have his own serial until the 80′s, whereas they started in radio and tv pretty early on). But you can show a picture of him to most folks and they’re probably get the name right, or at very least they’ll remember he’s the guy who runs fast.
And then it doesn’t matter who’s in the costume. It matters to us because we read the books. We know that Wally is like this, and Bart is like that, and Barry is whatever Barry’s supposed to be like these days. But that’s not the icon. A uniform isn’t iconic because it represents a single person–it represents what a person does. The Flash costume is that guy who runs fast and saves the day. Most people know that.
The legacy doesn’t do much to cheapen the brand. Folks not reading comics don’t care. Folks reading comics care so long as their favorite version is in the driver’s seat or at least so long as the story is good. If anything, legacies become a way to reinvent an idea and make it relevant again.
When I’m talking about Superman or Batman as iconic, I don’t mean the actual character of them. Average person buying a Superman shirt in Walmart might know that Supe’s real name is Clark Kent or Kal-El. But mostly he knows the guy with the S is an alien who can fly, fights crime, and stands for Truth, Justice, and the American Way sometimes. The actual personalities behind those symbols have changed so drastically since their inception that they might as well be legacy characters–surely our current Bruce Wayne bears virtually no resemblance to Adam West.
Anything can be iconic, sure. But the stuff that matters usually comes along at an unexpected time, and it’s never something people really think will take off. No one expected Star Wars to really take off the way it did. And once again, Darth Vader represents a lot more than just Anakin Skywalker–he’s every archetypical evil dark lord that needs defeating. TMNT and Optimus Prime? Sure, it’s iconic to us, the nerdier children of the 80′s who will never quite leave behind their toys. But not to our parents or grandparents. Unlikely to our children or grandchildren. Maybe the little geeklets raised by nerds, but 20 years from now, TMNT will be something quaint and nostalgic, still enjoyed by a fringe group but only particularly relevant to kids from thir 80′s-90′s reign.
When you see iconic characters in fiction, 9.9 times out of 10 it’s one person, not a mantle passed down from generation to generation. James Bond, the iconic gentleman spy. One person, not a group of people in MI-6 who all take one the identity. Tarzan: iconic jungle man, AGAIN not a title passed down from one “lord of the apes” to the next.
Are iconic mantles less iconic because they are not a single person? John Q. Public doesn’t even know that Link isn’t the same guy in every game. I personally didn’t know that Jame’s Bond was always the same guy. I’ve only watched Casino Royal and You Only Live Twice, so I didn’t realize I was supposed to be looking at the same person. There have been what? Seven or eight Megamen? You show a guy on the street any one of them and they still know they’re looking at megaman. While I know very little about transformers I’ve heard that others have worn Optimus Prime’s mantle, and yet he’s hardly lost any recognizability for it.
The majority of characters in general aren’t legacy characters, it only follows that the ratio would continue in looking at icons. I see no evidence that having someone else be the icon for a while would in any way harm the degree to which something is iconic. Peter Parker’s not iconic. My mom doesn’t recognize his name or know his face when she sees it. There could be anyone under that mask and it wouldn’t make a difference to her. Wouldn’t even occur to her that someone who used to be under that mask was being replaced. If it was a chick under there she’d probably think something like “Oh neat, a female spider-man!” because spider-man doesn’t mean peter parker to her. It means “guy who dresses in a spider-themed jumpsuit and swings from webs while fighting bad guys”.
If you asked her for the name of the guy under the spider-man mask she’d say Toby Maguire. A year from now she’ll be calling him Andrew Garfield.
I disagree, Peter Parker is quite iconic. The character would’ve NEVER been famous if it was simply because of the red costume and an ability to stick on walls. It was Stan Lee’s desicion to give Pete all the various problems in his home life and the character’s humor that caught on with the readers, and that’s what ultimately propelled him to stardom. Otherwise, he’d be just another strong man in a leotard, and pretty easily forgotten.
Apparantly, you don’t remember all the fan outrage when blond Daniel Craig was first cast as James Bond. That’s because Ian Fleming wrote in his original novel that Bond had black hair, looking similar to Hoagy Carmichael. Visit any Bond forum and you’ll find people still upset about that!
Obviously that’s how he became iconic. I wouldn’t dare to claim otherwise. There is however a certain amount of information decay that occurs as you go further from those who are actually interested in the relevant subject matter.
You ask a sci-fi buff about Darth Vader, and he can tell you the ways he was an amazing and groundbreaking villain all day. You ask someone who doesn’t do the whole sci-fi thing and has never touched the movies about Darth Vader and he doesn’t know any of that. He does however, despite having never watched a Star Wars movie recognize the outfit and know that Darth Vader can choke a guy from a distance. That’s what makes him iconic. The fact that John Q. Public who’s never set foot within ten genre categories of Vader still recognizes the guy and has a rough idea of his schtick.
Your comment about the James Bond message boards comes right back to that. I’m sure that was all real significant to the James Bond fanbase, but James Bond sure as heck didn’t lose any recognizability because of it. James Bond didn’t cease to be a culturally relevant figure because they cast an actor who didn’t look like his depiction in the novels. My dad knows more about James Bond than me, actually enjoying the films to a pretty fair degree and I don’t think he was even aware that this was a problem people were having with the actor.
What do I know about James Bond, with near non-existent exposure? I know he’s a British Spy who’s ridiculously good at his job, a sex god and symbol who always sleeps with the sexy female agent, his villains enjoy elaborate deathtraps and monologues while having a habit of leaving him unsupervised at the moment of death and he answers to someone named “M”. Also he always introduces himself as “Bond, James Bond” and enjoys his drinks “Shaken, not stirred”. Honestly, so long as the actor could conceivably pass for a British male and wore a nice suit I would not think that anything integral to the character’s physical appearance had been changed. I’d be wrong, but I’d be far from the only person who didn’t know that.
Having someone else be Spider-man in an alternate universe set of comics isn’t gonna damage the degree to which Spider-man is iconic anymore than cyborg superman did. Or Thomas Wayne as Flashpoint Batman. Those uninterested in the comics mostly won’t even know about Miles Morales, and those who do won’t question it at all. I take ten people off the street right now, ask them “What do you think of Miles Morales” they say “Who?” I say “Black Spider-man” five of them say “You mean Venom?” and five of them continue to express ignorance.
You talk about how Peter Parker is essential to Spider-man as a hero and how the life of Peter Parker is responsible for Spider-man’s commercial successes, therefore making the move of replacing him a bad decision that alters a timeless classic in ways that infringes on integral characteristics to the character, and everyone who doesn’t take an active interest in these things just hears Pierre Bernard on his Recliner of Rage. It’s all quite accurate, all quite valid concerns, but if you’re talking about Spider-man as an icon he’s not gonna be any less iconic because of this. There is absolutely no danger of Spider-man becoming any less culturally recognizable and relevant due to the introduction of Miles Morales as the new Ultimate Spider-man. The only dangers are to the story, and to the fans.
Furthermore, if we’re talking about it from a business perpective why they’d want to do this with an icon instead of maybe introducing a new antman/giantman, well you need only look to the fact that this is seeing any news coverage at all to have your answer. I myself happened to hear about it last week which lead to my checking out the comic and buying a subscription when I liked what I saw. If they write this Miles kid well then I’ll be sticking around after my twelve months is up and they’ll have themselves a new customer and a new Spider-man fan. From some of what I’ve been reading in this comments board I don’t seem to be alone in this.
I think you kind’ve lost sight of what I was originally saying Gangler. Laura basically was saying that nothing new can be ever be as successfully iconic as what already exists, so why bother creating new things, and that the success is due strictly to the costume and name. I disagreed. For example, Superman didn’t become an icon overnight, at one point early on he was even in danger of cancellation, as he was being outsold by Captain Marvel, a Fawcett comics Superman knockoff. If DC didn’t take legal action, Superman would be nothing but a footnote in history. Eventually, he found his way into films and radio shows of which they always kept his history, friendships, career and whatnot consistent. Ultimately, you have to cultivate a fan base first before it’ll become iconic to “John Q. Public.” If they had they kept changing his identity or appearance or whatever it’s never would’ve happened.
Take my avatar for instance, Mr. Fear is an enemy of Daredevil, but almost nobody knows who he is because they keep killing him off and sticking someone else in the damn suit! (There’s been 4 so far, one of which fought Spidey and Hawkeye instead!) So that’s why I personally don’t care for legacy heroes, not even the white honkey ones like Wally West.
So what I’m saying is that if you want a NEW or lesser known character to become iconic you can’t be switching it around, which is why I feel certain heroes haven’t caught on. (Such as Spiderwoman.) Not sure how you got “I’m scared Miles Morales will destroy Spider-man’s iconography!” from that.
Oh, well sure, there’s a case to be made for that. Sorry, guess I did get a little off track.
I don’t feel that it’s impossible to create an iconic legacy character. Ultimately it comes down to the quality of the work. If they keep bringing new guys into the suit because whatever they’re doing isn’t working then the real problem is that they aren’t figuring out a way to make this guy good or memorable.
However I will cede that it really would just be a better idea to work on having the guy you’ve got work and leave new ideas for a new identity. A, you are at the very least not helping by bringing in some new guy to the suit out of some desire to further him and the new guy would have a better chance of becoming iconic as his own new creation than as “That guy who wore [suit] between [year] and [year]”
Not to mention the reliance on such methods does by its’ nature limit the writing more than it would create benefit it and contributes to an overall stagnation of ideas flowing through the works. There’s no rule that says that everyone with superspeed has to be The Flash.
For that matter the notion that we need an icon is itself detrimental. You don’t generally create something thinking they’ll be an icon, you tell a story and let it happen. So we don’t need to come up with gold every time Batman fights someone not in his established rogues gallery. Just see what you can come up periodically and see what the readers buy. I’m sure the writers would be surprised, after all the Joker was supposed to die in his second appearance and never be seen again, but an editor thought “Hey, he looks like a half-decent character. We might be able to use him again at a later date”. I’ve heard there is some manner of similar story with Robin’s surprising popularity. For ideas that essentially could be summed up as “let’s have a scary clown that kills people” and “let’s give Batman a wisecracking kid” they sure got some mileage out of it.
Which is in fact another reason why bringing in the new characters as new identities is beneficial. We bring in a new batman and we’ve just got robin and the Joker and Bane and all that stuff that was already doing pretty well for itself. We bring in Miles Morales as Spider-man and he’s gonna have the same rogues gallery and have Peter’s old friends as major influences and all that jazz. We bring in Miles Morales as some new guy and we’re bringing in new villains and side characters and talking like Cave Johnson. “Bear with us, we’re just throwing story at the walls to see what sticks”. Inevitably with repetition you’ll create new venues for profit as a company and new culturally recognizable figures. Unfortunately with that comes the risk of failure, and that’s where we have a problem. You introduce your cool new character as Spider-man and you’ve got a readymade audience and selling it is easy. Hard to greenlight a project that’s very likely gonna fail when that same project with a new paintjob is guaranteed a certain level of success.
Sucks, and admittedly I’m new to comics, but if it’s anything like other industries that’s just why you gotta keep your eyes on the smaller companies and independents. Never know who’s gonna be the next guy to come in and create a sensational product now that the previously cool guys have grown fat on their own brands.
Exactly and I agree with 100% of what you said, from a corporate stand point it probably is simply safer to give the customers something already proven then to take a chance on something new.
It’s also nice to see that there are still new readers like yourself getting into comics, between the prices constantly rising and competition from other media I feel like it’s only a matter of time before they go the way of the dodo bird.
Like casting Michael Clark Duncan as the Kingpin. In the comics, Kingpin happened to be drawn as a white man but there was nothing specifically ethnic about him. Contrast that with casting Ving Rhames as Kojak. Being the son of Greek immigrants was a key part of Kojak. Ving is a good actor but he can’t play a Greek more convincingly than Telly Savalas.
I did feel that black kingpin and white kingpin were extraordinarily different people. Their approaches to the crime world, reasons for becoming Kingpin and general backgrounds were hugely different and race was the main reason.
I don’t think that difference is a bad thing. Michael Clarke Duncan was an excellent Kingpin, and probably my favorite thing about the Daredevil movie. But I do get a sense of him as being some other guy.
It kind of works anyway, because “Kingpin” is more of a title than a name. If they have Fisk adopt a white kid and raise him to be the huge white Kingpin we know from the comics I won’t bat an eye.
While the modern day internet people might say “it doesn’t matter”, there are way more than just a few that feel it does. Let’s take the Shortpacked crew. Would it be fine if one day the cast were made Chinese and it wasn’t some dream sequence or “alternate reality”. Ok sure Shortpacked is far from being characters entwined into Americana, but still these are established characters. A person comes to expect certain aspects from what they read. To introduce a new Chinese character who becomes a main character and maybe even takes over some of the “front and center” of strips takes more writing skill in getting the character popular. Not shifting gears cause a wild hair got up the writer’s butt.
I gave up on comics a few years ago due to the “who cares” attitude. There’s no real reason for me to support an industry that only wants to do things for shock value and doesn’t care. Well written stories just are not what matters or established canon. I can’t see supporting ideas that a hand full of other people say “it doesn’t matter”. So I stepped out.
Family Guy did an episode poking fun and had Peter “turn black”. They didn’t change him to be black out of the blue for that episode and all future ones, instead they had Cleveland who became popular in his own right. Heck even DC created Steel rather than making Superman black, and Steel has become a popular character of his own.
But then we are talking the Ultimates universe anyway. The “What If” or “Elseworlds” universe for ADD America to read since the mainstream comics go “too far back to catch up on”. In the end this “shock value” of an idea will be thrown out the window when that universe’s Peter Parker comes back. Another dumb “shock value” idea to make a cheap sale these days… bringing the dead back as if they never were dead.
But that’s all I’m saying on the matter. If it’s that hard for people to understand what so many other people are saying, it’s no point arguing on the internet. Nobody wins anyway since the comment section is usually for attempted but failed comical posts, or people to play “rebel” against the reactions of others.
One of the characters in shortpacked becoming chinese? So how would this work exactly? Like would Ethan for example die, and then a new chinese character would be introduced would would put on the Ethan nametag everytime he marches off to argue with the customers?
You do understand the difference between one person spontaneously changing race vs. a new person taking on an existing alter-ego, yes?
To use your Shortpacked! analogy, it would be like if Amber died, and a new character took on the Amazi-Girl mantle. Which I totally think Willis should do, now that I think of it. It would be a great way to run through a whole bunch of superhero tropes.
Now, if people complained that Amber was an awesome character and they’re sad to see her dead, that’s not inherently racist. That seems to be the point WearyExile is making about Ultimate Peter Parker down below, unfortunate Affirmative Action metaphor aside. If, knowing nothing else but the fact that the new character is biracial, you assume that Willis killed Amber only or even primarily for the sake of bringing biraciality in to the picture… then yeah, that’s getting into racist territory. And if you object on the simple grounds that whiteness is a key part of who Amazi-Girl is, despite there being no actual racial overtones to her identity (unlike, say, Black Panther), that sounds pretty dang racist.
(Of course I say all this as a “modern day internet person,” so maybe it doesn’t count for some reason?)
If the shortpacked cast were to all suddenly magically become asian instead of white, that would bug me. Because it would make no sense. If they were to all suddenly be replaced with asians instead, assuming the new characters were still interesting to read about, I’d be fine with that, aside from occasionally missing the old characters. And that’s kind of the difference here.
Spider-Man is not a character. He is a secret identity worn by Peter Parker, who is a character. Peter Parker must be white, if he was black, it’d be weird. But Spider-Man doesn’t HAVE to be Peter Parker, he can be anyone who happens to have spider themed superpowers who puts on the costume and takes on that identity. And that person who takes up the identity can be black, asian, mexican, russian, etc, because he will not be Peter Parker and is thus free to be his own, different character. And it’s not like Spider-Man doesn’t already have a history of being a non-stereotypical white dude. Spider-Man 2099, created nearly two decades ago, is half-irish, half-mexican. And just like Spider-Man 2099, this isn’t even the original Spider-Man becoming a black guy, it’s the Ultimate version, i.e. alternate reality where things are supposed to be different.
One of my biggest complaints with comics is how time seems to progress, but characters never age. The same guy has been Spider-Man since the 60s. I would much prefer if comics book characters were allowed to age, and retire, and die, permanently, not as just a temporary attention grabbing stunt. And, speaking as a white man, I have no problem letting people who aren’t white men take up the reins of a traditionally white role once that character’s time is done.
The only argument against a different Spider-Man that could possibly have any merit is the argument of giving him a new super hero identity instead of taking on an old one, but the problem with this is two fold. A) Sometimes taking on a previous super hero’s identity just makes sense. Does every Flash have to have a different super hero name when they all have the same power set? And B) nowadays, super heroes who haven’t been around for decades and have a lot of name brand recognition simply don’t sell as well. It’s much harder to create new super hero comic books and have them sell consistently, and sometimes absolutely great characters and books didn’t sell well enough to be continued simply because the star didn’t have a recognizeable super hero name, like Spider-Man.
Your offered scenario amuses me in light of the recently-listed prospect of Arnold (who may well have some Chinese heritage) becoming our new main character.
Plus, just last year I made Billie half-Asian for my Dumbing of Age retooling of this universe, when previously she was all white. Somebody’s hypothetical just became real, twelve months ago.
(I’m not sure that changing Shortpacked! characters’ backgrounds around to diversify is all that necessary anyway, considering my three Asians, my Hispanic, my lesbian, my Automotive-American, and my main character who’s a gay Jew.)
I was wondering about that, and it actually ties in to a point I was wanting to make. If you change a character’s race within the same continuity, yes, of course that’s going to be confusing and jarring. People don’t normally wake up one day with skin a different color than it was when they went to bed. (Of course, people also don’t normally fly about the city in brightly-colored costumes and have super-strength, so let’s not rule out the possibility just because it’s improbable. But anyway.)
However, if you’re retooling/reimagining a continuity, you’ve got some options. Little things about the characters get updated fairly regularly. (If nothing else, if you want a long-running character to still be active in modern-day, minor details like when they were born have to be fudged.) Fans are usually forgiving of changes like these, accepting them as necessities or even improvements (cleaning up inconsistencies, correcting old/incorrect science, etc.) As long as the overall shape of the story remains the same, it’s not a big deal. So the big question is: does changing the character’s race fundamentally change their story? If so, then of course it’s a bad idea. But if not – or if it even helps tell the base story better – then I don’t see why people would be upset.
Or make Static from Static Shock a white kid?
Are you trying to steal work from hard working scots? Grant Morrison already use this idea in Final Crisis. And before that I believe Marv Wolfman in a tie in to Crisis on Infinite Earth years after the fact. For shame stealing ideas from others who stole that idea just to make a joke.
With that scots comment, I’m now imagining the Justice League as ridiculously over the top scotsmen. Batman as a violent glaswegian in particular but everyone speaking in the thickest scottish brogue possible.
Also John Stewart from the JL cartoons as essentially the Demoman from Team Fortress 2.
I miss Milestone. And Dwayne McDuffie.
Rozum did a new Xombi series that’s unfortunately ending, but is really great! He’s also going to be writing a Static ongoing. Here’s hoping they use some more characters. Would love to see more stuff with Iron Butterfly, I always loved her costume.
I will certainly give that a chance. Thank you.
And yeah, I’d like to see more of the rest of those characters as well. The Shadow Cabinet were a pretty interesting lot I’d like to have gotten to know better.
Donald Glover was crazy right for Spider-Man. Why did you remind me of this Willis? I had just stopped being vexed. Now I’m vexed all over again.
Would a black aquaman’s arch enemy still be Black Manta, or would it be White Fish now?
This really is all it takes to make racists angry. I knew someone who hated Lois & Clark because of Dean Cain – he insisted that Superman could not be Hispanic. He did not like it one bit when I pointed out that Superman is the ultimate illegal alien.
Yeah, and “our race” is the last thing Superman is.
…Dean Cain’s not hispanic, he’s half… japanese, I think? Asian. And I’m not sure illegal alien should automatically equal hispanic. (wrote caucasian there the first time by mistake. Whups)
Here’s a shout to all my fellow cracker-japs!
I’m sure that accuracy is the first thing on the mind of most racists.
After all, you want to make sure /how/ someone is different before hating them for being different.
Wasn’t Superman adopted by the Kents? Aside from formally filing immigration papers, I don’t think Clark is illegal. Besides, he crash-landed from an alien ship in the middle of the country. I don’t know what any nation’s policy is as far as a baby washing up on shore, but infants don’t tend to get deported.
And even if you could deport Superman, where exactly are you going to send him?
I honestly think SOME superheroes should be cast to match their traditional race. (Not rigidly so, if there’s a great non-traditional actor than go for him, but at least a historically appropriate enthicity should be given preference.)
OTOH, I want Will Smith to play Reed Richards for a 4rigins film, so what do I know?
Derik, there’s a Mr. Samuel L. Motherf***ing Jackson who would like to argue about that point.
Yes, a classic case of an actor SO GOOD that he justifies overriding the traditional ethnicity of a character.
(I’m just saying first preference, casting directors should have open casting so they have the opportunity for ‘happy accidents’ where they find an actor SO GOOD it’d be a crime not to use them.)
The only characters who should be locked by race are ones that have core character traits based on nationality/race. Colossus, Storm, Luke Cage, etc. Besides that, what’s the big deal? If someone can tell me why Superman’s race matters AT ALL, I will eat my hat.
Hell, considering the historical connotations of the word “Superman”, having him be a blue-eyed white guy is arguably much more uncomfortable than any other race.
Although, the character was actually created by two Jewish dudes, so this certainly wasn’t intentional.
Now that’s an idea for a Superman variant, a blonde & blue-eyed Austrian going by the name Übermensch.
You can almost smell the controversy brewing already.
Here’s the only reason I can think of…
We don’t like change. Many of us automatically argue against it when we get the chance. This should be no surprise on a webcomic populated by geeks and fanboys.
Speaking of geeks, Spiderman has been a white geek longer than I’ve been alive. Race is a pretty important characteristic, so when Spiderman suddenly turns out to be black it strikes to the core of something we were used to. That’s going to make some people happy, upset some people, piss some others off and get a resounding yawn from the majority (that would be me).
That’s not saying that there aren’t a bunch of racists up in arms over this, just that I can see why some people without a racist bone in their body would also object.
“Race is a pretty important characteristic”
See that’s where we’d disagree.
The matter of ethnicity seems to matter more when the costume filled by a white guy is considered for wider array of potential successors. Since we’re still whitewashing casts (21 is a particularly annoying example, since it was based on a real event), I would like to see comics take a more progressive attitude toward this sort of thing.
I realize comic companies are required to make money. Many fans have made it clear they won’t accept “affirmative action” characters when a legacy gets handed down, but they haven’t been too good about embracing diverse groups of non-legacy characters either. This has to change. Getting there is going to be a long, uphill battle, but it should be fought.
I think we can all agree that Mohamed Ali is the Superman of Earth Prime.
“Spiderman has been a white geek longer than I’ve been alive.” See, one of those descriptors is important. The other… is really, really not. The appeal of Peter Parker is that he’s a geek like me. I don’t need him to be a white geek like me; I’ve met black geeks, Hispanic geeks, Middle Eastern geeks, you name it, who are much more like me than non-geeky members of my own race. As long as Spiderman is still the same lovable geek he always was, his skin color is pretty much a non-issue.
I kinda feel she should have added a White Cyborg too.
Oh c’mon, why do we have to have one of them on the team? What’s wrong with everyone being the same?
Yeah. Effin’ cyborgs. Think they’re so great…
You know… this all seems pretty much fine to me. Like… the central identity of all of these superheroes has never been about their ethnicity.
I’m bothered by this.
Not because they’re black, but because Batman doesn’t seem to have a nose under his mask.
So the new Batman is secretly Voldemort? Now that’s a twist.
But if Donglover is Flash, then how can Neil Patrick Harris play the role he was born to play?
Easy, Donald Glover plays Neil Patrick Harris playing the Flash.
Just beacuse Glover is the Flash doesn’t mean that NPH can’t be the Trickster.
It…it was the Trickster you were talking about, right? Blonde hair, blue-eyed, fast-talking, sleight-of-hand-using carny con-man? Tends to hang around with a music-obsessed audiophile.
But Mark Hamill is the Trickster, and always will be.
He’s crazy!Trickster, not smarmy-and-canaille Trickster. A good Tricks, but not much like the James Jesse of comic fame.
No asians on the team, is this just the Blaxploitation version of the Justice League?
why is the arrow pointing at Flash’s foot? it looks a little off but I don’t see what it’s trying to point out.
I think the arrow is indicating that the scene on top is what is on the piece of paper Robin was drawing on.
If Donald Glover can’t be Spider-Man, then he should be the Flash! Willis has spoken.
Only if he’s Barry Allen.
If Donald Glover can’t be Spider-Man, then he should be the Flash! Willis has spoken.
I am shocked and disappointed, Willis,
…that Wonder Woman is not wearing cargo shorts.
Also, while I want to see more color in comics, I do think original characterization should be respected. Neil Patrick Harris should play Barry Allen and some one with red hair and green eyes should play Wally West. There should be a black speedster with his own identity- like Jon Stewart who was the best green latern ever, accept no sustitutes. Or latino or asian or mixed race. Also, where are the lady hero movies? There weren’t enough females in the 2011 superhero movies for a volleyball game. I’m tired of all the movies I want to see not passing the bechdel test. Where is Storm: Origins? Mystique: Origins? Wonder Woman? Huntress? Hawkgirl? Jean Grey? Rouge- not played by a whiney teenager who gave up all her power so she could bang a boy?
I would just love to see a Black Canary movie.
OMFG, YES! Black Canery would be awesome!
Black Canary is great, but a movie focused on her would be a monstrosity. I don’t want to see a movie where the superheroine’s ability is to ABUSE MY EARDRUMS. That’s one hero I’d rather read than watch.
I really don’t think Informed ear abuse would be that hard a thing to pull off.
I don’t think it would be that hard to do it right. I don’t think Hollywood often cares about doing things right. There’s my problem.
A fair and accurate point.
I liked that about Rogue in X3, one of the few things I did like about that movie. Life without physical contact can be downright traumatic to a lot of people, and if someone wants to suppress that limitation, it should be her right.
As the comics liked to make mutant hatred a metaphor for racism and the movies made it one for homophobia, Rogue’s case that compared better to circumstances experienced by the transgendered.
Oddly enough, after watching Captain America, I did think it would be interesting if they ever adapted Truth: Red, White & Black.
Personal favorites: PC Wounder Woman, Aqua Man, & Flash.
This one made me giggle.
Inspiration! Anthony T. “Tony” Todd would make a great Superman! He has that odd mix of sincer and eerie that would make the performance different and captivating.
Hmmm… He would work really well for a lot of these characters, now that I think of it.
Shouldn’t this team have a white guy with electrical superpowers? White Lightning, or something like that?
That wouldn’t make racists mad!
Make him gay… with a black lover.
Since the Venn Diagram for hardcore racists and homophobes looks more or less like a single circle, this should cause some heads to explode.
The year is 1930. After a freak accident with his still, bootlegger Apollo Shiner gains the power to turn any liquid alcoholic. Now he fights police and criminals alike as… WHITE LIGHTNING!
I wouldn’t have cast Glover in the film either, he looks nothing like Peter Parker and making sure the actor who played the part actually looked like the character would be important to me.
Put bluntly attention to detail > other considerations.
Can Danny Glover be his grandpa or is he “too old for this s***?”
Since the half black half hispanic spiderman isn’t Peter Parker but rather a successor named Miles Morales, there’s no worry about detail to original character. It’s a new original character. They aren’t just making Peter Parker black.
Also with a (half) black spiderman, will Jacob find the strength to rejoin the cast?
It’s racist to not want established characters killed and replaced just for the sake of adding the minorities that comic books lack? I’d say it’s pretty racist to do that just for the press attention. And I know it’s PROBABLY not the case, but making Miles half black and half hispanic immediately made me think of a business hiring a black-asian-hispanic-middle eastern lesbian paraplegic so they could fill a few check boxes on their affirmative action paperwork.
What I would like to see is Miles Morales become a new original hero. Let Parker be Spider-man, and inject some diversity AND some original ideas into comic books for a change. I’m tired of comic book writers thinking the only way they can add minorities is to kill off and replace existing characters.
Spider-Man 2099 would like a word with you. His real name is Miguel and he’s been around for almost 20 years now.
And I don’t see anyone complaining that Jay Garrick was replaced with Barry Allen, who was replaced with Wally West, who was replaced with Bart Allen, who was replaced with Wally West again. Not to mention the many Green Lanterns (one of them black, and at least a few actually green).
New superheroes have been taking the names and legacies of old ones since the Silver Age (in fact, that’s basically what started the Silver age). Everyone from Mr. Terrific to the Atom. It’s about 55 years to late to start complaining now.
Spider-man 2099 was a case of it done RIGHT. He wasn’t replacing an original character, and aside from the name and somewhat similar powers, he was an original character in his own right.
I don’t know about Jay to Barry, but I know many complained when Wally replaced Barry and when Kyle replaced Hal. I actually complained when they sidelined Wally to bring back Barry. The Barry to Wally change I didn’t mind, because it was an established character replacing another established character and it made sense.
It’s not about legacies – it’s about killing off characters just for the sake of throwing in minorities. Do you think they really would have killed off Ultimate Spider-man to replace him with another white kid?
How did Spider-Man 2099 replace the original Spider-Man any less than New Ultimate Spider-Man? And in 2099′s case, he actually WAS a replacement for the actual, real-universe Spider-Man, rather than just in an alternate universe!
2099 replaced a long dead (by his time at least) character who was still in his own comics. 2099 didn’t do away with the original Spider-Man. Ultimate Peter Parker is dead, not going to be in any titles, and has been replaced entirely. You could argue that 616 Pete is still around, but I see 616 Peter and Ultimate Peter as two entirely different characters.
If Miles replaced Peter somewhere down the line and we still had Ultimate Peter Parker/Spider-Man stories, that would be different.
Y R U RACIST?
I kid. I kid.
“Do you think they really would have killed off Ultimate Spider-man to replace him with another white kid?”
Yes, I do. There have been plenty of times a character has been killed off and replaced with another of the same race. Probably has happened more times than doing it with another race.
Right now all we really know about Miles is that A) he’s the new Ultimate Spider-Man and B) he’s mixed race. That’s it. So how can you really say he’s not “an original character in his own right”? We haven’t even met him yet. 100% of what we know about him is his name and race. Hell, sounds a lot more original to me than the Ultimate Spider-Man they just killed, who was initially “Spider-Man but a bit younger to match the movies better”.
Saying Spidey 2099 was an orignal character unlike Miles is a little silly. He didn’t start out any more original. All we knew about him before he actually started appearing in issues was that he was Spider-Man in the future.
I had this whole thing about how Miguel was different from Peter but I realized we learned all of that AFTER he first appeared, so I’m going to throw up my hands and say you’re right. XD I hope we see some different powers out of him at the very least – I was already disappointed that he had spider sense. But I will wait until after his first five issues to totally blast him for being “just another Spidey”.
I’m not racist but whenever a black guy gets to do anything I immediately think of Affirmative Action.
And whenever someone has a dissenting opinion in a matter concerning anyone of another race, they’re automatically labeled racist as a way to win the argument.
If the Ultimate universe had STARTED OUT WITH Miles Morales as Spider-man, I would have no problem. Hell, if they killed off the main universe Spidey to replace him I wouldn’t care (I hate 616 Spider-man ). What bothers me is killing off a good character and replacing him just to grab headlines. Ultimate Nick Fury is black – he STARTED black in the Ultimate universe and they were able to make him different enough from the 616 version to make an awesome character. And you damn well better believe that I’d be just as upset if they killed him off to replace him with ANYONE else. (Samuel L. Fury is awesome ^_^)
Miles could turn out to be a great character. It doesn’t make what they did to Peter Parker any better though, and it’s still unnecessary. Jaime Reyes is a fantastic character for DC Comics – but he would have been just as fantastic if they hadn’t killed Ted Kord or if he’d been an entirely new hero instead of Blue Beetle.
Not everything is about race.
I’ve read that they planned too kill both Ted and Ultimate Peter and that coming up with characters to replace them with wasn’t decided until afterward. Actually, I think that Giffen was given a choice of whether or not he wanted to create a legacy Beetle and that he ultimately decided to do it.
I always liked that they made Jaime different enough from Ted that Ted COULD come back with him around with no problems. Now if only they’d take care of the actual coming back part.
If Spidey wasn’t killed off to replace him with a minority, more power to them…although that’s still just killing him off to get the “Spider-Man Killed” headlines.
I’d love to see Ted brought back as a mentor for Jaime. Keep Jaime as the Blue Beetle but have Ted in a support role like Bruce in Batman Beyond.
As long as Uncle Booster drops by to visit them every now and then
You should probably read this: http://tytempletonart.wordpress.com/2011/08/06/ultimate-spider-man-bun-toons-yay/
Read it. Didn’t apply to me and it took the same “call everyone who disagrees a racist” stance that you seem to be taking.
That one showed Cassandra Cain/Batgirl, right? Did you make a comic about how racist people were when they were upset that Stephanie Brown replaced her?
The link doesn’t actually say everyone who dislikes the change is bigoted, just that “some” of the negative reaction has taken the form of “shockingly bigoted” comments. And some of it definitely has.
From my read of your comments, the comic does address several of your points — for example, “[I]t’s about killing off characters just for the sake of throwing in minorities. Do you think they really would have killed off Ultimate Spider-man to replace him with another white kid?” Panel 2 with the beige background has a whole host of superheroes who have been killed off and replaced, and all of the replacements are visibly white, with the possible exceptions of Batman and the Hulk. The implication of Panel 3, which only shows three characters who were replaced by non-whites, would seem to imply that it is, in fact, more common to kill off a Spider-Man and replace him with another white kid.
The comic also addresses what seems to be your point with this sentence: “2099 didn’t do away with the original Spider-Man. Ultimate Peter Parker is dead, not going to be in any titles, and has been replaced entirely.” Panel 4 shows many other heroes who have been killed off or crippled before this point.
The point of the comic is, essentially, “All of this has happened before, multiple times, usually with much less noise. Why are people so outraged?”
Your central point is not that non-white ethnicities don’t have a place in comics, but that the writers should be able to create more characters to add them in. I agree with that to a certain point, but I feel like it’s mostly not how DC or Marvel works. They’ve been writing with these “big” heroes since approximately forever. There has probably been a superhero or supervillain for literally every potential power source / motif, even if most of them were only used briefly, or were quickly lost to obscurity in the wake of more popular characters. We’re talking 70+ years for some of this stuff, it’s actually not that unreasonable to imagine that, to some extent, it’s all been done by now. Even if something is a completely new spin on a concept, it’s probably not going to be a completely new concept.
I also think it’s very easy to fall into the trap of thinking that killing off a white hero and replacing him or her with a minority hero is automatically “PC” or a grab for media attention — but you have to stop and realize that by saying this, you are also saying that no one could possibly genuinely want to write about anything but a stock white dude under that mask unless they were benefiting cynically from it, and that is not only racist but also painfully sad.
You really don’t get the difference between replacing a non-white character in mainstream comics with a white character and replacing a white character in mainstream comics with a non-white character, do ya? That might not be racism, since you object to that notion, but it’s certainly prejudice and inexcusable naïveté at the very least.
So if I have this right, you have no problem with legacy characters, and you have no problem with characters of differing ethnicity filling the roles of characters that were traditionally a particular race, but it’s when these two elements combine that your objections surface.
Do I have that right?
You have it wrong.
Darn, thought I had it.
Are you actually just pissed off about the death of ultimate parker in general, and frustrated because it’s being made an issue of race rather than an issue of having lost an incredibly beloved character for some schmuck you’ve never heard of and have no faith or interest in yet for reasons that likely come down to money, what with corporations being what they are?
That….yeah, kind of. XD
I hate to see ANY beloved character replaced. I hated the deaths of The Question (Vic) and Blue Beetle (Ted) but found myself loving their replacements (not that I don’t still want them to eventually make a comeback in some form or other). I’m thinking of possibilities like Peter learning there’s someone else like him, Miles taking up a similar yet different identity, the two working togther, etc – anything that wouldn’t necessitate killing a character who for me has far surpassed his main universe counterpart. And whether Miles grows on me or not (and actually his debut in Ultimate Fallout shows promise), I’d be just as bothered if they decided to bring back Peter by killing Miles off rather than put him in a new identity (Ryan Choi anyone?).
I can get behind that. He was a really cool character. Truth be told I’ve never liked Peter Parker at all. He just rubs me entirely the wrong way. So when I heard about this development my thoughts were “Sweet! I can watch Parker die and then get all the cool of Spider-man without any of the aggravation that is Peter!”
When I read the story though it was actually really moving. He was a really sympathetic character and I actually teared up when reading his last words. After that I went and read all of Ultimate Spiderman, and it was fantastic, and then I bought a subscription once I confirmed that it would be the same writer who’s been doing the series for ten years. He’s the kind of character you root for and pity and admire and want to emulate. Makes me wonder if I could be a better person. I don’t think I’ve had anything I’ve just been that excited to read in a while. Pleasant surprise. Sad that his part of the story is over. Would’ve been nice if bringing in this new character didn’t mean getting rid of the old.
btw, you missed the point of the affirmative action comment entirely.
Your avatar is now half-black, half-samoan. DOUBLE AFFIRMATIVE ACTION!
Guess I need to explain this after all (and then I should probably stop, I’m commenting way too much).
The point I was making was that the first thing I thought of when I heard the new Spider-Man was biracial was how corporations (especially news stations ) hire biracial employees to make up for the lack of diversity in their workforce. Getting two or more of their minorities in one rather than actually having a diverse employee pool of blacks, hispanics, etc. So yeah, basically I was just making fun of Marvel’s attempts at diversity.
One of my favorite comedians put it best: “Corporate America doesn’t like to hire a lot of minorities, so they hire all of their minorities in one go.”
Right. And when the first thing you think when you hear of biracial guys getting jobs is Affirmative Action…
Any progress for minorities is illegitimate by default, only to be disproven later, maybe.
That’s not what I said at all. Stop putting words into my mouth.
I didn’t think of affirmative action first, I thought of corporations abusing affirmative action. I never said anything about affirmative action itself or minorities. What I was talking about is corporations trying to game the system. But if you want to know what I think of AA – quite frankly I think the program is racist because it pretty implies that minorities can’t get ahead without hand holding which is stupid and entirely wrong. Unfortunately, a lot of corporations need it because the idiots at the top mostly hire white males.
I just love demented knee-jerk reactions to perceived racism. Anyone can win any argument if they call the other person a racist.
AA acknowledges that minorities are at a disadvantage NOT because their race makes them (insert negative trait here), but because of the history of repression and the still present social and economic handicaps they face due to not being white. It’s to address a social inequality, not a personal or individual deficiency. There’s a big difference here.
Also, out of curiosity, why is pointing out the racist elements of someone’s argument considered an underhanded trick to win? Aren’t you supposed to call out racism when you see it?
I’m not sure what the critical difference is between first thinking of affirmative action or corporations abusing affirmative action, when learning of a bi-racial person getting a job. In fact, I’m pretty sure that was my point. If a bi-racial hero makes somebody first think of “corporations gaming the system,” that’s my entire point right there, giftwrapped.
Think we’ve reached the comment tree limit or something, this is a reply to Willis:
I’d think that would be more a reflection on how I see corporations and society treating race rather than some prejudice I supposedly have. When I see a white comic book company with white writers and white characters suddenly killing off a white character to replace him with a biracial character that hasn’t appeared in the comic before, I think that race is a motive. Sue me.
Here’s the thing: Comic-book companies kill superhero “secret identities” all the time for no reason other than it’s a proven money-maker. Thinking of all the superhero deaths recently, I can’t think of any besides this one where people looked for a reason outside of “death = sales.”
To me, it seems just as plausible as anything that Marvel decided first to kill Parker, then wondered who to replace him with, and eventually chose a new, biracial character. The process could have gone the other way, but leaping to the one assumption, yes, smacks of racism.
Don’t have any problem with race. Do have problems with Wonder Woman being overweight. She should look like Tyra not Oprah.
But… Oprah is far more powerful.
Then Oprah can be Amanda Waller, because The Wall is THE most powerful (read:awesome) character in DCU.
Makes you wonder who’d win in a fight between Amanda Waller and Squirrel Girl.
We’re getting into ‘Divide by Zero’ territory there, my friend. And yet, I want to see it happen, now, tho it brings us all our DOOM.
The fans would win.
…Yeah, because only racists have a problem when a character they love is replaced by someone else. That’s absolutely why only black people were angry when Kyle Rayner became Green Lantern, you know, hating on whitey.
Kyle is half-hispanic! And more awesome than Hal in every way.
I do have a preference for Kyle, though I only started following Green Lanturn during Hal’s breakdown.
To me, it was an awesome fall from grace story.I wounder if I might have shared in the hatedom of it if I had started reading earlier.
Hey look, it Icon.
“Hey look, it’s Icon”.
I type bad.
Now, I’m gonna admit straight up I don’t read the Spiderman comics, but…isn’t Spiderman from Queens? One of the most ethnically diverse areas in the country, in one of the country’s most ethnically diverse cities? Meaning it would kind of make some sense that there would be a non-white superhero from that area?
Oh right: blah blah tradition blah blah affirmative action blah im not racist but blah blah blah.
Queens is 40% white. Eek, white Peter Parker IS a minority!
I hesitate to point out that Canada recently won a majority government with only 40% of the popular vote. It depends on what the other 60% is composed of. Sure, the majority of people in Queens are not caucasian, but that doesn’t meant that caucasians are not the majority.
I’ve always wanted to see a non-white Wonder Woman. I still think Gina Torres could convincingly kick ass in that silly costume.
Well, the TV series of Wonder Woman in the 1970s starred Lynda Carter. Even though she appeared mainly white (at least to me) she is half Mexican. In the US (I’ll presume you’re from the US, forgive me if you’re not) lots of people think Mexican or Latino is some kind of race. By default most people think Latinos/Mexicans aren’t white. Therefore, Lynda Carter could technically be your nonwhite Wonder Woman.
Honestly, it’s not as simple as just casting Donald Glover as Peter Parker (and not Miles Morales) because then you have to consider the REST of the cast. 9Are his adopted parents May and Ben also black? Presumably.) but what of Flash thompson and J.J. Jameson. If they remain white guys, suddenly their “bullying” takes a racist edge. (J.J. becomes less comic relief and turns more bumbling villain) and Flash who eventually becomes Peter’s friend becomes far harder to redeem (once labeled a racist, always a racist. Certain actions simply will dog a character forever, such as Ant-Man beating his wife, the character will never live that down.)
So it’s not as simple as “why can’t so-and so be ______?” You actually have to reassemble the ENTIRE mythology. At that point the character becomes different enough that he’s not the same hero that people liked in the first place.
But Jameson hates Spider-Man without even knowing what race he is! Because, you know, his entire body is covered with costume. Jameson isn’t especially bullying to Peter any more than he is anyone else. And remember, Robbie Robertson is practically Jameson’s best friend. If Peter were black and Jameson remained white, all other things remaining the same, I don’t think there would be any credible claims of racial bullying.
True, but I’m referring to the AUDIENCE possibly making that judgment call,
not Jameson himself. He doesn’t know the skin color of the man in the suit, but we the viewers do, and consciously or subconsciously may find ourselves making that connection.
So it’s not as simple as just changing the race of the lead character (unless he’s an entirely different person, ala Miles Morales) you have to consider the rest of the cast as well.
There is a hilarious issue of She-Hulk that delved into this.
What’s the issue number?
I forget the issue number, but here’s the page in question.
Still one of my most favorite bits.
Wasn’t one of the main reasons JJJ hated Spiderman was because he wears a mask?
It’s been described through out the years that deep down Jameson resents Spidey for being the man he (J.J.) wishes he could be.
But in the first appearance, J.J.’s anger was more directed towards Spidey saving his astronaut son John Jameson when the Chameloen sabotaged his space capsule. J.J. thought he was trying to steal the spotlight from his son, and Spidey may have intentionally rigged things to look like a hero.
I think you’re making some pretty severe leaps there. I’ve been bullied by a lot of people, but rarely for my race. Generally being a pudgy nerd with awkward social graces was sufficient for that. Just because a black kids being bullied by a white guy doesn’t mean racism, and they’d have no problem conveying it. It would be as simple as having flash call Peter words like “Nerd” and “Dweeb” and criticize all the things he always criticizes instead of suddenly changing his routine to include a shocking new vocabulary and horribly offensive views.
J Jonah Jameson acts the way he does around every single person. He doesn’t target Peter specifically. He’d be the least prone to appear racist from that behavior out of everybody. It wouldn’t even register as anything related to Peter, let alone anything racial.
I thought aunt may and uncle ben were actually his aunt and uncle, with Ben being one of his parents siblings. If he’s adopted then there’s no reason they’d need to be anything other than white, and if we decide they’re black then I really don’t see how that would be a problem or change anything.
Ben is blood relations, May isn’t. So you have to consider whether to make her black or have it as a interracial relationship. (Which is fine, but again given the time period they met in this was considered a bit “taboo.” These experiences ARE going to influence how the character’s behave. It’s a ripple effect, and a good writer will have to consider such things. When May and Ben met she was being courted by another man, who was more financially well off, where as Ben worked as a carny. It was during the Depression era. May and Ben are his adopted parents in that they were awarded custody of Pete when his true parents died overseas.
So, where’s White Cyborg?
I mean, there’s no reason that Robin shouldn’t be pissing everyone off rather than just certain groups.
We like to call him Red Tornado.
Red tornado isn’t white, he’s red.
Unless you’re talking about the ORIGINAL Red Tornado, who was a woman, and one of the very first female superheroes.
Those costumes don’t look “moderny” enough. If you are going to change the characters’ ethnicity you should also change the costumes as well.
They need more lines. To go faster.
That pic made me smile.
I approve of the Wonder Woman and Aquaman!
I’m cooler with Barry Allen being black than with Peter Parker, because Barry has no real important biological family in his backstory that would also need to be changed along with him.
Parker was still white when he died in Ultimate Spider-Man.
Unless someone pulled a switcheroo on us, the corpse under the Peter Parker gravestone is of Anglo-Saxon descent.
The newcomer with the Spider-Man costume != Peter Parker.
I can’t stress this enough. I really, really can’t.
but this is more about Donald Glover not getting to be Peter Parker than Miles Morales
I will admit I am not a big comics fan so my opinion is not well educated in that respect. However, I dislike what they are doing with Spiderman. Not for any racial or story-telling reasons. Simply, because Spiderman has (in the mainstream to my knowledge) pretty much always been the white geek of super heroes. So it feels like as a “mostly” white geek that I’m losing a character I identify with.
Granted people of different racial and social (read: non-geeks) groups certainly deserve super heroes they can identify with. A black Captain america sounds like a good idea, Superman could be any color at all (since he is an alien). I thought the Muslim Batman was a really good choice as well. But I don’t identify with those characters as much as I do Peter.
I realize that they are “replacing” Peter with an entirely different character, which is fine. In fact I am sure a “mixed-race” nerd super hero would be pretty cool. I loved watching Static Shock. I just don’t understand why he cant be his own superhero. This is probably due to my professed lack of understand about comics and Legacy characters. All in all I am sure the New Spiderman will do great and will be an interesting take. But for me a nerdy, white Peter Parker will always be the ‘real’ Spiderman.
I get where you’re coming from, but the problem I have with this… ‘Argument’ doesn’t sound right, but it’s the best word I can think of.
The problem I have with this argument is that, as a nerdy white guy, if I don’t identify with Miles, I could always go check out Peter in one of the other dozen versions. Or reread Ultimate with Peter. Or watch/read one of the thousand other shows/movies/comics with a thousand variants on the ‘nerdy sarcastic white dude’ archetype. If I want to find someone Like Me engaging in wish fufillment, I could pretty much walk outside and trip over something that feels like it was written for me.
I can’t honestly say the same thing applies to, say, a black/latino geek. So I’m pretty comfortable having him come over and play with my toys, so to speak.
I’m not sure if this comment still applies to yours, or even if it makes sense, but it’s what I think.
I have more thoughts on it.
Even if it is a purely cynical moneymaking exercise, there are still black/latino/black and latino geeks who’ll get a sense of empowerment out of Spiderman being Like Them, which I think is more important than whatever motivated the people who paid for the ink and paper.
I don’t generally voice my opinion on this subject because I don’t like adding fuel to a distasteful sort of fire.
I’m not upset that the new Ultimate Spider-Man is black and/or Hispanic.
I’m not upset that there’s a new Ultimate Spider-Man.
I am however a bit upset about Marvel resorting to the cheap tactic of killing off a character for attention and publicity, something that has plagued comics in general for quite some time and the Ultimate universe in particular over the last few years.
And that the character they chose to kill off was Ultimate Peter Parker, who people generally agreed was the best character in the Ultimate universe.
I don’t mind Miles Morales’ existence, I wish him the best of luck in his comic book adventures, if the former Spider-Man’s life and death is any indication, he’s going to need it.
I really wish Pete had just gotten de-powered and forced into retirement, instead of the whole dying tragically thing, he could have even mentored the new guy, how great would that have been?
I’m bothered by the fact that Ultimate Peter was killed off too, though I don’t think a de-powered Peter Parker would have just ‘retired’. He’d find a way to keep going.
Like, TRAINING A NEW SPIDER-MAN, see how well that works?
Like Bruce Wayne in Batman Beyond only more puns.
He’d keep helping people, but that might not mean costumed crime fighting anymore. He was never someone who limited himself to that kind of stuff. He had the power to help people out that way, and felt he had the responsibility to do so, but unpowered Peter might not feel the need to go swinging across town to fight electro every time the guy causes trouble.
He might pursue the reporting angle and bring to the public eye the misdeeds of the wicked. He seemed to admire Mr Urich a lot for doing that, and at times showed a bit of a nack for such methods himself. Jameson certainly seemed to see something there, and that’s saying something. He’d definitely continue working towards his goal of becoming a biochemist and curing diseases diseases regardless of whatever else he happened to be doing.
If we’re assuming that he really is that attached to that particular method of helping people then I suppose it would certainly be within his abilities to set up a new costumed crime fighting career. He was able to put together the web shooters, though his father started the compound does seem to have enough of an aptitude and understanding of such matters that he could put together a new set of gadgets that he could use for vigilante work. The degree to which he understands Tony Stark’s work alone is telling in that regard. It would be really cool to see Peter as the low-budget tech wizard hero. Or he could go along the lines of his biochemical knowledge and work on a way to fix the problems with the venom suit plans and resume his work once he’d figured out how to make one that didn’t need to eat people. If he studied the Oz formula it might well be within his abilities to work out the problems with that and refine it or retool it towards his own ends.
The possibility also exists that he could work in any of those capacities, but under the employ of S.H.I.E.L.D. in order to equip the nations next heroes.
As a whole I really can’t see any direction that he could have gone in after being depowered that wouldn’t have been really cool to read. Really brings to light what a shame it is that it ended the way it did. So much potential there.
I have no beef with people who are sad/angry that Peter Parker is dead.
See, this is an issue I have mixed feelings about. (not the JL comic, the actual Spider-man debate). I’m totally okay with a black “Spider-man”, and whatever they’re doing with this new “Miles Morales” character. He’s a new character and I’m excited to see what they do with him. I for one will continue reading “Ultimate Spider-man” same as ever.
What I wouldn’t be okay with, and this is what Donald Glover was proposing, was making Peter Parker black. That’s not a new character. That’s just changing a specific character that has existed for 50+ years into something else. Being black or white isn’t necessarily important to Peter Parker’s characterization, but I myself being a nerdy white kid, grew up with Peter Parker as a role model because he was also a nerdy white kid. And I’m sure I’m not the only one in that 50+ year legacy who felt that way.
They should make more prominent positive black characters, absolutely. The “Mantle” of heroes doesn’t have to have anything to do with race, so a character with a new ethnicity taking up a mantle once worn by white character shouldn’t bother anyone. But actually changing a pre-established character, that’s nothing to get really MAD over, but it can be a little irksome.
See “Tristan J’s” comment above yours, same avatar. He makes a lot of really good points about the mentality of having lost out on someone you can identify with.
Like I said, I have no problem with Miles Morales, and what they’re doing with the passing of mantles. Thus I will continue reading USM happily. My problem was with the hypothetical event of making Peter Parker specifically black. It’s not really the same thing. Various minorities SHOULD have the luxury of more positive role models and further exposure in mainstream media. I’m all for that. And they can even adopt the mantles of once-white characters and it shouldn’t be a big deal as long as the story is good.
But taking an established existing character and changing it is always going to bother people to various degrees. Whether it’s a race issue, or giving Lois Lane red hair, or just not drawing those sweat armpit webs on Spider-man’s costume.
For example: the only thing that makes me angry in the actual comic above is the way Willis drew Superman’s “S”-Symbol! C’mon man! That thing’s important!
I wonder if folks got pissed when the Fleischer cartoons established that Superman could wholesale fly, not just jump like in the comics.
If it did, would that make them bad people?
Also, are you implying that changing a white character to a black character is analogous to trading the ability to jump for the ability to FLY? That’s like a set-up for a bad Dane Cook joke.
Haha, I see what you did there. Now if I’m angry, I must be a racist!
How much did the emperor pay you for those clothes?
Does Robin drawing the Justice League as black people make you angry?
Actually nu.. I’m happy as long as Aquaman has a beard.. but I’m mad that she wants to make racists mad! Those guys are mad all the TIME! They need to chill. Hmm wait, maybe I’m not mad at that. I ain’t even mad.
I’ve never been a huge JLA fan; JSA has always been my preferred group.
But if for no other reason, DC should be hung by their toenails for taking away Stephanie Brown’s run as Batgirl and replacing her with Barbara Gordon.
You will PAY for this DC; oh how you’ll PAY!
Black flash would run so much faster than white flash
Right, yep, this is it. This is the sentence I needed to prove to myself that I have no idea how to react to racially charged comments.
And black Batroc the Leaper, fuhgeddaboudit.
I believe they(he? it?) will. Eventually.
Once they’re retiring the Flash.
… wait, is there a superhero/villain called White Flash?
I am shocked that it took twenty four hours for someone to make a comment about black flash’s running speed.
The thought of a dark-skinned, curly-haired Wonder Woman kind of makes me smile a bit.
As has been stated above, she looks more like she’s from the Mediterranean region of the world in the image above than in her regular comics.
Which is why it makes me smile.
Lol, pretty good Willis, pretty good.
I am actually of those that like the change. This new story with the death of Peter and the emerge of a ‘finally’ different Spiderman is weird and exhilarating. And you know why?
Because for 10 years Bendis knows what the heck he is doing. And he is the head in this whole change.
I like the effort and I am sure I am going to love the new stories.
I so hope 10 years from now when we think of Ultimate universe, we have Morales embedded in our minds as that universe’s Spiderman. This is going to rock!
So, uh, I’ve read through the entire series in like… three days. And now I’m caught up. I think that’s a new record for webcomic reading for me.
I hate the arbitrary switching of a character’s race. Why is it ok for it to go one way, but if you took a long established minority character and made them white it would be wrong? Either it is all ok or never ok. most of the time it is never needed. If is a superhero mantle like Flash or a Green Lantern, then I have no problem. GL is part of a police group so it makes sense to be diverse. Wally taking over for his uncle is fine. They are family.
But just changing any characters race outta the blue is well seems wrong to me. Like a few years ago there was an all black version of the Honeymooners. Does that mean I can do an all white version of Good Times, Sanford and Son, or The Jeffersons? Or how about a white version of Steel or Luke Cage? Seems to me if it goes one way, it should go the other too.
I have no problem with a radical update to a character. The one good example of a race change that improves the material is Nick Fury. Goes from average white spy to Samuel L. Jackson. He got a major upgrade.
This new spidey seems like it is just a PC minority filling quota attempt.
The problem with your general logic here, is that you’re treating it like Peter Parker, nerdy camera-jockey extraordinaire, got bit by a radioactive NAACP member.
To use the Green Lantern example: this isn’t Hal Jordan -becoming- John Stewart, it’s John Stewart getting Hal Jordan’s title. Spider-Man as a mantle, not a man(-spider).
By your ‘outta the blue’ example, you should really, really hate the white Nick Fury => Samuel L. ‘Motherf**king’ Jackson transition.
You do realize the first Flash wasn’t related to Barry or Wally, right? Why was it okay to go from white Jay Garrick to unrelated white Barry Allen, but not from white Jay Garrick to a hypothetical unrelated black Barry Allen? What if Jay Garrick or Barry Allen had a cousin who was black? Could he legitimately become the Flash, or would it be wrong because of race?
And there’s that’ “non-white getting a role automatically makes me think of Affirmative Action” thing again, but now with the extra fun of “PC” thrown in, as if that were the hugest crime. Oh no, someone reminded us that non-white straight Christian males existed, and that maybe we shouldn’t be jerks to them! What a horrible thing.
There’s already a white version of Steel. We call him Iron Man.
I wish they would do white versions of Steel and Cage. Anything to address the vast dearth of white super heroes in the industry.
The answer to your first question is pretty simple: because if you took a long-established “minority” character and made them white, you would be removing from one-fifth to the ENTIRETY of that minority’s representation in superhero comics. Meanwhile, replacing a white guy with a black guy would make no visible dent in the ranks of white guys: they’d still have the market cornered.
Seriously: if half the superheroes were white and half were black, you could swap races back and forth and it wouldn’t matter. But it’s more like, 97% of superheroes are straight white [implicitly or explicitly Protestant] men and the remaining 3% is divided up between *all other races and genders and sexual identities and religions*.
“Captain Planet” did diversity better than just about anything else mainstream; one African kid, one white North American kid, one white Russian kid (but SOVIET Russian, so her existence was a whole other controversy), one Chinese kid, and one Brazilian kid. When most other shows do “diversity”, they cheat — a lot.
Think of the first season of “Power Rangers”, because that is the typical “trying to do diversity” lineup. One black boy, one Asian girl, one white girl, three white boys. We’ve got six characters, and they opted to make half of them white boys, keeping all forms of “minority” very firmly *in* the minority. This is what “looks” right to us. Heck, there’s often only *one* girl on a six-person team.
Do you see how, even in this example, it would’ve been easy to up the diversity quotient without the white boys watching at home feeling left out? And how, conversely, replacing even one of those “minority” characters with a white guy would’ve made the team *really* lopsided? That’s the difference between replacing a member of the majority and replacing a member of the minority.
And this is just keeping it to the math.
Is it racist if I when saw the black JLA and automatically assumed that Flash was Kenyan? Stupid Powerthrist videos…
That sounds less racist and more…pavlovian?
Letting yourself be led by catchy media could theoretically lead to racism, but I personally don’t think racism happens in your head any more than rape or murder happens in your head. It’s all about how you respond to the thoughts. If deep in your heart you think, say, Canadians are inferior to all other races and yet (possibly in pity for their inferiority) you treat them with precisely the same dignity and kindness you show every other race, I’d say you are for all intents and purposes not a racist. If you think they’re inferior and treat them as inferior people you’re a huge racist.
If I recall correctly, Superman got the power of flight because animators had a problem with him jumping. Therefore, I’d think a black Superman would lack that particular power.
This joke has ended up being both more convoluted and more racist-sounding than it seemed in my head.
Is Superman and Batman’s bottom lip pink, or is that a tongue? I’m not trying to be a douche, I’m just looking for clarity.
I don’t mean to sound stuck up and fake, but I didn’t notice anything at first.
I’m going to try one more time to clarify my position on this. Some of you are going to actually read and understand what I write, others are going to try to pick it apart, twist my words, and believe whatever you want about me. Have fun with that.
However wrong it may be, when you take a high profile character and replace him with a minority that’s not often represented in comic books, some people are going to assume that Marvel is doing it just to grab headlines and sell books. What’s wrong with that? Well, in a few months the shock value of the death and the intrigue about this new character will wear off and they’ll be left with their normal reader base. Comic books are increasingly relying on shock value and controversy, and less on good writing and art to sell their books.
DC did this once. Remember the new Batwoman? The headlines they grabbed when they revealed she was a lesbian? I was genuinely excited to see what they would do with the character, but then in the first two to three years of her existence they did next to nothing with her. There’s SO much they could have done with the character that would bring in an entirely new demographic, and instead she got sidelined after her big debut. It seemed like DC had no idea what to do with her.
I trust Bendis though, he’s one of the few decent writers in the industry and he can do amazing things with this character; but when Marvel sees sales slip after the initial boom of Miles’ popularity, I’m afraid they’re going to cancel the book because it’s not seeing the huge sales they planned (even when it sells just as much as it did with Peter). Or worse, awkwardly trying to bring Peter back making this whole thing entirely pointless.
Speaking of pointless – killing off Peter is something else that’s pointless. These are two characters that could easily coexist. For you comic book readers – think back to another time we had two Spidermen – Spider-Man and Scarlet Spider. Or if killing Peter was necessary or whatever, they could have easily introduced Miles into the book earlier to help ease us into it rather that, “Okay, Spider-Man’s dead. Let’s go get a new one.”
THAT’S why I’m bothered by how Miles Morales is being introduced. It’s not his race – directly at least. It bothers me if Marvel is only putting him in the book BECAUSE of his race, because that might mean that’s all they see him as. If those weren’t their motivations, it’s still a crummy way to introduce a character because he’ll constantly be compared to the dead guy he’s replacing. And I have nothing personal against the character. I’ve read his first appearance and so far, I like the guy. He captures that spirit of a teenager in waaaay over his head, just like Peter, and he has that sort of charisma about him. He’ll make a good Spider-Man. I just hate the price that comes with his introduction.
I think there’s a lot of value to be found in comparing the new wearer of a mantle to the dead guy he’s replacing. There is good storytelling to be had there.
I think it’s a little weird that you have “contingent botherment,” where you’re declaring you don’t know their intentions and you’re “bothered if X.” Seems to me you either believe X and you’re bothered, you disbelieve X and you’re not bothered, or you’re reserving judgment (which I think should mean defaulting to non-bothered, but you seem to be defaulting to bothered).
I doubt having a second Spider-Man would have eased anyone into anything; It would have been its own conflict (possibly a cool one, but a conflict). Batman would have called to offer tips on starting up Spiderman Inc.
I think that it’s not worth getting bent out of shape now about the chance they’ll end Miles Spidey badly or whether such a bad ending will be (or be perceived as) racist. Whether that’ll happen depends on a million factors, not least of which is how well Bendis writes in the coming months and years.
I’m bothered whenever they kill off a character to create a new one (seriously, is there like a set number of superheroes Marvel and DC can have or what?); but I’d be bothered more if they were doing it for a temporary boost in sales and media attention.
Maybe not having a second Spider-Man but rather having Peter discover another teen with spider powers. The two bond over that, Pete sort of takes him under his wing to teach him how to control the powers without really training him to be a hero. Then when Peter finally dies, Miles feels a sort of responsibility to his friend to take up the mantle. That’s why when I first heard that Peter was being replaced by a new Spidey, I sort of hoped it was someone in his supporting cast so there would be more of a connection….okay, actually I was hoping the title would become Ultimate Spider-Woman. >.>
A thought occurs to me. Did we ever actually see Parker’s corpse? He was dying, they were calling for an ambulance, and then we’re watching everyone deal with the news of his death and attend a funeral where we never even see the casket.
That’s usually a sign of something right? When we don’t see a body or a conclusive moment of death?
You’re thinking maybe a SHIELD coverup? Eh, possible. But that would mean that May, Mary Jane, Gwen, etc are going through this mourning thing as an act. Unless they aren’t in on it.
Here’s how I see it happening after giving it some consideration. 160 left off with Peter’s heart having stopped, an ambulance on the way having been called as soon as the neighbors saw the fight starting, so presumably it’s almost here. Ambulance arrives, boots up the ol’ ticker, after which point healing him isn’t really that big a deal. He had a bullet wound in his side, a series of burns, and had been severely bludgeoned. Even in a normal human being without spider enhanced physiology all that requires is a bullet removal, some stitches, skin grafts, a boatload of pain pills and a few weeks of forced R&R before being told to go home and take it easy for a while.
So when Peter’s in the hospital S.H.I.E.L.D. switches his body with one of the spiderclones they undoubtedly have kept frozen in storage since the clone saga. When Peter wakes up in S.H.I.E.L.D. headquarters Nick Fury tells him that too many people know he’s Spider-Man now. The secrets out and he’s not gonna be able to keep his friends and family safe anymore. If Aunt May and the gang are to continue a normal life and not be locked away in a secure facility where no one can get at them everyone has to think Peter’s dead. Peter sees the wisdom in this and reluctantly agrees, thus beginning his secret, under the table unofficial work for S.H.I.E.L.D. In their labs he has all the scientific information he could ever want and much he could get nowhere else. He’s allowed to pursue his own personal projects on the side so long as he keeps up with the assigned projects, and one day when the heat’s died down and he’s constructed a new identity he could even do field work if he so desired.
Just a theory, but either way the more I think about it the more it’s weird that he wasn’t able to recover from where we left him off at the end of #160. Combine that with the fact that after the events of that story arc civilian life wasn’t really going to be an option for him and it does seem to come together. They’ve been kind of building up to his having to abandon life as Peter Parker since the beginning, and they really didn’t have that far to go once the public narrowed Spider-man’s identity down to a school.
The S.H.I.E.L.D. coverup idea does make Nick Fury’s reaction to Mary Jane’s accusations a little odd though.
I’m certain that this is a better story than what they will actually come up with.
You know, I’d say that’s totally out of character for Fury to do something like that, but then I remembered Ultimate Beast and now I’m wondering if Fury has a whole staff of supposedly dead heroes. XD
Hey, I had this one in the queue for this week. Great minds think alike:
Am I the only one who only saw that they weren’t white AFTER I read the caption?
Am I the only one harboring PSL for this Elseworlds Wonder Woman?
I was about to get mad about the black Superman thing, even thoguh I’m not racist.Then I realized something:
Superman was born on a planet with a red giant star for a sun.
Red giants are hotter than normal yellow stars.
A hotter star would mean more melanin in the skin.
More melanin would mean darker skin.
Conclusion: Superman should be either tan or black.
The truth hurts
…What’s up with black Wonder Woman’s hair?
After I read this comic I immediately began to question which superhero Morgan Freeman would be.
I think James Earl Jones would be a good Batman.
I’m on an archive binge and at first I thought this was a joke about Action Comincs 9. Then I realised that hadn’t happened yet. What’s this about sorry?
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