african american superhero

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we finally got a super hero movie with one of the most diverse casts ever AND EVERYONE IS LETTING IT FLOP.

OH LOOK: A SUPER HERO MOVIE WITH • INDIAN SUPERHERO
• CHINESE SUPERHERO
• LATINA SUPERHERO
• HANDICAPPED SUPERHERO
• AUTISTIC AND AFRICAN AMERICAN SUPERHERO
• QUEER SUPERHERO
•GREAT ACTING
•RELATABLE CHARACTERS
•GREAT SOUNDTRACK
• A+++ CHEMISTRY
• NOSTALGIA
• NO FORCED ROMANCE
• NO NEGATIVE STEREOTYPES FOR PEOPLE WITH AUTISM
• NO QUEER BAITING
• FEMALE LEADS THAT AREN’T USED AS LEVERAGE FOR THE MALE LEADS
• AND THE OPPORTUNITY FOR 5 FUTURE SEQUELS WITH A FEMALE GREEN RANGER


But no, everyone wants to go see another Scarlett Johansson flick (no shade I love her), Alec Baldwin voicing a baby, and beauty and the beast.

If there’s not going to be a sequel, someone fight me. I may be little but I’m feisty.

Praying that South Korea, Tokyo, and China save the day because once again, America has let me down.

Year-old Kensington comic book store and coffeehouse getting attention

Since Ariell Johnson opened her comic book store and coffee shop in Kensington in December 2015, she has taken the world by Storm.

In fact, her childhood fascination with Storm, the X-Men superheroine, led her to comic book and sci-fi fantasy geek fandom in the first place, she said.

She has been profiled on ABC News, CNN Money, and MSNBC, not to mention various nerd and geek websites, as the first African American woman to open a comic book store on the East Coast.

And in November, she was depicted on a variant cover of the Invincible Iron Man No. 1 comic book, along with Riri Williams, the 15-year-old African American superhero character known as Ironheart.

Storm “was the first black woman superhero I ever saw,” Johnson, 33, said at her shop, Amalgam Comics & Coffeehouse, 2578 Frankford Ave.

“In addition, she was a powerhouse; she was one of the most powerful mutants in the X-Men universe. She controlled the very elements. She wasn’t a sidekick. She was the main event, which was exciting.”

Johnson said all the attention has been good for business.

“I think we’re doing well. We’ve had a very strong first year, and an untraditional first year, with all the hubbub around the shop,” she said.

Diversity in comic books has been met with some backlash from mostly male fans who assert on YouTube videos that characters should not be suddenly changed to black or gay. Some have called it pandering to attract more women and people of color to comics.

Johnson has not hesitated to speak out about the importance of the comic book world becoming more inclusive.

That means having characters who represent everyone - black, white, Latino, Asian, and people of all religions and sexual identities.

She makes sure to carry books written by and for women and people of color.

Johnson said people like them as heroes in fantasy and science fiction can empower young readers.

“When young girls come in here and know that a woman owns the shop, a black woman owns the shop, and they can see titles where girls are the heroes and not just the love interests or the sidekick … when they see women and girls taking the lead in things, that’s really powerful,” she said.

Since word of Johnson’s success got around, celebrity comic book writers have visited Amalgam.

The store was packed a couple of months ago when Ta-Nehisi Coates came for a book signing to accompany the release of a new comic in his Marvel series Black Panther.

She has also welcomed Greg Pak, author of X-Treme X-Men and other titles, and U.S. Rep. John Lewis, the civil rights icon who coauthored a graphic novel, March.

Amalgam is spacious and colorful, with a red couch at the front window and blue and yellow armchairs nearby. In fact, it’s like entering a live comic strip tableau.

Small round tables have comic book logos: symbols for ThunderCat, Captain America, and Spider-Man.

Johnson said she became enamored of superheroes while watching television cartoon shows as a child.

“I’ve always liked shows about super powers,” she said. “I grew up watching ThunderCats, He-Man and She-Ra. But none of those shows had any black characters featured.”

When she was about 11, she saw herself in the character Storm in X-Men cartoons.

“In addition to being black and a woman, she had dark skin. The only thing that didn’t look like me was that she had white hair and blue eyes.”

A Baltimore native, Johnson came to Philadelphia to attend Temple University and earned an accounting degree there in 2005.

It took a decade of working for other people, first in retail and later as an accountant, before she decided to fulfill her dream.

Inside Amalgam the other day, Sam Woods Thomas, the commercial corridor coordinator for New Kensington Community Development Corp., said the coffee shop was the only one in the neighborhood.

Still, he said, things are looking up, with a new apartment development in the next block that people are comparing to the Piazza in Northern Liberties.

But he said it’s small businesses like Johnson’s that are key.

“They bring life back to the block,” Thomas said.

i want more black characters in comic book movies

black villains

black heroes

black sidekicks

black comic relief

black supporting characters

black characters who are noble

black characters who are evil

black characters who are good because of altruism

black characters who are good because they feel guilty

black characters who are good because they want revenge

black characters who are good because it’s their job

black characters who are arguably not really on the side of good at all

black characters who are evil for sympathetic reasons

black characters who are evil because they fucking love causing destruction

black characters who are evil because they’re greedy

black characters who are evil because it’s their job

black characters who arguably aren’t evil at all

JUST. MORE. BLACK. CHARACTERS. IN. SUPER HERO. OR COMIC BOOK. MOVIES!!!!!

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October 17th is the birthday of John Stewart, Green Lantern of Sector 2814.  Happy Birthday, John Stewart!  (Not to be confused with the fake news guy, Jon Stewart)

Created by Dennis O’Neil and Neal Adams, John Stewart first appeared in Green Lantern v.2 #87 in December 1971.  He is DC’s first African-American superhero.  (The Black Racer appeared earlier in 1971, but is not exactly a “hero”).

A former Marine and architect from Detroit, John Stewart was selected by the Guardians of the Universe to be the backup Green Lantern for Hal Jordan when Guy Gardner was seriously injured.  He served as the backup Green Lantern several times before becoming the primary Green Lantern of Sector 2814 in Green Lantern v.2 #182 (November 1984), when Hal Jordan relinquished his ring.  He has remained a member of the Green Lantern Corps, even after Hal Jordan returned.  He has also served as a member of the Justice League.

Here are a few John Stewart comics from the DuGarm Collection at the University of Iowa: Special Collections.

Green Lantern v.2 #188 (May 1985), cover by Joe Staton and Bruce Patterson

Green Lantern: Mosaic v.1 #3 (August 1992), cover by Cully Hamner and Keith Aiken

Green Lantern v.2 #190 (July 1985), cover by Joe Staton and Bruce Patterson

Crisis on Infinite Earths v.1 #1 (April 1985), cover by George Perez

Green Lantern v.2 #165 (June 1983), cover by Gil Kane

Crisis on Infinite Earths v.1 #2 (April 1985), cover by George Perez

Green Lantern v.2 #182 (November 1984), cover by Dave Gibbons

Green Lantern Corps v.1 #202 (July 1986), cover by Joe Staton and Bruce Patterson

Green Lantern v.3 #6 (November 1990), cover by Pat Broderick

Who’s Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe v.1 #9 (November 1985), cover by Paris Cullins and Dick Giordano

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See what happened was I was ready to take out my hair,but decided to wait until I got home-Then Storm came upon me. Period.

Here we go again with DC fans....

Me:  Looks at trailer of Black Lightning, see’s a lot of great potential.


Them:  Complains about it not being Static Shock.


Me: DC Fans will forever being their own worst enemy yet again.  The CW is giving us an all African American cast superhero show(which is shocking no pun intended, considering the CWs target audience for years has been teenage to middle age white women ages 18-35).  And ya’ll still can’t be happy for it!?   I love Static but fucking stop with this shit already, static is a great character but Black Lightning  has been around longer and needs more attention ASAP.  He’s as great of character as Luke Cage and came out of the same era.


Seriously this character has been around for a long time and none of his solo series ever sold well enough because DC fans for years was all lets just buy Batman comics and ignore that great black superhero solo comic.  

Originally posted by n-wordbelike

I’m reading the Captain America: Death of the Red Skull TPB, on issue 299, and it’s pretty awesome. Why?

As the Red Skull makes clear time and again with his derisive comments, Steve is friends with a lot of different people.

We have, of course, Sam Wilson, who was the first Marvel African-American superhero (but not the first black hero). He’s a long time partner of Cap (it was called Captain America & the Falcon for a long time), he recently ran for local government, although he lost, and he’s a social worker. Pretty awesome.

We have Bernadette “Bernie” Rosenthal, who is Jewish. She’s Steve’s fiancee, a glassblower and ceramics teacher, will later go on to become a lawyer and represent Bucky Barnes in court, and loves trashy action movies and WWE. Pretty awesome.

We have Arnie Roth, who is gay. Steve’s oldest friend from childhood, he’s aged whereas Steve hasn’t. He’s fat and balding with a terrible combover. Steve will one day ask him to run the store beneath Steve’s secret future headquarters. He’s dealt with grief and pain, the loss of his partner, the suffering at the hands of Cap’s enemies, but he still goes on. Pretty awesome.

We have Dave Cox, who is disabled. He fought in the Vietnam war, where he lost his right arm, and became a staunch anti-war advocate and pacifist. Even when mind-controlled, he refused to kill. He has a lovely wife and toddler son, is a confidant of Steve’s and a friend of Sharon’s, whom he misses. And although I’m unsure of his fate, I hope he pulls through, comes out of his coma. Pretty awesome.

Then there’s Jack Monroe, who I know much less about and sort of breaks the pattern. Youth one may say, since the young aren’t taken seriously. Youth is what the Red Skull suggests. But Steve still believes in him, even if Jack frustrates him with his inexperience, rashness, and problematic views.

Anyway, look at that. Steve’s got all sorts of different friends, and they all have lives and hopes and dreams. It’s really awesome. The Red Skull mocks all that, but Steve believes in his friends. He knows what they are capable of. He knows that they are awesome.

It’s so great.

Black Superheroes and Electricity Powers

epperanalchemist asked: This is more an observation than a question, but any idea why it seems like so many african american superheros have lighting powers? Storm, Static Shock, Black lighting, and I think there are two more I’m forgetting. Like, is it concidence or is there a racist stereotype here that Im missing? (I ask because I was planning a superhero with lighting throwing abilities (alla Zeus, for example), and realized there’s a trend).

conqueror-worm asked: First, you all rock. Second, I’m writing a superhero story. My main character is an alien who crash landed here as a baby. She’s black though she’s an alien. Her super power is controlling electricity. I’ve seen a lot of posts/articles saying that a ton of poc have electricity related superpowers in movies and whatnot, and I was wondering if you all thought it was racist a trope? Or if it should be avoided? Thanks!!

Anonymous asked: Hi! I love your blog; I’ve been reading through it voraciously, and have found it tremendously helpful. I’m writing a story about people born with powers (metas); my MCs are a white teenager and a black teenager. I originally wrote the white teen as having electromagnetic control, but then I realized there’s a prominent black comic book hero — Static — who has the same power. Would it be appropriation to do this? Are there any ways to mitigate it? Thanks! 

The reason I’m concerned is because there are parallels between the white teen and Static; they both decide to use their powers to be superheroes (actual superheroes don’t really exist in this setting), they both fly by levitating ferrous objects, they’re both comic book nerds, etc. This power has a narrative purpose, but if I give it to the black teen instead, I feel like I might be pandering. Would lampshading help? Thanks!

Hi all.

So this is indeed a trope that a lot of people have noticed. Even TVtropes has taken note with their “Electric Black Guy” trope page. They actually explain the trend here:

In 1977, DC Comics revealed their first headlining African-American superhero with Black Lightning. However, due to numerous controversies and licensing disputes, in the many many adaptations of the DCU he has often been used via Captain Ersatz. This eventually developed into a consistent pattern in which Black superheroes had electricity-themed powers.

In short, this trope is when you mix the black person with Shock and Awe.

From my understanding, this trope is not one engraved in racism (at least not in itself) but is indeed a trope. Black heroes are typecast into roles with electricity powers because it’s what people have seen again and again, thus a “natural” inclination. Much like when people place marginalized characters into the roles they’ve always seen them in because it’s what they know, this is the same concept minus the explicit racist stereotyping roots.

And in regards to the parallel between the existing hero with electromagnetic powers; these powers don’t belong to Black characters, therefore it can’t be “appropriative.” There are plenty of superheros with electromagnetic powers that aren’t Black and their writers never had a need to lampshade their work.

I’m definitely hoping for more roles outside of Black characters = electricity, and I do know there are, and if you’ve got a unique Black character with electric powers who isn’t essentially a copy of one before them, great. However, most folks would like diversity even within Black characters with powers and not just a defaulting to the electricity trope.

~Mod Colette

Powers do not belong to any specific group or ethnicity and therefore this does not account as appropriation. Appropriation would actually be more like giving your white character dreadlocks like Static or making him speak in African-American Vernacular English just for the sake of making your character “cool” or “edgy”. 

These are obvious signs of appropriation, but are also easily avoided by not making those choices for your character. You do not need to worry about appropriation in this case, but do be mindful of any cultural appropriation from this trope that may influence your character. 

~Mod Najela

WHY EVERYBODY SHOULD BE PUMPED ABOUT DC'S ANNOUNCEMENTS

1) WONDER WOMAN MOVIE 2017

2) NATIVE HAWAIIAN AQUAMAN PLAYED BY JASON MOMOA WHO IS HELLA FINE AND HELLA BADASS

3) DISABLED AFRICAN AMERICAN SUPERHERO CYBORG PLAYED BY RAY FISHER WHO IS SUPER EXCITED ABOUT HIS ROLE #BORGLIFE

4) DC IS ACTUALLY GIVING BATMAN AND SUPERMAN SOLO MOVIES AFTER THEY SET UP EVERYBODY ELSE 

4) SUICIDE SQUAD WITH AMANDA WALLER

AND EITHER HARLEY QUINN

OR VIXEN

5) DWAYNE JOHNSON AS BLACK ADAM IN THE SHAZAM MOVIE

6) OPENLY QUEER EZRA MILLER AS THE FLASH

7) ACTUAL DIVERSITY IN A SUPERHERO TEAM AW YAS