Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Race and Comics

The Root recently published an article entitled Black Heroism Illustrated.  It documents the instances of black superheroes created by the comic powerhouses DC and Marvel.  Beginning with DC's Black Lightening in 1977 and Marvel's Black Panther who debuted in "Fantastic Four" no. 52 in 1966.

The article also documents the rise of African American sidekicks -- Captain America's trusted Falcon (1969) -- while interracial justice leagues began appearing in the 1970s.

The Shadow League chronicles comic stereotypes, from Harlem as the hometown of every African American superhero to the use of the descriptor "black" in superhero names; think "Black Lightning, Black Vulcan, Black Goliath, Black Racer, the Black Spider, Black Manta and so on."

The most recent addition to the black pantheon of superheroes would be Nick Fury - who apparently underwent a race change in 2002's "The Ultimates #1" -- from a white World War II army hero to, I mean let's just say it, Samuel L. Jackson.  Can you imagine anyone else being Nick Fury?  I can't, but Jackson himself was stunned.
“It was kind of weird,” Jackson said. “I just happened to be in a comic store, and I picked up the comic because I saw my face. And I was like, ‘Wait a minute, I’m not sure I remember giving somebody permission to use my image.’”
The comic itself even noted the likeness in a panel in which the Ultimates discuss who would portray them in a hypothetical movie. Fury answers, “Why, Mister Samuel L. Jackson, of course. That’s not even open to debate.”
Stunned, Jackson approached Marvel.
“They were kind of like, ‘Yeah, we are planning on making movies, and we do hope you’ll be a part of them,’” Hero Complex reports.
Hope, indeed.  Thankfully, he took them up on the deal.

The Shadow League closes "Black Heroism Illustrated" by saying, "while publishers were making an active effort to court and engage black readers, their ideas regarding [black] culture were still boxed and stereotypical . . . Comic Books and race in America go hand in hand."

As a product of pop culture, comics are a reflection of our national and community beliefs.  Do you see more superheroes of color?  Who is your favorite? What franchise needs more heroes of color? What other white superhero would you like to see make a race change?

32 comments:

  1. In my experience, it's hard to take many of these publishers' attempts at making black superheroes as anything more than novelty. As "Black Heroism Illustrated" notes, use of "black" in the hero's name marks it as something of a shortsighted effort to reach a new demographic. When a character's race becomes less of an aspect of their identity and more of a gimmick, it seems to me that either the publishers lack either insight or interest in pursuing an authentic superhero.
    I have experienced this myself in seeing the geneses of certain characters like the Black Panther, (who I as a child called the black batman), and Luke Cage (pictured above), and have come away feeling unimpressed as the character designs seem uninspired and derivative of earlier characters, rather than genuine takes on characters who aren't caucasian males. This can be seen similarly in female characters as well (remember Jubilee of the X-MEN?).
    All in all, however poor the effort was, this is an ongoing process of accurate and equitable representation in an art medium, it does take time, but the prospects of the future look promising. I mean who doesn't love Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury???

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  2. There are many superheroes and villains of color, but usually they are a different kind of species. My favorite villain is probably bronze tiger. He is such as bad ass and makes an appearance in the tv show arrow a lot. The franchise Capcom needs more heroes of villains of different color. Usually they are white people or a different species. For example in the game Resident Evil 6 I can not think of a single black person in the game who is of significance. The other superhero I would like to see make a race change is Vegeta from the Dragon Ball Z series. I could see him as a African American person because he most certainly has the attitude for it and he is definitely the most bad ass character in the series. They do not have s single black person in the series besides Mr. Popo.

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  3. Yes I have seen more superheroes of color recently, like in the new Captain America movie and in Iron Man 3 even though he wasn't really a super hero he still had an iron man suit and helped out Tony Stark. My favorite super hero of color is the green lantern because he was cool when I was a kid in the justice league and could do anything with his ring. I am not sure which franchise needs more heroes of color but I do feel like they are all realizing they do and have been trying to add them into the movies and comic in todays world. a white superhero that I would like to see make a race change would be Flash because I think it would be an easy transition and they haven't made a movie about Flash in a while so I feel like they would have an easier time with the race transition and it would be interesting how they would develop the new flash and how people would react to the change.

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  4. Since I spent the most of my life in Japan, I am not so much familiar with American superheroes. But I know Bat Man, Captain American, Iron Man and other popular American heroes. I think these heroes are reflections of the authors' images for what justice is. So, if they believe that the justice is just to help people out, the heroes would only help the people out, and do nothing else. If the authors thinks that the justice is to change bad culture, including racism and hierarchy, the heroes would attempt to appeal that those things should not exist in the world. Anyway, I guess the heroes who people wish would be are ones whom we can see now. So, if you hope the heroes who make a race change will show up, I am sure someone else would write the comic in which such a hero fight against racism.

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  5. The Root's recently published "Black Heroism Illustrated" which documents instances of black superheros instantly raises a question. Is there that few of black superheros that their appearances are few and far between? The first appearance is Marvel's Black Panther in 1966. That name is a bit of a stereotype to start, but I guess it's a start. Unfortunately it seems every black superhero is from Harlem, and is also prefaced with "Black this" or "Black That" reinforcing stereotypes. In 2002 Nick Fury became a new superhero without having the black preface. It's nice seeing The Shadow League trying to take a step away from the "still boxed and stereotypical" race issues in comic books. I don't know too much about comics but it's seems more and more that there are more diverse roles for black actors like in entertainment. Some of the refreshing roles I like are Sci-Fi roles like Mace Windu in Star Wars, and the athlete to nerd transition with Troy Barnes on Community. I look forward to the day when race is no longer present in our minds when it comes to character casting.

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  6. According to this article, one magazine was published showing that there are history about stereotype of Black heroes in American comics. I usually do not read American comics, so I do not know what are stereotypes of Black Americans in American comics. As other racial issues, Black Americans are always the target of this sort of discussion. Despite other countries' comics, American comic writers have to care about their races. These comics are fun for Whites to read and get to know what kind of person are Blacks since the society of Black and White people was completely separated. I have heard that when Black were discriminated in the past, they could not enter a store from the entrance, but they had to use special entrance for Blacks. Nonetheless, no matter how much fun and famous these comics were at that time, I cannot understand why they name the heroes "Black." This is absolutely racial discrimination, and even if the writers do not like and discriminate Black people, they should not write comics about racial stereotypes.

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  7. Is it wrong to use black heroes as a tool to gather more attention as a company? I believe that it is great to see that the Marvel universe has created their characters with a wide assortment of different races, especially during such an early, controversial time in America. Doing so had given them multiple advantages as a comic book company. Once Marvel Studios began having black superheroes available in the Marvel universe, they had made comics appear more interesting to the black community. Not only that, but using black superheroes in comics had also made these characters more accessible to the younger black audience, giving them a character they can easily relate to, and a righteous hero to have as a role model.
    After this article mentioned that Black Panther, the first black superhero, made his opening debut in the mid '60s, I can only imagine the social uproar that this character made at the time. Marvel had only done what any other company would have done; they took a risk and saw past the racial barrier that was set in 1960's white-dominated society. Although the awareness for racial discrimination has just began to exist, society had still continued to feel touchy with the use of black characters in media. Marvel took advantage of this, then created the first black superhero. This ended up gathering a large, collective amount of controversial attention set towards the company, which in the end is exactly what Marvel wanted.

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  8. I believe that, writing comics should not be based on race, because you might hurt the feeling of a the reader, you might say something in the comic book and it might hurt the reader so bad, comics shouldn't be on race or anything, our focus is what the this comic portrays

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  9. It was interesting reading this because I didn't know Nick Fury was orgianlly white and that they changed him in the comic books to get Samuel L. Jackson to play him in hte movies. I never really noticed that there weren't black super heros because I was so use to seeing the regular ones. The only other black super hero I know is John Stewart also known as the Green Lantern. I have only seen him in the Justice Lague and he's one of my favorite memebers of the Justice Lague.

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  10. I believe that race should not be an intense issue when it comes to identifying or characterizing superheroes. Even the comic book that is on display, the caption reads “The First and still the Greatest BLACK Superhero of All”. Why does it have to be pointed out that this superhero is black? Would it be necessary to say that Superman is the strongest and most powerful white superhero of all? However, it is nice to see that superheroes are becoming more diverse; as mentioned before, comics are a reflection of our community and to show that diversity is a key factor within superhero franchises shows that our society appreciates diversity as well.

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  11. Comics are a reflection of our national and community beliefs so it would make sense that as our nation becomes more and more multicultural and multiracial that we see more and more superheroes of color. I have seen more comic book heroes of color in the past years but they are far less popular than the comic book heroes we see today. The reason is that they are new and not as established as say the x-men or Iron man, so they need to pay their dues before they become as main stream as other super heroes. As for a comic super hero who I would like to see have a race change, I would have to say no one, ever. I am dead set against changing anything about a character, it effectively destroys that character. Not just changing white super heroes to a different race but changing any super heroes race. In the movie the last air bender they changed an Asian character to a white one and it was horrible, also character destroying and kind of racist. Let’s say superman makes a race change to Chinese because when superman was created the nation was a bit prejudice, so to be fair we will make him Chinese. Also age discrimination is a thing now so we have to be fair to old people and make superman 90 years old. Might as well through in feminism and “heightisim”(I just made up that second word, but its short people demanding fair representation in comics, I’m sure it’s a thing). So now superman/superwoman is a four foot tall, 90 year old, Chinese woman. Not that I wouldn't love to read a comic starring super four foot, 90 year old Chinese women, but that is not superman. So that is why I would not want to see a race change or any other change, once you start to change facts about the character you destroy the character.

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  12. One of my favorite superheroes is Static who was originally a milestone character before the milestone universe was merged with the DC universe. I loved watching the T.V show and I've read a few of the comics. Static is an African American superhero, so I would definitely have to say that if they changed his race it would be a big thing. Especially since Milestone comic created comic book characters that were meant to represent a variety of races.

    I think the character black panther is really cool and he is one of the marvel superheroes that I am waiting for marvel to make a movie for. I think changing a characters race to appeal to people isn't really something that should be don't. That doesn't mean there can't be an effective and exciting different version of the character.

    The best example I can think of is Miles Morales as Spiderman in the ultimate universe. Granted I haven't read the comics nor have I read that many spiderman comics, but that doesn't change the fact that Spiderman is my all time favorite superhero.

    When I heard about the replacement of peter parker I was one of the people against it, then when I heard it was only for the Ultimate universe I was a little more open to it. For one reason there is fact that Miles Morales wasn't a race changed peter parker, he was and is his own character that has a connection to the original.

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  13. I have a lot of love for vintage superhero comics. As an African American female myself, I would like to see Spider Man, and Wonder Woman go through a race change.

    As a tumblr buff, i remember maybe three years ago there was a rumor going on saying that MARVEL was planning to cast Childish Gambino (he is an African American underground rapper, and stand-up comedian, his real name: Donald Glover) as Spider Man. The whole social media, especially tumblr went CRAZY. I was going CRAZY, it was exciting and was looking forward to it until they canceled the whole plan. Even Childish Gambino (Donald Glover) made fun of the cancelation in one of his standup shows.

    I may be going off topic, but to me, the comic industry has got to break the stereotypes. Comic, superhero, and Sci-fi lovers like myself are kind of bored of seeing a majority of White superheros. Superman has always been White, Spiderman has always been White, I can go on and on. Even female superhero are majority White. I would love to see wonder woman go through a sex change before I die. This will not only bring the self-image of the Black community more, but also the self-image and confidence of young comic loving girls of color.

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  14. Growing up I did not see many super heroes of color. That meaning that it was predominantly white super heroes. The only super hero of color that I remember seeing was “Static Shock” which came on after school.
    My favorite super hero that I had growing up was falcon the super hero. I only was able to find him on comics, but he was a black super hero that did not have the prefix black to him.
    I think all of the franchises that involve super heroes need more super heroes of color with out having them come from a specific cultural back-story. The super heroes of color are something that should be included in all franchises without making them feel foreign.
    I think seeing a very mainstream super hero like “The Punisher” into any type of racial change.

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  15. I can only note one black superhero and that would be Static Shock. My favorite black superhero is the only one I know which is Static Shock. Static Shock is actually my favorite superhero because of the fact that he is black. I also love his personality and there are certain things he goes through that I can relate with him. I would love to see marvel make more colored superheroes because there would be more of a chance that it would be a movie about the black superhero. A super hero I would love to see make a race change is Naruto Uzamaki from the anime series called Naruto Shippuden.

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  16. Growing up, I never was a super comic book fan but I did enjoy watching films or television shows that about super heroes. The only show I really remember having a black super hero was "Static Shock". Static Shock hero was the only hero of color that I remember was not a sidekick. I feel that there should be more heroes that represent all ethnicities, not just black or white.
    I think that super heroes should have characteristics that relates to the ethnic group that they are representing but I do feel that publishers should be careful and not try to overdo it, because that is how they might lose the audience they are trying to represent.
    Something that comes to mind when I think of a super hero race change is the recent talk in the media of African American actor Michael B. Jordan playing the role of "Fantastic Four" reboot of the Human Torch who has been known to be a white character. I think that the reboot of the Human Torch character is a great to make the Fantastic Four brand appeal to a more ethnically diverse audience.

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  17. when was growing up, I decided to read a comic book titled "spawn". as a growing up kid, I felt like I had the power to climb on walls, have a chain in my hand and punish people that do evil. I was too addicted to comic books. I think that super heroes have a lot of characteristics that can make growing up kids to want to be a super hero. something that comes to my mind is "Xmen" there was a scene where the mutants flew to an African country. And they didn't understand the language, there was a mutant amongst them that knew how to speak the African language, as well as interpret it for them. this is like a brand appeal to more ethnically diverse audience

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  18. In the comics of marvel, I do see different super heroes of color and also villains to. My favorite superhero would be superman because he has x-ray vision, heat vision, super strength and he can fly. The only downfall of this character is kryptonite is his weakness, as shown in the comic books and cartoons. A race that I probably like to see change is Flash. Flash is the guy who runs super fast and the fact that his race is white, they could probably make a story where Flash's apprentice could be African-American or Mexican. I feel the creator of Marvel makes everyone of race because all his characters are different ethnicity. Therefore, in Marvel there are various race of super heroes and there is nothing to be judgmental about. In the community of these comics are endless, the story line or plot can be changed if they wanted to.

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  19. I love the ideas of bringing in more race to marvel and DC. It shouldn't matter what skin color they are they just need to play the right characters. My person favorite character is the Hulk because he is a nerdy professor that turns into a giant beast. Comics today has evolved and hopefully still evolving because its is all nice to see you ethnicity in the comics. There is always room for change and i like what they did with Nick Fury because he was organically white and the comics changed him to African American. Plus Samuel L Jackson is a great fit as Nick Fury because he knows how to play the role perfectly. Marvel and DC and other comics is doing a great job by bringing more diversity into the comics. This is going to be a big impact for our future kids, cousins, and friends watching it because it will not only show whites but it will show other races like Blacks, Asians, and a lot more.

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  20. Super heroes of color have really become the new thing (to the point where it mildly resembles affirmative action) although it’s something that I really do enjoy and appreciate. Two of the most recent characters that I can heavily identify with because of my Muslim background are Simon Baz of the Green Lantern Corps, (also an original character,not based on a previous GL) and the updated Ms. Marvel, Kamala Khan. One of my all-time favorites however, is John Stewart (who is also a GL) based on the Justice League animated series version. I mentioned two members of the “Green Lantern-verse”, which is pretty telling as the possibility for expanding upon diversity in that particular segment of their overall universe is near endless. Another case where the diversity could have been expanded upon in an even greater degree was with Batman Inc. I can appreciate adding embellishments or tweaking established characters whenever there is an update to a comic or another type of fictional universe, however I’ve never really been a fan of rooting a character’s history and changing critical things about them, like their race, although I do understand why it happens (it’s harder to make a character from the ground up, then it is to change an existing one).

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  21. I really hope to see more superheroes of color. Even though the list of superheroes is getting more and more ethnically diverse the characters of color are still overshadowed by their white brethren. Growing up I was always rooting for whatever Asian superhero I could find, unfortunately there weren’t many. So like every other suburban Asian kid looking for a super powered role model I turned to the Japanese style of comics which would be manga. But if I were to pick my favorite hero of color it’d be Cyborg from the DC universe. His iteration on Cartoon Network’s adaption of Teen Titans made Cyborg my favorite superhero of any color. Like music, when Asian teenagers couldn’t root for their own we’d cheer on our black brothers, which would explain why they’re all into hip-hop. So my tastes settled on Cyborg growing up as a kid. If any franchise needs more characters of color it would probably be X-men, I know that this particular franchise was one of the forerunners of having an ethnically diverse cast it’s still predominantly white, and for a series that has such an emphasis on characters being different and hated by society I believe that more heroes of color have to added in order to make a more believable universe. That doesn’t mean that they’re not trying though. I loved Xmen: Days of Future Past’s version of Blink. They made her Chinese which I was a huge fan of. If any superhero needs a race change it’d have to be Spider-man, I know they’ve already made a black Spider-man, but I just want to see Donald Glover in a spidey suit.

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  22. Being a comic book lover myself the author of this blog post made excellent points in regards to Black representation in comic books. I feel that you are seeing more black heroism throughout the comic book history, I feel Marvel gives the best representation with their characters. One of my all time favorite characters that Marvel has created would have to be Storm (Ororo Monroe), not only is she a female African woman who once ruled as queen over a tribe and again as the wife of T'Chala another black Marvel character, but her mutant ability (weather control) is a force to be reckoned with. I am very selective when it comes to the comic books that I read, so I tend to stick within the Marvel universe, but from TV shows, and movies I feel that DC Comics needs to up their game in black representation in their comics. As far as a race change from a current comic book character, I think Captain America would be an excellent choice. I say this because of the time period that Captain Americas origin came about, racism was at an all time high and it would be very ironic to say that an African American man had a huge roll in the victory of WWII.

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  23. James Rhodes (War Machine), T'Challa (Black Panther), John Stewart (Green Lanter), and Ororo Munroe (Storm) are all major comic book heros (and heroine) that are highly popular in the comic fan base. Although this article points out excellent points about how African American hero's are portrayed, I feel that today's society is much more accepting of the idea and shows improvement in how black heros are represented. In fact, the upcoming Fantastic Four movie has Michael B. Jordan casted as Johnny Storm, who is originally white in the comics. Jordan being African American, is proof of how society has adapted to more accepting views on race among superheros. Also, in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Jamie Foxx did a great job in his role as Electro- another character that is originally white. So overall, I do see more superheros of color, but I do feel that there could be more; considering the amount of white superheros that have be created over the years. A character that I would like to see a race change in is Captain America, because of the fact that it is a bold move. However, it would surely make a positive statement about today's society. Because so many people are more likely to watch the movie than read the comics, I feel like the change is most impacted in the theaters. If the actor does a good job portraying the character and fans enjoy the movie, then the comic fans are more likely to read the new version of comics. Black Heroism is something I believe we'll see grow larger as new generations alter the comic universe.

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  24. Superheros were initially created to provide entertainment and hope to many Americans. The article brings to light that comic book companies, such as Marvel and DC, are beginning to spread this hope to people of color. As a person of color, I find this fact very exciting. Growing up to superheros being only white, I found it difficult to connect to the characters. It also gave the idea that people of color were not worthy to become a superhero themselves. However, my feelings about comic book heroes changed once I began seeing people of color as them in movies such as X-Men and Captain America: Winter Soldier. Although these people of color were not the main character of the film, I found it very empowering that people of color are being represented. I do need to say that these comic book companies need to work more in diversifying their products because not all Americans are white. We have African American superheroes such as Fury, Storm, Cyborg and the Falcon but I cannot recall seeing any Asian American superheroes. Asian Americans are at times represented as minor characters but that's their only extent. In the recent Avengers: Age of Ultron movie, I can recall an Asian character but she is represented as a medical genius and a sex symbol (or possible love interest for Thor); the character is later nearly killed by Ultron and the audience does not get to hear anything about her. Why is there no Asian superheros that is represented today? If comic book companies want to diversify their products they need to add more people of color main characters into them. In addition, Marvel and DC needs to make media that correctly represents a person of color. Once the companies successfully diversify their products, many people will open their eyes to diversifying themselves and provide hope to many Americans of color.

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  25. A recent example of black heroism that I am aware of is the recreation of Spider-man. Instead of an older, white character to take on the role of Spider-Man, Marvel has introduced Miles Morales. He is of African American decent and is a little younger than the normal superhero. He is definitely my favorite since there has been a social movement to bring in Donald Glover, one of my favorite Hip-Hop artists, to play the “black Spider-Man”. Marvel has not been able to bring him into a movie deal, but he did voice Miles Morales in the Disney XD Spider-Man series for one episode. Ultimately, I think all franchises need to include more African American superheroes. It is more about equal representation in my opinion, so if Marvel and DC want to start with this trend, it would only bring in a wider audience and fan base. I would love to see Deadpool have a race change. I think he would be just as funny and entertaining regardless of his race.

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  26. In the world of comic books, it is predominately based on white characters. Personally I would love to see more race changes when it comes to comic books. My favorite race change is Spider-man, Miles Morales. I had always loved the character of Spider-man; he was that awkward teenager that life was turned upside down from a freak accident. I always wanted to see this character in my race and see if the story would have changed and how he would have faced this problem. I will always feel like the comic book world needs more superheroes of color, in many pieces of literature white seems to be the default race, and it shouldn’t be that way anymore. The world is changing and hopefully learning from their mistakes. A superhero I would definitely like to see have a change of race is The Hulk, the last time I checked they were already in works of it, the new Hulk would be Amadeus Cho, who is a 19-year-old boy genius.

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  27. As a prior comic book fan, I think that writers shouldn't change current white superheroes into colored counterparts,but instead add new characters who come from different backgrounds. I believe that this allows people all around the world to relate more to the characters and become further interested in comics. An example of this is Kamala Khan. Kamala Khan is of Muslim descent, and her story reflects the lives of many Muslim Americans who live among other fellow Americans. This story inspires Muslim Americans to appreciate their customs and culture, and educates people of other ethnicities of such.

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  28. Yes, I did see more colored superheroes. I used to watch more when I was little. My favorite was Static. He was a teenage boy that had electricity for power and he would ride on top of a board. It’s been awhile since I saw that show. I also like Frozo from the Incredibles; he had the ability to freeze any liquid. I would like to see more colored superheroes especially different races. It would be outstanding to see other kinds of superheroes that work together that all have a different background. The superhero that I would love to make a race change would be Deadpool, that should have been different.

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  29. I agree I do think comics illustrate our national and community beliefs. One of my favorite black superheroes would have to be static shock. I have watched mostly every episode and would love to see a movie come out. On the other hand I was excited to hear the rumor about their being a black flash movie coming out as well; however, "The Flash" show is still a great one. Sadly, I don't really follow up on comics I believe I'm way too late in the game, so I just make sure I watch every Marvel and DC movie or show that comes out; despite the slight changes from the comics I believe they have. Overall, having a multi-racial franchise of superheroes and villains has united us in some way; the more the better.

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  30. You can definitely tell that comic books often reflect where America stands on race. If you look at old Spider-man comics, there are instances where he refers to the Japanese as Japs or where the Vietnamese are referred to as gooks. Over time there are new characters that are added that help diversify their universe. Hobie Brown, a young, black window washer who is tired of being stuck in a dead end job and working for a racist boss, becomes The Prowler. After a quarrel with Spider-man, they become longtime friends and team up from time to time to take down evil. A more modern hero of color would be Miles Morales, a half-black, half-latino teenager who becomes the newest Spider-man after the first one dies in the Ultimate Universe. The difference between him and older heroes of color is that he does not want to be known as the "black Spider-man". He just wants to be Spider-man like the other 50 Spider-men swinging around New York City.

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  31. Being a woman of color, I would always love to see other superheroes of color. As a child you want to be able to look up to something or someone. Black kids also want to be able to have this opportunity but many are at a yellow light because majority of public figures or people to look up to are white. Having a black superhero is not only amazing but the impact they have on other younger children of color is beautiful. Some superheroes I wouldn't mind having a race change are Superman, WonderWoman, and Wolverine.

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  32. I first got fully engrossed with comic books when I went to see Guardians of the Galaxy in theaters at Downtown Disney in Anaheim. I became obsessed and watched all the other Marvel Cinematic Universe movies I could buy. I have seen more superheroes of color, particularly black heroes like Falcon and Luke Cage in addition to Black Panther whose movie is set to premiere next year. Additionally, I've enjoyed many of the superheroes of color I've seen in recent comics, such as Nico Minoru/Sister Grimm from The Runaways and Riri Williams/Ironheart. However, my favorite is Kamala Khan, the Muslim Pakistani-American girl who takes over the mantle of Ms. Marvel from Caucasian superhero Carol Danvers. I really appreciate how Kamala is one of the rare depictions of a Muslim character that has a lot of personality and character development without adhering to any of the stereotypes of the Islamic faith. I also identified with her nerdy side like how she wrote fanfiction and geeked over other superheroes like Spider-Man. However, I feel that certain franchises do need more people of color, particularly the Avengers. War Machine and Falcon have been included in the Avengers, but they've been sidelined by Iron Man and Captain America, so I feel that there needs to be more leading Avengers who are people of color. One superhero who I really think needs to have a race lift is Iron Fist/Danny Rand. I've always felt that he should be Asian-American, since his character background and abilities are predominantly derived from Asian culture. Although I do acknowledge that there is a stereotype of Asian men knowing martial arts, there are very few Asian superheroes with their own title and changing his race would help Asian-Americans identify with him the same way African-Americans have identified with Luke Cage and Black Panther.

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