Beginning in September, Marvel will be relaunching and introducing new and diverse titles in an initiative it calls “All New, All Different.” The bulk of the new titles will be released in November, but in the next two months there will be some cool surprises to check out.
‘Blade, The Hunter’
This new series will introduce the world to Blade’s AKA Eric Brooks’ daughter Fallon Grey. She is a 16-year-old high school student who lives in Oregon. She does not know that Blade is her dad until supernatural forces want to hunt her down. This title has been under the radar, compared to the other announcements, but sounds like a much-needed twist on Blade. Blade, The Hunter will be written by Tim Seeley, with art by Logan Faerber. The title will be on stands in October.
Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur will be the latest title added to an all new relaunch of Marvel Comics titles later this fall. This relaunch will feature more diverse titles and characters to make the Marvel Universe more inclusive for readers of all backgrounds.
The creative team will consist of longtime comic artist Amy Reeder and writer Brandon Montclare on writing duty and artist Natacha Bustos. This new title is based off of a 1978 series created by legendary comics writer and artist, Jack Kirby, where a caveman called Moon Boy and a red scaled dinosaur called Devil Dinosaur had strange adventures.
The updated version will star Lunella Lafayette as Moon Girl, a tween super genius who struggles to fit in with people her own age.
When asked about diversity in comics in a Entertainment Weekly profile, artist Natacha Bustos said it’s been disappointing.
“I myself have come up against this dilemma (I’m half Afro-Brazilian and half Chilean besides being Spanish) of finding few or no cultural references, especially in Spain, a country where there is isn’t any community comparable to the African-American community in the states,” she says. “You end up ironing out your differences and you need to work hard on this aspect to be able to continue maturing as a person.”
Lafayette will be an Inhuman with a hidden gene that has yet to be triggered. One element of the plot will be focused on her trying to control her potential problem.
Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur will be out on shelves this fall.
The Marvel cinematic universe has become a gold standard in cinematic world building. However, it isn’t perfect. For fans who waited years to see their favorite super heroes on the big screen, the MCU is perfect and can do no wrong, but for others, it is a pool of mediocrity. With all of the good there is also bad. Here are some problems that need to be addressed.
People of Color
Watching Marvel movies can be a painful experience for people of color. Actors like Idris Elba, who is a Golden Globe winner, has been relegated to a divine doorman. He may get five minutes of screen time per Thor film, even though he is a dynamic actor who starred in his own TV show.
Oscar winner Don Cheadle plays the sidekick to Robert Downey, Jr., a man who was nominated for an Oscar portraying a Black man in Black face. There has to be a reason Terence Howard jumped ship. These talented Black actors have climbed the mountain top of their craft and they get no real respect or significance in these films.
Honestly, Anthony Mackie has a decent role and some actual importance in the Captain America films. Also, Nick Fury is vital to the universe but what will happen after Infinity War? People are banking for Black Panther, but will he be relegated to a bit player in the team up films? It is possible. Marvel has a lot of diverse characters. It would be nice to see more Hispanic and Asian heroes as well.
The geek community is vehement about changing white characters into people of color. After every casting announcement, Twitter becomes a hotbed of racial epitaphs and ignorance. The intolerance over the casting of fictional characters in pieces of entertainment can be reminiscent of the worst kinds of racism in this country. To the pleasure of open-minded geeks everywhere, Marvel and, especially, DC Comics continue to add diversity anyway they see fit. Here are some white characters who are now people of color.
Iris West (DC)
On the hit CW show The Flash (2014), Candice Patton portrays Barry Allen’s love interest. At first fans were in an uproar over the casting, but now since the show has become a hit, most fans have moved on.
In the DC Comics cinematic universe, the king of the Seven Seas will be played by Jason Momoa. He became a fan favorite playing Khal Drogo on the HBO show Game of Thrones.
Marvel continues to dominate the movie theaters with its dynamic characters and elaborate cinematic universe. However, there are issues. Recently, Avengers director Joss Whedon left Twitter over a fan backlash over Black Widow. The reasons he left are still unclear. The situation brings up the problem of character diversity. There is very little diversity in terms of race and gender up to this point. Here are five cool female characters who can shake up the mostly male and mostly white films.
Misty Knight is a former cop who is a hero with a robotic arm. What makes her interesting is that her arm was created by Iron Man aka Tony Stark. She is a hero-for-hire who works on the streets of the Marvel Universe. It is possible she might be on one of Marvel’s Netflix series.
Robots Taking Our Jobs
We see it every day in the grocery store. The convenient self-checkout lanes might make our trips to the store easier, but these machines take away jobs that people may want and need. Since the creation of the modern assembly line by Ransom Olds in 1901 and later perfected by Henry Ford in 1913, manufacturing large machines has become easier. Today, there are manufacturing robots that have replaced human hands. In the 1950s and ’60s, many people relied on these jobs and many lived comfortably from them. Now those jobs are scarce, and cities like Detroit are feeling the effects.
“The comics can look different than the movies … and we’ll all survive. YAY! (G’night.) pic.twitter.com/zXZwmOHgr0”
— Dan Slott (@DanSlott) Feb. 22
Comic book purists who complain about race changes don’t necessarily challenge things like height, hair, costumes or other superficial details as harshly as race. These purists may be using the comics as a pretext for their racial issues.
“In an age where Samuel L. Jackson is a perfect Nick Fury, we’re past the point where the movies HAVE to look EXACTLY like the comics.”
— Dan Slott (@DanSlott) Feb. 22
The original Nick Fury was a white super spy. By the new millennium, Nick Fury was changed to Black in Marvel’s Ultimate comics line. Samuel L. Jackson’s Fury is the same as the comics. Marvel remedies this by making Black Fury white Fury’s son.
Most superheroes were geeks before gaining their unearthly abilities. There are certainly more than 10 that can be listed below. For example, the X-Men’s Beast is a nerd, but, in a fight, he isn’t. Among the criteria for this list is that nerdiness must help in the fight of villains. These characters use their nerdiness to build their costumes, build tech, or they have nerdy powers in general.
David Alleyne is a member of the Young Avengers. He has the power to mimic the knowledge of any person he meets. He also can retain that knowledge forever.
Brainiac 5 (DC Comics)
Querl Dox is related to the Superman villain of the same name, but he is a good guy. Dox is a member of the Legion of Superheroes in the 31st century. He is really smart. He has a 12th-level intellect, which makes him one of the smartest people in DC Comics.
Captain America (Marvel Comics)
Capt. America is an over-exaggerated parkour practitioner. It is possible to mimic his actions with a lot training in boxing and parkour.
Black Panther (Marvel Comics)
Like Iron man and Batman, Black Panther has wealth. Like Capt. America he is a martial artist and parkour practitioner. Any fighter in the real world willing to learn non-Asian fighting styles can be Black Panther.
When the “Storm” comic first launched, I was super-geeked along with many other comic book fans that Ororo Munroe was finally getting her own solid series. I rarely write reviews because I spent years doing so when I wrote a film blog, and countless other websites do the same thing, so I usually step outside of reviewing books, films, TV shows, etc. However, when I noticed that sales were down for “Storm” and that there was a #SaveStorm campaign on Twitter, I was concerned. I was sad when I heard news that the female-empowered comic “She-Hulk” was canceled. Storm fans asked for her own comic and Marvel listened, and I am still curious to know what is it about this AMAZING comic that has not yet stuck with fans?
I want to just take a moment to bask in the awesomeness that is Storm. I’ve been reading several comics right now “Thor,” “Death of Wolverine,” “Black Panther,” and some old-school “Excalibur.” However, nothing gets my goosebumps and the hairs on the back of my neck standing still like Greg Pak’s “Storm.” If you haven’t started on the comic, then it’s absolutely fine because that just means you have the opportunity to catch up on the first five issues!
It’s obvious from Storm’s inception until today that she has had massive appeal to all people. It’s not just Black women who are fans, but men and women of all different backgrounds and nationalities love and adore her. However, when you are a Black female who has to deal with a greater deal of adversity than a man or a white woman, I love turning to comics to see a woman with brown skin like me kicking ass and taking names!
Read more from Jamie Broadnax: blackgirlsnerds.com