Off My Mind: Race in comics

This is something I wanted to write about a couple of months ago but I didn't like the first version so I deleted it but here I am having another go and before I start, this is about the Marvel universe. 
Anyway I have been thinking and it seems to me that almost all of the important Heroes in the Marvel universe are all American and white now I know you could argue that they are made in America they can be all American but still why haven't they branched out leave New York, set up shop somewhere else and bring in some new foreign Heroes to be part of the Avengers and when I'm talking about Race I am only talking about people and not any alien characters . 
However if you think about it there are a lot of black super heroes but do they play a big part in the universe today. Off the top of my head here are all the black heroes part of the marvel universe I can name: Falcon, Black Panther, Storm, Patriot, The black Captain America, the late Bill Foster, War Machine, Luck Cage, Bill's replacement Black Goliath, and Brother Voodoo. Out of this list I would say 2 of the people in this list play a big part in the marvel universe. Brother Voodoo is the sorcerer supreme so he will have a part to play in times to come and of course Luke Cage one of the characters that I think made New Avengers the great book that it was and now he has taken over from Norman Osborn as head of the Thunderbolts. Some of you will argue with me about my 2 choices but when you think about it I'm right about my choices. Some of you might pick Storm but if you have been reading Doomwar she has fallen from her grace of one of the strongest members of the X-Men ever and a fearless fighter to someone who now seems Dependant on her husband the Black Panther, that is a relationship I would like to shine some light on. Why were they sworn into matrimony, I know it was shown that they had a history when they were young but was it only because they are both African that it seemed like a good idea to join them together? Some of you would probably say War Machine but sure he was in the latest Iron man movie and he had his own series a while back but now he only drifts in and out of the Invincible Iron man comic. 
Now the reason I thought about this is because I am Irish and live in Ireland so I checked to see if there was any Irish Heroes and I found out that there is only 2 and if this didn't anger me enough one of them is DEAD. I am of course talking about Banshee and Siren the daughter of Banshee. I am quite unhappy with this as it means that there is only one Irish hero out there but for some reason I'm happy with the fact that there is enough British heroes to make their own team MI13 I think it was. Even though the Irish and English have a bad history I actually liked the Captain Britain secret invasion story. This doesn't change the fact that Marvel still hasn't branched out to other countries because with the Heroic age and everything else going on it might be a good idea for Steve Rodgers to gather or appoint someone to go all around  Europe and gather together a European Avengers (The Eurovengers) from heroes from MI13 and that French superhero group that was in Fantastic Four comic during civil war like Charles Xavier did when the original X-men team were stuck on Karota. 
 When we think about it America's neighbor Canada, everyones favorite X-men and Avenger Wolverine came from there and so did Deadpool, it even had enough Heroes to form the super hero team Alpha Flight but most of them died in New Avengers except one of the survivors went on to form Omega Flight but they don't seem to be together as U.S Agent left to join the Mighty Avengers and Weapon Omega left to join the dark x-men. Another country that has its own super hero team is Russia hell Russia even has its own versions of Captain America and Iron Man so if they can have a team why can't Europe its just not fair that America has to run Super Heroism just like it has to run everything else, on top of that it is also not fair that the black hero seems to be taking a back seat lately bar the two I've mentioned   
So I leave you with these questions, what is the position of race in comics ? Does any new hero sitting and waiting in the minds of our comic writers have to be American and white to become a success and gain the popularity of the readers it just doesn't seem right. Will we ever see a super hero team in Europe?  
 Has any of what I have said shined any light on it ? 

27 Comments
27 Comments
Posted by Aronmorales

I( know what you mean, why is it the states are the only ones with super heroes? 
Well that's something I'd like to see change.

Posted by No_Name_

You forgot all America, White and MALE.

Posted by KRYPTON

Well Black Panther is from africa

Edited by Joeybagad0nutz

Deadpool and Wolverine are Canadian. Also you got Alpha Fight and Red Guard. And didn't thte bear from that team get his own comic???

Posted by Joeybagad0nutz

Oh and isn't Captain America origin Irish??? There you go. The Great American hero family came from Ireland.
Posted by IronSpidy-Rooney
@JoeRiccadonna: He said he was Irish just like every person who has run for President of America has said they have Irish roots. It doesn't mean anything unless there is proper proof.
Posted by IronSpidy-Rooney
@JoeRiccadonna: I'll put that in thanks
Posted by Anthony Robson92

The only other marvel character who springs to mind as being Irish is Shamrock, she recently appeared in Girl Comics although that wasn't such an empowering role for her. (Having her as a hairdresser for heroes rather than a heroine) 
 
I agree it would be cool to see a more diverse team of Avengers. I like the idea of Eurovengers, there's plenty of existing Marvel characters who could easily fit in and room for new characters, with the possibility of a rotating roster?

Posted by Edamame
@IronSpidy-Rooney: Many American presidents have Scots-Irish ancestry. 
Posted by ComicMan24

Diversity in comics is something to be desired.
Posted by Edamame
@ComicMan24: The majority of the characters in Marvel or DC comics are White Anglo-Saxon though. Not that much diversity. 
Edited by ComicMan24
@Edamame:
That's a sad truth.
Posted by pixelized
@Anthony Robson92 said:
" The only other marvel character who springs to mind as being Irish is Shamrock, she recently appeared in Girl Comics although that wasn't such an empowering role for her. (Having her as a hairdresser for heroes rather than a heroine)  
Idk, get enough bad haircuts and you'll start to regard the one person that does it well as something close to God.
 
@Edamame said:
" @ComicMan24: The majority of the characters in Marvel or DC comics are White Anglo-Saxon though. Not that much diversity.  "
That is something that turned me off to reading the new Birds of Prey book. A large roster with minimal diversity just looks really bad.
Posted by ComicMan24
@IronSpidy-Rooney:
Jack' O Lantern from DC is Irish too.
Edited by Edamame
@ComicMan24: Banshee, Carnage (Kletus Kassady), Black Tom Cassidy and possibly Abyss all have Irish ancestry as well. 
 
@pixelized said:
" @Anthony Robson92 said:
" The only other marvel character who springs to mind as being Irish is Shamrock, she recently appeared in Girl Comics although that wasn't such an empowering role for her. (Having her as a hairdresser for heroes rather than a heroine)  
Idk, get enough bad haircuts and you'll start to regard the one person that does it well as something close to God.
 
@Edamame said:
" @ComicMan24: The majority of the characters in Marvel or DC comics are White Anglo-Saxon though. Not that much diversity.  "
That is something that turned me off to reading the new Birds of Prey book. A large roster with minimal diversity just looks really bad. "
I haven´t read that one. 
Posted by ComicMan24
@Edamame:
As it turns out there are more Irish than we thought.
Posted by Edamame
@ComicMan24 said:
" @Edamame: As it turns out there are more Irish than we thought. "
True, but it is still mostly White Anglo-Saxon. 
Posted by IronSpidy-Rooney
@Edamame:    what does Anglo-saxon mean
Posted by TheAmericanDream

Storm is still a popular X-Men character, and she is a black female.
Posted by Edamame
@IronSpidy-Rooney said:
" @Edamame:    what does Anglo-saxon mean "
Anglo-Saxon ancestry originates from England. 
 
@TheAmericanDream said:
" Storm is still a popular X-Men character, and she is a black female. "

Storm compared to Scott Summers, Emma Frost, Charles Xavier, the Juggernaut, Iceman, etc.  : )
Edited by exodus0000000

Well being a negro and all I feel your pain...nah it doesn't get that serious, but I understand where you're coming from.  This is something that me and my brothers used to joke about way back when the original Xmen cartoon used to air on FOX.  
 
P.S. isn't Apocalypse egyptian? And aren't egyptians black contrary to popular belief? One of my brothers would joke around and call Apocalypse "A-PACK-of-lips" due to his big a** lips.  Man that guy has some big lips.

Posted by Edamame
@exodus0000000: Apocalypse is Ancient Egyptian.
Edited by Do I have to give a name?

I think part of it could simply be that the writers are trying to make characters that they themselves can relate to. It's easy enough for an American writer to write about American characters, regardless of their colour. But writing about, for example, a French heroes life would be harder, especially if the writer has never been to France. I can agree that more diversity would be a good thing, but I find it to be a much more fluid story if the writer is coming up with something organic to them. Instead of specifically trying to cater to a certain type of character template. Diversity is great, but diversity for diversity's sake often comes off as false and in some cases, damned racist.  

Posted by Captain13

I'm an American, but I understand how you feel. I remember when I was little I would wonder why everyone who had superpowers was a White American Male. And why there was a Justice League of America instead of a Justice League (of Earth). The companies are trying to be more diverse, and I think the Heroic Age should/will encompass the European parts of the Marvel Universe. Just cross your fingers.
I always thought that the Avengers and the Justice League should be more like the Justice League Unlimited cartoon, which had like a hundred heroes from around the world working together. That would be totally cool if they did it right. 
The problem with both companies is that when they make minority or international characters, they don't try to make those characters appeal to everyone. I.e. a female superhero is basically only a hero to women because she has so much girl power (and women are better than men *cough* Wonder Woman *cough*); Black heroes often deal with "Black problems" and they want everyone to know how Black they are, so they put Black in front of their name (Black Lightning, Black Goliath, Black Racer, etc.). You may have to put up with some Irish stereotype heroes before you get a hero who just happens to be Irish, but hang in there. And hey, Banshee is past due for a revival, so he may show up again in a year or two.

Posted by Son_of_Magnus

Like a character by his CHARACTER not by his/her race I could care less if all characters where white or if they where all black if they are still the same character than I will still read it

Posted by tgaxgriffenx

This is a very deep topic you bring up because a lot of comic book heroes were created in times when diversity wasn't really high on peoples to do lists. Being a mutli-racial person my self I look for diversity every where but you just have to except the fact that these two companies, Marvel and DC, are old school companies , DC celebrating there 75th anniversary and all, run by white Anglo-Saxon men. I think the front runners for both companies were made white Anglo-Saxon and will remain that way. Batman, Superman, Spiderman, Captain America, Fantastic Four, and Hulk are all major staples and big sellers who are Anglo-Saxon. You just kinda have to deal. But it seems as though there have been slow changes within the industry over time. We have had some strong diverse characters sprinkled in here and there, Black panther and Storm, Jamie Riaz (Blue Beetle), Static Shock, John Stuart (Green Lantern), Luke Cage( Sweet Christmas) and others I can't quite remember right now. Feel free to add any others i forgot. "I have noticed most of these characters are African american. These just happen to be the characters i have read and remember currently."  I think if people talk about it enough you'll either notice it more or help influence change. Personally I can only name two interracial couples off the top of my head, Misty Knight and Daniel Rand and Luke Cage and only one of them has a child. I bet there are more though. I agree with the idea of a European Avengers and more books about diverse heroes from other countries. I think its a great idea. Every day were becoming more exposed to life in other countries so why not in comics. Though playing devils advocate I would assume it would be hard to write about a country or people you don't know much about but that could be rectified by hiring multi-cultural and diverse writers and artist. Great topic. If the demand is there Marvel and DC, being a company interested in money, they will have to supply in some way or another.

Posted by tamerafox

"  everyones favorite X-men and Avenger Wolverine " Excuse me? I hate Wolverine. 
But anyways, as a black woman, I wished there were more representation of minorities, but comics does a better job in diversity than say, manga. At least skin color doesn't represent whether someone is good or evil.