He got down with a Robot? To each their own.
Yung ANcient One's forum posts
Good blog. gOOD SHIT,
Thanks you two.
Worse things have happened. Deadpool, Mandarin...
Funny but I actually enjoyed the Mandarin "debacle."
I have addressed this in different blogs, for different reasons. The first was Why Comics Need to Change, Part 1: Continuity and Copyrights. The second was Mining the Public Domain, OR Why Wonder Woman Should Be Better. The third was Diversity Changes For Established Characters, and that one is probably the closest to this blog. It talks about the Miles Morales Spider-Man and the casting of Laurence Fishburne as Perry White. Basically, I said that Miles becoming Spider-Man was an organic, in-story way of another character picking up the mantle. Fishburne, on the other hand, I called bad casting. Is he a good actor? Absolutely. He doesn't look like Perry White though, who is an old white guy. I suggested that they could have cast Harrison Ford, Tom Selleck, or Sean Connery as Perry White, if "old white guy" was what they needed. However, I'll say here that none of those three looks like Perry White.
Here's the thing with movies though: we go see books made into movies to see our favorite characters come to life on screen. Sometimes they have to use prosthetics to do that (Dick Tracy; Pirates of the Caribbean), or CGI (Hulk; Transformers), or a combination of that and good makeup/props (X-Men; Spider-Man, etc.).
Now, casting in recent years has done a phenomenal job of picking actors that looked like the characters, or that they were able to make look like the characters. So maybe we've gotten a little spoiled, and want to see them all perfectly cast. But not really. We get it- the comic characters are drawn and can look however they need to. It's going to be hard to find real life actors to look like some characters. So okay, Hugh Jackman is taller than Wolverine should be, but otherwise, oh frick, he's perfect! They've never found a guy who looks exactly like Bruce Wayne. <shrugs>
We can deal with that. It's a tradeoff for seeing the costume, the gadgets, and everything else come to life on screen. When a diversity change is made though- swapping a caucasian character for an actor of a different ethnicity? It's like, "Did you even try?" Idris Alba was AWESOME as Heimdall, in Thor- he delivered two of my favorite lines in the movie, that gave me chills- but I was still disappointed that he didn't look like the comic character.
Why is this a problem? Because Vikings were white. Sorry, I have never, ever seen a black Viking portrayed anywhere, in any history treatise, and the Norse mythology was the Viking mythology. Those gods were white- sorry. It's bad casting to cast them otherwise. And Thor should be a redhead, not blonde, but Marvel has gotten away with that for eighty years, give or take.
It would also be bad casting to cast Black Panther as a white guy. He's the king of an African nation, and has always been black in the comics. He shouldn't be an Apartheid loving white guy, nor should he be Chinese. The Internet would have a volcanic meltdown if T'Challa was cast as anything other than a black guy (and I specify the color for the sake of clarity, and because not all Africans are black).
If they make a movie about the Jaime Reyes Blue Beetle, he should be Latino. As much as he looked like the character, Colossus should have a Russian accent. Midnighter and Apollo should be gay, if that ever goes to screen. And I need Martian Manhunter to be green, Sinestro to be magenta, and Starfire to be a golden-orange.
It's not racist to want to see actors that look like the characters. The problem is that most of the Big Two comic characters were created in a time when comics (and just about everything else) was a white-dominated industry, so the main characters were white, and so were most of the supporting characters. Does that need to change in today's world? Absolutely! But not in an arbitrary manner.
Take the existing characters, and let them retire, die, or otherwise be written out in favor of new characters taking over (and that's more what Why Comics Need to Change... talks about). The arbitrary replacement of a white character is as much of a disappointment as it would be to arbitrarily replace any other ethnicity. I've never liked it, in the movies or the comics. Do it in an organic, story-driven manner, and I'm all for it. Just arbitrarily changing it- no, no, no, no, no.
I want to reply to you. I have a lot to read though (I'm talking about your blogs).
(warning: long post, but history of racism in media is long)
I feel I felt the need to write to you to say that from your response, I don’t think you actually understood my post.
When someone uses parody to mock racism or sexism, they are not endorsing racism or sexism. Sadly, the instagram generation tends to forget this. My post was satirising people whom always go for the straw man arguments about race (and gender) in comics and focus on the minutia of an issue rather than the overall totality of it. Which is why I am unsure if you realise that my post was satirizing people who become irate at the notion of a non anglo Silver Age comic character. Or even a non anglo Doctor Who. Or even a non MALE Doctor Who, or Magneto, or Thor, and I brought these things up to editors I worked for over a decade ago, and got into rather big trouble for it. Because they would rather throw a tokenistic hat into the ring, than expand the length and breadth of "what makes a comic book hero, what constitutes a comic book hero".
Because, when you look at what pol-correct regulations are SUPPOSED to do and achieve (but fail miserably at), it’s *supposed* to be about who is best for the gig, the position, the brass ring, despite anything. Despite circumstances of birth. That’s often what heroes and superheroes and anti-heroes fight for. The racism and sexism and genderism that rails against that is often what the villains are about. But in the industry, this leads to sad ironies.
I mean, you should have seen the look on the face of an editor "back in the day” when they were spitballing alternative universes, and asking for ideas, and I said “Why not portray the Family of Magneto - a Latin name by the way - as a ruling family of Spain like in El Cid, or maybe the Incan Dynasties, or the Yucatan Royal Families, since the history and nobility and the inculcate Sense-of-Self in those ruling families actually match Stan the Man’s basis for Magneto and Polaris better than anything found in Mighty Whitey culture?”
The mere *suggestion* that Magneto or any character of his status could be non anglo was "big trouble". People could "talk" about the need for the narrow expression of race in pop art and mass media to be expanded, but DOING that was a different matter.
Talking versus doing, or in this case, greenlighting new characters and publishing them.
Versus the occassional tokenistic characters, provided by pol-correct editorial groups, are a distraction from what Al Gore might call “an Untenable, rather than Unfortunate or Inconvenient, Truth.”
What truth? “Making Whitey happy ain’t necessary to make MONEY from a comicbook character”.
Shaft wasn't for Whitey. Foxy Brown wasn't for Whitey. And in fact, Black Panther, the TV animated motion comic wasn't for Whitey. Dis they still make money? HELL yes. Did Black Panther, an African Focused comic and show, get paid for at full rate to be shown in Australia, where African based people are less than 0.001% of the population? Yes. Did it STILL get good ratings? YES. In competition with Spidey and Avengers and all else in a country which is VERY anglo centric.
Seem's Whitey don't care about seeing WHITEY characters as long as the CHARACTERS got some CLASS. Like T'Challa.
The whole problem with race-swapping, including the titular character of this thread, is a distraction, as is almost all overtly expressed racism/sexism/anti-queerism/ageism. It’s is a distraction from the fact that some privileged white boys and old farts can’t stand the idea that maybe they aren’t as good at their jobs as a few (or more) non anglo, non het, non male, non “standard Christian” people. I mean, have you ever seen the work of Denys Cowan, at his best?
Just IMAGINE a 24 issue run of Daredevil, written by Dwayne McDuffie and drawn by Denys, inked by Barb Kaalberg (a personal friend). With Matt Murdoch as a Nigerian or Congolese student accepted to Stanford Law School during the 60’s (similar to my stepfather, the second Black Man to attend Stanford law School). Would it have “compared well” to the Miller stuff? No.
It would have been BETTER.
But would it ever happen? Nope.
Because it’d show the lack of need for an anglo-centric “comic-verse”.
Which in turn proves that there’s no need for mostly white/male/het creators.
Which in turn proves that there’s no need for NON WHITE, NON MALE, NON HET EDITORS.
Hence my post above. Which was not mocking non white versions of characters; it was mocking the notion that a few variant versions of characters in a non white manner excuses the almost "Siberian Tundra in dead Winter" white aspect of comics in general.
And we all want a change from that. Seriously, all of us.
But what will bring that change about?
A lot of pol-correct posts ain't gonna do it. Pol-correct blither blather on the net has been about since 1992. Yet over 20 years later, here we are, with the same lack of diversity, with an ex DC Bat editor spending half of her bandwidth saying "Hire this female artist!" every second time she posts an entry.
If pol-correct stuff WORKED, all tbhose women would already be hired and paid THE SAME AS THE MALE ARTISTS.
“Annnnnnnnnnd in THIS cornah, we have the Latino Polaris! Annnnd in THIS Cornahhhhhhhh, we have the Mongolian Ben Grimm!” and so on. A big distraction. From the rela issues.
THAT’S what my post meant.
Best to you, Great Thread,
I wanted to reply to you sooner but due to time constraints I was unable to. I loved your post. I was just talking about it with a friend.
I honestly want to read it again to remember exactly what I originally wanted to reply. Thanks to unforeseeable events, I was interrupted while typing a response. The only thing I remember I wanted to say is that your post was amazing. I am so glad you posted a reply. I am happy that I misinterpreted your original post because it allowed me to learn.
I also wanted to say that I would enjoy arguing with you (amicably of course) about some notions but like you posted, "Pol-correct blither blather" might not change anything.
Dr. Strange wasn't Jewish but I would love Eli Roth playing him.
Gene Wilder is Jewish and played a famous Dr., but I would hate Gene at age 29 playing Stephen Strange.
For me a youngish Sydney Poitier would have the nobilitas and dignitas for Dr. S., the race would not matter.
But again, if we are looking at casting of films being a way to combat racism, it's like treating a gangrenous leg by putting bandaids and anti-septic spray on pustulent ulcers on a foot, that is attached to a leg that is already ostensibly dead, green and slimy from the knee down.
Again, I don't know if I agree with your analogy. I mean... I kind of do... but... *sigh*. I am hopeful.
...which brings up "change" and definition of "change". If a character is a white, refined Ph.D. student, and then some dipsh!t hisptertard "director" makes the character a swhite Seattle or Portlandia slacker, more "change" has happened than if the character was made into a Jamaican exchance student with the work ethic of J.P. Morgan.
But again to reference Wild Wild West, the color change of Jim West was immaterial compared to the change in PERSONALITY. The studio was not being pol-correct by casting W. Smith, they merely wanted who was hot for box office sales at the time without a thought. LOTS of African based or Latino based men could have played Jim West (and played him better), but not Will. And if a better actor had been chosen, there would have been pressure on Rossio and his partner to have turned in a better, less half -arsed script. Rossio who's Sandman script and Godzilla script got sh1tcanned, by the way.
Why not have Ice Cube with his one-note monotonous line-delivery playing Matt Murdoch, when that would be impossible as a court lawyer must have RANGE in his speaking manner, like Larence Fishburne (who'd be perfect for the role, and many other classically white roles).
I enjoyed this post... I just don't know what to add to it. I feel like it would be better in person when I could just react instantly and ask questions.
Pointing out that skin color is more noticeable than hair is racist? Smh, no it's not. Offensive? Now you're just being ridiculous. A change of hair color isn't that big of a deal because omgz..It's not like nobody's ever dyed their hair a different color in real life. Sure if it's a defining characteristic about them then it's important, but otherwise..Why should it be a big deal? Now you're bringing up eye color which is irrelevant to what I said. I cared more about them having someone who actually looked like and portrayed Johnny Blaze better than what we were given with Nick Cage. Would it have bothered me if he still wasn't blonde? No, because it's not important. Now if Blaze was black instead of white then yes that would have been wrong because Blaze has never been portrayed as black. I find your post offensive. Skin color will always be more important than hair. People throw the word "racist" around as much as they do "homophobe" nowadays.
I think my post about Eye Color, Hair Color, and Skin Color are relevant because my point is that Skin Color should be as important as Hair Color and/or Eye Color because it is to me. At the end of the day, I don't care if your hair is purple, your eyes are orange, or if your skin is green because those "traits" are not extraneous when considering the character of a person. It is just as important as the clothes they wear. Does it define them? To a certain extent, but at the end, the judgement of character is through interactions. Therefore, I pointed out how eye color was important because it is when considering to the source material. Best example Ben Grimm who's nicknamed The Ever Loving Blue Eyed Thing. It is part of his story, more so than Johnny Storm being a blonde or a "white boy." I have not seen one complaint about Jamie Bell not having blue eyes but apparently eye color is not as important as Johnny Storm being "black."
The reason why I personally, myself, me, I find your sentence offensive because I find the notion that a person's skin is important, to be offensive. No one's skin color should be important; no more than someone's eye color or hair color. So, yes, my examples are to point out that they are not a "big of a deal because omgz" eye color/hair color/skin color are not a defining characteristic. Plus, your sentence that "skin color will always be more important than hair" is offensive to me because again the idea that pigment is important is offensive. I think skin color should be as important as hair color or eye color, meaning that it shouldn't be of much significant worth. I am quite aware of the world we live in. There is racism and it is blatantly obvious. I know that skin color actually matters more than hair color which to me is ridiculous because it is basically the same thing: a arbitrary trait showcasing human aesthetics.
The way you feel about how unimportant hair and eye color are, is the way I feel about how unimportant skin color is. Your example of Blaze is actually worth adding to my OP to showcase how "I must acknowledge as well that the concern that comicbook fans are racist has some validity. A clear example would be how complaints for the motion picture Wanted having Angelina Jolie( she’s “white”) play Fox (a “black” character) was nearly unheard of." I totally forgot about Blaze. Why is Blaze not being portrayed as a blonde not important when he has always been portrayed as a blonde but the idea that he would not be portrayed as a "white guy" is important? Why?
Either way, I appreciate you chiming in.
Hair color doesn't really bother me that much because it's not as apparent as a skin color. I did read through it, I'm just stating my opinion. Even if I chose not to, as some have already said..it's a very long post. Not everyone watches the films when they complain about them. I for one have no desire to see the new Fantastic Four. What amazes me is that when I think about it, it'll be the first Marvel character film I've passed on in a long time. Yes that's one of the most annoying things about when they do these changes. You get a non-comic reader looking at how they are in the movie then they go around acting like that's how the character is suppose to be. I wouldn't mind them trying to appeal to the mainstream audience if they'd quit teaching them the wrong things.
I don't want to sound disrespectful but your first sentence sounds racist. I pointed out the complaints (because there were many) about Constantine being a brunette and not a blonde because it is a clear example of how no one claimed "racism" for the reason behind the complaint. As I posted, fans and fandoms usually have a self-entitlement issue. They feel like they have ownership and want what they want. Some wanted to see a blonde Constantine because that is how they know him. To say that hair color isn't a big thing as skin color is offensive to me. I find both important concerning source material and both trivial when concerning films now. I was quite interested in making sure Michael Chiklis had blue eyes, so when he would be dressed up as The Thing, he would be the ever loving blue eyed thing. I cared that much for the source material but since it is a alternate story, a parallel universe, I don't mind trivial changes such as hair/eyes/skin color or ethnicity anymore.
Again, I don't mean to be rude or abrasive but I found that first sentence offensive. However, I do agree that it can be annoying for noobs to act as if they are in the know. The thing is that happens regardless of trivial changes such as hair, eyes, or skin color. It is a sign of a new highly interested fan/supporter. What we should do is simply enlighten them and inform them of great comics they should buy.
Deadshot isn't Jewish either but no-one would care if a Jewish actor played him.
My OP speaks about the issue of when fans care and when they don't care. I talk about the concept of "race" and the actual aesthetic issue of a character rather than the actors heritage like Constantine being a brunette when in the comics he's a blonde.
IT is a long post, however.
There is literally no point into making Will Smith, Deadshot. I'm positive he'll mess it up anyways.
There are quite a few posts that explain why there are reasons why Will Smith was cast to be Deadshot.
I would say to look for Ms. Lola's post.
The thing about a black Johnny Storm is not only was he never black but it's like people never stop to consider how stereotypical it is. Consider Storm's personality and then have a black guy portraying it..Like I said, seems stereotypical. For ex, the Avengers changed a lot in appearance to match their film counterparts. Captain America off the top of my head had his suit changed and you could tell it looks like his film version's. Some say race doesn't matter, I say it does. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
@hopeonfire Nobody's racist for being against it. Wanting someone to stay true to the source material isn't racism.
Thank you for posting. I've underlined and bolded the part of your post I would like to discuss.
I. I agree it is lazy to just change a established character's background instead of promoting a character who already exists that represents a minority. However, like Vance posted. They play the name game because it is lazier and a easy win. It is easier to make Johnny Blaze Asian in a parallel universe via a new film than to give Robbie Reyes a film who is obscure to the mainstream audience.
II. Why is it always "black?" Well, actually my OP mentioned other changes. Fox (WANTED) was made to be "White"(Angelina Jolie) when she is "black" in the source material and there are almost no complaints to be found for that lack of respect for the source material. They've made John Constatine into a brunette. It isn't always "black" but it is the only one people seem to really notice. Plus, I think choosing Jolie, Will Smith, Jamie Fox wasn't fulled by "race" but the fact that they are big names in the film community. As Ms.Lola stated, the film companies depend more so on the mainstream audiences than the dedicated fans because in all honesty, people complain like crazy for Star Wars/Transformers/TMNT/etc but they still end up watching it.
III. Films effecting the comics is a bit annoying but... it doesn't matter to me much. There are way bigger fishes to cook than the issue of companies capitalizing on the exposure that the films bring. I complained about Michael B. Jordan playing Johnny Storm because of the idea that a new fan would watch the film, fall in love with the character, visit a local comic shop, look to buy a Fantastic Four comic, and find their character to look completely different than he did in the film. This is only an issue for me because if they want to promote diversity they should promote Black Panther, Cyborg, Blue Beetle, and etc than to change a characters background.
IV. I want to post more but to be blunt. I do not believe you read my entire OP and I feel like I am restating everything I already typed in my OP.
V. Please read the entire OP if you have not done so already.