Michael B. Jordan Responds To Trolls Saying A Black Man Can’t Play Johnny …

24 May 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Fear of a Black Superhero: Michael B. Jordan and the Importance of Colorblind Casting.

In an Entertainment Weekly essay published Friday, the movie star responded to the online backlash over the decision to cast a black actor as Johnny Storm/Human Torch in the upcoming reboot of the Marvel superhero franchise. Yet Jordan couldn’t resist going online to see the reaction, and was dismayed by those who couldn’t fathom him as the brother of Susan Storm (Kate Mara). “Turns out this is what they were saying: ‘A black guy? Jordan, who will play Johnny Storm—aka The Human Torch—in the upcoming Fantastic Four movie, is firing back at online commenters who did not think he looked the part because he is black and the character has blond hair and blue eyes in the comic book. Jordan as the Human Torch in Josh Trank’s Fantastic Four was something that angered a vocal section of fandom, who wanted to see a cinematic Torch as white as the original comic book character.

The Parenthood alum — who received praise for his work in the 2013 award-winning drama Fruitvale Station — plays Johnny Storm in the action sci-fi, which is a caucasian and blue-eyed character in the original Marvel comic books. “I didn’t want to be ignorant about what people were saying. In a new essay, Jordan responds to the outcry, advising those upset to take a look around. “It used to bother me, but it doesn’t anymore,” Jordan writes in Entertainment Weekly of the response to his casting. “I can see everybody’s perspective, and I know I can’t ask the audience to forget 50 years of comic books. Comic book fans around the world are eagerly awaiting the release of this summer’s Fantastic Four, but it’s easy to see that some are happier than others about the film. Nicknamed Project Bookend, the not-so-secret work was meant to be carried out by just a few senior officials, and examine how a “Brexit” would affect the country’s export’s and major cities’ economies. The email noted that any questions from the press should be answered by saying that “there is a lot going on in Europe in the next couple of months…that would be of concern to the Bank.” A note to the Bank’s staff on the project: Take a good, long look at the “CC” field before you send any of Project Bookend’s results.

They must be doing it because Obama’s president’ and ‘It’s not true to the comic.’ Or even, ‘They’ve destroyed it!'” Jordan, 28, wrote. “Some people may look at my casting as political correctness or an attempt to meet a racial quota, or as part of the year of ‘Black Film.'” He continued: “To the trolls on the Internet, I want to say: Get your head out of the computer. Storm and his sister Sue (“The Invisible Woman”) had always been portrayed as white in the Fantastic Four comics (and those godawful early 2000s films, where they transformed Hispanic Jessica Alba into a blonde-haired, blue-eyed WASP), so some fans couldn’t accept the idea that a black man would be stepping into those shoes. Sarah Eberspacher Irish voters overwhelmingly said “yes” to same-sex marriage on Saturday, with 62.1 percent in support of amending the constitution to legalize gay marriage, The Associated Press reports.

This is a family movie about four friends—two of whom are myself and Kate Mara as my adopted sister—who are brought together by a series of unfortunate events to create unity and a team. John Lyons, one of just four openly gay members of the country’s 166-member parliament, credited young voters with shifting Ireland’s historically conservative constitution in a more liberal direction.

Marvel didn’t introduce its first major black superhero until 1966 (Black Panther) and its first specifically African American superhero until 1969 (Falcon). When one considers how often black characters have been downplayed or revised in favor of white characters, deciding to go in the opposite direction isn’t so much the “politically correct” thing to do—it’s absolutely necessary if we’re going to combat the cultural tendency to prefer white faces over all else. But that doesn’t mean that all-white superhero teams and characters must be set in stone; especially if we recognize that these books being all-white in the first place was the result of white supremacist culture. The image of the superpowered white man coming to save the day is ingrained in our consciousness—and is, of course, just one facet of how whiteness and white supremacy has been communalized all over the world.

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