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Episode 318 — Black Superheroes


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#1 July Diaz

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 12:09 AM

Andrew Ti and this week’s special guest Jay Tan finish the week off by discussing a couple of the stereotypes that black superheroes have such as almost always having lighting powers. As always, leave us a message about anything you think is racist at (323) 389-RACE.

#2 dlo burns

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Posted 17 January 2014 - 10:07 AM

The original black superhero was Black Lightning (who literally shot black lightning), and I think all the ones afterward were mostly ripoffs or homages (such as Static Shock).

Other things I could think of:
- Luke Cage and Powerman are the same. He's bullet proof and strong.
-There's Misty Knight, she was a cop who lost her arm and Ironman made her a bionic one. She's part of the steer level crew with Luke Cage and Dare Devil.
-Static Shock came from Milestone Comics which was created by a group of black comic book artists and writers. Sadly creator Dwayne McDuffie passed away a few years ago.
-Isaiah Bradley was a prototype Captain America, and his story is a commentary on the government's eugenics program.
-Cyborg has been promoted from the Teen Titans to the Justice League.
-Black Canary is a white woman.

#3 Johnny Unusual

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Posted 18 January 2014 - 01:46 AM

There were black super-heroes before Black Lightning. Black Panther for instance, who first appeared in Fantastic Four in 1966 (a good 11 years before Black Lightning) and got his own series in 1972 when he took over as the lead of the comic series Jungle Action from a forgotten Tarzan clone named Tharn.

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While not a super-hero the character Lobo (no, not that one) is also notable is the first known black lead of a comic about a heroic cowboy framed for a crime he did not commit.

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#4 omondieu

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Posted 20 January 2014 - 05:05 PM

There are a lot of superheroes of colour whose powers are products of comic book writers in the '60s/'70s/early '80s trying to be inclusive while reinforcing racist stereotypes.

More than a handful of black superheroes have powers or identities which are very much connected to ancient African tribes, animals, and nature (Black Panther, Storm, Vixen), i.e. not "civilized" western culture.

The amount of superheroes of Asian descent is pathetic, but of course a lot of them are experienced martial artists and use samurai swords or katana.

And the number of Native American/First Nations superheroes who wear traditional headdresses and buckskin boots would make drunk hipsters cream themselves in delight.

#5 dlo burns

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Posted 22 January 2014 - 05:36 PM

View Postomondieu, on 20 January 2014 - 05:05 PM, said:

The amount of superheroes of Asian descent is pathetic, but of course a lot of them are experienced martial artists and use samurai swords or katana.


Amadeus Cho doesn't know kung-fu! He uses super math to defeat his enemies!

...wait