[Signal Boost] Boyega Brigade Boost for Theatre Peckham

From the GoFundMe:

“I admire Theatre Peckham’s continued mission to increase diversity in the creative industries, inspiring young people like myself to be the change we want to see in this industry.” — John Boyega

Hey, fellow John Boyega stans! John put his heart and soul into bringing the amazing Finn to life in the Star Wars sequel trilogy. Many of us who never saw ourselves in major sci-fi franchises found a champion in Finn’s journey from slave to hero. John told us from the door that he lives, breathes, and bleeds Finn, and his dedication to the role and to his fans have been a high point of the entire series.

In honor of his fantastic portrayal of Finn — and the effortless cool, poise and sense of humor he maintained offscreen — we’re raising money for something near and dear to John’s heart — Theatre Peckham, the South London-based training theatre company where he was a featured player from ages 9 to 14, and of which he became a patron in 2016. The group recently unveiled a mural  of John, and as a patron, he has helped TP kick off its 2020 fundraising drive to celebrate “talent that has come from Peckham and looking towards the future of those who will become.”

All money raised here will be sent directly to Theatre Peckham in aid of its programs and its mission of building a diverse talent pool for creative industries. Since 2020 is the year that John brought in with a bang, we’ve set that as an initial target.

(TP takes donations in pounds only, so this will work out to about 1600 GBP depending on currency exchange. If you feel most comfortable donating directly to TP’s donations’ processor , that’s cool too!)

Please consider donating to this worthy cause if you can. Thank you!

Boyega Brigade Boost for Theatre Peckham

For me, John Boyega’s performance as Finn changed the game.

I wasn’t a die hard Star Wars fan before the sequel trilogy. I’d liked the franchise, sure. But I was well in my teens before I saw all of the previous films. I didn’t have opinions on favorite characters or any of that. I saw a cool space opera and that’s about where it went for me. I wasn’t invested.

And then John Boyega, my Attack the Block bae, gets cast in The Force Awakens and I pretty much got sucked into further fandom-ing for him – but also for Finn. Finn remains a character I adore and who I would love to write some day. I’ve seen myself in him and I know many other John Boyega fans and Black people in the general (non-nerdy) audience did too.

Like Em says in the description for the GoFundMe above, “Many of us who never saw ourselves in major sci-fi franchises found a champion in Finn’s journey from slave to hero.”

As far as I can remember, there are only four Black people playing human characters in Star Wars. John is the first to be a main character. That he’s playing a character with as much power and potential as Finn – who broke his own conditioning and rebels against the fascist First Order that took him away from his parents…

I get chills thinking about it.

I am a huge John Boyega fan and that’s why I want to ask that my friends and followers alike donate whatever they can to this GoFundMe and share it with anyone that might be interested! This way, we can all show our appreciation to John by can supporting the place that helped set John on his path to stardom.

Let’s help light the way for future generations of actors to find themselves and practice their craft at Theatre Peckham!

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Supporting Stitch’s Media Mix in 2019

how to support stitch's media mix 2019


I’m Stitch and I’ve been running Stitch’s Media Mix since March 2015.

I created my site as a place for fandom and media criticism after being frustrated by my inability to find a safe, welcoming place where I could be a part of these conversations in the fandoms that I was trying to participate in.

I love being in fandom and I love the act of being a fan, but I feel as though there’s room for improvement that is always being overlooked. I’d love to be able to change certain things about the overarching institution of fandom, but for now, I’ll settle for educating and snarking my way along as I figure out how to bring change to and spark conversations in my main fandoms.

Using my academic background – a BA in History and have my MA in English/Literature – alongside my experiences as a queer Black person in fandom, I try to tackle the media I consume and the fandom spaces I inhabit from a critical and faintly snarky angle.

I use my website to host my writing: media critiqueanalysis of fandom tropes and trendsbook reviews, and the occasional bit of original fiction.

My focus is on talking critically about the media folks create and consume in order to forge a path towards making fandom a more welcoming place for marginalized and underrepresented groups of people.

I want everyone to be able to have a seat at the proverbial table without it being pulled from underneath them. Continue reading

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Two Sides of Being A Black K-Pop Fan: Incredible Rage

Jump into Indescribable Joy if you’re not ready for the rage:

On February 11, 2020 twitter user @revegina uploaded a ninety-two second video set to SEVENTEEN’s만세(MANSAE) that highlighted several supremely antiblack moments in the relatively recent history of Korean pop and hip hop.

The video – embedded below since the user in question has since been suspended – includes such gems as:

  • Two separate members of Super Junior (Yesung and Shindong) in blackface
  • (g) i-dle’s So-yeon having her “ethnic hip” moment on Queendom
  • Lots of fucking cornrows, locs, and box braids on scalps that cannot handle that shit
  • Wendy from Red Velvet and RM from BTS mimicking Black people on two separate variety shows
  • Hwasa (from Mamamoo, a group that slathered on the brown makeup as a unit to portray Bruno Mars on a variety show back in 2017), dropping an absolutely unsubtle “nigga” into her cover of Beyonce’s “Irreplaceable” like we wouldn’t fucking notice
  • A clip of RM telling interviewers, in English by the way, that he couldn’t see two of his bandmembers in the dark because “they were too black” from early on in their time as a group
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Two Sides of Being a Black K-Pop Fan: Indescribable Joy

Part One, Incredible Rage [Incoming]

The thing is that being in this fandom is not all white-knuckled rage at antiblackness…

I promise.

Korean pop music and hip-hop spark genuine joy in me.

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Authenticity Essay #2 – Girls (Not) On Top

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Near the end of October 2019, Korean rapper San E posted a photo on Instagram of his favorite (“best”) Korean rappers as part of the promo for something he’d reveal in the following days. He has ten rappers on the list, and while many of them would be on my top ten list… none are female artists.

Now, here’s the thing… I’m not actually surprised that San E couldn’t bring himself to place a single female MC on his list.

First, there’s the way that San E seems to hold female rappers – and women – to a different standard in his time as the host of m-net’s Unpretty Rapstar (2015 to 2016).

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Stitch Talks Monsta X's #AllAboutLove

If you’re not on Twitter or don’t/can’t follow my main account, here’s what I’ve been up to since Friday… a twitter thread review of Monsta X’s new English CD All About Luv that I’ve turned into a blog post because I worked REALLY hard on it.

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Featuring… Blasian Celebs

Last February, the closest I got to a Black History Month post was my review of Horror Noire on Shudder. This year, I’m aiming a little closer to what I’m writing about on the regular, by focusing on Black and Asian celebrities – as I’ll be writing a short piece on Afro-Korean celebrities at some point in my series on Korean pop and hip hop later on in the year. I stan talent first and foremost, but it has been incredibly convenient that I already had this list loosely sketched out in my mind with these incredibly talented celebrities.

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Whose Job Is It To Fix Fandom?

During the first two weeks of January, I came across an exchange between two Star Wars fans who were absolutely holding on to the narrative that the Rey/Kylo shipping fandom was being burdened with false accusations of racism – two weeks into the fandom as a whole going off on John Boyega over separate comments he made on New Year’s Eve.

@enfysblessed – I’ll repeat it until I’m blue in the face. Fandom as a whole is racist because society is racist and scapegoating one wildly diverse, large group who have one thing in common isn’t helping anything and is actively making it harder to combat fandom racism

@bensvvolo – this is honestly the most baffling thing to me, people not realizing the racism they recognize is societal and, I’d argue, not even fandom’s “job” to “fix”.

Two things stand out to me about these two tweets.

First, there’s the idea that supposedly scapegoating a “wildly diverse, large group” (Rey/Kylo shippers) for racism they are either participating in or not stopping from their fandom… is “actively making it harder to combat fandom racism”.

As someone who’s been writing about fandom racism relatively professionally since 2015? (And casually, to an extent, since the time of the Sleepy Hollow and MCU fandoms’ initial antiblackness?)

It’s actually fans like those two that make it hard for me to have my work taken seriously and for other fans to recognize and work against fandom racism.

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Fuck Your Fake Woke

This is essentially a prototype – originally posted on Patreon ages ago – of WFRLL: Woke Points For What. It’s definitely a bit… spicier than that article. I fixed some spelling errors and comma placement but for the most part, this is the article posted on Patreon… whenever I posted it on Patreon.

Right about now, in fandom spaces, “fake woke” has all but replaced the GamerGator popularized “virtue signaling” when people want to get mad about the fact that some of us care about the delicate challenge posed by trying to get positive representation for marginalized people in fandom and media. 

The second that I see someone call someone else “fake woke” or accuse them of being interested in talking about or unpacking social justice in order to get some sort of social credit – via “woke points” (courtesy of the Reylo fandom who keeps using that specific phrase to discredit anyone that’s even vaguely critical of their ship) or “virtue signaling” or even the good ole fashioned “ally cookie” – I know to be wary. 

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[Stitch Responds To Feedback] Do You Know What True Antiblackness is?

I get a lot of weird ass messages and mentions, but this message, sent on the first day of Black History Month 2020, definitely ranks at the top of the weird ones.

In case you’ve missed it, January was a month full of Star Wars fandom criticism:

All of these were written/created in response to a fairly large amount of Rey/Kylo shippers showing up and showing their racist little asses over John Boyega’s initial “lay the pipe” comment (a single sex joke) and then over him dunking on their ship.

But it’s not actually about my feelings about the ship. Actually, the one thing I tried not to do was talk about my feelings about the ship because that’s not what any of this is about.

It’s bigger than ships. It’s about how this fandom has been antiblack on main for years and is finally throwing off the hood to show its real face.

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Stitch Gives Away Tochi Onyebuchi’s Riot Baby

Ella has a Thing. She sees a classmate grow up to become a caring nurse. A neighbor’s son murdered in a drive-by shooting. Things that haven’t happened yet. Kev, born while Los Angeles burned around them, wants to protect his sister from a power that could destroy her. But when Kev is incarcerated, Ella must decide what it means to watch her brother suffer while holding the ability to wreck cities in her hands.

Rooted in the hope that can live in anger, Riot Baby is as much an intimate family story as a global dystopian narrative. It burns fearlessly toward revolution and has quietly devastating things to say about love, fury, and the black American experience.

Ella and Kev are both shockingly human and immeasurably powerful. Their childhoods are defined and destroyed by racism. Their futures might alter the world.

It’s only February, but Tochi Onyebuchi’s Riot Baby is already of my favorite books of 2020. This novella is riveting, painful, and above all… full of familiar experiences. I started reading this book and couldn’t put it down even when it got tough. It’s just… incredible.

So I’m giving away two copies.

To enter, leave a comment on this post using a valid email telling me about a work of Black speculative fiction that has moved and/or haunted you!

I’ll choose the winners on the 29th and send you the kindle copies then!

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Stitch Watches Watchmen

Note: This isn’t a full review(in fact, I primarily focus on the first episode) because I don’t have the time for it right now! If you want to talk about specific parts of the show, drop me a comment and we’ll chat about some serious spoilers!

HBO’s Watchmen series leaves me just as unsettled as the end of Jordan Peele’s Us did.

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