NOTE: the final link for this month includes a piece about the fights over rape in fiction and so my response/thoughts… revolve around rape in fiction (and a little bit about it in fandom). Read carefully, please.
We started by affirming simple truths: that Black critics have been setting the record straight and engaging Black citizenry “in the making of its own story,” as Elizabeth Méndez Berry and Chi-hui Yang wrote in 2019, across the centuries, from Frederick Douglass’s sharp observations about blackface minstrelsy to the barrier-breaking journalism of theater and music columnists like Pauline Hopkins, Sylvester Russell and Lester Walton in the late 19th and early 20th century. The long Harlem Renaissance gave us figures like Nora Holt, Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston. And Amiri Baraka and Phyl Garland wed Black nationalist desire with fierce, experimental music criticism in the Black Arts era.
I would not be where I am now without Black critics who came before me. I think about that often.
It’s not just about reading their work and learning or growing from it, but about having that access to content and understanding that without them paving the way, there’d be nowhere for me to step.
For the still in-progress transcript (now in final edits): I could not have gotten this out with the help of Hayden who handled the majority of the transcription and clarifications (for cultural references and Korean language since my audience is largely US-based). You can find them on:
Women of Color in Marvel Live Action Properties is an essay series that will look closely at the portrayals of female characters of color by actresses of color in Marvel’s various franchises. I was inspired by the fact that a lot of these female characters don’t get anywhere as much love as white female characters in similar roles and that we’re not as likely to see fandom analyze why they’re empowering. They don’t get meta-fandom or essays unless it’s about placing them in relation to white characters. I want to celebrate the women of color that inhabit the same worlds as our favorite superheroes while looking at how and why they’re important to fans like me.
Sometimes, if you want justice you have to get it yourself.
Claire Temple in Luke Cage Season 1/Episode 7 “Manifest”
Claire Temple is too good for the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Claire Temple is one of the best characters in the MCU and she’s one of the few recurring female characters of color the franchise has had in the almost ten years of its history. She’s also Afro-Latina – as is actress Rosario Dawson – making her one of the few Black women to have a major recurring role in the MCU following Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.‘s Raina.
In a genre that’s spent much of the past decade finding newer and more popular white male actors (often named “Chris”) to play their heroes rather than focusing on female characters or characters of color, Claire Temple is an extra awesome rarity.Read More »
I need White Feminism (which exists to benefit whiteness and white womanhood) to stop telling me that Black female characters are better off when they’re single.
I need White Feminists ™ in fandom to stop pretending that they’re protecting or promoting Iris West/Nyota Uhura/Abbie Mills/Eve Moneypenny by wanting these Black female characters to stay single and “strong” forever, pushing them away from the potential of canon romances with white male characters.Read More »
Content warnings: This post contains descriptions and images of sexual assault/harassment from the comic that may be triggering or upsetting to readers.
With every reading of Wonder Woman: Earth One, I hate it a little bit more.
Grant Morrison has been working on WW:EO for years.
Seriously, the first book in DC’s Earth One line (Superman: Earth One Volume One) came out in October 2010. In the past almost six years in that same line, there have been three Superman books, two Batman books, and one Teen Titans book. And yet, the least represented version of DC’s Trinity, Wonder Woman, has been pointedly absent from the universe.
Part of it, is because Grant Morrison is apparently a slow writer. He had to get things just right and that takes time. Morrison, like his comic creator peers Alex Ross and Jim Lee, isn’t the best with deadlines.
However, there’s another, more insidious reason to the push back: sexism.
Obviously, this post has spoilers for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. And some of them might be above the cut.
Earlier yesterday, The Raven Cycle author Maggie Stiefvater took to tumblr (in a response to a message sent from one of her fans) to announce that she had beef with the Star Wars fandom in the wake of Episode VII: The Force Awakens.
Why does she have an issue with the fandom?
Could it be because fandom insists on shipping Rey with Kylo Ren despite everything he did to her?
Could it be because of racist AUs like the ‘segregation’ AU someone saw floating around?
Or could it be because clueless and offensive people fandom have decided that Finn is the ultimate misogynist for – wait for it – daring to hold Rey’s hand at some point in the film?
Not even close.
Maggie has beef with the Star Wars fandom because they’re focusing too much on Poe Dameron and Finn.
You know, the first men of color to ever be main characters in a Star Wars film.
Instead of basking in that beautiful POC rep (or, if she must complain, point out that we still haven’t had a woman of color with a significant presence in the film series on that same level), she’s steamed because fandom isn’t focusing as much on Rey as they are on Finn and Poe.Read More »
Today, I woke up to two interesting things going on in comics. Both things revolved around women and girls in comics. I have thoughts on both but I’m a wee bit grumpy about them weirdly enough (thankfully, some commentary from and about my nieces helps soften that a bit I think).Read More »
While short, this review does contain spoilers for Fast & Furious 7 both in the text and in the video accompanying it. If you haven’t seen it yet, this isn’t the review for you.
I loved the original premise for the F&F franchise. Dom, Lettie, and Brian up against the world was my thing. I liked the idea that the characters existed in this morally gray area where they were on the run from the government as well as the actual bad guy in the films.
The shift from car thieve/drag racer centered franchise was a bit unexpected but okay, it works. It really works. And in Furious 7, there’s a really good blend of the dynamics where you have the whole “these guys are doing illegal shit” but they’re also the good guys. I loved how we did get some racing scenes in (the beginning with Lettie was fabulous both because she was back behind the wheel and because we saw her dealing with the trauma caused by her injuries and having flashbacks). I also loved how this starts setting up the stage for the crew to do bigger things and to interact with crime/criminals on this larger scale.