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Melanin Monday: Why We Need Black Panther

I recently saw Thor: Ragnarok, and while I think it is one of the better films to come out of the Marvel Cinematic Universe to date, though I will admit a lot of that had to do with the tone of the film, rather than the actual plot (but that’s a discussion best saved for another day). In fact, I absolutely love the MCU, the good, the bad, and the ugly (I’m looking at you Hulk and Incredible Hulk), but there is one film that I am looking forward to the most from the MCU… and no, it’s not Infinity Wars Pt 1…. I mean, I am, that shit looks like it’s going to be epic, but even more than that, the film I am most looking forward to is Black Panther!

I still remember the first time I saw the teaser trailer, it literally gave me chills, hell, I still get chills every single time I watch this trailer. Don’t get me wrong, T’Challa is not the first black superhero to grace the silver screen (and God willing, he won’t be the last), but Black Panther has something the Blade franchise, Spawn, and of course the comedies like Blankman and Meteor Man never quite seemed to capture with their Black super hero leads. Don’t get me wrong, each film mentioned above, has it’s merits, but each one is missing a bit of that inherent Blackness that makes Black Panther stand out as something truly revolutionary.

I don’t say this to take away from how integral these earlier films were and to an extent, still are, hell despite some questionable aspects of each film, one can argue that each one was integral in establishing positive depictions of Black men in film. Love em or hate em, each one of those films built the foundation on which Marvel’s Black Panther film stands, and you’d be doing them a great disservice to overlook these important stepping stones that paved the way for T’Challa gracing the silver screen in February.

But, let’s not get complacent, let’s not let Black Panther be the end all for Black superhero films! Netflix’s Luke Cage proved that there is a demand for more diverse superhero narratives, especially our Black and brown skinned heroes. I know I am not alone when I say that we need these narratives more than ever, in a time when men and women are still being persecuted because of the color of their skin; in a time where hate is reflecting back on us from ever facet of the media; in a time where history is being rewritten to suit the needs of people too ashamed to look back on the injustices of the past…. We need Black Panther, we need this kind of positive representation, because it gives us hope.

T’Challa isn’t just a stunning example of the beauty, power, and strength of one man, no, he is the embodiment of the beauty, power, and strength of all people of color. He is who we are, he is everything we have the potential to be, and that’s what makes this film so important. When I see Chadwick Boseman in his Black Panther costume, I get choked up, because he wears his blackness with pride, he is unashamed, confident in his strength, he is a symbol of what I aspire to be. He is a king, a leader, a man of honor and integrity…and that dear readers is what makes this film so revolutionary.

 

So, I want to hear from you guys! How do you guys feel about the upcoming Black Panther film? Are you looking forward to seeing a Black superhero grace the silver screen? Any heroes you think deserve to get the Hollywood treatment? Let me know what you think in the comments section. If you like what you see, like this post or follow Nice Job Breaking It, Hero! As always THANK YOU FOR READING!!

10 replies »

  1. I’m definitely looking forward to this film. The trailer for this one looks really cool, and it’s nice to see a completely different kind of superhero than anything that has gone before. The character of Black Panther is very interesting, so I for one can’t wait for next year 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I feel like I’m one of the few people (especially one of the couple black people) that doesn’t care too much for black panther. He was lit in civil war but nothing about him or his comics have interestes me, like I don’t get the hype behind the film.

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    • My knowledge of Black Panther is pretty basic. I never really dived into his story like that. But I’m really excited to see this film because it looks awesome. More so for what it represents rather then the narrative but yeah, that’s just me though.

      Like

      • I know a fair bit about him but it’s like most marvel films, I just can’t get too hype for them. I know some people are getting hyped for the movie because it’s a prominent black character going mainstream but personally I can’t really get with that because it kind of feels forced. While it’s good it’s like when you throw a bunch of minorities whether it be racial or sexual in a medieval setting it feels kinda forced (my main problem with it comes from black twitter). If it winds up being a good film I’ll give it it’s props but judging by these past marvel films it might come off as kind of average to me.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Fr, they’ll either make you cry from laughter because the comedy is hilarious or cringe from stupidity like everything being racist or some people thinking the US is 50 years old.

        Liked by 1 person

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