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Repulsive Blasts

« July 2016 »

Memo to comic book nerds: IT'LL BE OK.

Yesterday, Marvel announced that Riri Williams, a fifteen-year-old black girl and prodigy, would be taking up the mantle of Iron Man in the comics after Civil War II. If you somehow survived the multiple apocalypses of Half-Black-Half-Latino Spider Man, Female Thor, Black Captain America, Black Movie Human Torch, and Muslim Ms. Marvel, you know what's coming. THINLY VEILED RACISM! A bunch of nerds who don't understand how minorities can be superheroes because they don't understand minorities at all. And never want to have to.

But before we get to that, let's take a stop at Clueless White Boy Town, where a number of commenters wonder how Riri, depicted in art with a fairly large natural hairstyle, would be able to put on the Iron Man helmet. Even if you somehow ignore the fact that, as depicted throughout comic, cartoon, and movie history, Iron Man armor is fucking magic and does magical things like not wrinkling tuxedos, hair squishes, assholes. And no, you can't touch it to be sure.

Anyway, the typical I'm Not Racist But argument goes something like this, from "Will". ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"Yes, Marvel. That’s the answer. Replace every major character in your universe with a black/Asian/Female/Gay alternative. Do it all at once. Because inventing original, compelling characters with these traits is hard. It’s better to just alienate your long-time fans so you can look like you’re totally on board the equality ban wagon."

Do you know why Marvel doesn't invent original, compelling characters? Because nerds won't buy them. Nerds will buy Iron Man. Nerds have always bought Iron Man. Nerds will buy Iron Man even if they're mad about them being replaced, because Iron Man. Or Thor. Or Spider-Man. That's all you've bought for 50 years, that's all you want. So even if you weren't pretending to be interested in new black, Asian, female, or gay characters, you're still pretending to be interested in new characters.

Of course, there are people tying this into our greater societal issues, like this weirdo who calls himself "The NanoRaptor":

"I do still think theres alot of PC lately. Soon we will be told we have to have a even ratio of friends that are of varied backgrounds."

Don't be silly. First, even the most egregious examples of what's called "political correctness" haven't come close to that. Don't worry. There is literally nothing the government can do to force YOU to have friends.

Then there are the people who say things like "Iron Man will always be Tony Stark to me", which is fine, except for all the times he wasn't, like the time he was James Rhodes and the time he was Pepper Potts and the time he was a weird de-aged Tony Stark teenager, etcetera, etcetera. Also, he's gonna be Iron Man again because comics are comics.

And for all of you snidely wondering "what's next, a [combination of minority qualifiers] [white male straight Marvel character]?", don't worry about it. It is inevitable that something will be next, and it is inevitable that you won't like it, so stop wondering and just accept your sad, sad fate of only being able to read thousands of comic books with white male heroes.

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