Saturday, August 29, 2015

Of Hancock and Black Superheroes

In anticipation of the screening of "Hancock," Peter Berg's kickass, if tangled, superhero yarn, the conversation behind us was about why, despite Batman and Spider-man and Iron Man, until now there have been no black s

Of Hancock and Black Superheroes

0 comments
Blog Image
Will Smith as Hancock

In anticipation of the screening of "Hancock," Peter Berg's kickass, if tangled, superhero yarn, the conversation behind us was about why, despite Batman and Spider-man and Iron Man, until now there have been no black superheroes on screen. Uncharacteristically, I was too shy to enter the fray. I will now.

In film, there have been a handful of black supers, including Robert Townsend's "Meteor Man" (1993), the inner-city teacher who finds an emerald that makes him invincible, Damon Wayans' "Blankman" (1994), Samuel L. Jackson's Frozone in "The Incredibles" (2004) and Halle Berry's Storm in the "X-Men" franchise. (The charitable might also cite Berry as Catwoman. Call me uncharitable.)

Still, it's fair to say there have been no superstar black supers, (unless you're willing to count the superhuman -- though not superpowered -- Shaft and Superfly, Sweet Sweetback and Sheba, Baby -- blaxploitation stars of early 1970s vintage). This is not for lack of comic-book heroes: During the 1960s there was Black Panther in the Fantastic Four comics, Black Lightning and also The Falcon (a social worker/crimefighter who was, if memory serves, an ally of Captain America). In the 1990s, the supers Icon and Static could be found in the comix bins and more recently the hip-hop Blak of Blokhedz whose rhymes have supernatural effect.

Can you think of other black supers? Who would you like to see as a super on screen?

Do you think Hancock's Eagle insignia is inspired by a certain NFL franchise?

 

 

Film Critic
0 comments
We encourage respectful comments but reserve the right to delete anything that doesn't contribute to an engaging dialogue.
Help us moderate this thread by flagging comments that violate our guidelines.

Comment policy:

Philly.com comments are intended to be civil, friendly conversations. Please treat other participants with respect and in a way that you would want to be treated. You are responsible for what you say. And please, stay on topic. If you see an objectionable post, please report it to us using the "Report Abuse" option.

Please note that comments are monitored by Philly.com staff. We reserve the right at all times to remove any information or materials that are unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, pornographic, profane, indecent or otherwise objectionable. Personal attacks, especially on other participants, are not permitted. We reserve the right to permanently block any user who violates these terms and conditions.

Additionally comments that are long, have multiple paragraph breaks, include code, or include hyperlinks may not be posted.

Read 0 comments
 
comments powered by Disqus
About this blog

Carrie Rickey Film Critic
Latest Videos:
Also on Philly.com:
letter icon Newsletter