The Phenomena of the "Black Panther" Movie
Marvel Comics showcases another character this February entitled “Black Panther.” This character was introduced during the ‘Civil War’ movie inception, as the future king of Wakanda due to the death of his father in an explosion.
The African country of Wakanda is masked as a 3rd world country in the movie but is highly developed and technologically advanced. As the story unfolds we learn more about the main character, the King of Wakanda, the country and its people.
The interesting phenomena behind the creation of this movie is that an all African American cast, director and producer are involved. This movie has sent critics, the public and movie goers in a tailspin for months leading up to its released. What makes this movie so popular, powerful, influential and even disdained to our society, particularly the African American community?
This movie is iconic and historic because of the casting and film making roles but how often are African American portrayed as Kings and Queens with powerful influence on the world technologically and economically? The portrayal of such powerful African American figures is liberating for many of us who have been bombarded for centuries with unfavorable images of African Americans. This movie allows for us to celebrate the uniqueness, the historical impact of our community on the development of society and dismantles the negative image of our people. Although it is fiction, the premise behind the concept of African kingdoms, resource rich countries and advanced educational concepts is entrenched in reality – the lost, misguided or skipped over history that is not discussed.
More importantly, this movie begins to empower a generation of African Americans who have felt hopeless, degraded and minimize through the negative media images, police brutality and onslaught of minimum opportunities. This movie allows our community to see how historically rich our community was, the power we possess when working together and the possibilities of great achievement when sound decisions, investments and planning comes together. Who would have thought that Marvel would present such an idea, at the right time in our society where diversity is not celebrated widely and differences illicit discrimination and isolation.
Kudos to Marvel.
Finally, an opportunity to showcase just how great a people we were, are and can be!