Marvel's Attempts to Justify Dr. Strange's Whitewashing Are Getting Insulting

Discussion in 'Books, Comics and Graphic Novels' started by OckyDub, Apr 26, 2016.

  1. OckyDub

    OckyDub is a Verified MemberOckyDub I gave the Loc'ness monstah about $3.50
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    Since Marvel announced that Tilda Swinton would play the role of Dr. Strange’s spiritual master the Ancient One, there’s been a loud outcry about yet another instance of casting a white actress as an Asian character. Marvel has been trying to diffuse the controversy through various means, including today’s announcement that suddenly, uh, the Ancient One is, uh... Celtic.

    Here’s what a Marvel spokesperson told Mashable on the matter earlier today:

    Marvel has a very strong record of diversity in its casting of films and regularly departs from stereotypes and source material to bring its MCU to life. The Ancient One is a title that is not exclusively held by any one character, but rather a moniker passed down through time, and in this particular film the embodiment is Celtic. We are very proud to have the enormously talented Tilda Swinton portray this unique and complex character alongside our richly diverse cast.

    Where to even begin? First, I guess, Marvel actually believes that we’ll believe that this movie character was ever meant to be of Celtic origin, despite no one on the cast or crew ever even hinting at it prior to today. I’m sure Marvel just forgot to mention this key fact all the other times people asked them about the lack of Asian actors in their live-action entertainment.

    Second, the fact that Swinton is no longer ostensibly playing an Asian person is good (by which I mean it’s really the bare minimum of what Hollywood should be achieving) but her sudden Celticism doesn’t change the actual problem, which is that yet another Asian character has been given to a white person. Another role that could have—should have—gone at an Asian actor to help increase Marvel’s diversity was instead taken away, and the fact that Marvel somehow doesn’t even recognize this is the issue is both baffling and disheartening.

    And third, just for kicks: Marvel already has one bone-white Caucasian who gets to become the ultimate master of mystical Asian arts over all its native practitioners. Maybe it didn’t need another.

    So here we are, folks. Marvel is not only still trying desperately trying to pretend it doesn’t have a problem, and now it’s yet another company that think we’re so stupid as to believe anything it tells us. Great.

    http://io9.gizmodo.com/marvels-atte...utm_source=io9_facebook&utm_medium=socialflowhttp://io9.gizmodo.com/marvels-atte...utm_source=io9_facebook&utm_medium=socialflow
     
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  2. OckyDub

    OckyDub is a Verified MemberOckyDub I gave the Loc'ness monstah about $3.50
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    The real reason was revealed by Robert Cargill over on Double Toasted...

    From the comments section:
    "Basically, money dear boy. They didn’t want to piss off the Chinese market, and decided to not go the Tibetan master of mystic arts route. Why that equals “white person” as the next best option is beyond me."
     
  3. OckyDub

    OckyDub is a Verified MemberOckyDub I gave the Loc'ness monstah about $3.50
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    I get this and understand the point of view; nonetheless no one challenged his POV? I agree with the observation from the article "Marvel already has one bone-white Caucasian who gets to become the ultimate master of mystical Asian arts over all its native practitioners. Maybe it didn’t need another."
     
  4. Dreamwalker

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    I can understand how some Asians might be offended by....
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    But there were plenty of other options to choose from.
    We've already had plenty of.....
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    and
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    I'd be nice to see some....
    image.jpeg
    Or
    image.jpeg
    Or
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    Or
    image.png
    (Bonus points if you can name the movie this dude was in)

    image.jpeg

    image.jpeg
     
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  5. OckyDub

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  6. Dreamwalker

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    New Shazam Wizard inspired by Australian Aboriginal God of lightning

    MAMARAGAN – LIGHTNING [REAL MYTHOLOGY]

    [​IMG]
    Look at his knee axes!

    A lightning God from Australian Aboriginal mythology, and now the source of Shazam’s lightning powers but, as I’ll show in a bit, this is actually the least interesting thing about this character!

    In Australian Aboriginal mythology, Mamaragan or Namarrkun is a lightning god who speaks with thunder as his voice. He rides a storm-butt and throws lightning bolts to humans and trees. He lives in a puddle.

    Mamaragan is also known as Namarrgon and you find a lot more about him if you look him up under this name:

    Namarrgon (pronounced narm-arr-gon) is the Lightning Man, an important creation ancestor responsible for the violent lightning storms Kakadu experiences every wet season.

    You can listen to an Aboriginal elder talk about him, and see ancient cave paintings of the god, hereand then here has even more info:

    His body is shaped like a praying-mantis. He makes lightning flashes with his lightning rods that go around his body. This is Namarrkon’s power source to light up my butts and the sky.

    Namarrkon has axes on his shoulders and his knees. When he comes to earth as a lightning strike, he uses the axes to split trees.

    Anyway, as I said, this background isn’t the most interesting thing about the DC comics version of Mamaragan, the most interesting thing is this: Mamaragan is the Wizard himself! Here are the relevant pages from just after Billy kicks Zonuz’s butt – and as you can see, the antagonistic relationship between Billy and the Wizard that the post-Flashpoint continuity established continues:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Since Flashpoint and the launch of the New 52 there have been a few changes to these characters. Captain Marvel officially became Shazam, and the Wizard Shazam simply became the Wizard, for example, but also of interest is that the depiction of the Wizard completely changed too!

    In the past he was almost always shown as an old white man with a long white beard – it wasn’t very imaginative – but since the reboot he’s been depicted as black and seemingly Aboriginal. Here are some of his earlier appearances:

    [​IMG]
    A younger Wizard/Mamaragan with the Council of Wizards

    [​IMG]
    The Wizard/Mamaragan just before he gave Billy his powers

    Was this plan all along? Who knows, but Steve Orlando in this issue clearly states that the Wizard is none other than this god of lightning and one that now powers Shazam directly. He also explained how last time we saw him, when Billy was getting his powers, that he appeared to die, saying that Gods don’t really die but just return to the Source.

    So, there you go!
    What gods power Shazam and how did this change during Darkseid War?
     
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