My crossing into the sci-fi event horizon was in the early 80’s with influences by Flash Gordon, Alien, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Heavy Metal magazine, Conan the Barbarian, X-Men comics and Millipede the video game. I feel like I must include kung fu theater in here as well. For decades comics have always pushed imaginative boundaries where it seemed like traditional media was afraid to press. With Hollywood and mainstream media finally coming around in the late 90’s, more people are being exposed and becoming fans of these genres and their rich stories. Regardless of the reasons or factors, historically a large portion of the protagonists or main characters within comics, sci fi, anime and video games have been White. Of course there has been mainstays and progress from Storm, to Blade, to Afro Samurai. As Black geekdom continuous to grow so does the presence on social media.
Every Black Facebook group that I’ve been a member of that’s centered on the love of comics, science fiction, anime and video games has been complicated as fuck. I must say that I classify myself as a non-heterosexual, masculine leaning, agnostic, anti-feminist, politically independent thinking, Black man…so there are very few tables for me to pull up a chair and eat at. The near constant egg shell treading and dodging the barrage of sensitivities in these groups was exhausting.
Below are real examples from some of our brothers and sisters in these groups.
- Black men posting pics of women dressed in cosplay (who were either fair skin or non-Black) and Black women being upset because they were not posting cosplay pics of darker skinned or full figured Black women.
- Many Black heterosexual dudes revolting in disgust anytime a woman or gay dude posts a pic highlighting the sexiness or attractiveness of male characters. These dudes act as if their corneas were being turned gay and a phantom middle finger was simultaneously being inserted in their anuses.
- Black queer feminists losing their minds with cries of misogyny, patriarchy or toxic masculinity because someone posts a clip or action sequence from a film, anime or video game; where a female character/s happens to meet a gruesome end. I was in one group where the below clip from the AniMatrix and following conversation around it got dudes banned from the group even though the poster’s purpose was using the clip to show parallels with white supremacy.
- Males posting clips of them trash talking each other while playing a VS match in a fighting game and the language was deemed offensive and deleted (even though it was entertaining and funny as fuck).
- Not being sensitive to those who don’t like nigger or nigga being spelled out and would prefer typing ‘n-word’ or the less offensive ninja.
- How a Cloak and Dager live action tv show is another addition to the destruction of the Black Family.
- Black folks upset because Finn was running and sweating too much in Star Wars which made him look like a slave.
- Black folks who don’t know whether to be upset that Finn (Black man) and Rey (White female) appear on screen together or more upset that the writers might make Finn and Poe gay.
- Black men having a problem with Rick and Michonne on the Walking Dead while Black women didn’t have a problem with it but many of these same women have problems with interracial Black man/White female coupling with Luke Cage.
- Black women and Queer folk calling misogyny, patriarchy or male privilege on Game of Thrones due to the sex and rape scenes but muthafuckin ‘crickets’ on the men getting skinned alive and their dicks and testicles cut off. Interesting how they can also point out the white supremacist undertones in GOT but not acknowledge that the characters who wield the most power within the series are women. Just think, the younger and smaller Arya Stark could probably easily kill John Snow and the Hound in battle…which are two of the most powerful men on the show.
Pointing out or questioning these dynamics got my posts deleted, blocked from threads or banned from the group all together. Other times I just self-exiled.
These groups were more about politics, policing language, ‘wokeness’, and less focused on the enjoyment of or paying homage to why the group/s was created…being fans of comic books, science fiction, anime, video games and their Black characters.
Why couldn’t these groups be creative and talk about topics like; is Augustus ‘Cole Train’ Cole in Gears of War a stereotype and wonder if he would take a knee during the anthem like Kaepernick if he was still playing Thraseball or would he be like Ray Lewis?
What about how Blade (not Superman) is really the father of and blue print for Hollywood super hero films franchises.
Is it me or does Aughra from the Dark Crystal looks like a cross between Aunt Esther from Sanford and Son and the Crypt Keeper?
How America was scared to make Panthro in the Thunder Cats Black.
You can’t tell me Goliath in Disney’s Gargoyles isn’t Black.
How Carl Weathers was a Black sex symbol.
And why Al Simmons/Spawn is 100 times more important to the unification of Black people across the world than T’Challa/Black Panther could ever be.
Nope…I’m being schooled on toxic masculinity by a person who keeps referring to me as a ‘queer person of color’.
I’m now down to my last Black nerds sci fi group on Facebook. Live long and prosper.