On the one hand, there's the problem with Positive Discrimination
. Under the hand of a poor writer, Black Panther gets handed a lot... which tends to cheapen the character and doesn't allow him to grow in a very well developed way. When applied to Wakanda, there's the problem of making them disconnected from the rest of the universe, straining the suspension of disbelief. There's making Wakanda a technologically advanced nation with a strong presence and then there's making it practically "Asgard On Earth," both of which have happened.
This is particularly important due to the point that the MCU is at this time, both story-line and development wise.
On the other hand, there's all sorts of African stereotypes that have also found their way into Wakanda's portrayal that probably need to be treated with care. Not only that, but there's a lot of things people default to when making black heroes that should probably be watched out for: there's a trend of making black characters with the mindset of "we need more X black characters" first and not "we need to make strong, well written characters and plots." This leads to a bit of "hey, look! This black hero is just as cool as the white ones!" with characters written more in a sense of "showing up" and not really being well made.
If we want Panther to do well, we want him to be well made. We want his story to be well constructed We want Wakanda to be a well established setting that fits in well with the rest of the world and is connected enough to have us want to be brought back to it.
We don't want Black Panther to be introduced as "hey, this is the black hero!" A problem with a good chunk of black superheros is they're established as a symbol first and a character second, which hurts their longetivity. A lot of the failures are so because there's little to them beyond "this is a black hero!"
No, we want Black Panther to have substance. We don't want him to feel like he's introduced because they want to introduce a token, or introduce some diversity, or simply because they felt they had to get his introduction out of the way. I don't want to leave the theatre thinking they presented him in such a way that people watched it and went back to the other heroes without connecting to him.
I want Panther to be the kind of character where we want
to see more movies of him because he, as a character, is made that well and that interesting. I want his world to be made in such a way that we want to see more of it, just like we want to see what happens next on Asgard and where the future of Stark Industries will take it. I don't want him to be seen as "Black Batman," or "Black X" or simply "the black guy they made that one movie about." No, I want Panther to have a presence as Panther, and for people to connect to him.
All of that that I've pointed out is a lot
easier to fall into than it seems, particularly as a lot of the pitfalls are most easily fallen into when someone wants to make a movie look progressive, but goes about it the wrong way. The key is, again, to write Panther as a character first.
Also, this may be my Aaron Mc Gruder
fan talking, but they ought to keep BET far, far away from this movie. And y'know, they might want to keep Aaron Mc Gruder
away from this movie too, actually.
edited 6th Jun '12 4:26:33 PM by KnownUnknown
"My final prayer: O my body, always make me a man who questions!" — Frantz Fanon