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Black and Nerdy

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A.J. has a nice lab, complete with a lab mode switch and a backup clone body.

"Are there other Black nerds, or is it just you and Urkel?"
Frank to Toofer, 30 Rock

A nerd who is Black.

The Black Nerd is a countertrope to common racial stereotypes. Most nerds are portrayed by races who already have the stereotype of being weak or bookish, such as whites, Asians, and Jews. Black people, on the other hand, are often portrayed as jive-talking Soul Brothas, Gangbangers, or Scary Black Men. The Black Nerd upsets these trends by being, well, a Black Nerd. This is especially common in comedies, where writers are often reluctant to feed into racial stereotypes, but need flaws to make their characters funny. Giving a Black character personality flaws or traits which run counter to common stereotypes is a convenient way to add diversity, while trying to avoid accusations of discrimination.

Writers might deliberately invoke the trope to shake things up and challenge the audience's assumptions, but other times the trope is only used to turn a smart supporting character into the Token Black.

Often the Black Nerd is simply an expert in a nerdy field, such as computers, and doesn't really possess many negative characteristics commonly found in nerds of other races. This variant of the Black Nerd may become a case of Flawless Token if they have an overly high level of overall competence resulting from their intelligence, without flaws to counterbalance. There are also quite a few people that have a thing for geeky Black guys/girls, mostly due to them not being as prominent. A popular type of Token Black Friend. See also Asian and Nerdy.

Compare The Whitest Black Guy, note  which often overlaps. Contrast Pretty Fly for a White Guy.

The trope is named after "White and Nerdy", a song by "Weird Al" Yankovic.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Wynton Styles from Bakugan: Battle Planet is techy and a bit geeky. He also wears glasses.
  • Nils Nielsen from Gundam Build Fighters is known in-universe as "The Early Genius," for an intelligence that has him performing doctoral studies as a teenager, and "Samurai Boy," for his apparent passion for Japanese culture. He enters the world tournament with his Sengoku Astray not to win, but specifically to discover the properties of the Plavsky particles that allow the series' titular toy mechas to move and fight like the machines in the show they are based on. Oh, and he's also a ninja.
  • Jose Rodriguez, Ken Murata's doctor in Kyo Kara Maoh! is an Ambiguously Brown (Afro-Latino judging from his name) American with dreadlocks and glasses who is obsessed with Japanese culture and runs off to Akihabara whenever he goes to Japan.
  • Donna King from Marine Corps Yumi is a Yaoi Fangirl and the smartest of the four main characters. Once she's out of boot camp, the first thing she does is go to a comic convention in San Diego.
  • Milton, the protagonist of Peepo Choo, is a young black teen who likes anime and manga, particularly his favorite anime Peepo Choo, but being black and nerdy isn't seen as acceptable in his native Brooklyn. His brand of nerdiness isn't all the way portrayed as positive though; because he also has zero clue how to act in Japan, he often tries to diffuse situations and bond with others the way the characters in Peepo Choo do it. He eventually learns to separate fiction from reality and makes equally as geeky friends during his trip to Japan.
  • Played with Musa Kamala from Run with the Wind. He is a Tanzanian transfer student of science and engineering, while also demonstrating surprisingly fluent Japanese. However, he averts most nerd cliches, instead being an Academic Athlete and generally refraining from Techno Babble.
  • While having a NerveGear and a day one copy of Sword Art Online is probably enough to qualify Andrew Gilbert Mills by itself; it was Agil who was able to analyze and start distribution of The Seed, the game design framework that revitalized the VR industry.

    Comic Books 
  • Black Panther is one of the smartest heroes in the Marvel Universe, though people tend to forget this because he's also a supreme badass.
  • Jane of the Boom! Studios comic By Night is a Black female chemistry major and aspiring documentarian.
  • Clem Hetherington is an archaeology enthusiast who wishes to follow in her mother's footsteps.
  • Victor "Cyborg" Stone, who, while not quite as smart as Holt, is still extremely intelligent and one of the premier scientific authorities in the DCU.
  • George Hamilton III in Peter Bagges' Slice of Life Comic Book Hate. (He appears as a supporting character, and, no, the title does not refer to racism.)
  • Jen of Lumber Janes is a Black, female camp counselor who is an enthusiast of subjects such as astronomy and botany.
  • Miles Morales, the second Ultimate Spider-Man.
  • Michael "Mister Terrific" Holt, the third smartest man in the DCU.
  • Lunella Layfayette from Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur is a 10-year-old Black girl who also happens to be the smartest person in the Marvel Universe.
  • Jason Rusch, the second Firestorm. He was not particularly brilliant in the original continuity, but the New 52 reboot made him a science whizz so that he could be the "brains" of Firestorm (essentially filling the role held by Professor Stein in the original series).
  • Prodigy of the New X-Men used to be a variation; his mutant powers allowed him to passively borrow information from everyone around him, but precisely what he knew depended on who was around him at any given time. Later, when he lost his powers, The Stepford Cuckoos enabled him to remember everything he had absorbed, making him a straighter example.
  • Robin (1993): One of Tim Drake's high school friends is the Black roleplayer and movie aficionado Kevin Hudman, who has a natural talent for strategy.
  • Alex Wilder, in Runaways. He's even introduced playing a Marvel MMORPG.
  • Static. And for that matter, his inspiration, schoolteacher Jefferson Pierce a.k.a. Black Lightning.
  • Superman: Ron Troupe, Daily Planet reporter and husband of Lucy Lane. He has been called the smartest man at the Daily Planet by his co-workers, and is known for his high-minded writing style and sharply objective perspective. He is perhaps best known for taking a year off from the Daily Planet and coming back with six advanced degrees.
  • In most adaptations of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Baxter Stockman is a black Mad Scientist with a very unassuming appearance... at least before he gets mutated or forced to slap on cybernetics.
  • Karen "Bumblebee" Beecher of Teen Titans. She has no super powers but was smart enough to create a suit that granted her the power to fly and fire energy blasts. Originally, she didn't want to be a superhero but used her technology to pose as a villain for her boyfriend Mal Duncan to defeat and look good in front of the Titans. The team was so impressed with her intelligence they made her a member anyway.
  • Thunderball of the Wrecking Crew was originally a brilliant physicist who was said to be on par with Bruce Banner. The only reason he turned to crime in the first place is because his employer screwed him over and stole his work.
  • The Ultimate version of The Falcon is a gifted scientist and engineer, and is actually the one who designed his wing suit in this continuity.
  • The upper-class psychiatrist in Watchmen is a Black man, contrasted with the low-class, street-smart, red-headed Rorschach.
  • Wonder Woman:
  • Patriot of the Young Avengers. While not immediately evident, it's mentioned in passing that he works as a librarian and attends the Bronx High School of Science, a very prestigious magnet school.

    Comic Strips 
  • Oliver Wendell Jones, from the comic strip Bloom County. Probably best illustrated in the strip sequence when his mother tries to get him to act a little more 'Black' by wallpapering his room with a huge picture of Michael Jackson's face. Oliver responds by hanging a picture of Albert Einstein over it.
  • Huey and Caesar from The Boondocks fit this to a T, especially Huey (who frequently references Star Wars). Riley has actually called them nerds on occasion.
  • Lemont Brown from Candorville is a rare main character example of this. He never acts in a manner contrary to the trope, so he can be a bit weak for a protagonist, but thanks to Character Focus he's more fleshed out than most examples.
  • Marcus in FoxTrot. He's actually the friend of equally nerdy Jason Fox, and his dad is apparently some sort of scientist; Jason borrows his oscilloscope on one occasion.
  • In Frazz, Caulfield. A third grader who regularly reads Shakespeare, Hemingway, Vonnegut, etc.

    Fan Works 
  • Louis Starsky from Concept Road.
  • In My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic fandom, when it comes to humanized fan-art, Twilight Sparkle's color scheme (consisting of varying shades of purple) leads to her often being drawn as Black, or at least noticeably tanner than the rest of the cast. She is of course a highly adorkable bookworm.
  • In the Partially Stars series of Welcome to Night Vale stories by thatwilderness, Carlos' scientific associate Dave Halland is this. He's super-intelligent and able to remain calm in the face of nearly anything the increasing weirdness of the town and its environs can throw at the team. Likewise Rochelle Walters, who joins the group in "Considering the Varieties of Silence".
  • Total Drama Legacy has Serena, a Black Occidental Otaku. There's also Storm, who is Black and is one of the most intelligent contestants on the show.

    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Max Dillon/Electro in The Amazing Spider-Man 2. The comic version of Electro is a blue-collar thug, while the film version is a meek scientist and Spider-Man fanboy.
  • Bad Boys (1995) has a very tall, Nerd Glasses wearing convict (played by the 7-foot-tall John Salley), who manages to parley his computer hacking skills for freedom with Miami police. According to him, illegal cracking is what got him into jail in the first place.
  • Shuri in Black Panther is a the princess of the African nation of Wakanda, and is also a teenage Gadgeteer Genius who designs much of the advanced technology used by her people.
  • Ronald Wilkes in Cedar Rapids, a straight-laced and nerdy insurance salesman. In one scene, however, he lapses into a Scary Black Man impersonation in order to get his friends out of a fight. He reveals afterwards that he was impersonating a character from "the HBO program The Wire," of which he is a huge fan. Fittingly, the actor had a role in The Wire.
  • Duncan Pinderhughes in Class Act, he is a genius high school student who was getting ready for graduation, but is somewhat disheartened to find out that, despite his perfect SAT score and 4.0 GPA, Harvard University will not admit him unless he can pass phys. ed.
  • Jamie Foxx's character in Collateral.
  • Brian in The Day After Tomorrow puts a lampshade on it: "Sir, I am president of the electronics club, the math club, and the chess club. Now, if there is a bigger nerd in here, please point him out."
  • Dear White People: Seeing how the entirety of the film is set in an Ivy League-like university, most of the characters are nerdy to some extent. Most notably though are Samantha White, a burgeoning filmmaker/film buff and leader of the university's militant Black students, and Lionel Higgins, an introverted, gay, Black sci-fi nerd who — for his sexuality and geekiness — never gets any respect from anyone, white or Black.
  • In the first Die Hard film, the computer hacker is Black, wears glasses, and doesn't have any combat skills. He spends most of his time making basketball references, as if to prove that he's Black.
  • Thoth in Gods of Egypt is played by Chadwick Boseman. In Egyptian mythology Thoth is the god of knowledge, inventor of writing, and recorder of deeds. Pretty much everything you do, Thoth knows about and writes down. Basically, he's the biggest nerd in existence.
  • Paul "Lord Nikon" Cook from Hackers. Hosts viewing parties of pirate TV show Hack the Planet, Squees over Acid Burn's new laptop, has legendary hacker Zero Cool's exploits memorized (then again, his Photographic Memory means he doesn't have to actively memorize anything).
  • Taylor Mckessie, the African American head of the chemistry club from the High School Musical movies, with a straight A grade point average.
  • Ford Prefect as played by Mos Def in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (2005). This, however, may be the result of the film, being produced by Disney, having downplayed (but didn't completely eliminate) aspects of Ford's character such as habitual drunkenness and womanizing.
  • Otto Lipton, the school's resident genius, in High School U.S.A.. He has built a robot that accompanies him everywhere.
  • Dean Cain, the villain of How High. A subversion of sorts, since he's repressing an inner Soul Brotha, which is unleashed by THC.
  • And in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Jeffrey Wright plays the nerdy Beetee (whose race was not identified in the book, although many people seem to have pictured him as Asian). Perhaps the fact that Wright often wears glasses in real life might explain the type-casting.
  • Whoopi Goldberg plays this in one of its first instances in film, Jumpin' Jack Flash.
  • Ray Arnold, played by Samuel L. Jackson, in Jurassic Park is the park's chief engineer, a nerdy field, though he displays no nerdy characteristics. Contrasting him is Wayne Knight's character Dennis Nerdy Nedry, who is a standard, fat, white computer nerd.
  • Franklin Webb from Jurassic World. He is the systems analyst for the Dinosaur Protection Group and also runs their social media and online marketing.
  • Rich Purnell from The Martian. He is the one who comes up with the idea to save Mark once everyone gives up. He is portrayed as a stereotypical nerd.
  • In the Jim Carrey comedy Me, Myself & Irene, the protagonist's three Black (technically, multiracial, as their mother is white) sons: Jamaal, Shonté Jr. and Lee Harvey are simultaneously Black Nerds as well as Slang-Speaking Scary Black Men.
    Shonté Jr.: Damn. I can't figure out the atomic mass of this motherfuckin' deuteron!
    Jamaal: Shit, man, that shit's simple! Okay. Tell me this. Tell me this.
    Shonté Jr.: What? What?
    Jamaal: What's a deuteron made up of?
    Shonté Jr.: Duh, a proton and a neutron.
    Jamaal: Then what's this motherfuckin' electron doing right there?
    Shonté Jr.: Shit, I don't know!
    Jamaal: Well, get it outta there then!
    Shonté Jr.: Okay, so, you're sayin' I add up the atomic masses of the proton and the neutron, right, I see's that, but what do I do with the goddamn electron? Can I bring it over here?
    Jamaal: Enrico Fermi'd roll over in his motherfucking grave if he heard that stupid shit. I mean, he'd just turn over ass up in your face. He wouldn't give a fuck!
  • Ving Rhames in the Mission: Impossible movies. Like other iffy examples of the trope, he's not really a nerd at all. In fact, he's arguably a Scary Black Man who happens to be a super-hacker as well. Most likely his race is a reference to Barney Collier in the original TV show, who really is a nerd.
  • MonsterVerse: Dr. Brooks, Matemavi and Ben are all highly-intellectual (and in at least two cases physically capable if unassuming) dark-skinned Monarch operatives, and Bernie Hayes is a wily, African-American Bunny-Ears Lawyer.
  • Lamar Latrell, The Camp Gay, Twofer Token Black nerd in the Revenge of the Nerds films.
  • Johnson, Bob Morton's friend and fellow exec at OCP in the Robocop movies.
  • Claudette from See You Yesterday with her time travel equipment she uses to try and save her brother from being killed by police with the help of Sebastian.
  • Ethan in Sky High (2005) is this, right down to the button-up shirts and dorky glasses.
  • Jeffrey Wright plays a version of this in Source Code, although he was also rather a Mad Scientist.
  • Miles Dyson in Terminator 2: Judgment Day, is a genius Black man in a nerdy field (cybernetics), though he displays no nerdy qualities.
  • Anthony Anderson as Glen Whitman in the 2007 Transformers movie, to the extent that when Epps compares claw slashes in a steel wall to Freddy Krueger, Glen jumps in and geeks out by insisting that it was Wolverine, his reasoning being there were three claw marks (Wolverine has three claws on each hand) and Freddy Krueger has four claws. After a Beat, Simmons claims this outburst to be "very funny". Despite his nerdiness, the novelization has him end up with Maggie.
  • Effectively enforced within the setting itself for Elijah in Unbreakable: intelligent, Black, and suffering from a congenital disorder that makes physical activity impossible. His mother introduces him to comic books to give him something to do, and by the time he is adult he owns and runs a comic arts gallery.
  • Colin Powell (Jeffrey Wright) and especially Condoleezza Rice (Thandie Newton) come off this way in W., Oliver Stone's interpretation of the presidency of George W. Bush.

  • Fat Charlie of Anansi Boys, in contrast to his cool "brother", Spider.
  • In Audrey's Magic Nine by Michelle Wright, main character Audrey is a shy, reserved, 12-year-old Black girl with a penchant for drawing who's never without her sketchbook.
  • Nicole in Beauty Queens is very smart and wants to be a doctor. However, she isn't socially awkward and Beauty Queens explicitly discusses race.
  • Óscar de León in The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao is Dominican and Nerdy.
  • Olamide from The Cavaliers Series. In Oxford Blood is by far the hardest working of Harriet’s group of friends. She dresses in a fairly dowdy manner, has an equally nerdy boyfriend and is generally more at home in the library than the bar In Screaming Spires, she reacts to the trauma of her boyfriend’s murder by becoming glamorous and barely working, to the extent that she’s almost kicked out of Oxford.
  • Jalil in Everworld, the only black member of the main cast, and The Smart Guy of the group. He's convinced he can reduce the magical, fantastic Everworld to scientific and logical principles that can be understood and controlled, something he equates to software engineering.
  • Arthur Cross of The Fold is a Black celebrity scientist and project lead of a space-bending experiment in teleportation.
  • Bill Nye's series Jack and the Geniuses has Ava, a 12-year-old Black Gadgeteer Genius girl whose inventions include her own surveillance robot, a motorized skateboard, and a talking toaster.
  • Yo-less in the Johnny Maxwell Trilogy. So called because he never, ever says "Yo". "He was born with a defective cool."
  • Kingdoms Disdain: Cardinal's knowledge of fantasy tropes implies he was this before being transported to Laskmeer.
  • Legendborn: Bree is a Black gifted student, demonstrated by her acceptance into and early college program, and makes several nerdy pop culture references (e.g. Lord of the Rings and Jane Austen) throughout the book.
  • George "Sticky" Washington from The Mysterious Benedict Society is a neurotic boy who is highly intelligent due to his photographic memory. His parents abused this by forcing him into contests, which is why he ran away. Sticky is the the only kid to wear glasses, though the others are smart in their own rights as well.
  • Radar in Paper Towns, Quentin's Black Best Friend and obsessive editor and tweaker of The Omnictionary to the point of social isolation (sound familiar?). In a direct nod to the trope, his parents are fantatical collectors of Black Santa memorbilia, even earning a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records.
  • Seika in Princess Holy Aura, who is a Black bookworm and computer nerd.
    "I wasn't just a geek, I was a geek without any friends."
  • In Project Hail Mary, an African-American scientist named Martin DuBois is set to be the science officer of a spaceship mission to save earth from a hostile alien lifeform. He has doctorates in physics, chemistry and biology and is described as extremely rational and meticulous, e.g. he writes a detailed, multi-page memo on how he wants to die (nitrogen asphyxiation), given that the spaceship cannot return to earth. However, DuBois later dies in an explosion after a scientific experiment goes awry and the narrator of the book takes his place on the mission. DuBois, with his extraordinary, multipronged scientific expertise, is possibly a parody of the black and nerdy (counter)trope.
  • In the Rivers of London books, by his own admission PC Peter Grant is more than a bit nerdy, gangly and tends to have a shaggy-looking haircut. Not that you'd know by the American covers where he is inexplicably metamorphosed into a Scary Black Man.
  • Sanity Jones of the graphic novel Sanity & Tallulah is a Black, female preteen who lives on a space station, is a gifted scientist, and uses her scientific finesse to create a three-headed kitten.
  • The Secret Science Alliance and the Copycat Crook by Eleanor Davis has Greta Hughes, a Black preteen girl who's a science enthusiast and Gadgeteer Genius.
  • Hiro Protagonist in Snow Crash combines this trope with Asian and Nerdy, being half Black and half Japanese as well as one of the better hackers and programmers around. However, he's not much of a nerd at all. In fact, he's got a beautiful ex-girlfriend, a bunch of friends, and badass sword skills both in and out of Cyber Space.
  • Isaiah in Someone Else's War. (Well... all the characters are Black, but he's the only one who's nerdy.)
  • In the Temeraire series, Sipho Tsuluka Dlamini goes from being a poor child living in the bush in early 1800s South Africa to taking a liking to the mathematics, reading, and writing lessons the protagonist insists on for the youths under his command. He continues writing and publishing accounts of his adventures with the protagonists and studies of the dragon kingdoms of Africa more than 25 years after the end of the series, contrasting against his Blood Knight aviator older brother.
  • A Visit from the Goon Squad: Sasha's college friend Bix, who is always bent in front of his computer and predicts, in 1993, that computer messaging is going to be a big deal and that social networking will make falling out of touch a thing of the past.
  • In Wally Roux, Quantum Mechanic, the titular character is a Black prodigy who's smart enough to build dimension-hopping technology to go on an adventure.
  • Wonder Woman: Warbringer: Jason Mayeux Keralis is a Black Mad Scientist biologist with a great interest in Greek Mythology.

    Live-Action TV 
  • 30 Rock:
    • Toofer. In the pilot, he's told "Are there other Black nerds or is it just you and Urkel?"
    • In Season 7, Tracy dismisses Barack Obama as "that half-nerd".
    • Tracy himself would count. He's definitely nerdy, he just doesn't display any of the common drawbacks (in that he's popular, cool, and has lots of sex). He's stated to be a big fan of both Star Trek and Star Wars, and one of his most famous scenes has him running around while screaming "I am a Jedi!" at the top of his lungs. This would be a bit of Real Life Writes the Plot, since Tracy Morgan is a big fan of Star Wars in real life.
    • Also Grizz and Dot Com (to an extent), as they're both very well read, speak in soft eloquent voices, and are cultured in art and music, but their physical appearance suggest big, scary, Black body guards.
  • Angel: Gunn references Daredevil #181 as part of a Perp Sweating and later name-drops several versions of The Flash.
  • Boomer from the classic Battlestar Galactica can fit this trope, since he does have a knack for hot-wiring, such as on 'hovormobiles' as revealed in the episode 'Fire In Space'.
  • Jordan in The Bernie Mac Show is the nerdiest of the main cast, to a point where he tops the "Nerd Wall" in the girls' restroom at his school, much to his insecurity. Bernie then reminds him that one of the smartest and richest people were nerds, which causes Jordan to gain acceptance of his nerdiness.
  • In Beverly Hills, 90210, Steve's friend Herbert, who helped "hack" into the school's computer to change his grades.
  • Andre Junior, from black•ish started out as a nerd — his father, noticing there was only one other Black kid in his school, tried to get them to be friends, and was shocked to find out Junior had more in common with the nerdy crowd. He's mostly grown out of it to become a failed rap producer, but his younger brother, Jack, seems to be filling the spot.
  • Clarence from Boston Legal although not strictly a nerd, was intelligent and socially awkward. The difference was that instead of replacing socialisation with intellectual pursuits, he found that he could socialise confidently in drag.
  • Cash from Breaking In is such a big Trekkie the agency found him stalking William Shatner, and was able to get Captain Kirk's chair as a reward for keeping him away. He also wanted to do a paired Star Wars cosplay, and was offended when the protagonist refused to join.
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine
    • Captain Raymond Holt who finds things like obscure historical references to be absolutely hysterical.
    • Also Terry Jeffords, who despite looking like a Scary Black Man, is actually a huge nerd. He enjoys fantasy books in particular, and used to dress up as a superhero when he was a kid. It's also discovered in a Season 4 episode that he secretly writes fanfiction in his spare time.
  • Community: due to Character Development and Flanderization, Troy goes from being a ditzy Jerk Jock to a huge geek, who is still a ditz.
  • In Continuum, Lucas Ingram is the Liber8 group's science and tech expert. As a zealous political terrorist, however, he doesn't actually have any nerdy mannerisms.
  • Dear White People: Lionel. He dressed as Geordi LaForge at a high school dance, causing some mockery from other Black guys.
  • In Degrassi: The Next Generation, Liberty Van Zandt is the queen of the nerds. Lakehurst's Damian might also count for this trope. In later seasons, Connor takes over Liberty's role as Supreme Black Nerd.
  • Marcus "Augur" Devereaux on Earth: Final Conflict, although he's a downtown cyber-punk hipster kind of nerd.
  • Henry Deacon on Eureka, although he is also pretty outgoing and sociable. It's pretty much a given that any Black character in the town will fit this trope.
  • Chris Rock expresses this opinion of his childhood self in Everybody Hates Chris: "Before the Internet, there were only two Black nerds. Me, and this guy."
  • Mac from The Fades, who has a very wide variety of geeky interests to which he compares the show's central premise.
  • Leo of Fairly Legal is an avid World of Warcraft and Magic: The Gathering player.
  • Trope Codifier Steve Urkel in Family Matters is an Extraverted Nerd who has a stereotypically nerdy aesthetic complete with Nerd Glasses who obsesses over his grades and has built a robot, a jetpack, and a transformation chamber. Also his Stalker with a Crush Myra.
  • Carlton Banks in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air is this; he's a straight-A student, president of his schools glee club, and reads the dictionary for fun. Will, despite being the cool guy Foil to Carlton fits the bill as well, being a huge comic book fan who is seen playing with Spiderman action figures on more than one occasion. He's also shown to have a surprising interest in classical literature, leaving pretty sophisticated notes in his copy of Crime and Punishment for instance. It's heavily implied that he'd be just as high an achiever as Carlton is if he'd just put the work in, but his Brilliant, but Lazy tendencies keep getting in the way.
  • Chidi from The Good Place was an ethics scholar and professor who dedicated his life to understanding ethics and morality born in Nigeria and raised in Senegal in his earthly life. Eleanor calls him a "human sweater vest" and he considers rowing out to the middle of a lake while reading French poetry to be his idea of a good time in paradise.
  • Dr. Miranda Bailey from Grey's Anatomy. An interesting example as she is also the resident Sassy Black Woman. A flashback has her being very shy and awkward and even used to wear glasses.
    • Dr. Maggie Pierce counts too, having graduated from medical school at 19 and become department head at the young age of 27.
  • On the short-lived Comedy Central series Halfway Home the character Sebastian wants people to think he's a gangsta when the fact is he is a suburban kid who got arrested for hacking.
  • Micah from Heroes is a child prodigy, and probably the smartest character on the show. Technically he is multiracial (as is the character's actor), as his mother is white.
  • One of the earliest examples is Sergeant Kinchloe (played by Ivan Dixon) in Hogan's Heroes, the camp's radio and electronics genius.
  • Holby City neatly subverts this trope, with La Charne Jolly being a rare female example. Alternatively, Ric, not related to Peter...
  • Byron is this on I Am Frankie. He's Cole's best friend, he's Black, he builds his own little robots, he cries when his robot is damaged, he's one of the smart kids...
  • Moss, from The IT Crowd, is the extreme variation of this trope. He's nasally, awkward, timid, has no fashion sense and works in IT. He even has his afro parted to the side. That said, his Blackness is rarely if ever referenced. Incidentally, Richard Ayoade, who plays Moss, is half Nigerian and half Norwegian.
  • Alec Hardison, The Smart Guy of the Leverage. He's highly intelligent and is also the coolest guy in the room. Any room.
  • Malcolm and Hal's primary friends are a father and son team of these on Malcolm in the Middle. Stevie was also a Genius Cripple, making him a Twofer Token Minority.
  • Miles Hawkins, the title character of M.A.N.T.I.S., is a scientist and has an interest in the arts.
  • Only a year later, Barney Collier (played by Greg Morris) was the Token Black on the original Mission: Impossible team, hired specifically for his electrical/mechanical genius. In the 1980's revival series, we get Grant Collier (Barney's son, played by Greg Morris's real life son Phil Morris).
  • Franklin Aloysius Mumford from My Wife and Kids.
  • Cookie in Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide is The Smart Guy to the protagonist, always coming up with crazy inventions and being one of the very few students at James K. Polk Middle School to make the honor roll.
  • Ice-T played a frighteningly convincing criminal version of this trope on New York Undercover. His intelligence made him one of the most difficult villains to stop on the show, taking multiple episodes before he is defeated.
  • 100 Things to Do Before High School has Fenwick, who is said to be the smartest student in his grade.
  • One of the black characters in The Orville, John LaMarr, is initially the navigator of the exploratory space vessel USS Orville and comes off as laid-back and non-intellectual. Later, one of his superior officers discovers that LaMarr had scored extremely well in aptitude tests. LaMarr says that he learned to hide his intelligence while growing up so as to fit in with his peers. Because of his new-found abilities, LaMarr is appointed as the Orville's chief engineer. Other than his technical expertise, he does not have any nerdy characteristics.
  • The Other Kingdom has British foreign exchange student, Winston P. Althazar who's shown to have a bit of nerdy personality aspects within in, especially with his obsession over the "wizardry" in Athenia.
  • Max Lewicki in Perception is a graduate student in Neuroscience and not only works as a teaching assistant to his brilliant professor boss, but also is in charge of figuring out ways to keep said boss grounded and in control of his schizophrenia. Max is also a cultural nerd who is sometimes seen indulging in Star Wars themed pastimes (including wielding a light saber in an unidentified game where he claims to "whipping some Jedi ass" and also attending a scifi convention dressed as Lando Calrissian).
  • Dwayne in PerfectHarmony has a big frame and deep voice but he has a very non-masculine personality
  • Alexandra Moreau from Poltergeist: The Legacy is the rare female (and positively portrayed) example of this trope.
  • Power Rangers has had a couple of these.
    • Damon in Lost Galaxy is the team Grease Monkey and Mr Fix It, whose duties include helping repair their city-sized spaceship's engines.
    • An even better example would be Ethan from Dino Thunder — gamer, comic fan and nearly inseparable from his laptop (his first scene shows him hacking the school sprinkler system for a prank). He does have a hidden athletic side that gets brought out in "Leader of the Whack".
    • Power Rangers Megaforce has self-described computer geek Noah, complete with Nerd Glasses.
  • Gus in Psych. Shawn disapproves of all Gus's comic books, spelling bee and grammar fixations, but almost every episode some of Gus's obscure nerd knowledge comes in handy. He also likes tap dancing (Lassie ends up trying it and realizing that it helps him concentrate on solving crimes).
  • The Cat's alter-ego Duane Dibbley in Red Dwarf. He was introduced as the Cat's worst nightmare in the Despair Squid episode, then proved popular enough for a return appearance when a psychic monster sapped the Cat of his cool. John-Jules' claims the character is so popular because "no-one's ever written a Black nerd before”.
  • In Rizzoli & Isles, Detective Barry Frost is well versed in computer technology, action figures, and MMORPGs.
  • Turk from Scrubs is both a Black nerd (Or "blerd", as he calls it) and one of the show's cooler characters. He actually referred to his cousin as one. One episode had him as a temporary medical resident after breaking his arm and he wore Nerd Glasses to appear nerdier.
  • Rocky from Shake it Up is the biggest nerd opposed to Henry on the show.
  • Jal from Skins: smart, sensible, and a talented musician. Often teased for being too uptight.
  • The premise of Smart Guy follows 10-year-old Child Prodigy TJ Henderson (played by Tahj Mowry), who is moved up to high school with his older siblings, Yvette and Marcus. Although he subverts the trope, having plenty of friends his age despite skipping six grades and likes to play sports, TJ does exhibit exceptional knowledge that may go over some of his high school classmates' heads.
  • In Star Trek: The Next Generation, Lt. Commander Geordi La Forge. His inability to get a date is a Running Gag.
  • Stranger Things has teenage Lucas Sinclair, who's a D&D fan and a long-time member of his school's AV club. His younger sister Erica is another example; she's a snarky 10-year-old girl who can solve complex math calculations on the fly all in her head, and has a pretty solid understanding of politics.
  • Darius Hawthorne on Aaron Sorkin's short lived series Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip
    • Sort of. He's just more intellectual than the stereotypical black comic of his era but he's not necessarily nerdy.
  • In the Supernatural episode "What Is And What Should Never Be" (S02, Ep20), there is a Black college anthropology professor who is wearing glasses, a sweater, and a button up shirt.
  • Rufus Carlin is a nerdy, shy engineer and time machine pilot in Timeless. Another Black character in the same show, Connor Mason, is the inventor of the time machine.
    • Similarly, Malcolm Barrett's character Phil in Better Off Ted and pretty much anything he's in is like that
    • Phil LaMarr made a monologue in MADtv (1995) about how he was often cast in this trope as opposed to castmate Orlando Jones who came off as cooler
  • In Walker, Texas Ranger, James Trivette, the best friend and partner of the titular policeman, is into the modern approach of catching the bad guys, preferring to use computers and cellphones. With his expertise in technology and Walker's martial arts skills, it makes an unbeatable combination. In the first season, he originally wore glasses, but did not in Season 2 and onwards.
  • Raj from What's Happening!!!!, the original Black nerd, a Nerd Glasses sporting, uncoordinated, aspiring writer. Some elements of the character served as the inspiration for Steve Urkel.
  • Brother Mouzone from The Wire is exhibits some nerdy traits, such as being immaculately dressed in a bow-tie suit, a high-brow speaker, an avid reader, and an intellectual. However, he's also a ruthless drug gang enforcer.
  • David, the Token Black Friend in Wishbone, fits the smart, competent Black computer geek kid stereotype.

  • The African love interest in Kent Jone's Don't Mind:
    "She got that high grade, Her weed come with diplomas"

    Pro Wrestling 
  • Harvard Law graduate David Otunga qualifies, what with his goofy bowties and argyle sweater-vests.
  • Xavier Woods definitely qualifies. He's a fan of anime, comic books, video games, and pretty much anything from The '90s. Not only is he One of Us, Xavier Woods is also educated. One of his degrees is a Master's in Psychology and he's working on getting a PhD.
  • Woods later carried this trope into The New Day, a trio of gleefully nerdy Black men. Their pinnacle of nerdiness came at WrestleMania, when they came out into the ring dressed in Saiyan armor. When Woods isn't wrestling, he also has his super-successful YouTube gaming channel, where many of his wrestling co-workers appear.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Warhammer 40,000:
    • Vulkan, the Black Primarch of the Salamanders Space Marine chapter was, with the possible exception of Ferrus Manus, the most technologically savvy of the Emperor's sons, being an expert weaponsmith. His chapter carries on this legacy as they often design and build their own weapons, particularly flame throwers and the eponymous war hammers (playing their John Henry iconography for all it's worth), and are generally one of the more intelligent, or at least reasonable, Imperial factions.
    • The Space Wolves chapter is also something of an example, as the few dark-skinned members come from a mercantile culture that lives on their planet's southern islands rather than the more primitive vikings in the frozen north the chapter usually recruits from. As a result, Black Wolves are more familiar with technology and more likely to take up skilled positions like tank commanders or Techmarines rather than foot soldiering.

  • The Flick: Avery is a young Black man. He wears glasses, he's socially anxious, he can be very shy, and he has an encyclopedic knowledge of cinema. (He can't be beaten at Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.)
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child featured Afro-British actress Noma Dumezweni as Hermione Granger, making Hermione into this. The Harry Potter fandom has been floating the idea of Hermione as Black for quite some time now, and although this isn't really true in book canon (Hermione is described as having her face go pale or white, or blushing, many times) J. K. Rowling (the author of the books) and Emma Watson (a white actress who played Hermione in the movies) have spoken in support of this casting choice.
  • The rock musical Passing Strange focuses on a middle-class young Black man from L.A. who is into Zen Buddhism and spirituality, and leaves home to travel Europe and commune with other artists. Somewhat subverted in that he's also rock musician. The character is actually based upon the show's co-writer and narrator Stew, of the band The Negro Problem.

    Video Games 
  • Bully's Cornelius and Sheldon, played straight.
  • Cyberpunk 2077:
    • T-Bug, the Mission Control V and Jackie work with in act I. She's a talented netrunner who quotes Aristotle.
    • The Voodoo Boys are a mysterious gang of hackers who are either of Haitian descent or just straight up from Haiti. Unlike most examples of this trope, they are dangerous and flat-out terrifying.
  • Claudette in Dead by Daylight was a botany student before she was pulled into the Entity's realm, where she uses her knowledge to heal survivors faster.
  • From Dino Crisis we have Rick, who spends most of the time in the control rooms as well as fixing technical problems.
  • James Parnell of Evolve happens to own a fairly large collection of comic books and is mentioned to be expanding it. He's also eight feet tall, ex-military, ex-mercenary, owns an armor plated combat suit and fights multi-story tall monsters for a living.
  • Dr. Diggins from Fossil Fighters. Brilliant scientist, able to understand alien technology. Lover of dinosaurs. Dorky enough to wear shorts and a Hawaiian shirt beneath his lab coat.
  • Growing Up:
  • Nishan of High School Story is a Black nerd with a mohawk. He used to do homework for jocks before transferring to your school in addition to maintaining his own high grades, and eventually builds a scale model of a Venusian volcano complete with toxic gas clouds.
  • The computer game adaptation of I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream makes Ellen a computer scientist and engineer.
  • Louis from Left 4 Dead works in IT. That alone might not be enough to make him into a nerd, but in comparison to Bill and Francis, who are a retired Green Beret who served two tours of duty in Vietnam and a Badass Biker, he can come across as a mix of one and an Action Survivor. The Sacrifice DLC shows him to be a bigger nerd than once originally thought: he can read Japanese, makes a joke by comparing computer firewalls with molotovs, and is worried about having no internet or Xbox to play with when he and the other survivors go to the Florida Keys to live on an island.
  • Runaway 2: The Dream of the Turtle has the African-French Professor Pierre Pignon.
  • Donald Anderson in Metal Gear Solid and Sigint in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. They are actually the same character. They're not exactly as nerdy as Otacon or other scientist characters, but they're not exactly skilled soldiers either.
  • Red Dead Redemption II has Lenny Summers of the Van der Linde Gang. Almost in defiance to the common stereotype (at the time) that Blacks were somehow unintelligent, Lenny is very well-read and cunning. Justified by his father lucking out big-time with some semblance of an education in spite of being a slave.
  • Your Voice with an Internet Connection in Red Faction, Hendrix. Needless to say, he doesn't make it to the end of the game.
  • Jim Chapman in Resident Evil: Outbreak enjoys crossword puzzles, and is rather wimpy in all other respects.
  • Amani Ronga, who functions as Mission Control in Waking Mars. She occasionally drifts into Technobabble in her conversations with her expedition partner Liang, who politely says "Yes" whenever she does so.
  • The Walking Dead (Telltale): Player Character Lee Everett used to work as a history professor before the Zombie Apocalypse. When his group meets Christa, another survivor, she can say that her boyfriend, Omid, decided to go on a cross-country tour of Civil War monuments, and asks, exasperated, "Who, other than old, white guys, would find this interesting". Lee will excitedly raise his hand.
  • Marcus Holloway from Watch_Dogs 2. A glasses-wearing hacker who loves old-school media (hence the username) and cheesy movies. A quick look at his internet history reveals a search for sexy anime elf babes, as well.
  • Dr. Richard Tygan in XCOM2 is a biochemist and XCOM's head of research. He is described as one of the brightest minds on Earth.

    Visual Novels 

  • Justin "Ransom" Oluransi of Check, Please!, while also the bro-est of bros, is a 4.0 GPA biology major and is frequently seen thinking in protein folding diagrams.
  • Sensei Greg of El Goonish Shive is obsessed with anime, and even invented anime style martial arts.
  • Morgan in Nerf NOW!!, originally a female Demoman of Team Fortress 2. She's the cast member with the clearest preference for classic, pretentious, and/or just plain brutally difficult games, the most disdainful of fanservice, and generally goes for the most complicated strategy in any game. On the rare occasions the Author Avatar appears based on Jo's actual appearance instead of the usual "purple tentacle," he also counts.
  • Duane in Penny and Aggie, who is a huge English nerd to the point that his class presidency reelection campaign logo was just the letter A.
  • Probably Dale, now that he's getting some Character Development, though use of technology doesn't reliably indicate nerdiness in the Questionable Content-verse. Although defining himself by his World of Warcraft faction counts.
  • Ian Jones-Quartey, author of RPG World, if his portrayal of himself in his autobiographical series IanComix is anything to go by.
  • Jacob of Shortpacked!. As almost everyone in the cast is also a nerd, the main contrast is that he's a 90s kid who makes Ethan and Amber (who grew up with Transformers and the Ninja Turtles) feel old.
  • Brandi of Wapsi Square is a female example. While her intellect isn't always apparent, she's still a huge fan of Star Trek and other such shows.

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Wyatt from 6teen isn't a complete nerd, but he is the most intellectual of the group. Though he looked very geeky as a kid (complete with glasses and vest).
  • Walter "Doc" Hartford of Adventures of the Galaxy Rangers both fits and subverts the trope. A bona-fide computer psychiatry Ph.D. and top-notch hacker, he is also prone to making pop culture wisecracks and fond of jive slang, often acting as the team's comic relief. However, he also acts as the team's Deadpan Snarker and the Badass Normal.
  • Alan Powers ("Brain") from Arthur. He's an animal like everyone else — a bear to be exact — but he celebrates Kwanzaa and has relatives in Senegal.
  • The Falcon in Avengers Assemble. In the show, he even designed his own wings/flight suit (as opposed to the comics, where they were built by the Black Panther).
  • Max Gibson from Batman Beyond is a computer hacker and scored a perfect 2400 on her SAT.
  • Andromeda from Big City Greens can be assumed to be African-American due to her voice actress, and is a nerdy conspiracy theorist. Remy also counts; he's unambiguously Black in an Amazing Technicolor Population and has many nerd stereotypes down pat.
  • Wendy Wower of Big Hero 6: The Series fits the bill. She's a Black Genki Girl scientist (with green pigtails) who specializes in artificial intelligence, and was in fact the mastermind who came up with the thesis that was used to create Baymax (which she didn't receive credit for due to her former science partner stealing it). She later became a children's entertainer with her own science-oriented, educational TV program.
  • J.D. Bennett/I.Q. from Bionic Six, the (adopted) son of resident tech expert Jack Bennett/Bionic-1 and Teen Genius in his own right.
  • Darryl from Bob's Burgers is an Ambiguously Brown kid around Tina's age who wears glasses, is an expert at video games, and is fairly smart and analytical.
  • Odie in Class of the Titans; he's the team Smart Guy, being the distant descendant of Odysseus.
  • The Cleveland Show: Cleveland's son Cleveland Jr, a chubby, bespectacled geek whom his father describes as "a big, fat Urkel".
  • George Washington Carver from Clone High, much like the historical figure he's based on. True to form, he's portrayed as pencil-necked science nerd who is obsessed with peanuts to the point of absurdity.
  • Duane Williams from Craig of the Creek is a computer programmer whose hobbies include cryptography and retro video games. He's also a former college athlete who works out in his free time.
  • Tucker from Danny Phantom is a technology enthusiast, and a very outgoing one at that.
  • Daria: Downplayed with Jodie. She's Black and sacrifices a social life in order to do better in school, but she is not necessarily nerdy. She's considered "cool" by the others.
  • Karen, aka Bumblebee, from DC Super Hero Girls is a Shrinking Violet Teen Genius who engineers her own suit.
  • Twins Orangella and Lemonjella LaBelle from Detention, a pair of identical twins, each a Playful Hacker who is deeply fluent in Techno Babble. Their hacking is usually what gets them into trouble in the first place.
  • AJ in The Fairly Oddparents. Although AJ has been Flanderized into an Insufferable Genius with a touch of Flawless Token.
  • Futurama:
    • Hermes Conrad, a perfectionistic, overachieving high-level bureaucrat and accountant at Planet Express who also happens to be Jamaican. His son Dwight appears to be following eagerly in his footsteps.
    • It's a Running Gag that many or all of the 3000-era Harlem Globetrotters are The Ace mathematicians and physicists who rank among the finest scientific minds in the universe, with their leader "Bubblegum" Tate holding teaching positions at two different universities.
  • Brock from The Godzilla Power Hour isn't particularly nerdy, but he is Dr. Darien's science intern and definitely a smart guy.
  • Irwin from The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy, yo. He's very geeky and socially inept. He also frequently hits on Mandy despite the fact that she can't stand him.
  • Wade from Kim Possible. He's a ten year old genius who already completed high school and college within eight months and makes all of Kim's gadgets.
  • Lincoln's best friend Clyde McBride from The Loud House. He's very intelligent and an excellent student, and even mentions that he helps his parents do their taxes.
  • One of the members of Minoriteam is Fasto, the jive-talking, womanizing fastest man alive. His civilian identity is that of Lando K. Dutton, a nebbish bookworm and professor of Women's Studies.
  • Max Kanté from Miraculous Ladybug is willing to rattle off facts and statistics at the slightest provocation, is an avid gamer, and built his own Robot Buddy Markov.
  • Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur (2023): Much like her comic counterpart, Lunella Lafayette is a brilliant multi-disciplinary scientist at the ripe old age of 13. Bubble guns, radioactive-powered portal generators, and a full-on secret lab within an abandoned train station are some notable inventions. She does have her blindspots when it comes to recognizing an old cassette player.
  • Dutch Gordy in Motorcity is the Burners' mechanic, and a Badass Bookworm who also becomes quite adorkable around Tennie.
  • Eugene, who substitutes for Dilton in The New Archies.
  • Sydney Skelley of Ready Jet Go! is a Black preteen girl who loves sci-fi, especially an In-Universe series called Commander Cressida.
  • The Real Ghostbusters and Extreme Ghostbusters have Winston Zeddemore and Roland, respectively. Winston's frequently seen brushing up on historical texts (a trait carried on to the 2009 video game) and is a huge fan of Sherlock Holmes, while Roland loves classical music. Of course, they're both very experienced with advanced technological equipment as well, due to their jobs.
  • In Recess, Vince's older brother Chad is this, though it's used only to illustrate a difference between him and Vince, who's an ace athlete. Also Rodney, one of the Pale Kids.
  • PJ Masks: Newton Star, a new hero introduced in Season 4. During the day he wears Nerd Glasses (though he loses them when transforming into his nighttime identity), and likes to spend all his free time in the library, studying anything space related. Even as a hero, he'd rather use his powers to go into space for exploration than to perform heroics.
  • Cassidy Williams, the Velma-counterpart in the previous incarnation of Mystery Inc in Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated, As Angel Dynamite, not so much.
  • The Simpsons:
    • One of the three nerds who roomed with Homer at Springfield U. The character in question, Benjamin, was once mistaken for Urkel in the comics.
    • Also Lewis, Bart's friend, in some incarnations.
  • Token Black's father Steve in South Park. He works as an accountant and is revealed to be a massive The Lord of the Rings fan to the point that Token's name is retconned to be Tolkien in the episode "The Big Fix". Randy chastises him for "not sounding like a black guy", and Steve gets back at him for his mistreatment by using ebonics to promote his rival weed business.
    • Zig-Zagged by Token himself. While in previous seasons he was perfectly content to play as Tolkien-esque fantasy characters, superheroes, and ninjas with the other boys, he suddenly does a 180 and declares a distaste for "nerd" stuff in the same episode.
  • Static/Virgil from Static Shock. He's an honor roll student that's heavily into Comic Books/Superheroes and occasionally gets bullied around (especially pre-series).
  • Cyborg in the animated Teen Titans (2003) series. Unlike the other interpretations of Cyborg over DC history, this version learned robotics and rebuilt himself. Also a Genius Bruiser.
  • In Tenko and the Guardians of the Magic, Steel is a history buff, but mildly nerdy.
  • Cameron from Total Drama. He's spent most of his life reading due to growing up in a bubble (literally), knows a good deal about psychology, and tends to trip up in conversation due to his lack of social skills.
  • Cleo Carter from Tutenstein, when it comes to Egyptology.
  • Taranee from W.I.T.C.H. is both Black And Nerdy and Asian and Nerdy. She's especially bookish in the cartoon adaptation. Taranee is quite smart and wears glasses.

    Real Life 
  • Nicely summed up by Donald Glover (famous for being a Black nerd on Community)
    "...I'm a Black nerd and that shit was illegal 'till like, 2003."
    • Further expanded upon it by stating that nerds are people who like "strange, specific things" and that Urkel doesn't qualify due to being "retarded."
  • R. Talsorian founder Mike Pondsmith started his pen-and-paper roleplaying company in 1982, and is responsible for Cyberpunk, Teenagers from Outer Space, Castle Falkenstein, and Mekton (which was inspired by Mobile Suit Gundam.) He also has a B.A. in graphic design and B.S. in psychology, and was roped into roleplaying in 1977 when he was introduced to Dungeons & Dragons and Traveller. He also owns a Badass Baritone voice, and more than a few fans wanted him to voice a character in Cyberpunk 2077 (which became a reality when the game was released).
  • Barack Obama, 44th president of the United States, is an avowed fan of Star Trek, collected Conan the Barbarian and Spider-Man comic books, is hopelessly addicted to his Blackberry, follows Aperture Science on Twitter, and made Internet culture and technology concerns a cornerstone of his campaign. Of course, The Onion took a shot at this.
  • Colin Powell, former Secretary of State, JCS Chairman, and Star Trek fan.
  • has included more than a few cyberpunk references in his music.
  • Neil deGrasse Tyson: astrophysicist, director of the Hayden Planetarium, and host of NOVA ScienceNow on PBS.
  • Pierre Bernard, Conan O'Brien's graphic designer, as well as a comic who draws heavily from comics and sci-fi for his material.
  • Rosario Dawson, a Black-Puerto Rican actress, producer, and Trekkie capable of speaking Klingon.
  • Lupe Fiasco. Loves Anime, manga, videogames, skateboarding, martial arts, and coincidentally is one of the most creative and talented rappers in the business.
  • Pharrell Williams played in a marching band in high school, enjoys Star Trek and the words of Carl Sagan, and one of his bands is named N.E.R.D.
  • Mendel Bij de Leij of Aborted fame is well-known for his love of video games and anime.
  • Adam Warren of Oceano is known for his love of video games, particularly Nintendo titles, and has a Twitch channel devoted to them.
  • US immigration policy gives strong preference to people with skills and education, which means that this trope is often Truth in Television when it comes to African immigrants and their children. (This policy is also one of the main causes of Asian and Nerdy.) Statistically, sub-Saharan African immigrants have higher levels of educational attainment than all other American ethnic/immigrant groups, including whites and Asians. Nigerian Americans, as a migrant group, are the most educated in the U.S.
  • The Atlantic's senior editor and blogger Ta-Nehisi Coates. Aside from his more obvious American history and music nerdom, he's a huge fan of comic books and plays World of Warcraft. According to his memoir The Beautiful Struggle, he was also a bit of a Cloud Cuckoolander as a kid. As a result, he was hired by Marvel to write for the comic Black Panther and also worked on the movie version.
  • SportsCenter anchor Stuart Scott. He was a popular choice for commentary because he was so pop culture savvy.
  • "Popular gaming pundit" N'Gai Croal, of Edge and (formerly) Newsweek, among others.
  • Aisha Tyler has a "I Can Kick Your Ass At Halo" shirt, and in one stand-up routine claimed that she would never have kids because that would eat into her Halo time.
  • Players of the Yu-Gi-Oh TCG who play in California will attest that there are a lot of Black players. This wouldn't be noticeable aside from that Black players from California tend to act in a manner that wouldn't clue you in that they were nerdy in the slightest, acting as street tough, like the people who you would expect to make fun of you in school for playing the game.
  • Alfonzo Rachel of the Macho Sauce Productions fame is a huge Battlestar Galactica fan and, in his own words, a sci-fi dork. Of course, he himself doesn't look all that nerdy.
  • Rapper MF DOOM, full-stop. His stage persona is, quite literally, Doctor Doom as a rapper, and in almost any given song, he makes it very clear that he is One of Us, frequently including shout outs to Star Trek, Fist of the North Star, Predator, Scooby-Doo, and more.
  • Jay-Z isn't really this, but his engineer Young Guru is, and when he was working with Jigga on his then-new album back in 2005, Guru was reading a comic called Kingdom Come. He saw the parallels between Superman's place in the comic, and Jay-Z's place in hip-hop. As a result, in 2006, Jay-Z released his comeback album — entitled Kingdom Come.
  • LeVar Burton plays these sorts of characters a little too well to be entirely acting, as evidenced by his work as Geordi LaForge and his work on Reading Rainbow. His daughter Mica Burton is a cosplayer, actress, YouTuber, streamer, and tabletop gamer as well.
  • Many of the top fighters within Fighting Game tournaments are Black. The 2011 and 2012 EVO champion of Mortal Kombat 9, is a Black guy named PerfectLegend. In 2013, Perfect Legend's was dethroned as the Mortal Kombat 9 EVO champion, only for another Black and nerdy guy named C88 DJT to take the title.
  • Kiera Wilmot, a Black teenager who got expelled from school for a science experiment gone wrong. To elaborate, the girl was an ace student and had no previous record of doing anything wrong, but was expelled and charged under Zero Tolerance policies. But fellow nerd Homer Hickam, a retired lead astronaut trainer for Spacelab and the ISS, learned of her story and got scholarships for both her and similarly academically accomplished sister to attend Space Camp.
  • Twin valedictorians Marcos and Malcolm Allen who are graduating high school with 4.8 GPAs.
  • The runner of Your Yu-Gi-Oh Channel.
  • Cory Booker — former Mayor of Newark, New Jersey, currently Senator from New Jersey. Not only did he graduated from both Yale and Stanford, he was also a Rhodes Scholar.
  • Tosin Abasi has a huge understanding of musical theory and puts all his knowledge into his music, making him more of a Geek than a nerd.
  • Berhan Ahmed, receiver of the Australian of the Year award, is an Eritrean-Australian social activist and science nerd with a PhD in forest science. He has changed from his enviable role as an expert in termite taxonomy and its effects on crops, trees, and buildings, to become the chairman of the Victoria-based Africa Think Tank.
  • Charles Frank Bolden, Jr, the current Administrator of NASA. As well as having a science degree, he is a retired United States Marine Corps Major General and a former astronaut.
  • Lonnie G. Johnson, the inventor of the Super Soaker, is an engineer who owns a technology development company with over 80 patents.
  • Furbearingbrick, a personality in the Creepypasta community best known for the "Worm Jeff" saga, is an African-American woman with a fondness for obscure Japanese video games and video game trivia.
  • Magic: The Gathering pro player and commentator Cedric Phillips.
  • Percy Julian, who developed an interest in plants as a child, and would grow up to receive more than 130 patents for his work synthesizing medicines from them. He pioneered the development of cortisol, steroids and the birth control pill. His wife, Anna Johnson Julian, may also count as a female example of this trope as she was the first Black woman to earn a PhD in her field (sociology) at the University of Pennsylvania.
  • Larry Wilmore is a self-proclaimed "blerd" (Black nerd); on one episode of The Nightly Show he mentioned President Roslin in a discussion on women in politics.
  • Similar to Wilmore, Stephen Robinson is one of the more professional writers on the (left-leaning) news/satire site Wonkette... but he's also the one most likely to drop Doctor Who or musical-theater references in the middle of an unrelated article. There's also this quip:
    I am concerned that willfully ignoring [waning but still-controversial issue] makes me like the leads in a horror film who stop considering the slasher killer an active threat just ten minutes before the credits: "No, we're quite sure it's fine now. Let's all relax."
  • Wayne Brady has stated that in order to be a good improv actor, you need to be a nerd. He's dropped many an obscure reference to prove his point.
  • Phil Morris was already familiar with the origin of Vandal Savage before voicing the character on Justice League. Bruce Timm also related a tale on one of the Justice League: The New Frontier commentariesnote  of running into Morris at the San Diego Comic Con — Morris was there, not to promote any projects he was working on, but purely as a fan to buy comics and other stuff.
  • Many YouTubers have literally made successful careers being Black and Nerdy. Examples include: Marques Brownlee, Soldier Knows Best, Pelvic Gaming and many others. If that wasn't enough, there's also the YouTuber Black Nerd Comedy, who's LITERALLY named Black Nerd on YouTube. Basically, he's the literal embodiment of this trope.
  • Samuel L. Jackson has been stated to be a big fan of anime and Star Wars. So much so, that he's had the opportunity to star in three Star Wars films AND be the voice behind the main characters of an anime.
  • Frank Ocean is a massive film buff whose list of his 100 favorite movies includes the works of Akira Kurosawa, Ingmar Bergman, and Stanley Kubrick.