When Marvel promised a new diverse roster I'm sure that they expected opionated backlash. Although Marvel have changed the lineup with ethnic and female superheroes it's deemed by some as a "PC" stunt or Marvel is "ruining" their iconic characters by changing the race of them.
Now for me, I absolutely disagree with some of the people who disagree with the new lineup. For one, it's a roster that is properly being represented in relation to social demographics. In relation to this, Marvel have respected that view in that most of the world's demographic is indeed multicultural. However, thanks to decades of history, society is led to believe that mainstream heroes in film or comics are white males. A notion that I accept because history tells you that mainstream superheroes (ever since the 1950's) have been white males. Iconic superheroes through generations have always been white such as Spiderman, Bruce Banner (Hulk), Thor, Captain America, Superman and Batman (represent DC). Yes these characters are hugely popular but after decades of false representation it is time for a change. Now Marvel have done just that in the All New All Different roster. I recently did an article praising one of the changes in Amadeus Cho who is now the Hulk. Cho is the first Asian-American mainstream superheroe for Marvel. The article I did received plenty of feedback. However, there was a number of users who think that Cho is not the Hulk simply because he is not Bruce Banner.
But this is my point in this debate. Characters like Cho are absolutely necessary in comics today. I am a strong believer in ethnic diversity in comics. However, people assume that these new characters like Miles Morales, Sam Wilson, Kamala Khan, Jane Foster and Amadeus Cho are racebending their favourite respective superheroes. I completely disagree with that and will explain the main characters in question....that no character has been racebended or changed.
1. Miles Morales
Ever since Morales was introduced in 2011 he was met with mixed reviews. Morales took over from Peter Parker who died in the Ultimate comics line. Some people praised Morales for being a superhero of colour. Others were quite frankly racist to the core.
Now this reaction was typical and predictable. However, Morales has weathered the ignorant storms at the beginning and has flourished into a mainstream superhero. But unfortunately Miles Morales is still treated with contempt due to him taking over Parker. However, other Spidermen did not receive any backlash from fans like Morales has. As any Marvel fan should know that Marvel have cancelled the Ultimate universe and has integrated the Ultimate and 616 universe as one. A result that has seen Miles Morales and Peter Parker together in the same comic. This was a smart move by Marvel. Not only because Morales is popular but also his image is the real image of the social demographic of society.
When Marvel announced that Peter Parker would die in the Ultimate comics in 2011, people assumed that his replacement would be white. But of course Morales was introduced and the results you can see. I will say that there is nothing wrong with Miles Morales. Spiderman is set in New York, a place that has a very large black and hispanic population. So the chances of a non white Spiderman in New York is very high. So what is so implausible about that? Well the answer is ignorance. Again it relates to what most people are use to and Miles Morales certainly broke that thought process. So, people are still thinking that Spiderman has been racebended. Well he has most certainly not been. Miles Morales is Spiderman but also Peter Parker is still in the Marvel comics with two titles. So how can Peter Parker be racebended if he is still in the Marvel universe? It's laughable how people see colour and get defensive with their icons.
Miles Morales and Peter Parker together in the same universe. Since Parker is in the same universe as Miles he has certainly not been racebended!
So Miles Morales is a separate character now. Especially after the Ultimate universe has finished but all the same he is his OWN character who will work with Parker. There is absolutely nothing wrong with what Marvel did here.
2. Sam Wilson
Sam Wilson aka The Falcon, has now become Captain America. Wilson has been Steve Rogers (original Captain America) best friend in today's world. He has been Rogers closet friend and confidant for many years. Steve Rogers though was getting old and was unable to continue as Captain America. So of course someone had to take over. Marvel quite rightly decided that should be Sam Wilson. Not because Wilson was black but because he was the best and logical choice for the shield. Bucky Barnes was busy..so to speak so Wilson who again is Rogers best friend would be the perfect choice. Unfortunately racism reared it's ugly head with Wilson (just like Morales) and some people cried out "Political Correctness". However, Wilson as Captain America was not a political one its a logical one. I actually do not remember any negative response when Bucky Barnes was Captain America!
Bucky Barnes as Captain America when Rogers died. But why does Sam Wilson get negative feedback but Barnes gets a pass? Unfortunately it's that same issue....racism.
So now we have a black Captain America. Again Wilson is his own character because Steve Rogers still exists in the same Marvel universe as Wilson. So Steve Rogers was not turned black. He was not killed off or treated badly at the expense of Wilson. Marvel made a positive but smart choice of Wilson becoming Captain America.
3. Kamala Khan
Kamala Khan is Ms Marvel. She is the first Muslim superhero in Marvel comics. She is Pakistan - American and has Inhuman genes. She can shape shift and has healing factor. Khan's character is a imperative one. One, there are not many Muslim superheroes in comics and two, she is a fantastic character. The original Marvel, Carol Danvers, took the title of Captain Marvel and Khan took the title of Ms Marvel. Danvers is still the same Carol Danvers as before but Kamala Khan is also another. Not once has Danvers been changed in anyway.
4. Jane Foster
This is a simple explanation. Thor became unworthy to wield Mjolnir and Jane Foster is worthy. She is now the new Thor. It's not because she is a woman but she is the best candidate to wield Mjolnir. Marvel have created a brilliant superhero in Foster. Not only due to her sympathetic character (cancer) but also how she responds to being Thor. I love her as Thor...I look at Foster as a character not as "Oh she's a woman" type of superhero. There have been many people who wielded Mjolnir (all males) but surprisingly no one had a problem with them. Just like racism unfortunately sexism is all an issue. It's the 21st century and some people need to accept that characters like Foster are important for the comic industries.
5. Amadeus Cho
*I attached a link above stating Cho as Hulk*
Amadeus Cho is the new Hulk. He is the first Asian-American mainstream superheroe for Marvel. Cho's inclusion as the Hulk has been met with the predictable, narrow minded response from some fans. However there is nothing wrong with Cho being the Hulk. Marvel have still got Bruce Banner in the comics. Marvel also announced that there would be a new Hulk so why not Cho? Again people need to think about the move logically. Amadeus Cho was Hulks sidekick and friend for years. He embraced the Hulk when others turned their backs on him. He has worked and studied Gamma Radiation with Banner (depending on how Banner is). Cho is truly the ideal character to be the Hulk because he embraced the Hulk in every way possible.
So why the hate?
That is simple to answer.....people are afraid of change. The change I am talking about is the change of someone's race. Hypothetically would any of the characters that I mentioned above still get negative feedback if they were white male? No, it's because Miles Morales, Sam Wilson, Kamala Khan, Jane Foster and Amadeus Cho are people of colour and female. That is unfortunately the exact reason why people appose the change. But I would like to know what's changed? As I said before, Peter Parker is still in the Marvel universe....Steve Rogers in still there.....Bruce Banner is still there.....Carol Danvers is still there and Mjolnir has picked Foster. So what is the issue? Truth is there is no logical issue at all but the real issue is that of fear. It's fear of change that upsets people. For an age we lived in a society that was pretty much whitewashed in media. Everything was predominantly white. When you read comics the main superheroes were white, watched a movie that has been a white cast only in it. It also transcends to the fact that Hollywood racebended non white roles for decades. Historical figures such as Genghis Khan, Ghandi, Othello, American Indians were played by white actors. The women in that time were nothing more than second class citizens. That in itself was wrong and quite frankly disgusting. So I'm glad that Marvel have not followed suit. The people who feel that their iconic characters are mistreated then please spare a thought on the real life hero's and figures that were demeaned by the "Golden Era" of Hollywood. That was a time of pure racism and sexism. So now Marvel have respected the true meaning of diversity in their roster and if anyone who has an issue with it are simply afraid of the future. Miles Morales started the diversity train I just hope that many more board it.