On This “Free Comic Book Day,” We Honor And Thank George Perez

One out of every 10 classic superhero graphic novels I own is done by him. A life of extraordinary achievement by a person who, from all public accounts, was a nice, kind person.

https://www.facebook.com/CheyenneJazWiseCosplay/

50-Word Review of “Doctor Strange: Multiverse of Madness” [SPOILER VIDEO ADDED]

A lot and yet so little

If you are only thrilled by a movie because of its middle and mid-credit-sequence cameos, are you really thrilled? If those two were taken out, this would be a sub-par effort because all of the nuance and lessons of WandaVision were sacrificed in order to create a decent horror showcase.

I didn’t know John Krasinski was this popular. Most of my cheering was because the FF was finally entering the MCU. Seeing Krasinski, the Geek Web’s choice for Mr. Fantastic, meant that my Marvel dreams are well on the way!

SECOND VIEWING REVISED THOUGHTS:

“In this movie, he makes a tiny little journey from being a very proud superhero to being someone who learns a modicum of modesty and learns that other people can be trusted, too,” [director Sam] Raimi says. “He’s not the only one that can do the job. It’s about coming to understand that others have worth and he’s not better than everyone.”

The film was better the second time when I figured this out and accepted that the above was its only thematic thrust. My real problem with the movie is that it wasn’t worth stomping on the character nuances of its best TV show to date to get there. Strange’s growth comes at Wanda’s expense. We’ll see if the Marvel Master Plan is worth this.

“You Know Because You Read The AFRO!” To Gayle King And Others Like You: It’s Really Okay If You Just Lie Next Time :)

Writing this while reading Richard Prince’s Journal-isms column that has people reacting to the idea that CBS’ Gayle King, one of the nation’s top Black journalists, did not know about the lives and work of Ethel Payne and Alice Dunnigan.

Admittedly, I’m not an average person when it comes to the Black press, so I can’t relate. As a ’80s teenager, I read Ethel Payne in real-time in the newspaper I started my career at, The New Jersey Afro-American! (“You know because you read THE AFRO” was the newspaper chain’s motto 🙂 ) My Afro’s Op-Ed page was “national,” not local, and it was added on to local editions like ours by the Baltimore headquarters. Payne had an Op-Ed column there, “Behind The Scenes.” And because the Black press is so self-referential, whenever she was honored, they’d tell her history. At 22, I had also read the 2nd edition of Roland Wolseley’s The Black Press, USA, a flawed-but-important book that shaped my decision three decades ago to become a Black media historian. Of course it mentions her, as does later a much better general-history book written by historian Clint C. Wilson II.

Yeah, I wish prominent Black people in public would stop being so honest about their ignorance. 🙂 Not knowing something and being rich and famous means you don’t have to know it, right? This means that Gayle King has never regularly read historic/legacy (20th century) Black newspapers!

It’s one thing when David McCullough admitted in 1989, as he did in his PBS’ American Experience intro on William Greaves’ Ida B. Wells film, that he didn’t know who she was, but another when one of us does it!

Don’t think our young Black journalism students are not peeping that because I’ve taught them at HBCUs and I know. (And this is part of a larger, systemic dumping of all media history classes because of J-schools’ well-funded digital focus. When I last checked, Maryland, my grad alma mater, stopped teaching journalism history as separate classes years ago.) Sadly, this public omission proves Gen Z’s irrelevancy point from its perspective.

P.S. Prince reminded me of this, so they’re really little room for excuses.

Book Micro-Review: The True Believer

A Revolutionary For Our Time: The Walter Rodney Story.
Leo Zeilig.
Chicago: Haymarket Books, 340 pp., $22.95.

Quite a revelation about the power and pitfalls of complete faith in a revolutionary Tanzania and Guyana. The un-mentioned truth of this just-the-facts bio is that the Black world still produces people exactly like this in terms of energy and focus, but the difference is that they are completely and happily colonized. Reading this book from the 2022 prism was like absorbing very detailed speculative fiction. Rodney is the grassroots servant-hero personified, the Bizzaro version of what Harvard Law School will continue to turn out, thanks to its success with Barack and Michelle Obama and Ketanji Brown Jackson.

An Origin Story of Haki Madhubuti: Day One of the 16th National Black Writers Conference #NationalBlackWritersConference @ #CenterforBlackLiterature @ #MedgarEversCollege #NBWC2022

CONGRATS to Black Power Media….

….for its daylong telethon for Dhrouba bin Wahad. I have long thought he is an important Black decolonized political analyst and public intellectual and I think, as an important Black Power-infused thinker, he is beyond worthy of both support and assessment.

114-Word Review of “The Batman”

The Darkest Knight

Those who know and love the top stories of the last 30 years or so of Batman comics–particularly those of the last 15 years–will think this is two-thirds of a masterpiece and forgive the exposition-ish info dump at the beginning of the third act. The film’s last part attempts to serve the needs of both epilogue and the now-customary post-credit let’s-set-up-the-next-two-films. This outing is so powerful it will make you forget any Batman film not named The Dark Knight. After this soon-to-be trilogy, the only future film direction I’d see is Batman Beyond because it would be the only part of this soon-to-be 90-year-old character that will not be mined by then.