Diversity? in Comics

Thor is a woman, Spider-man is black, and the Hulk is Korean-American. These popular characters were once all white males, but Marvel Comics has undergone some re-branding and decided to branch out with character diversity. Are these changes to be praised and the new line-up celebrated? Can this truly be called diversity when these female and minority characters are launched from the platform of popular, established, white male characters?

This article will argue whether or not this kind of "diversity" is valid.

  • I always thought about why didn't they just create new characters as opposed to changing the old? I like that they are trying to be progressive and gain a more diverse audience and appeal to the masses, however, I feel as if it's kind of a half-hearted move. Sounds like they said to themselves, "Oh hey, it's 2015, we need to have more diverse characters. Oh, let's just change Thor into a woman and make Spider-man black." Upon hearing these changes, I didn't feel moved. I think for this topic, it would be important to see how their readers have reacted and what their thoughts are, and if this made an impact on Marvel's comic-book sales. – Jmarie 9 years ago
  • While I am incredibly glad to see that more female characters are being added, I am hesitant to praise the way in which it is happening. Representation is everything; it's what pulls people in and keeps them buying, volume after volume. People of all colors, creeds, identities, religions, and orientations deserve to be explored and promoted - correctly. Having Thor be a woman is an interesting change, but I think it was a cop out. Jane Foster could have been so incredible on her own. She didn't need Mjolnir and the power of Thor to be "super," but that's the angle they chose. The Spiderverse is taking a slightly better approach to it. This opens the path for there to be multiple personalities with the same powers. That sort of open-ended story telling could do so much good for representation. What could all of these different people, all from different backgrounds, do with the same set of powers? While all of this is all well and good, I want to see original characters that aren't being slapped with the merits of their "previous" versions. Jane is going to have to break away from readers who have the white, male, Norse "god" mindset. They could have easily taken a bit from the movies - why was Jane Foster, a normal woman, able to absorb an Infinity Stone? There is so much potential there! Let's have new characters that are black, latina/o, trans*, gay, asexual - but let them be themselves. No recycling of names to get attention. Let the characters speak for themselves. – crypticlyric 9 years ago
  • I worry about this change in comics. I absolutely think that creators need to be creating more diverse comic universes, however some of these changes seem half thought out and sloppy. I'd much rather see new characters of different races than old characters redefined. No matter what the main stream public is probably going to remember the white character, thus taking something away from both versions of the character. I also worry that these changes are temporary grabs for publicity and lacking in real substance. – SomeOtherAmazon 9 years ago
  • Who writes comics and for whom? – Munjeera 8 years ago

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