Wondering what afro-futurism really is?
It was coined by one cultural critic Mark Dery in the 1990's, who believed that unless African Americans wrote their histories, it could be obliterated pretty soon. It was up to them to write down their hardships of slavery and racism or nobody in the future would know what the faced. And it could only happen if African Americans extensively engaged in areas of art and literature as well as used more technology - since it is only through these that the future exists.
Afrofuturism thus depicts the work of artists who imagined fiction, including science fiction, to draw up imaginary worlds, and talking about possible futures. While there were not many writers when Dery did talk about this, and included only the likes of Samuel Delany and Octavia Butler. In the last quarter century though, the number of Afrofuturist creators have grown significantly, and the Black Panther was a result of it.
The movie does a lot more than just bring around a new superhero that children would love. It talks about the struggles of the blacks and has a majority black cast as well. Additionally, it has a black director and the film presents an Afrocentric point of view. Thus, as a result, you wouldn't see the typical portrayal of the black image, as you would see in most American movies.
The New Superhero Marvel Needed
In an age when there is a growing curiosity about what is right and how African Americans could get true equality
in the society, the movie was needed by Marvel more than anybody else. Additionally, the fact that there are only a few, if at all, black superheroes in a country where a significant part of the population is, is one thing that you just cannot ignore.
The movie Black Panther takes in its title from a five-decade old movie, which has actually got forgotten among many of Marvels' other superhero movies. In fact, the mention of Black Panther was so subtle that Christopher Priest had to talk to Marvel to ensure that it does not hollow out the character. And boy, today it is one of the most lucrative deals that Marvel has, even surpassing the sales from the likes of traditional Marvel superheroes like the Spiderman movies.
When Did we First see The Black Panther
So, are you wondering when Marvel fans actually saw the Black Panther for the first time? It was back in 1966, in a Fantastic Four comic. Since then, while the comic was identified with black rights, there has not been many issues discussing about this superhero.
The comic was distributed before we had the black voting rights organizers then adopting a similar black panther ballet symbol during that time, for their political party. If we are to talk about the comic, nothing in its covers suggested that it had anything radical, but a look inside it told a different story. Unfortunately, the emergence of the same political party with a similar symbol, clouded the public understanding of the same and Black Panther was kept in the backburner for quite a while.