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Fantastic 4 Cast…Johnny Storm Blacklash!

So the new Fantastic Four rebootapalooza  cast has been unveiled.

Miles Teller – Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic

Kate Mara – Sue Storm/Invisible Woman

Michael B. Jordan – Johnny Storm/Human Torch

Jamie Bell (likely) – Ben Grimm/The Thing

Josh Trank (Chronicle) is in the director’s chair, replacing Tim Story who, about a decade ago, put out a fairly OK Fantastic Four movie and than a garbage follow up.

I am not as bent out of shape as others over casting. I mean I know there will always be questions for the casting of any movie, every movie. I remember back when the first FF movie was cast there were concerns about Jessica Alba being cast as  Susan Storm, because Alba is not white, rather she is quite ethnically ambiguous…or maybe just not white enough.

Which brings us to one of the main sticking points I see in talk backs and comment threads about the casting…the backlash…or is it blacklash, to Michael B. Jordon being cast as Johnny Storm/Human Torch.

Torch was played to perfection by Chris Evans (current star of Captain America films and fun times) and one of the shining parts of those two movies.

But here we have Jordan, who is black, who has been the subject of critical acclaim for recent cinematic performances and who was pretty much Trank’s first and only choice for the Human Torch. But knee jerk reacting fans, so called comic  book purists and the like are quick to crap on the casting and complain about making white characters black and calling it affirmative action casting and such. Same thing they were saying about Michael Clark Duncan playing the Kingpin in the Daredevil movie.

It’s both interesting and sad to read what folks are saying, but of course the internet has a way of giving people balls of steel in ways they never would have them before.

Questions have abounded like “so how is he going to have a white sister?” “so what are they going to have them adopted?” and others. Which, they can easily have him adopted or he could just have been a step sibling to Susan Storm/Invisible Woman. There are any number of ways they can go.

Other things you see attached to complaints about race switching, such as Lawrence Fishburne playing Perry White in Man of Steel, is people saying “why don’t they make movies about black characters or create more of them?”

Comic books are creating more characters and making them more ethnically diverse, yes, but it may take years to develop those characters and get them a following like the X-Men or Spider-Man characters that people know and love and bean counters can see tons of money behind. And even when they are making these ethnically diverse characters, they are making some of them out of existing characters, the Miles Morales Spider-Man…Ms. Marvel being a Muslim. Are they going to create brand new Muslim character or tap into an existing name/brand they can hit the ground running with? Reasons why they do it are not anything new.

Also the fact that comic book characters are changed, altered in their ages, looks and every other way from story to story, series to series, writer to writer, there is no set way for them to be. There may be the way you’re used to seeing or how they were when you started reading the book.

When I started reading them, they were all older adult characters, but am I going to crap on the Ultimate FF line of comics because they are much younger incarnations? No.

I am a F4 fan all my life. It’s always been my favorite comic book even if I haven’t kept up with the issues over the years due to just not being financially able to keep my habit going. The Thing is my favorite marvel hero, always will be. I loved Chiklis as the Thing in the movies from years ago, heck, I even own a copy of the bootleg Roger Corman version.

That said I am all for this reboot and waiting to see what the director and the writers have in store. Anxious to see Jordan and what he can do. Hoping it’s a great job and his casting is justified and people stop calling it “gutsy” or “stunt casting” and the like.

I am very anxious to see this version of the Thing which I am sure will be mo-capped. (booooo)

As long as Galactus isn’t a cloud, we’re good.

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