The internet completely blew up when the news broke that actor Michael B. Jordan would be starring in the newest Fantastic Four film as Johnny Storm (aka the Human Torch). There has been a great debate, in terms of, whether or not the character of Johnny Storm should be portrayed by an African American.
Originally the character of Johnny Storm was drawn in the 1960s comic as a white man with blonde hair and blue eyes. What a lot of critics said about Jordan as the “Human Torch” was that “the series had been destroyed,” “they must be doing it because Obama’s president,” and “it’s not true to the comic.”
Michael B. Jordan has responded and pushed back against the negative critics in an essay that was published in Entertainment Weekly last Friday. Jordan stated, “To the trolls on the Internet…Look at your friends’ friends and who they’re interacting with. And just understand this is the world we live in. It’s okay to like it.”
In response to Jordan’s essay, actress Zoe Saldana has given her support via Facebook for Jordan’s role. Throughout Saldana’s post, she questioned why no one has ever had anything negative to say towards white actors and their portrayal of real-life people of color in various films for countless years yet the image of an African-American actor playing a fictional character gets a enormous amount of backlash.
A lot of what Saldana discussed throughout her Facebook post relates closely to the idea of cultural appropriation. Unfortunately, there are still individuals out there who do not possess progressive point of views and are stuck in a mind set that “white is right” and that is exactly the opinion that creates countless stereotypes that have negatively portrayed people of color throughout our society.
Whether the trolls like it or not, Michael B. Jordan is going to be the next Human Torch! All we can do now is wait for Jordan to blow our minds in the Marvel summer blockbuster that is sure to be a hit!