Spiderman Updated

In a valiant effort to broaden its audience and bring their characters in line with the twenty-first century, Marvel Comics have unveiled their brand new Spiderman. Great excitement and joy has been recorded in Latin America. 

It seems Peter Parker was of a race that had become obsolete and irrelevant in our vibrant multicultural society. The only adequate response was to kill him and for the archetype to reincarnate itself in a more postmodern avatar. White comic book readers can now let out an epic sigh or relief (hurricanes will be hitting Africa and Asia shortly), for their comic books are now once again acceptable for public reading and display. 

Of course, this is part of a wider effort in the entertainment industry, and no doubt Superman and Batman will soon be updated accordingly. Some television characters have already been updated: a few years ago, for example, Kojak was re-imagined as a Black man—although, strangely, he did not prove popular. Perhaps the producers jumped the gun, and should have waited until the advent of Obama the Great. Much that was previously thought impossible has become possible under the leadership of that man.

I suppose I will be forgiven for wondering if this project, which we could well call The Great Erasure (i.e., the grandiose project of erasing Whites and Whiteness in art, advertising, and media representations everywhere), means that I and those who look like me are being targeted for physical erasure one day. What do you think?

You can read about the exciting new Spiderman 2.0 in the BBC report reproduced below.

Marvel Comics introduces mixed-race Spider-Man

BBC, 3 August 2011

Marvel Comics has unveiled a new half-black, half-Latino Spider-Man, who replaces the recently killed-off Peter Parker.

Miles Morales, introduced in Marvel's Ultimate Fallout Issue 4, is a nerdy teenager from New York City.

Marvel editor-in-chief Axel Alonso said the new web-slinger "speaks to our rich cultural heritage" in the US.

Parker died in Ultimate Spider-Man Issue 160 in June during a fight with his bitter enemy, Green Goblin.

Like Parker, Morales is a geeky, working-class teenager from the boroughs of New York City.

Morales lives with his black and Latino parents in ethnically diverse Brooklyn, while Parker was white and raised by his aunt and uncle in a mainly white neighbourhood in Queens.

"Going into this we knew we wanted to make a statement about the 21st century," said Alonso.

The Marvel editor-in-chief, whose mother was from England and father from Mexico, said he cried when Barack Obama was elected president "partly because he was African-American but largely because of the fact that he was mixed race".

Alonso added that when Morales "peels off his mask now, he's going to have a very different look and he's going to resonate emotionally with all sorts of new readers".

He told AFP news agency Spidey writer Brian Michael Bendis is Jewish and has two adopted children from Africa.

"So I know for him it was definitely personal," Alonso said.