Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Can I Just Say That I Love Black People?

I happen to be a Black People myself and oh, how I love me. We're inventors, storytellers, entertainers, doctors, lawyers, businessmen and women and in The DC Universe...supervillains.

I love DC Comics where they say "Forget PC, cuz! We got comics to make!"

Two years ago, while talking to Scip of "The Absorbascon" fame, we got onto the subject of cool villains and out popped the name "Black Manta." Manta's always been a favorite of mine and I never quite knew why. Was it because of unearthly design of his costume? Was it the icy eerieness of his voice from "The Super Friends" cartoon? Was it his cool Manta Ship? Truly, it was all of that but I did not know just what made him so enigmatic. Why was Black Manta "The Number One Foe" over Aquaman's own brother, The Oceanmaster?

Scip goes, "You know why Black Manta's "Black Manta?"

"Maybe because of the black costume. Duh-huh!" says I.

"No, Devon. Because Black Manta is a Black man in a manta costume."

(Stunned silence on my end.)

I think I then began to cry.

I needed to learn more. Black Manta is a scientist, who sick of racism on the surface, decided a Black man's right was to be dominant underwater, by any means necessary. That's when I fell head-over-heels in love with Black Manta. The moment I realized he was crazy. My kind of crazy.

Crazy is, as in the current Aquaman run, running for mayor of Sub Diego,simply because you believe Aquaman isn't representing the Black population properly.

Crazy is shattering the myth that Black people can't swim and convincing other Black men to become underwater henchmen.

Crazy is being the first member to join Lex Luthor's Legion of Doom in the pages of this month's "Justice" maxi-series. (Black Manta does not operate on "CPT-time.")

Crazy is kidnapping Aquaman's son, Arthur, Jr, placing the water-breathing child in an air bubble. Forcing Aquaman to duel to the death his adopted son, Aqualad, in order save his birth son's life.

I'll read that villain over a "Master of Magnetism" any ol' day. Mags may be evil but Black Manta is crazy. Black Manta is enigmatic, college-educated, motivated and crazy.

I like that "crazy." As I once said, "Pulling your d*** out in public makes sense to the crazy." Black Manta pulls his out with every appearance.

In that sense, Black Manta is one of the truest of supervillains.


Scipio said...

I love it about DC that they LET Black Manta keep his ideology, even if it seems less than up-to-date (to WHITE folk, anyway).

Manta gets props for the sheer audacity of his vision!

JackM said...

I have got to say, that post may very well be the most poignant yet hysterical blog post I have ever read -- with all due respect to Senor Absorbascon. After reading it, Christine, my beautiful and supportive wife screams out "I MUST MEET THIS MAN!!!" Just fantastic stuff.

ARMquaman said...

Totally agree Devin but Black Manta is misunderstood but he needs a power up to pose more of a challenge to Aquaman. Aquaman's just too strong and fast for him especially one on one. Peter David tried it a few years ago but it didn’t take as Manta appeared in a Kevin Smith written Green Arrow issue back to his regular kick-ass costume. What you need is a power up WITH the classic costume. Black Manta can’t be just a Lex Luthor underwater. Aquaman when written correctly is too powerful for that street level type of villian, especially if Manta thinks he can go one on one with Arthur.

Maybe Manta can create a clone of himself and Aquaman with a DNA sample and call him Blackquaman

J. Bryan Shoup said...

When Black Manta appeared in Quiver, he was depicted as a mutated, noseless, green-skinned humanoid.

Doctor Polaris said...

Excuse me? EXCUSE ME? I, the Master of Magnetism... Not crazy? I am the very *definition* of crazy, friend.

And yes, I know you were probably talking about the other guy...