I’ve seen a lot of people, ( and by a lot I mean a handful, just enough to catch my interest) share their thoughts on Henry Cavill stepping down as Superman. I’ve also seen rumors going around that Micheal B. Jordan might step up and take the mantle as Superman in the near future. And of course, I’ve seen the shitstorm that came from that. So I wanted to voice my thoughts on a topic that some of you may consider “old news”.
This question is a rather interesting one to answer and can vary from person to person. One person might say “Of course they can, skin tone shouldn’t matter when it comes to playing a fictional character” while another person might argue that “Nah, they need to stay accurate to the portrayal of a fictional character, whether they be real or not.“
The reality is that a Black actor COULD play a Superman character but not THE Superman character if you get what I’m coming from. In the comic book universe, there’s a concept known as the multi-verse, which allows for a near-infinite versions of your favorite heroes. And surprise, surprise, there are superman of “African descent” or heroes who bear similar feature of that of African or African American in these continuities. Literally doing two seconds of Google search could’ve saved you a lifetime of online shame.
If Warner Brother wanted to start from scratch and rebuild the Justice League, they could do it with Kalel aka Calvin Ellis of Earth-23 or Val-Zod (Earth 2). Both of them have a very interesting story and universe to explore.
With that being said, the real question comes down to, can a Black actor play the MAIN universe Superman that world knows and loves. To be completely honest with you, no! I’ve had my stances when it comes to randomly and unnecessarily changing the skin of a character. You can read more on that on my blog called My View On Changing Original Characters To Fit An Agenda Of Diversity & Why I Disagree With It!. I wasn’t a fan when they did it with the Human Torch in the horrific film that was the Fantastic Four and I’m not gonna be a fan now. There’s a right way to do it and there’s a wrong way to do it. I’m all for diversity, shit, as someone of African descent I should be, but I won’t blatantly disregard or disrespect a well-known character just to get what I want for “diversity sake”.
As I’ve said, if the next few movies are based on the narrative of Calvin Ellis of Earth-23 or Val-Zod (Earth 2) then that’s perfect, but if Warner Bros are thinking of just replacing Henry Cavill with Micheal B. Jordan halfway into their already messed up cinematic universe then hell no, they can keep that mess to themselves. I’d rather have a comic book movie that’s a faithful adaptation of DC hero than a diversity pandering mess.
That’s why I also think Warner Bros’ only hope is to bank on the Flash movie to set things right. By using Flashpoint, they could use Ezra Miller’s Flash to change the universe’s timeline, therefore giving DC a chance to write out certain actors. But I still think it’s too soon to be introducing that concept to an audience that clearly doesn’t read comics.
Either way, it’s going to be interesting to see what Warner Bros will do in the future. Personally, I’d like to see Calvin Ellis of Earth-23. He’s a Superman and the President and I think he forms a multiverse Justice League. That’s cool to see. Let me know your thoughts on this matter.