With TV shows Luke Cage and Black Lightning, and film characters like Black Panther and Cyborg, it’s clear Black superheroes are having a big moment. For the first time, members of the Black community are seeing an abundance of representation in comic material on screen and we don’t want this moment to end! Black History Month is almost here, so I thought it would be the perfect time to highlight some Black superheroes I’d love to see on screen!
Monica Rambeau aka Captain Marvel aka Spectrum
Captain Marvel/Carol Danvers is due to make her appearance in the Marvel Cinematic Universe this year in Infinity War. If you don’t follow the comics at all you might not know that Carol Danvers isn’t the first female Captain Marvel. In 1982, the original Captain Marvel died and passed on the name to Monica Rambeau. After an encounter with extra-dimensional technology, Monica gained the power to manipulate and transform into any form of the electromagnetic spectrum. She was soon asked to join the Avengers and even became the group’s leader at one point! Since then, she’s gone by the aliases Photon, Pulsar, Spectrum, and even her own name. With the recent casting of Dewanda Wise in the Captain Marvel solo film, many are hoping Monica Rambeau will make an appearance alongside Carol Danvers.
Ororo Munroe aka Storm
I know what you’re thinking. Storm has already appeared in multiple the X-Men movies. Why is she on this list? Although Storm has already appeared on screen multiple times, I don’t think any of her portrayals have done her justice. Ororo Munroe is a mutant with the ability to manipulate weather patterns. This ability allows her to do things like control ocean currents, the atmosphere, and even fly. Though it hasn’t been confirmed, Storm’s abilities are rumored to have earned her a spot on the list of Omega level mutants. Mutants on this last have some of the most powerful and most feared abilities. Now that Marvel Studios has acquired the on screen rights to the X-Men, I’m hoping Storm will have a chance to appear in the MCU. Especially since Black Panther, Storm’s ex husband, is taking off as a character. Maybe we’ll get a future cameo!
Riri Williams aka Ironheart
The Invincible Iron Man comic series was thrust into national news in 2016 when it was announced that a 15 year old Black girl would be the new Iron Man. Riri Williams is a engineering student at MIT and certified super genius. She built her own version of Iron Man’s suit in her dorm room with hopes of becoming a superhero. After Tony Stark hears about one of Riri’s heroic efforts, he decides to become her mentor and help her reach her superhero goals. When Stark becomes injured, Riri decides to take his place with the new name Ironheart. Shortly after the character was introduced, MIT students made an Ironheart fan film. Fans instantly became excited about seeing Ironheart on screen someday. When creators revealed that Riri’s character design was based off of Disney Channel actress Skai Jackson, the possibility of a live action Ironheart seemed a lot more attainable.
Miles Morales aka Spider-man
In an alternate Marvel Universe, Peter Parker dies and Miles Morales takes up the mantle of Spider-man. Just like Peter, Miles gained his abilities after a spider bit him. Due to his ethnic background, he quickly gained a following before his first issue was even released. When news came out that the new Spider-Man would be a biracial Black and Puerto Rican kid from Brooklyn, thousands of comic book fans finally saw themselves represented by a character they’ve loved for decades. Since his appearance, fans wants Miles to make an appearance on the big screen. Hopefully Miles will appear in the MCU after Prowler hinted at his existence in Spider-Man: Homecoming. You can catch him in animated form in his own movie later this year.
Mari McCabe aka Vixen
Mari McCabe, or Vixen, is a member of the Justice League. Her powers come from a totem that gives the wearer the abilities of animals. She’s also known for her complicated love triangle involving Hawkgirl and John Stewart. In August 2017 sources announced that the animated CW movie, Vixen: The Movie, flopped. This was a shock to many fans as, many didn’t know the movie was airing! DC blamed the flop on lack of interest in Vixen. Many Vixen fans say there is interest in the character, but the movie was not well advertised. Vixen also appeared live action when her character appeared on the CW’s, Arrow. She was later moved to a more permanent position on Legends of Tomorrow but overall her character received mixed reviews. Fans are hoping she will get another chance at live action if the Green Lantern movie is made.
John Stewart aka Green Lantern
For those who grew up watching DC’s animated series, John Stewart is who we think of when anyone mentions Green Lantern. John is a member of the Green Lantern Corp, and intergalactic group in charge of peacekeeping throughout the universe. He was originally chosen as a backup for Hal Jordan, but when Hal gave up the Green Lantern title, John took over full time. In the current run, both Hal Jordan and John Stewart serve together as Earth’s Lanterns. In 2017, DC announced they would be making a Lantern Corp movie and it would feature two human Lanterns. Fans immediately began fan-casting who they would like to play John Stewart in the live action movie. There’s even hope that John’s live action appearance will make room for cameos by Vixen and Hawkgirl.
Virgil Hawkins Aka Static Shock
Static Shock is one of the most popular Black heroes in the DC universe. Virgil Hawkins was a regular high school student when he was exposed to radioactive gas during a gang riot in his city. Those who survived exposure to the gas developed strange mutations and abilities. These survivors were known as “Bang Babies” and they caused an increase and gang activity and deaths. Virgil gained electromagnetic powers from the gas and decided to become the the superhero, Static Shock. Static gained popularity in 2000 with the release of a solo cartoon series on WB Kids. Even after the series end, Static remained popular and even made cameos in other DC cartoons and video games. The recent increase of Black superheroes on screen have many fans calling for their childhood favorite to be brought into live action as well.
Val-Zod aka Superman
Like Marvel, DC also has an alternate universe. In that universe Kal-El, the Superman that we know, still survived the destruction of Krypton and made it to Earth. However Val-Zod, Power-Girl, and a few other Kryptonian children also escaped alongside him in separate escape capsules. Upon arriving to Earth Val-Zod decided he would live a Pacifist lifestyle and became a recluse. He does not take up the mantle of Superman until a clone of Kal-El, made by Darkseid, begins attacking Earth. Henry Cavill’s Superman contract is ending soon and many are wondering if the hero’s next on screen representation will be Val-Zod.
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