Comics Alliance Tackles The Lack Of Black Writers In The Comic Book Industry...

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by Tambay A. Obenson
February 4, 2013 3:24 PM
6 Comments
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Unfortunately, there isn't a comic book pro on the S&A staff, although I have previously asked that those of you who are writers and/or illustrators, or who live and breathe this stuff, and who would like to contribute your knowledge, enlightening those of us who aren't as connected to that world, to please do so (you can email me at obensont@gmail.com; I'm always open to submissions, as I've said repeatedly).

In the meantime, I'll point you to a thoughtful piece on the Comics Alliance website, penned by editor Joseph Hughes, titled Outrage Deferred: On The Lack Of Black Writers In The Comic Book Industry.

I think the title speaks for itself, but here's a sample:

This is the first week of Black History Month, a four-week celebration and remembrance of the significant events and people of the African diaspora. For many, myself included, it's a month to reflect on where we've been, as a people and as a nation, and to contemplate exactly where it is we're going. In terms of the comic book industry, an obvious interest and passion of mine, there is one glaring and sobering fact that needs our attention: There is currently not a single black writer working on a monthly series for either of the two biggest comic book publishers in the United States, and precious few working for any of the others. And yet, this fact has hardly been discussed recently, in the way some other diversity issues are. So what happened, exactly? Why is it that we no longer seem to care about this as much as we once did? Where has our outrage gone?

It's a familiar lament, however from a different POV than we're used to writing and reading about here on S&A, and I encourage to read the rest of it, which you can do HERE.

And feel free to return and share your own thoughts - especially if you work in that space, or are heavily invested in it. 

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6 Comments

  • ALM | February 7, 2013 3:22 PMReply

    R.I.P. I loved, loved, loved his work with animated superheroes.

  • Brandon Easton | February 6, 2013 3:28 PMReply

    There’s a few Black writers in Hollywood who have been working in TV, animation and film that also have worked in comics. For example there’s me (Brandon Easton – writer on the newest Thundercats series and Transformers: Recuse Bots) and I had a critically acclaimed graphic novel Shadowlaw released last January and a bunch of other stuff coming out in 2013. There’s Geoffrey Thorne (writer for TNT’s LEVERAGE and just got a deal with Dark Horse). There’s Vince Moore (writer of the TOTAL RECALL comic from Dynamite). There’s Kevin Grevioux (creator of the UNDERWORLD franchise, who also has done stuff for Marvel). There’s Enrique Carrion (writer of Image’s Vescell). There’s Brandon Thomas (writer of Miranda Mercury, and writer for the new VOLTRON comic series at Dynamite). Not to mention the extremely diverse creators on IndyPlanet.com.

    And there are others whose names escape me at this time. My point is that it seems that once Dwayne McDuffie passed away (RIP), everyone pretended that no other Black writers existed.

    We’re out there in greater numbers than you think. It’s just slow going.

    Best,
    Brandon

  • getthesenets | February 4, 2013 4:45 PMReply

    Being a comic book head from way back(back when you got laughed at for reading comicbooks)..I have the same feelings about this topic as I do about lack of diversity in any industry.

    Best way to address it is for CURRENT pros to try to attract and develop the next generation of talented people. Perhaps encourage the younger ones to create their own lanes instead of trying to get into the door of somebody else's house.

    I think Chris Rock funded a seminar/class/workshop at Howard U. to try to develop new Black comedy writers.

    gonna read the entire article, but unless Joseph Huges is saying things along the line of mentoring new talent...he's talking that same ol B.S.

    Years back, I met the brothers who were behind Brotherman...right at the Gallery mall..they started from ground level..with a mall cart/kiosk

    I had a Wolverine t shirt on..and they started screaming on me...we had long convo and I respected their position and what THEY were doing to counter what the industry was about then(as it is now)

  • ET Complaining | February 4, 2013 4:18 PMReply

    How about the LACK OF WHITE Rappers in the music industry, or lack of Asians reporting in the news or lack of lesbians running Production companies or Mexicans not Owning Media Outlets??? Lets just make sure we cover all the lack of races in every profession OMG!!

  • Troy | February 5, 2013 9:20 PM

    20 plus Hispanic channels in my cable package are all owned by white people? Even though the richest man in the world is Mexican?

  • Jackie Chainz | February 4, 2013 5:54 PM

    You must not be familiar with the underground, plenty of white rappers out there. And last time I checked, the mainstream has MGK and Eminem still making waves, too. In regards to black writers in the comic book industry, those days are pretty much long gone now that Milestone Media is dead, as well as McDuffie.

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