Larry Stroman On When Black Fans Avoid Black Creators At Comic Con

1980382_10202655234527488_4742809555452565280_oLarry Stroman, co-creator of Tribe and known for his work on Darkstars and X-Factor, wrote on Facebook.

for all of you BLACK PEOPLE who go to comic shows,comic cons,events at comic stores who break your necks to AVOID every black creator working on an independent or mainstream book……you should be ashamed of yourselves.

It seemed to strike a nerve.

Art Bellfield Preach! It happens to me all the time!

Kendu Cheek I second that !!

Chris Johnson I want to know what the reasoning is, too. Are we too "threatening" or what?

Keith Murrell I'm not gonna lie That happend to me alot that past two days at my booth…but it's all good I'm still having alot of fun and meeting alot of amazing artist and people…

Though some fans experience the problem in the other direction.

Cm Talley To all the Black creators I've never seen at any comic con…Where the Hell are you?

B. Alex Thompson I'm usually at most SoCal shows and some in the extended CA & NV areas. WonderCon, Long Beach Comic Expo, Wizard World Sacramento & San Jose.

Kyrun Silva I've been at a lot of the NorCal shows this year. This is my first year doing anything with my company Big Tree Comics. I've been at a couple Wizard World, Big Wow and couple other events.

Cm Talley Black creators should get organized to pull Black comics readers to the products outside of the particular con's organization. That would require unity and organization, but we do have the internet and social media.

Kyrun Silva Any social media is great. We need to change the perception that black created Comic books arent as relatable or as interesting as other main stream books.

Greg Anderson-Elysee Its that dumb mentality that Black books and products are inferior to the "regular" books. Its that Black Geek Stockholm Syndrome mentality. Its highly disappointing.

Roosevelt Pitt A close colleague once said that black people who behave as Larry Stroman described are inclined to eat from the table of those who care less about them, but will continue to take their money hand over fist. It's a weak position to be in. I've never been among that number. I prefer to support my people first.

Brian Mark WilliamsThe point Mr. Larry Stroman is making is very simple but at the same time very complex. The fact that thousands of threads exist out here bemoaning the fact that there are no black writers or authentic, free range black concepts out there for public consumption is simply staggering. But these same folk that say they want black superheroes and black stories are walking around the convention in an INVINCIBLE t-shirt, with an IRONMAN statue by Bowen and Batman Earth One vols 1 and 2. Now on the surface, there's nothing wrong with buying what you want to buy. It's your money. But damn…stop asking for something you don't want or are not ready to process. I feel like a lot of black comic book fans are scared to let go of the mainstream comic book industry's teat…but you are never going to see yourself or your real community represented in any of these books that you automatically consume every month because these companies really don't give a f about you. Wake up and support your indie black creators, and with your contribution and interest we can build something. As for the fans out there that wish color didn't matter…I have wished the same thing every day of my life. But the stark reality is that color does matter…and it always will.

Roosevelt Pitt I agree with your assessment Brian Mark Williams. I challenge black comic fans to examine their mainstream purchasing habits and to discern are they based on simple fandom or borderline worship.

Ricky Eaddy Yeah, Kyrun it happens a lot of our booths…but hopefully on the plus side, when I get a 15 min break or so, I try to visit all the Black creators tables

Doyle K Davis so we check the color of whos doing comics before we make our purchase?or should it be based apon the quality of the comic without checking the people's color? and yes i bought comics because i liked your art larry without knowing you were black, color means nothing to me

Brian Mark Williams You don't check the color of the artist or writer, but you look for content that is inclusive of you and your community…issues or history that you care about or never realized actually took place because it was obscured or hidden from you. As a black man and lifelong comic book fan, I have had to search far and wide for black superheroes that thought about and acted on things that would be natural for them to focus on…like civil rights, the hood, foreign policies, an all black team, racist terrorist groups, black pride and so on. Not that a white writer cannot take an interest in black culture and write about these same things but for whatever reason you tend not to see these types of stories from the Big 2…primarily because they are staffed and run by a white male majority. That's the truth.

Joyce Chin I haven't seen that happen when I've been sitting next to a black comic book creator, but I haven't sat next to everyone at a con. It's insane that it does happen. Also, sit next to a French guy? EVERY FRENCH PERSON IN THE BUILDING SHOWS UP.

Joyce Chin I just sat next to Afua Richardson at Dragon Con, she had a lot of everyone show up.

Philip Tan If you sit next to the Chinese or Filipino guy, you get every one of those respective fans too… There just aren't too much of us around in the biz…


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About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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