Michael B. Jordan Comments on Fantastic Four Casting Backlash
And he was a lot nicer about it than he needed to be.
It’s 2014, people. Knock off the racism. For everyone who complains that we don’t have flying cars or jetpacks yet, we’re still closer to those things than we are to people not hating each other for stupid reasons, and that’s a shame. There is nothing wrong with someone who isn’t white playing the Human Torch. End of discussion, or at least it should be.
That hasn’t stopped people from throwing a fit that Jordan will be playing the Human Torch, because guys, get this: the Human Torch is white and Jordan isn’t. Despite there being absolutely nothing wrong with that, people have found all sorts of lame excuses for why the casting choice is unacceptable.
Most commonly, people have said, “but Sue Storm is sister, and they cast a white person to play her!” Nope. Sorry. People of different races can be siblings, and trying to use that argument is pretty racist in itself.
Then, there’s the popular, “So it would be OK if we cast a white actor as [non-white character]?” Again, nope. It sure would not be, and pretending not to understand that there are different social implications there is silly. (Oh, please, please be pretending.)
Anyway, as with any casting choice, not only should the most important thing be whether or not the actor does a good job, so there’s really no reason for anyone to be upset about it until they actually see the movie. At a recent event in Rome, Jordan fielded an interview question about the backlash, and though it’s unclear from the video what the exact question was, he handled it by writing it off as people being afraid of change by saying,
You kind of know going into it… People are used to seeing something one way, you know? It’s the continuity, I think, more than anything. People don’t like change too much. [Am I] annoyed? Ehhhh. You kind of accept that it is what it is. You can’t make everybody happy.
No, you certainly can’t, but I’d really like to live in a world where we don’t have to worry about the skin color of a fictional character making people unhappy. Can’t we all just go back to being unhappy that Marvel’s movie rights are spread all over the place, which prevents more crossovers? Get it together, everybody. When the flying cars and jetpacks finally get here, I’d like to feel like we all deserve them.