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Miles Morales Gets Soul-Glo Treatment in Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse (Part One)?

I'll take texturism for 100.

Miles Morales in Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse (Part One) trailer. (Image: Sony Pictures.)

This weekend, Sony Pictures released a teaser trailer for the sequel to the Academy Award-winning animation feat Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse with Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse (Part One). Because Miles is visually aged up, Oscar Issac exists, and nearly every individual frame in this series is a piece of art, everyone began screen-sharing moments of the trailer.

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It’s here that some began to see that Miles’ hair texture looks like it came from a different part of the Spidey-verse.

This last comparison (and others having a similar conversation) also prompted For All Nerds Alumni Host DJ Benhameen to create this meme of the teaser footage over Soul Glo music from Coming to America.

To all the defenders: no

Some of the defense of this change comes out of a general misunderstanding about hair texture, while others are straight-up anti-Black.

For example, some say something along the lines of “he is now showering, so his hair is nicer.” No, stop it. This attitude perpetuates the racist stereotype that kinkier and tighter-textured hair is dirty. This is why 3-4 hair types (especially women and femmes—and starting from a young age) feel pressured to get our hair straightened with chemicals (Just For Me), heat, weaves, or a combination of the three.

There is no such thing as “biracial hair”

Others on the defensive point to the looser curls as a visual cue that Miles is more mixed. I use “mixed” and not “biracial” (even though some tried that) because being Puerto-Rican (his mother) or being Latinx, in general, is not a race. Latinidad is Black, white, and Indigenous heritage mixed to various degrees.

Now that Race/Ethnicity 101 is out of the way, there is no one way of looking multi-ethnic, biracial, etc.

Just because those with a white parent and a Black parent (like myself) get the most representation in media, it doesn’t mean all people of multiple ethnicities look like us. (And we don’t all have similar features like texture, features, and skin color!) That expectation extends to Miles, whose parentage (racially not ethnically) is vaguely similar.

The only excuse I’m taking at this point is that all the events and massive radiation scenes from the first movie did something to his hair. This is not a serious theory; I’m just scraping the bottom of the barrel at this point. We’re all super excited to see this movie and hope that this either gets fixed or is both explained (by official sources or in the film) and adjusted narratively. This is especially pressing because they are working on Part One and Part Two simultaneously.

(Image: Sony Pictures Animation)

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(she/her) Award-winning artist and writer with professional experience and education in graphic design, art history, and museum studies. She began her career in journalism in October 2017 when she joined her student newspaper as the Online Editor. This resident of the yeeHaw land spends most of her time drawing, reading and playing the same handful of video games—even as the playtime on Steam reaches the quadruple digits. Currently playing: Baldur's Gate 3 & Oxygen Not Included.