Lots of black people's faces and bodies posing like a movie poster wearing superhero type clothes against a blue background that looks high tech

There's a simple fact about geek media that's well-known to every woman, every person of color, every queer person who has ever been a fan, but which seems to completely escape an awful lot of the cishet white men, something which the rest of us have simply lived with all our lives but which some guys just can't handle:

Sometimes things aren't for you.

Sometimes the target audience for something is actually, amazingly enough, not cishet white men. It's rare, but it happens!

That doesn't mean you can't enjoy them. Whole fandoms have been built on adults enjoying cartoons that were created for children. And people of color and women and queer folks have been enjoying movies and comic books and novels about cishet white male heroes all their lives. They kind of have to, since that's the bulk of what's out there. (Thanks, gatekeepers!) They understand that stories about people who don't look like them are still stories about humanity, and that makes them worth experiencing (except when they're just objectively terrible). They know that something doesn't have to be about people who are just like them to be good – though it sure is nice when it is.

This month, on February 16th, Marvel Studios will release a superhero movie that is not for white people. It was not made by white people. The only real regard given to white people was in deciding how to depict an African nation that wasn't wrecked by white colonialism. The only white people on the group poster are Martin Freeman – who you might know from playing every Hapless Everyman in British literature – and Andy Serkis – who you probably don't know when he's not playing a CGI chimpanzee – both of whom are pretty much villains.

Like they did with the Netflix Luke Cage series, Marvel Studios has had the sense to give its Black characters to Black creators. And I can already hear the whining about it threatening to drown out the whining about a Star Wars movie that revolved around women and people of color.

But I am excited for Black Panther, as excited as I've been about all the other Marvel movies which have been excellent movies about people who aren't quite like me, but more so because I remember the joy I felt watching Alien, or Paul Feig's Ghostbusters, or collecting action figures of all the new Jedi women from the prequels because we never used to have Jedi women, and I am excited that Black geeks are going to get some more of that joy. This isn't just another white male superhero played by a guy named Chris in a movie that will certainly be objectively great but which will nonetheless be about another white male superhero.

Black Panther isn't for me, but neither was Iron Man. I'm going to love it anyway. It's for another group of people who things are not usually for, and that is far more exciting than another blond Chris.

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