The Disney Plus debut of Wakanda Forever highlights one of James Gunn’s biggest DC blunders

Black Panther Wakanda Forever

Screenshot via YouTube/Vudu

It’s been a day since James Gunn and Peter Safran churned up the fandom waters with their true shotgun of announcements about the first phase of what’s to come DC Cinematic Universe. And while Gunn’s announcement may have excited fans of Superman, Batman, Green Lantern and, well, The Creature Commandos, the recent addition of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever Today on the Disney Plus streaming lineup highlights one of the biggest mistakes made by the new DC roster.

In a case of unintended irony, on the eve of Black History Month, DC Studios announced a series of 10 new film and television projects, one dedicated to just one Black superhero. The Studio’s New Green Lantern TV Show — lanterns — will feature longtime Green Lantern Corps member John Stewart in a starring role, but will likely be paired with a white cast member who will take on the character of the original Silver Age Lantern Hal Jordan. And while catfish Will feature the impressive talent of Viola Davis as ARGUS director Amanda Waller, the new DCU doesn’t appear to be premiered with one of DC Comics’ longtime black superheroes as its focus.

Another note that might come across as sour, DC Comics is celebrating Black History Month by focusing on many of the names that didn’t make the first cut of the DCU. Black Lightning, Cyborg (who has been in not one, but two film and television projects whose cables have been pulled through the new DC order), Vixen, Static Shock, Firestorm, and Mr. Terrific (who was featured in a tweet by Gunn a few weeks ago) are all highlighted in upcoming comic book titles but not seen by fans outside of these pages.

Of course, it should be noted that Marvel waited until Phase 2 to debut War Machine/James Rhodes and Sam Wilson/The Falcon, and T’Challa/Black Panther didn’t show up until Phase 3. With any luck, we may see future announcements for a more diverse DCU in the future.

It should also be noted that Gunn, Safran and the studio would be of great service now and in the future by ensuring they hire a diverse group of filmmakers including women, POC and those across the sexuality spectrum and Gender to ensure the studio’s projects tell their characters’ stories in the most authentic voice possible. The Disney Plus debut of Wakanda Forever highlights one of James Gunn’s biggest DC blunders

Adam Bradshaw

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