The world of super-beings is getting a lot more diverse. First Spider-Man, now the Human Torch. And while it’s long overdue, it’s only a small step in the right direction. Society has a long way to go until it can be considered truly equal.
When I was kid, my friends and I used to go camping in the woods out behind my house. We’d stay up late, talk about girls, and usually at least one of us would be abducted by a tall, pale, faceless figure, never to be heard from again. That’s right: Slender Man. He was a part of all our childhoods, appearing in the backgrounds of our photos, eating our friends’ souls, and convincing us with to stab each other with his wicked mind tricks. And I wouldn’t change that for anything. He’s a part of all of us.
But it’s 2015. Our deepest fears must evolve with the times. The world is ready for a black Slender Man.
Now I know what some of you are thinking: Slender Man is GHOSTLY WHITE. It’s just a part of who he is, no less important than his slenderness or facelessness or extra windy tentacle arms that he slides down the throats of his captors. Right? Wrong. Slender Man is whatever we want him to be. Period.
Sure, rumors of a black Slender Man have been met with great skepticism, and some outright vitriol on social media:
And many super fans have lambasted the #blackslendy push as a politically correct stunt that would destroy the Slender Man franchise. But to all the would-be detractors of progress I say this: would it honestly really be so bad? At the end of the day what’s the difference between having your children abducted and dragged to hell by a white 12-foot-tall slender faceless being and a black one? Or Asian! Or gay! Who cares? The result is the same. The fear is the same. So what’s the issue? The #blackslendy movement is about equality, plain and simple.
Just think of all the good that could come from a non-white Slender Man. There are countless young black boys out there that would never dream of growing up to be a supernatural, forest-dwelling eater of child souls. And that’s because there aren’t any strong black faceless-creature-of-terror role models. Seriously, try to name even ONE! The only black men they have to look up to are rappers and doctors and teachers and U.S. presidents…a bunch of normal humans with faces and regular-length limbs.
We’re better than that. So next time you’re looking at an old photograph of the woods or some children playing, do your best to imagine a supernatural, tall and slender black figure lurking in the shadows. We owe it to the future.