Shut your mouth. Wakanda Forever! This week, Nakea is picking the movies and taking the reins, as we discuss two cinematic milestones featuring black action heroes: Shaft (1971) and Black Panther (2018).
We're starting out with a long, spoiler-free fangasm about Ryan Coogler's new superhero blockbuster, before taking a deep dive into Gordon Parks' landmark blaxploitation classic. It's a conversation that ranges all over the diaspora, covering the history of black film heroes, the importance of representation, and the all-important question of who'd win in a fight: King T'Challa or John Shaft?
—0:00: Prologue: "All the Time?" by Lee Edward Colson
—0:57: Intro and Black Panther discussion
—31:23: Black Panther trailer
—32:44: Cultural Osmosis: Pre-Viewing Discussion of Shaft
—44:47: Shaft trailer
—45:19: The Verdict: Post-Viewing Discussion of Shaft
—1:19:38: Outro and Next Week's Movie
Notes and Links
—Films discussed: Black Panther (dir. Ryan Coogler, Marvel Studios, 2018) and Shaft (dir. Gordon Parks, MGM, 1971)
—Introductory audio ("All the Time?") is from an awesome video posted by Twitter-user Lee Edward Colson (@leecolston2).
— Check out and support the "Wakanda the Vote" initiative by the Electoral Justice Project.
—Articles discussed: "Black Panther and The Invention of Africa," by Jelani Cobb, The New Yorker; "Black Panther a watershed in cultural history of African Americans," by Leonard Pitts, Jr., Miami Herald; "Black Panther begets political action beyond the big screen," Angela Helm, The Root.
—Interview discussed: "Gordon Parks' Big Score," Roger Ebert, rogerebert.com.
—Book discussed: Framing Blackness: The African American Image in Film, by Ed Gerraro.
—Tweet discussed by Daniel Kibblesmith (@kibblesmith).