Sigh: Deadpool 2 Is Making A White Character Black, So Naturally Heads Are Exploding
‘Deadpool 2’ will Star a Black Actress In a White Role. Guess How The Internet Is Taking The News?
When you see “Deadpool 2” in a headline, you’d be wise to expect to see the line “Heads exploding” somewhere in the content body. Deadpool is, after all, a pretty big fan of ultra-violence, and “exploding heads” sounds like something “The Merc With The Mouth” would do to pass time on some random Wednesday afternoon.
But in this article, the heads exploding are those of some rather nitpicky — and possibly racist — fans of the Deadpool comics, who are reacting to a bit of recent news involving the upcoming sequel to the R-rated smash hit 2016 film with the same tone you’d expect to hear from a Tea Partier in 2009 rambling about the “purity” of the Oval Office.
On Monday, Deadpool star Ryan Reynolds revealed an image via Twitter of Atlanta star Zazie Beetz in costume for her upcoming role as Domino in Deadpool 2, which is due for release in June of 2018.
— Ryan Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) July 31, 2017
Okay, this is the part of the article where I nerd out for a bit while half of you reading glaze over. Domino is a mercenary and the love interest of Cable, the mutant son of X-Men mainstay Cyclops, who is played by Josh Brolin in the upcoming film. Domino is, for lack of a better phrase, a super kick-ass ninja assassin. And she has a mutant superpower, too: she can manipulate probability and use her manufactured luck to her advantage while putting the hurt on others, or to pass some misfortune onto her foes.
But aesthetically, Domino is known to fans of the comic series for her pasty white skin and a big black circle painted around her left eye. And as you can see in Reynolds’ tweet above, Zazie Beetz is a black actress with a white circle painted around her eye.
You’ve clearly been on the Internet, seeing as how you’re reading this on the Internet right now. I’m sure you know exactly how white guys saw this image… they completely and utterly lost their shit, of course.
But please tell me Domino will still have her bright white skin
— Jamys Baker (@JezzaHolmes) July 31, 2017
The story is that she was created as the ultimate Soldier & her skin has been snow-white since birth…
— Gideon Burkland (@gideonburkland) July 31, 2017
…Really? That’s domino? I’m going to sound a LOT like a racist here but aren’t her colours supposed to be the other way round, IYKWIM…?
— Mark O’Leary ? (@TheBlackDemon96) July 31, 2017
And the hair… The opposite.
— Le Maitre Mot (@jackietuning33) July 31, 2017
Awful portrail of domino. Ridiculous idea to racial change characters.
— Matthew Soper (@MatthewSoper4) July 31, 2017
Thankfully, Not Everyone Is Outraged Over Deadpool 2’s Domino
Sigh. Well, to the Internet’s credit, a number of people stood up to defend her casting as well. Like @perconstantine, who points out that Negasonic Teenage Warhead from the first Deadpool movie didn’t emulate her comic book version perfectly either.
Because NTW was totally comics-accurate? Why was this okay but a non-albino Domino is some unforgivable sin? pic.twitter.com/7SPbjvPqwB
— Percival Constantine (@perconstantine) July 31, 2017
Other Deadpool fans called this nonsense precisely what it is, and defended the casting decision.
It’s almost like folks only have a hard time with this because she’s black
— Natalie Slaughter (@NatSlaughter) July 31, 2017
It’s a comic book. It’s not real. If people can believe Ben Affleck as Batman, we’ll all be fine here.
— Julie (@jooblee) July 31, 2017
It looks different but still bad ass
— Zafira Joann (@JoannZafira) July 31, 2017
Why put race into it, I’m sure she did the best out of everyone who auditioned for the part and that’s why they picked her. So calm tf down
— J∆KE∆H (@Jakeah_21) July 31, 2017
She looks awesome! Wish that face paint was a little bolder but minor issue.
— James Buckley (@jamesbuckley) July 31, 2017
— RobinRunGirl (@Robinrungirl) July 31, 2017
Settle Down, Nerds: Deadpool 2 Will Kick All Sorts Of Ass
When I saw the image from Ryan Reynolds’ tweet earlier today, I literally turned to my girlfriend and said “Cool! I didn’t realize Domino would be in Deadpool 2!” This was before I saw Reynolds’ full tweet or any text accompanying it. So obviously, Zazie Beetz’ portrayal is more convincing than some people on Twitter care to let on.
These angry posters aren’t rambling about comic book purity or some transgression against comics as a visual medium. Any real comics fan will look at that image and clearly recognize Domino. The people who can’t are most likely doing what people on the Internet these days do best: allowing mob mentality to get the better of them and inserting themselves into an argument for lack of something better to do, because arguing on the Internet is a hoot.
It’s doubtful the team working on Deadpool 2 cast Beetz as Domino to fulfill some sort of race-related quota. As @Jakeah_21 pointed out in the tweet above, Beetz most likely auditioned for the role and simply out-performed everyone else. And based on the quality and hilarity of the first Deadpool movie, I’m willing to wager the team developing Deadpool 2 won’t disappoint when it comes to introducing Domino into the story.
I’d like to congratulate Zazie Beetz on landing this role, and also congratulate the costume team for their excellent efforts transforming Beetz into Domino. I’m really looking forward to seeing Deadpool 2 next summer, when it finally hits theaters on June 1st 2018. And what about all those people whining online about Beetz’ casting? Screw ’em. Haters gonna hate.
Featured image courtesy of Ryan Reynolds/ Twitter, used under condition of fair use
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Matt Terzi is a political satirist and essayist from Binghamton, New York, who has written for some of the most prominent satire publications in the country. He’s now moving into more “serious” subject matter, without losing touch with his comedic roots