Wakanda Forever Follows a Long Tradition of Anti-Azuretism.

Black Panther:Wakanda Forever follows a long tradition of anti-Azuretism. A xenophobic tradition that has raised its ugly head once more in modern times.

It started with the hatred towards the Smurfs (circa 1981).

We may think that it was all Gargamel’s doing and that our society was on the side of the Smurfs, but Gargamel simply played on existing racial anxieties and legitimized the bigotry and anti-Azuretism felt by much of the “murican public.

He normalized anti-Azuretism, while also objectifying and over-sexualizing Smurfette.

Gargamel gave permission to old white men to publicly and proudly hate Azure punks walking on their lawns.

Sadly, it got worse. Much worse. In the middle of the 1980s, the Reagan Years, or that period historians refer to as “America on Cocaine”, the Smurfs became the target of the evangelical right which resuscitated (no pun intended) the old medieval myth that Smurfs turn into demons after midnight.

Little did it help that the studio tried to make fun of the accusations by introducing Devil Smurf. A funny, but poorly thought response if you ask me.

To this day, Peyo, the creator of the series lives in isolation protected by the French secret services while the global community tries unsuccessfully to get the American Christian right to lift their fatwa against Peyo. Free Peyo- there is only so much brie one can eat.

Then came Avatar, a film that tried to once and for all expose anti-Azuretism. It failed, miserably.

Bringing back the “White Savior” trope, a human paraplegic Marine eventually leads the Na’vi, the indigenous people of Pandora. The Na’vi, are the newest version of the Smurfs, but less French (thank you Jesus!), and more Indigenized and Africanized. They are also taller and have tails- because, apparently, we learned nothing from the Evil Smurf fiasco.

But I digress. Jake Sully, the human paraplegic Marine, assumes the role of savior, bests the Na’vi warriors, makes Smurfette (played by Zoe Zaldaña) fall head over tail for him, and leads the Na’vi in their fight for freedom against the evil human corporation and their gun-for-hire ex-marines.

This is problematic. Very much so. Lawrence of Arabia called, he wants his story back.

Sully, a la Hernán Cortés,  introduces human weapons and tactics which made the Na’vi better warriors- after mastering their ways (at this point Sully is in my “I must be part of this guy’s posse” list). And he also gets Smurfette? The leading warrior and hottest Smurf ever, like seriously, ever? All of that after Dancing with Wolves– I mean, Dragons?

It is obvious that at a certain point, James Cameron lost sight of his main goal, denouncing anti-Azuretism, and the film ended up being very condescending toward Blue communities on Earth and, and worse yet, our galaxy. The main message was “even the most messed up of us can best the best of you- and make you better” in a romantic reminiscing of White Privilege and Supremacy.

Then came “Bright” (2017) a noble attempt to shift the blame for anti-Azuretism to the Black community. Why not, right?

In this one, Smurfette is presented in a very secondary role turning tricks for drugs. Worse yet, the Smurfs in this film do have ugly teeth and look like demons because we haven’t yet learned from the Evil Smurf fiasco.

It goes without saying that the only goal accomplished in this film was blaming the Black community (poorly represented by Will Smith, or so I hear) for the new wave of anti-Azuretism. If you want to be gaslighted, this is your film.

Then, the new film, and our main dish, Teenage Mutant Ninja Mayas (who look like turtles), AKA, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.

What better than to get Black Africans to kill the evil Mayas? In this blame-shifting film with more holes than the finest aged Swiss cheese, the Mayas have turned Blue, live under water, swim with the fishes, and if you thought that life is better under the sea you thought wrong. So very wrong. They are also evil. Evil AF mind you.

Thus, to make plausible and palatable the idea that Mayas can be evil (like the Conquistadors and the Holy Inquisition warned us back them- circa 1500-1700s), they are Azuretized and given the devil’s ears.

Oh, the leading Mayan dude (who goes by the name of “Namor” because like Bad Bunny he says “muchacho deja eso” when it comes to love and rather llevarselas “a toas a un VIP, un VIP, eh”) is way over the top and wants to exterminate the humans who live in the surface to avenge the conquest and colonization (just like his white and white-passing like-minded professors of Latin American, Caribbean and Latinx studies taught him). But Mutant Ninja Maya Smurfette is eviler. Eviler AF. Can we stop making female villains so evil. Hello, the bible called… and the Koran, and every other organized religion called…

And just like that, we get the noble Black African warriors of Wakanda Forever my brother, with a Just Cause to massacre the Mayas in act of Black on Blue violence that surpasses the crew of Fox and Friends’ crew’s wettest dream. Anti-azuretism has been off-shored, outsourced, to Sub-Saharan Africa (it is all in Biden’s laptop) because we refuse to accept that Anti-azuretism was a Western invention.

The film ends just like the conquest of Mexico (or the European takeover of the Middle east, or the Anglo-American conquest of the West, or the partition of Africa, or… wow so many! You get the idea).

The noble Wakandans, (now led by a woman Black Panther- in a gender-blame shifting genius move), defeat the Blue Mayas but instead of eliminating them, they will take care of their blue friends and protect them from the world above. We know how this ends. And so we don’t feel bad about the future extermination of the Blue Mayas, the film ends with them plotting their betrayal of the naïve Wakandans.

A source tells me that in the next film, Hillary Rodham Clinton plays a crucial role in the planning of a Wakandan military air campaign designed to bring about regime change in the underwater Mayan dictatorship under the guise of a humanitarian campaign. And we should celebrate this moment with vigor! Because it is a great achievement when women break that glass ceiling and join in the colonization effort and go imperializing (like my students have been writing for 20 freaking years) in the name, of not love, but equality!

But this is all I will say for now. No more spoilers.

Wakanda Forever and say no to anti-Azuretism.

P.S. The only reason we are not discussing the treatment of the the Gungans in those serial crimes against the film industry we know as the “Star Wars” prequels, is because Jar Jar Binks (“Patience my blue friend”) is the Azure person that legitimizes anti-Azuretism vitriol. Because, after all, who hasn’t felt the urge to punch Jar Jar, right? Or wished that he trips into a power generator? And just like that, Star Wars (those horrible pre-quels) became the most anti-Azuretist of all films, if we can call them films.

Misquoting President Obama and Bob the Builder “No, we can’t!” Hell no!

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