March 07, 2018


Black_pantherLike adults who read Harry Potter books as if they aren’t children’s books written on a sixth grade reading level, many grown audiences [knowingly or unknowingly] ignore the fact that superhero movies are a children’s genre. Superhero movies such as “Black Panther” represent nothing more than a dubious method for indoctrinating kids into accepting and participating in violent behavior, with the help of their goose-stepping parents.

You need look no further than “Black Panther’s” repetitive return to “ritual combat” as its means of electing a leader for a fictional East African tribe to know that something is rotten in Denmark, or in this case “Wakanda.” Nevermind that Marvel comic book writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby lifted the term “Wakanda” from a Native American word for God. Capitalist exploitation? You bet.

For as boring as the movie is, and “Black Panther” is nothing if not an utter mind-numbing experience, here is yet another reminder of Hollywood’s lazy and persistent use of redundant comic book material to profit from marketing violence to kids while, in this case, spitting on the graves of native peoples. 

What's the point of competent filmmaking if there isn't a shred of originality or narrative inspiration anywhere to be found? "Black Panther" isn't a movie, it's military propaganda pushed through a corporate system (in this case Hollywood) built on the same economic model as America's military industrial complex that protects the corporate elite. 

These movies aren’t about ideas, such as civilized discussion or compatible behavior, they are about greed and instilling vengeful behavior in kids who grow up instilled with oversimplified notions about wars, fighting, and taking revenge on fellow human beings.  


Just as the “Star Wars” movies have made many times over their box office profits on toys, so too does Hollywood deal in superhero merchandising to elevate profit margins to astronomical levels. Follow the money. You might think it’s a big deal for a movie like “Black Panther” to employ so many black actors, but you can bet the film’s producers are not sharing any product revenues with those same thespians. To put it simply, superhero movies are nothing more than very long commercials. Think about it when Halloween rolls around and every other nine-year-old is wearing a Black Panther costume. You can’t call that Cinema.

Black Panther

“Black Panther” is forgettable as it is toxic. To pretend otherwise is pure folly. As for the popularity of superhero movies, keep in mind their relation to a lowest common denominator cashed in on by faceless corporations. All you have to do is follow the money. Go ahead; buy a toy. But remember to think about what it really represents.  

Rated PG-13. 134 mins. (D) (One [plastic] star — out of five / no halves)

Groupthink doesn't live here, critical thought does.

Click on the button to pledge your support through Patreon.


Treehouse Brewing's American Brown Ale BEAR is the beer of choice for Mike and Cole to hash out the first (and hopefully only) superhero movie to make it into the Feast. We also have our first food-fight as a result. Do superhero hero movies indoctrinate children into violent behavior? Cole thinks so. Could this be the movie that breaks LA GRANDE BOUFFE (THE BIG FEAST)? Superhero movies do indeed teach confrontation after all. Get out the electric knife for this one Bouffers, and don't worry about the mess. 

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and follow us on SOUNDCLOUD. And tell your friends! 

While we're at it, this is what social commentary looks and sounds like.

Help keep Cole Smithey writing reviews, creating video essays, and making podcasts. Click on the button to pledge your support through Patreon.


Groupthink doesn't live here, critical thought does.


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Featured Video

SMART NEW MEDIA® Custom Videos



Throwback Thursday

Podcast Series