In an article posted on Forbes.com recently, it was discovered that the role of the one of Netflix's new upcoming shows, The Witcher, would have one of it's title characters Ciri, portrayed by a minority. For those who may not know the game or the books, Ciri, is a rather milky white character in all of the fictions. This has of course caused quite a bit of controversy because, well, white people. And I don't mean to be so blanket and blunt, but I'll explain.
So let's go back as recently as the live action Teen Titans show coming to DC's new streaming service. Remember when that photo leaked of actress Anna Diop as Starfire? I could go into details but the internet got mean and of course hateful. Let's go even further back, remember when there was rumor about them casting a Black Peter parker for a supposed Spider-Man movie. That got so much heat that Sony pulled the plug on that immediately. And that was just a rumor. And I believe to this day people still shit on Michael Clarke Duncan's Kingpin in the Daredevil movie. And he is without a doubt the best part of that whole travisty. It's something about when a minority gets cast in place of a caucasian character that really sets people off. It's almost as if minorities can't come up even if just make-believe.
The fact is that Hollywood is trying to make the change and have been for some time, but especially in the "build a wall, grab em by the p*ssy" era that we live in now. Because this is when diversity is needed the most. That being said though, this hate is nothing new. Minorites, blacks in particular, are constantly getting slammed, brutalized, and attacked online for playing roles that have historically been white. Michael B. Jordan, for playing the Human Torch, Quvenzhané Wallis for playing Annie...and she was just a damn child. But wanna know another child who got a ton of hate for doing a damn good job in a role? Amandla Stenberg. The actress who played Rue in the Hunger Games. They called this little girl every racial slur under the sun, just because she didn't fit their own ideas of what Rue should look like. Except, fun fact about Rue. SHE'S ACTUALLY BLACK IN THE BOOK! In fact, this was so bananas in pajamas, that it got full coverage in an article on jezebel.com where they post:
It's like I just wanna ask these "hardcore fans" that wanna stay "true" to the source material: "Do you even read bro!?"
Hissrich, the Executive Producer of the series is on record as stating that she wants the world of The Witcher to be more diverse than we're used to and more than is expected. Something that the original author is 100% on board with. Its the so called "die hards" that are having a rough time with the idea of the character being portrayed by someone other than a white actress. And don't get me wrong. If they casted, let's say, Scarlett Johansson for the role of Black Panther, I'd be a little perplexed. However, not so angry I'd send her personally a bunch of hateful, racist remarks. The whole idea of doing that is a bit asinine.
However, true story: people suck. And with the internet at their disposal, like minded terrible people can get together and destroy concepts, ideas, and most importantly but worst of all, people. The show was just barely confirmed and it already has trolls circling the deep. As usual though, only time will tell how this all plays out. I'd love to say that it'll end with them casting a black, asian, or latin actress and the internet will be calm or excited. She'll receive no disgusting tweets, DMs, or emails and go on to play a role that could change her career. However, odds are...
Jonathan Quamina is founder/writer/editor for Geek Unhinged. Follow him on Twitter