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CULTUREARTICLE

Ta-Nehisi Coates is Writing a BLACK PANTHER Comic for Marvel

The groundbreaking superhero continues his stay in the spotlight.

Ta-Nehisi Coates doesn't only write National Book Award nominated works of culturally necessary nonfiction about African-American identity. In addition to his prize-worthy Between the World and Me, not to mention his continued work as a national correspondent for The Atlantic, Coates is set to lend his vital authorial voice to an altogether different kind of project: penning a Black Panther comic for Marvel.

Coates, a self-professed Marvel Comics fanatic, is set to write a new series that will continue the superheroic pursuits of Black Panther, the first-ever black superhero in mainstream comics. Coates revealed the gig on Twitter yesterday, with reference to notorious supervillain Doctor Doom:

Black Panther has edged deeper and deeper into the ongoing cultural conversation about wider superhero diversity as of late, due in great part to Marvel's planned movie adaptation starring Get on Up's Chadwick Boseman that's due for release in 2018. Ava DuVernay famously passed on the directing gig (thankfully so) after a widely-publicizing courting process.

As the directorial search continues, may we again suggest (via Matt Barone's impassioned plea) that Marvel need look no further than film veteran Ernest Dickerson, who served as Spike Lee's go-to D.P. from the late eighties to early nineties before becoming a director himself in 1992 with the Tupac-starrer Juice, which we were just recommending, as well as several other nineties cult classics, including Tales from the Crypt: Demon Knight and Blind Faith. Dickerson has long since transitioned into TV work, directing episodes of everything from Dexter and Treme to The Wire and The Walking Dead. He has become one of the small screen's most flexibly functional hired hands, but we can't help imagining what Dickerson could do with such an iconic character (not to mention a Marvel-sized budget) if given the fully-merited opportunity. Maybe Coates could even write the thing! Now that's the type of collaboration that fanboy dreams are made of.

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