Culture

BBC's Head of Creative Diversity Says Idris Elba's Luther Character 'Isn't Black Enough to Be Real'

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Wokeness is exhausting, and I’m starting to think that’s the point. Every minute of every day, you’re inundated with utterly dishonest nonsense about what a racist you are. Every conceivable aspect of your daily life is now considered racist, up to and including the rice in your cupboard. (Does it have a picture of a black guy on it? Racist! Does it have a wacky “Chinese” font? Racist!) At a certain point, the stupidity is so overwhelming that it wears you down and you just give up. Okay, whatever, I’m a racist for liking old-school rap music and kung fu movies and whatever else. I’m oppressing other cultures by learning more about them. Fine, just leave me alone.

So in 2021, I greet news items like the following with a sort of numb resignation. This is what the world is now? Fine.

Tom Pyman, Daily Mail:

The BBC’s diversity chief has claimed Idris Elba’s TV detective Luther ‘isn’t black enough to be real’ because ‘he doesn’t have any black friends and doesn’t eat any Caribbean food’.

Miranda Wayland said the hit crime drama, which won plaudits for having a strong, black lead character, was only superficially diverse and that corporation bosses are now looking to portray minority groups in a more convincing and rounded way…

She said: ‘When [Luther] first came out everybody loved the fact that Idris Elba was in there — a really strong, black character lead.

‘We all fell in love with him. Who didn’t, right? But after you got into about the second series you got kind of like, OK, he doesn’t have any black friends, he doesn’t eat any Caribbean food, this doesn’t feel authentic.’

First of all, until today I was unaware that the BBC has a “Head of Creative Diversity.” Let’s just pause for a moment and savor that.

Mmm-mmmm!

“But Luther doesn’t have any black friends!” If you’ve ever watched the show, you know he doesn’t have any friends. He’s a cop who works within the system because he has to, but he has very little use for people when he’s not saving them. One of his classic lines: “You get a reputation for answering phones, and all they do is ring.” He’s the prototypical loner character. Almost comically so. If he’s bound to a stereotype, it’s that one. But this BBC “diversity” genius doesn’t think he’s stereotypically black enough?

I really don’t want to know how much this moron is making per year to tell Idris Elba he’s somehow a victim. Believing that a person who looks a certain way should talk and think and behave a certain way is the opposite of diversity.

But okay, if we’re gonna go there, then let’s talk about another role Idris Elba has played: Heimdall in the Marvel movies. Now, Heimdall is a Norse god, and Norway is one of the whitest places on earth. In all the depictions of Heimdall in human history, including 40+ years of Marvel Comics, he was shown as white. In fact, he’s traditionally considered the “whitest-skinned of the gods.” So when Elba’s casting was announced a decade ago, it raised a few eyebrows.

(No, there was not a “backlash.” A few trolls on Twitter said some stupid $#!+ about a black guy playing a Norse god, and then everybody else yelled at those trolls so much that it started trending. It wasn’t the first time and it won’t be the last.)

And you know what happened then? The first Thor movie came out, and Elba was great in it because he’s great in everything. I’ve been a fan of his ever since the British sci-fi/horror series Ultraviolet over 20 years ago, and he has yet to disappoint me. He’s a terrific actor, he obviously had fun with the role, and it was not a big deal at all.

But… Can you imagine if some Norwegian “diversity chief” had complained that Idris Elba wasn’t “white enough to be real”? Why, we don’t even see Heimdall eat any lutefisk, or whatever the hell those people eat. How can he call himself Norse?

That would be considered racist and for good reason. But saying the fictional character of John Luther isn’t “black enough” isn’t racist? Only if you’re terrified of a race-baiter calling you a racist.

It’s depressing that for all the progress the civil rights movement has made, after generations of black people have worked so hard and endured so much prejudice to be a part of western society, segregation has come roaring back. And the worst part is that this time, it’s voluntary.