Welcome to "Stranger Than Truth" with Timmy Williams. Each week, Timmy interviews a different fictional character from the world of geek culture to seek out the answers to the questions you've always wanted to ask. Recent interviews includeBatman,Sarah Connor and the cast of Bone.
You may know Timmy from the sketch group The Whitest Kids U' Know, and you've probably seen him in a gas station buying snacks on his way to do stand-up somewhere.
He's also a huge nerd, as you can see by his Twitter handle:@TimmyIsANerd
This week, Timmy talks to Storm of the X-Men about the state of minorities in comic books.
I’m on a journey to find an interesting interview subject for this week’s column. All this traveling through time and space and such has me feeling pretty befuddled and it’s time to clear my head. That’s why I’m hiking the Appalachian Trail today, just like that Robert Redford/Nick Nolte movie that’s coming out that I can’t tell if it looks good or not. I’ve got a backpack full of donuts and that walking stick with the frozen mosquito on it from Jurassic Park. But gee whiz it’s getting pretty hot now. You know what would feel good right now? Some rain.
Clouds swirl in and now I’m in a torrential downpour! How’d that happen?
I didn’t mean heavy rain, I meant like a little sprinkle kind of rain.
The rain goes from heavy to soft and wonderful in seconds.
Hey who’s doing that?
Oh, hi Storm! What are you doing here?
You’re looking for an interesting person to interview, so here I am.
So you’re interesting, huh?
Storm throws a bolt of lightning at my face and before it hits me a snowstorm erupts around the lightning and freezes it! Then a tiny anthropomorphic owl swoops down, grabs the frozen lightning, and flies off while humming that Carly Rae Jepsen song about boys. Storm had nothing to do with the owl, but that is still pretty interesting.
I’m also claustrophobic.
But aren’t you the leader of the Morlocks too? They live in the sewers; doesn’t that make you freak out?
They normally send an emissary to the surface world if they need to speak to me, but if I do need to visit the sewers we just send Nightcrawler in a white wig. With the bad lighting down there you can’t even tell the difference.
But if it was really you, wouldn’t you be able to summon lightning or really bright hail or something and light up the sewer? What happens if they ask Nightcrawler to do that?
Do you know what happens when an interviewer gets struck by lightning?
The same thing that happens to everything else?
That joke still doesn’t make any sense.
Whatever. I can make hurricanes.
Now that we’ve entered the “hacky weather jokes” portion of the interview, I need to ask: since you shoot lightning all day long, how do you handle static cling?
It used to bother me, but it seems that people don’t mind it when my costume clings.
I wink. Storm winks too.
You’ve had relationships with two of the coolest hunky nerds, Black Panther and Forge. Give us some dirt: who’s the better lover?
Forge. A removable leg can come in pretty handy in sexual positioning, especially in my signature move “The Fastball Special.”
Is that an homage to when Colossus picks up Wolverine and throws him at a bad guy?
Yes. It’s hard fitting them all in the same room but it’s worth it.
This is so interesting.
I told you.
I wink. Storm winks too.
You’ve often taken over the leadership of the X-Men. Does Cyclops care when you take the reins? Does it shake his confidence?
Well he normally gets involved with women who can literally control his mind so I think he has no problem taking orders from a strong female. And if he gives me any crap I just fog up his visor and watch him bump into things.
Fog, lightning, hail...what’s your favorite weather to make?
My powers are hooked to my emotions, and being a stressed-out leader with claustrophobia, the weather I make is generally pretty dark and broody. But one time I made a rainbow...
Aww. For someone so dark and serious, it’s nice to hear that you can make happy things.
...then I followed the rainbow to its endpoint and challenged the leprechauns for their gold. I am now Queen of the Leprechauns.
But you’re tall and not Irish!
Height and ethnicity matter not when you have these powers; if it’s scared of snow and lightning, I can become its queen.
Let’s talk about ethnicity. You were the first black female character in a Marvel or DC comic book. Does that make you proud to have pushed the envelope for representation?
Yes but I would have been prouder it hadn’t been the mid-70s! Took too long, in my opinion.
Gotta agree with you there, but at least it happened eventually. Obviously race relations still have a long way to go in this country. You’re in the public eye and a great leader - what do you think should happen?
Someone once said “racism will stop being a big deal when we stop talking about it.” I think we will be there when the color of one’s skin simply doesn’t matter! I will always be proud of my heritage as a Moroccan/Egyptian/mutant/nudist/Wakandan/Panther Goddess, but it’d be nice to live in a time when no one really cares about skin color beyond the aesthetics of it.
So do you think we already have enough black or non-white characters in comics?
Of course not! But I yearn for a day when we characters are given a race almost at random or, for example, because a dark skin tone is the best match for a white mohawk, not for some kind of hollow gesture to make activists feel good about themselves.
Basically you would like to see human representation in comics that is as visually varied as the real world.
Yes. But popular culture still has a long ways to go for accurate representation.
I wink. Storm winks too.
Did yousa say “accurate representation?”
Oh no it’s Jar-Jar! Run!
Storm zips off on a little tornado, leaving me alone on the hiking trail. Then I see him crashing through the trees: Jar-Jar Binks. He has me cornered against a sheer cliff face.
Yousa and meesa have big toppy-wopics to discuss, Tim-Tim!
Check in next week when I am forced to interview Jar-Jar Binks.