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This Historically White Marvel Character Got Replaced By An Afro-Latina In ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ And We Couldn’t Be Happier

There’s a lot to be excited about in the new trailer for “Thor: Ragnarok.” Some are excited for the return of everyone’s favorite green monster:

Credit: Marvel / Youtube

Cate Blanchett joins as Hela, the Asgardian goddess of death, Tom Hiddleston returns as Loki and we get to see short hair on Chris Hemsworth as Thor.

But others are more excited the Thor-capturing bad-ass Valkyrie played by none other than Tessa Thompson.

Band Name, Anyone ?

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Tessa has been killing it lately. She played one of the leads in “Dear White People,” she was Bianca in Creed and played Charlotte Hale, the big boss, on HBO’s hit “Westworld.” She’s also Afro-Latina, her father is of Panamanian descent and her mother is of Mexican and European descent.

And from what we see in the trailer, Tessa Thompson Valkyrie kicks ass.

Thor: Ragnarok / Marvel

It appears that she’s responsible for helping capture Thor after he is stripped of his hammer, Mjöllnir and dropped on a junk planet.

Thompson, as Valkyrie helps keep Thor prisoner in the trailer.

Thor: Ragnarok / Marvel

I’d be backing away slowly if I’d gotten Thor chained up, too.

She then appears to sell Thor over to The Grandmaster, played by Jeff Goldblum, in a look that you can legit see him wearing on like a Tuesday.

Thor: Ragnarok / Marvel

At this point, this movie is just like Gladiator. Where’s Russel Crowe?

Check the trailer below to see Tessa Thompson kicking butt and Thor reuniting with the homie.

Credit: Marvel Entertainment / Youtube

READ: From Dancing Bachata To Shooting Giant Space Guns, Zoe Saldana’s Gamora Blasts Off In New ‘Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2’ Trailer


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These Brooklynite Afro-Dominican Twins Are Unapologetically Reclaiming Brujería

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These Brooklynite Afro-Dominican Twins Are Unapologetically Reclaiming Brujería

Brujería is practically second nature to Ph.D ‘Social Science Brujas‘ and yoginis, Dr. Griselda Rodriguez-Solomon and Dr. Miguelina Rodriguez. For the Afro-Dominican twins raised in Bushwick, Brooklyn in the ’80s, their spirituality emerged in their youth.

The twins were raised Catholic and watched their faith parallel the private rituals their mother practiced. Surrounded by altars and religious objects common of the 21 Divisions or Dominican Vudu, brujería seemed normal.

Yet, in the public eye openly claiming such practices were shunned.

“Unfortunately, that mystery is not because the practice itself is mysterious and dark; it’s because main society and religion has made it so that we have this fear of brujas, brujería, and santería,” Miguelina told Refinery29.

Known as the Brujas of Brooklyn, the twins sought to create a space dedicated to the solace of women of African descent further dismantling the harmful ties once associated with brujería.

Launched in 2016, Griselda and Miguelina work to normalize ancestral practices and heal generational trauma.

As scholars and professors at the City University of New York, they tackle conversations around gender, religion, race, and anti-blackness in the community through meditation.

“With Brujas of Brooklyn (like so many other platforms), we really create a space for Latinx people to explore what it means to be Latinx, and to understand that who we are doesn’t exist in a box,” Griselda told Bustle.

Syncretic traditions and rituals descendant from the Yoruba faith are a source of resilient strength in the face of historical brutality within the Latin American diaspora. Out of the 11.2 million Africans that survived the transatlantic slave trade, only 450,000 arrived in the United States. The rest were dispersed in the Caribbean, Central and South America.

Resistant to the cultural erasure, these spiritual practices have remained and expanded within the diaspora. Now a resurgence is evident.

Thanks to social media, spirituality and witchcraft have grown among millennials. Formerly, private practices have become mainstream as today’s brujas are working to unravel folk myths that have led to the miseducation of many.

You see them everywhere through astrologers, tarot readers, and holistic healers.

Brujas live their lives unapologetically and the twins are no exception.

Spirituality in Latin America is complex. Demonized by Christianity, the fear of brujería is also rooted in sexism.

“The word bruja for me, it’s very political… it has been demonized for so many years. And a lot of it, we’re starting to understand, is because women are inherently powerful people,” said Miguelina to Refinery29. “I think that when a woman taps into that power, she becomes so powerful, and the patriarchy is scared of that.”

In order to reclaim a practice, one must first decolonize the mind and spirit as well as empower the women that paved the way for witchcraft.

“The people that were considered witches in Western Europe, Africa, or Latin America, were curanderas, herbalists, midwives, doulas, astrologers. There are generations of women whose powers couldn’t manifest because those in power were afraid of us,” said Griselda for Bustle.

Like those that came before them, the twins are ‘womb-healers,’ aimed to heal the inherited intergenerational trauma, which disproportionately affects Black women.

In the United States, Black women historically have the highest maternal mortality rates. Due to health conditions and institutional racism within the healthcare system, in 2018 Black women were 2.5 times more likely to die from pregnancy-related complications.

Practicing Yoni, an ancient Sanskrit word for ‘vulva’, they tap perform an act called “woke womb work” in retreats and workshops. They also involve Kundalini yoga in their craft which involves chanting, breathing exercises, and poses meant to activate Shakti; spiritual energy located in the spine.

Both containing origins in Hinduism, the practice is tied to divine feminine energy.

With workshops serving up to 100 people, now virtually during the pandemic, the Brujas of Brooklyn having taken their practices to the public sphere. As they continue to work to revive a legacy robbed from them, in part due to anti-blackness, those that engage are discovering inner magic they never knew they had.

“Women have been reclaiming this word for generations,” Griselda shared to Bustle. “But we’re seeing it a lot more today because of social media, thank God. What better ancestor to reclaim than the witches who took no sh*t 700 years ago. We’re living through her in a new way.”

Read: More Mothers Are Hiring Doulas, But What Is A Doula? Here’s What You Need To Know

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Watch Oscar Isaac Pretend To Lick Blood Off a Knife In This Training Montage For His Marvel Series, ‘Moon Knight’

Entertainment

Watch Oscar Isaac Pretend To Lick Blood Off a Knife In This Training Montage For His Marvel Series, ‘Moon Knight’

Photo via Getty Images

Oscar Isaac is showing us that acting involves a lot more than just sitting around and looking pretty. Last week, Marvel Studios shared an exciting new video of the Guatemalan-American actor training for his new Disney+ superhero series, “Moon Knight“.

In the fight choreography video, we get a glimpse into how brutal and violent Isaac’s “Moon Knight” will be.

From the first few seconds of the training montage, it’s obvious how much work Isaac has put into training for the upcoming series. The fight choreography is very martial-arts heavy. As he fights various stunt men around him, he employs various fancy tricks like flipping his opponents’ bodies onto the ground.

It appears that his “Moon Knight” character’s primary weapon of choice will be a knife. Throughout the video, Isaac trains with prop knife. At one point, he plunges the knife into his opponent’s body. Afterward, Oscar Isaac jokingly licks the knife while looking at the camera.

This will be the first Marvel production featuring a Latino actor in the lead role. However, Oscar Issac’s character, Marc Spector, was never written as Latino in the comic books.

In the comic books, Moon Knight/Marc Spector is a Jewish man. Instead, he is the son of a rabbi. He is also a heavyweight boxer, a US Marine, and finally, a mercenary for the CIA. So, it’s safe to assume that Disney+’s “Moon Knight” series will have a lot of action.

According to Marvel, “Moon Knight” will be about “Moon Knight features a complex vigilante who suffers from dissociative identity disorder. The multiple identities who live inside him are distinct characters who appear against a backdrop of Egyptian iconography.”

This isn’t the first Oscar Isaac training montage that Marvel has released ahead of “Moon Knight’s” premiere.

In March, Marvel also offered fans a sneak peak of “Moon Knight”‘s upcoming fight choreography. They posted a video to their YouTube channel of Oscar Isaac engaged in some acrobatic-heavy fight stunts.

In that video, the 42-year-old actor practically dances around the gym mat, rolling on the ground, flipping himself over, and using tons of energy to go through the action sequences. It’s obvious that Isaac (ever the committed actor) is putting his heart and soul into preparing for this role.

We can’t wait to see it!

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