Everyone loves to hate a fashion retailer faux pas, and this week's wrath is directed at Forever21 with their weird take on "Wakanda Forever", the iconic quote from Black Panther (the movie and the comics). "I'm crying", one user tweeted along with a shot of the model.
"Hey @Foever21, In what universe did you think it was ok to feature a white model in Wakanda gear?" The tweet, which featured a link to purchase, angered fans on Twitter, particularly Black Twitter, who were upset over Forever 21's decision to advertise the sweater on a white person, particularly since the groundbreaking superhero film celebrates blackness.
- Mark-Paul (@WhoIsMarkPaul) December 18, 2018How tone deaf do you have to be to choose this model for that sweater? As A Former #21Men Brand Specialist For The Company, I'm Highly Offended.
Utilizing red, yellow, and purple colors, the sweater contains the Black Panther logo along with the words "Wakanda Forever", the battlecry of citizens of the fictional African nation. Forever 21 is no exception to this rule as today they unveiled their "Wakanda Forever" Christmas Sweater. "We celebrate all superheroes with many different models of various ethnicities and apologize if the photo in question was offensive in any way". It was hailed by the New York Times as a "defining moment for black America". Some users on social media took offense.
Forever21 under fire for using white model for Wakanda Forever merch
Now the jumper is shown on a plain white background with no model wearing it.
"As parents, or even as the people creating costumes, we need to be very aware of what that says", one professor told the NYT.
Real or not, Wakanda definitely harbors a sentimental value for many, with its depiction of Africa in a powerful light and representing the strength and power of the Black community.