Media company combats stereotypes through comic books
[CNN] “The thing that makes you weird is the thing that makes you powerful.”
Weaver admits he is a weird Black kid from Atlanta who taps into his “nerdiness” when crafting novel ways to encourage youth of color. Working with his Weird Enough team, he created “The Uncommons” comic series, where issues of race and superhuman powers converge.
The focus is inclusivity; Tony and his team present a universe where individual differences and talents create super strengths when used collectively. Essentially, Weird Enough Productions is flipping the script on media misrepresentation and also giving voice to underrepresented groups.
“Superheroes have always been very inspirational. I am enthralled by stories that feature protagonists that don’t quite believe they can get to where they want to go, but have the courage to take that first step anyway,” Weaver told CNN.
“And I think that where we are as a nation right now, a lot of people don’t quite think we can get where we want to go in terms of equality, in terms of justice for all people,” the 26-year-old said. “We’re not going to get there unless we take that first step.”
Weaver said he believes there is a need for Black people of all ages to embrace their humanity. It's an important calling because of -- and in spite of -- America's deep-rooted racial history.
There is a sentiment expressed in episode 5 of HBO's "Lovecraft Country" that's widely accepted as a clear description of what some Black people have been feeling: The world keeps interrupting me and I am sick of it.
On an average day, a Black person may deal with insults or microaggressions because of race. And then there's the mental strain of watching or hearing about Black people killed on the street. When a person is seen as less than human because of their skin color, it's difficult to feel whole.
Dealing with these issues as an adult can be tough. It's even tougher for a child.
Weaver spoke candidly about growing up as a young nerd who was bullied by his peers and subjected to microaggression by his teachers.