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  • Writer's pictureKarev

Khem Fest 2019 Celebrates the Heroes of Color.

Blerd-Hop was born on Heritage Hip-Hop after we went to our first Khem Fest 5 years ago. We saw the fusion of Hip-Hop and comics forming due to the rise of anime and comic book references returning back to the genre in high details. Within beats and punch lines people have referred back to the days of Spider-Man, Batman and other superheroes. Naseed Gifted bought the Khem Fest to the people that loved Comic books but wanted to see more than Caucasian superheroes in the world but to see more people of color in the genre as well. Now we see that there are many that feel the same way and they showed up and showed out at the 2019 Khem Fest.

This year the venue was in the Hahne Co. building in Newark, NJ and the fans were greeted by tables full of people that are creators of their own specific brands. There was a table for heroes that come from Africa, web series of superheroes based on people of color. There were heroes of East Indian descent, Puerto Rican decent, and books based on not only Science Fiction but on revolutionaries like The Black Panther Party, and also Hip-Hop characters. People who are deep thinkers and that are woke could also find heroes based on Khemetic foundations of thought to challenge the status quo of what is "traditional" when it comes to the make up of the motivation and background of what a hero is.

As a comic book fan I feel that the mainstream comic book companies have done a horrible job at creating good stories that teach and entertain the reader. The stories are recycled and independent companies are keeping the genre alive. Khem Fest gives people a chance to experience more than just the "norm" of characters and stories. With Luke Cage and Black Lightening being great hits on Netflix and CW11 the mind has opened to a lot of people on where can they find more heroes that represent them in the field of comics and literature. Khem Fest has helped to expose this by not only bringing books to the people but helping to expose People of Color that write books, create animated series and web series to the masses to be seen and heard.

Where many Comic Cons fail, Khem Fest succeed because they fused the genres with music to aid in the atmosphere. Live performances by Lyle Omolayo, Queen Legend Gail Campbell, Tha Gata Negrra, and The Ronin of Rap helped to aid in the culture of bridging music and comics together to solidify that Hip-Hop culture is not only music, but the expression of talent God has given you and how you sew those seeds back into your people and the community you share your gift with. In 2020 Khem Fest will be back and we invite you to come be apart of it. Not only that take the time to look for more outlets that produce heroes that reflect your face, and values in all media to learn and teach the generations that come after you about their importance and gifts they bring to not only comics but to life as a whole. We are our best heroes and now the world is watching and taking notice.

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