Stomrzy “Superheroes”

Stormzy is a Ghanain rapper based in the United Kingdom. Stormzy’s Superheroes was released on September 9, 2020 shortly after the Black Lives Matter protests that previous summer. I was attracted to the video because of its use of Animation and the animation style. The animation style reminded me of the tv series, The Boondocks. The song doesn’t use any hard hitting beats or samples, which can usually be found within modern rap. He uses a low tempo Afro beat. The beat doesn’t overpower his overall message, but you’re still aware it’s there. Stormzy does this to honor his roots while still connecting the song to a young audience. The rest of the video is set in what I believe is the U.K. The video shows both young women and men in a positive light. There’s also a part where a woman is helping set the table while her elder is reading. I think this represents honoring your roots and those who paved the way before you. In the song, Stormzy encourages both young black men and women. One of the lines says “Walking ‘round with all this pride on me… Know that you can still rely on me. Please, just stay alive for me”. There’s another part of the video where a young black girl looks at herself in the mirror and doesn’t like what she sees. Then, she looks behind her and sees a Little Simz poster, who is an upcoming British-Nigerian female rapper. From there the girl grows more confidence. I liked this part of the video because Stormzy endorsed another female rapper and pointed out the need for representation. Rap culture is a male dominated space that promotes misogyny and while there are rappers who make female empowerment songs whether they be authentic or not (For example, Drake or Wale), they don’t have the same impact as a female rapper. Stormzy also promotes both men and women. In the past, there have been many rappers that talked about violence against black men instead of black women. Black women are often left out of the conversation when it comes to violence or abuse whether that be physical, mental or emotional. Overall, I liked how he incorporated his Ghanian heritage with the place he grew up in. He was able to combine both that was authentic to himself and others.

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