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Watch: Philly’s Real-Life Superhero

The first time Ariell Johnson imagined herself as a superhero was when she laid eyes on Storm of The X-Men. “I just saw this white-haired, white-eyed black woman flying around shooting lightning at people and I was like, ‘Who is this?’” she says. “I felt like I was just kind of watching other people’s adventures but never imagining myself as being a part of it.” Advertisement That all changed when she saw Storm. Since then, Johnson turned her love affair with comic books into a business. The Temple University graduate opened Amalgam Comics & Coffeehouse in the Kensington area of Philadelphia. She wanted to create an inclusive space for comic book lovers, especially those who didn’t always see themselves as being a part of the action. “I remember my first time going into a comic book store. It actually took me over the course of months to actually build up the courage to go inside of one because geek culture has a reputation for being very elitist,” says Johnson. Black Comic Book Store Owner Lands Invincible Iron Man Variant Cover Ariell Johnson is the only black woman on the East Coast to READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!

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