Anansi/Ananse is perhaps the foremost legend out of Africa. His mischief and cunning travelled with him across the Atlantic when Africans were enslaved and sent en mass to the new world. Rather than die away though, these strong ancestors maintained the stories within their communities, telling them in different ways and adapting them so they alone understood their meanings. With time, however, Anansi has become more than an embodiment of the undying spirit of Africa in Africans. The world has adopted him in different ways. In this series, I write about some of his depictions in comics.
The True Ananse
In the ancient days, Ananss’s treachery led to him being banished to earth and trapped inside a spider totem. After years have passed, a cult develops around the statue. The cult worships this strange being and, eventually, fate, with fingers as treacherous as Ananse’s past, bring the cunning spider into contact with a boy named Selasi Rockson. Through Selasi, Ananse is reborn into our modern world as a superhero rather than the villain that seemed to have been his past.
This story arc is the origin series in the grander universe that is The True Ananse. Published by Leti Arts, Ghana’s foremost platform for comics and games, The True Ananse is just one of a series of superhero digital stories that re-introduce heroes of African folklore into our modern world. Dubbed Africa’s Legends, the superheroes try to solve unique problems peculiar to our times. The venture re-ignites interest in our own history and culture as Africans, giving us a reference point for future endeavours. Perhaps, with time, these adventures might evolve into things big enough to propel the entire fabric of Afro SFF into something bigger and better and something to aspire toward.
Anansi: The Origin, is in its third series now, and depicts a young Selasi struggling with visions that might well be caused by mental breakdown or not. The series is available on the Afrocomix app of Leti Arts.