Ta-Nehisi Coates compares Obama to Captain America

The Atlantic columnist Ta-Nehisi Coates drew similarities between Marvel hero "Captain America" and former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaJudge orders Georgia officials to provide backup paper poll books ahead of election Supreme Court fight should drive Democrats and help Biden Michelle Obama says even former first families can get on each other's nerves during quarantine MORE during a panel discussion Saturday afternoon at SXSW.

In a discussion with The Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg attended by The Hollywood Reporter, Coates discussed his role as a writer for the popular "Black Panther" comic series, which recently broke box office records as a film adaptation, and brought up Obama when discussing the hero's often-ally, Captain America.


"He's like Barack Obama," Coates said. "I want to clarify that. I don't mean that as praise or criticism. He's somebody who believes in the ideal of America, really, really believes in it."

Coates is slated to join the writing staff for the Captain America comic series this summer after two years of writing for Black Panther. The nationally-acclaimed writer says he is learning to think like the patriotic Marvel hero in preparation for the role.

"What is exciting here is not some didactic act of putting my words in Captain America's head, but attempting to put Captain America's words in my head," Coates said.

Coates has written frequently about Obama, the nation's first African-American president, including in his recently-published book “We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tragedy."

Last year the writer deleted his Twitter account after a wave of criticism sparked by leftist thinker Dr. Cornel West, who accused the columnist of an "allegiance to Obama."

“Peace, y’all. I’m out,” Coates wrote in December on his now-defunct Twitter account. “I didn’t get in it for this.”