MARCH 22: America #1 (2017)
Before you see the word comic book and decide this article isn’t for you, hear me out real quick: a lesbian Latina superhero strikes out on her own to take on her biggest challenge yet – going to college. Are you hooked yet?
I was first introduced to America Chavez through the Young Avengers comic books and she completely stole the show for me. As someone who was introduced to superheroes through movies, I was used to the stereotypical lead character following in the same narrative footsteps as all his straight, white male brethren. To see a queer brown girl as a main character excited me (and did I mention she can kick star shaped portals that lead to other dimensions???). When it was announced that America Chavez would be getting her own solo comic to be released in March of 2017, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. The possibilities within America’s story are endless and Gabby Rivera and Joe Quinones did not disappoint with this first issue.
Marvel made headlines when they first announced America Chavez’s solo comic series, and not just because it was the triumphant return of many people’s favorite hero, but also because it was announced that writer Gabby Rivera would be spearheading the series. It was refreshing to hear that a gay Latina writer would be bringing truth and realness to this gay Latina character’s story. The story follows America as she retires from her usual superhero-ing business and enrolls in Sotomayer University – think Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters but cooler. Rivera’s influence is prominent from the very first page; from America’s relationship with her girlfriend Lisa to her memories of her two mothers from the Utopian Parallel, it is the little things throughout the first issue that imbue the character and the story with a sense of queerness that kept me smiling. No matter how well-versed you are in comics or the superhero genre, I definitely recommend the “America” series to everyone seeking out more lesbian representation in their life.