Thursday, October 13, 2022

Milk Carton Characters: Latin / Bicultural Edition

This second installment of what characters DC might choose to reintroduce with The Dawn of the DCU focuses on some Latin characters who've fallen by the wayside.

13-14. Yolanda Montez.  I know; there's really nobody I seem less likely to want back than Yolanda *hic* Montez, especially now that she's already back as the whingeing Catholic-guilt–crippled JSA member from television's Stargirl. I mean, really; ANOTHER woman in a skintight catsuit? Isn't THAT just what comics needs in 2022. BUT there are two reasons I want her back. First of all, Wildcat is funny, as in ridiculous-funny to make fun of.  

omg, I forgot she was a journalist.
A ROCKSTAR journalist.

Second, I still have a crush on Alex Montez, her brother, who could become a low-key heroic (or non-heroic, or anti-heroic) version of Eclipso again, and you can't have Alex Montez without Yolanda.

If he won't, Alex, PLEASE give me a call.

15.  Jose Delgado.  Do you remember him? He was around during "The Triangle Era" of Superman titles (the one that DC now hopes to recapture), when the supporting cast mattered.  He was kind of modern Wildcat: a boxer/MMA-type with a costumed crimefighting identity ("Gangbuster"). José Delgado actually was like what Robert Beltran imagined himself as being.  Obviously, Delgado couldn't be brought back as a romantic rival for Clark Kent.

No; no, he really couldn't.

But he could be something; he could certainly be Gangbuster again.

16-18.  The Brothers Ramon. Vibe (whether you call him "Paco" or "Cisco") is simply the sign of healthy DCU eco-system, of a healthy SOCIETY. And his brothers, Dante and Armando, go with him.  Since there are three of them, you could have your bizcocho mojadito and eat it, too.    

If Vibe had a sister, "Ruptura" would be a great codename.

You could have the revised 'modern' version of Vibe, you could have the classic breakdancing Vibe, and you could have the tech-savvy Vibe (or powerless Cisco) of The Flash tv show, all in one family. The potential for drama and comedy is all there.

19. El Dorado. Television's Young Justice did a clever revamp of this originally paper-thin Super Friends character, which could work in comics.  

"Ed Dorado" was a ... straightforward name choice.

He doesn't need his own title, or even to be IN a regular title. DC makes that mistake too often. He doesn't even need to do that much; he's a kid, not a professional hero.  Just acknowledge that he exists every once in a while in the Southwest.  

20. Bunker.  Bunker (Miguel Barragan) is so often cited as The Gay Teen Hero that's it's easy to forget he's The Mexican Teen Hero. 

Personally, I think of him as the Teen Hero with Freakishly Large Thighs.
Seriously, brah, are you AMRAPping those kneebucklers or what?

Sure, it's a bit awkward having a Mexican-American hero whose power is constructing walls, but you can't help your power set. Bunker's vivacious; stop shopping for new spices and use the ones you already have, DC (and I DON'T mean just trotting him out for a panel in your annual Pride issue).

21. René Ramirez. Yeah, I'm going there.  

As often as possible. Who wouldn't?

René Ramirez was the best character on all of Arrow, and no one's done anything else with the Wild Dog character for decades.  Put the René Ramirez version into comics (and give me a reason to read Green Arrow).

22. Lourdes Lucero. Encantadora (as she was known)!  She was a charming, fun, femme fatale.

Whose breasts defied the law of gravity and possibly unrelated local ordinances.

Superman deserves a low-key, mystical villain who's not out to kill people. So do we.

23. Before there was Bunker, there was... Hero Cruz.  His story is complicated, but basically: gay black latin teen with the H-dial.  

And a VERY early start on the daddy look.

There are lots of ways to introduce a swiss-army-knife hero without using the H Dial and, almost by definition, he'd be useful anyway and fit in anywhere.  DC could use some more utility players and an updated Hero Cruze would be a great choice.


Anonymous said...

What's Jaime Reyes up to these days? I infer he's regularly appearing somewhere, or at least was until recently? It's hard to get enough Jaime Reyes.

Anonymous said...

Jose Delgado recently appeared in the mini ONE-STAR SQUADRON, but it didn't go well for him.

Scipio said...

" but it didn't go well for him."
Don't tell me they kiledl Delgado?

Anonymous said...

I realize this is the wrong blog to admit this, but... my favorite Latino* superhero is Kyle Rayner. Modeled after Keanu Reeves who is well known for Not being Latino. But one of Kyle's supporting cast is a gay teen and came out to him. It was really touching to me how Kyle didn't know how to react first but quickly made his young friend know he's accepted no matter what.

I bring this up because Bunker has a Lantern-adjescent powerset and BOTH characters' whereaboutsare unknown to me. As a Titan and a Teen Titan? I think they could be counterparts similar to Nightwing and Tim Drake. Or Arsenal to Artemis.

Scipio said...

Jaime has the "Graduation Day Special" coming out in November and next August his MOVIE is schedule to be released. He's doing fine. Way better than Gangbuster.

Scipio said...

"Bunker has a Lantern-adjescent powerset"
SInce his introduction, I have said that Bunker belonged in the Green Lantern dynasty. Effectively, he's "Teen Lantern". But nobody listens to ME.

But I also have always cried "bogus" on the cynical retcon of whitest of white boys Kyle Rayner as Latino.

Besides we need WAY fewer Green Lanterns. Fortunately, I have a plan for that...

Anonymous said...

"Give me a reason to read Green Arrow"

They'd have to publish Green Arrow first.

But, yeah, I'm 100% on board for a Green Arrow series with Rene. Ollie mentoring the independent, brash Wild Dog could be fun. You could flip the script and have Rene team up with a cool-headed, socially awkward Connor Hawke.

- Mike Loughlin

Scipio said...

"They'd have to publish Green Arrow first."

Indeed. I think one of the lesson to take from the popularity of Batman is not just "people like Batman". Batman has a cluster of likable and distinct but related heroes around him; the Batman Family is a cup with a lot of handles. The CW shows did this well for the Flash and Arrow shows and the comics could and should follow the pattern. The Flash comic does this BUT it's just a surfeit a speedsters, which missed the point.

"Connnor Hawke". There's a name I've not heard in a long time. I don't except to, UNLESS DC finally actually takes advantage of its mutliverse and in the most obvious way possible: publishing separate Earths in separate lines.

Anonymous said...

"UNLESS DC finally actually takes advantage of its multiverse"

Would you read a Conner Hawke book set on the Earth of 90's/00's legacy characters, even if it meant Kyle were the only Lantern there, and meant Wally and Impulse wouldn't show up in the main Earth anymore?

Anonymous said...

I really liked the Judd Winick run on "Green Arrow". He did the Arrow family really well, with Ollie as an imperfect patriarch doing his best (and honestly doing a good job more often than not). It was sometimes a bumpy ride because he didn't have all the answers, and everyone knew it.

I think where Judd Winick left Connor Hawke was that he had indestructibility powers and martial arts, but he'd lost all his archery skills. I don't think they ever explained why; this was probably close to 15 years ago. That said, he played really well off Roy Harper; I remember one issue that simply involved Roy and Connor hanging out for a quiet night. They did stop a convenience store robbery of course, but that's a quiet night for the Arrows.

Sometimes I dream in comics I'd like to read. Once I dreamt a splash page where Ollie, Dinah, and Batgirl kick open the door in a bar and and bark some sort of statement about why they're there, and the locals start picking up bottles and knives. Then there's a two page spread with three rows of panels, showing Ollie, Dinah, and Batgirl fighting their way across the bar. Finally they get to a back room where there's a guy holding a girl with a knife to her neck, but as he glances at a doorknob to escape, he gets a boxing glove arrow to the face. Next page, Ollie, Dinah, and Barbara are at an all-night diner, talking shop. Then I woke up just when it was getting good.

MarkAndrew said...

Some deep dives here, by which I mean I don't remember half these characters even if I read the runs they were part of. On a related note, my top Google searches for El Diablo were frozen burritos and a song by Machine Gun Kelly.

Anonymous said...

Did they ever explain how Alex got his hands on Eclipso's diamonds, especially when the last time they were seen the Spectre turned them into dust and scattered the remains into space?