Writer: Gabby Rivera
Penciller: Joe Quinones with Ming Doyle
Colorist: José Villarrubia
Letterer: Travis Lanham
Release Date: 4/5/17
America is a book that has a lot of people excited. Not only is America Chavez able to speak to the Latinx generation currently growing up here in America, but she’s also a proud homosexual and that also allows her to speak to that demographic as well. In short, America is a bit of America and Marvel understands the responsibility the comic has to do those things properly.
America definitely wasn’t aimed at me. I am a six-foot-five Dutch-American and I am straight. But I love this character because she speaks to me. I understand being lost and alone and that is America by Gabby Rivera. While this issue wasn’t the best issue in the world, I found it more enjoying than some of my colleagues. Here’s to hoping Ms. Rivera finds her footing and turns Ms. Chavez into one of Marvel’s greatest accomplishments.
Plot: America is stuck in the 1940’s and must find her way back. All of a sudden, Peggy Carter shows up and is expecting America, but this issue doesn’t cover how she knew. As America arrives back in the present, she has to defend Sotomayor University against a group of partying cyborg teenagers hell bent on trying to hack the codes for the simulation labs. Just when she thinks that’s all that could possibly happen, her ex-girlfriend is kidnapped by a group of militant intergalactic teenagers who view Ms. Chavez as their leader.
Story: The problem with this story is that it is hard to tell what the plot actually is and what’s going on. When we last left America, she had just punched a Nazi by the name of Hitler and was stuck in the middle of World War II. As this issue picks up, Peggy Carter has been waiting for her and helps her escape. How Peggy Carter knew she was coming is something that was never explained and I still don’t understand why there is a Greek organization with the name Leelumultipass Pi Theta Betas. Don’t even get me started on the intergalactic group of teenagers that kidnapped Chavez’s girlfriend because she ignored them on Marvel’s version of Twitter.
While I didn’t hate this book as much as some other people, I couldn’t help but agree with some of their assertions about the writing upon reflection. Not only is this book all over the place, there are some ridiculous storylines, even for comic, going on here. There aren’t a lot of explanations and cameos, even when they’re done well, seem forced and poorly thought out. I want this book to succeed because I love Chavez’s dimension-punching, time-traveling abilities. She has so much going for her when it comes to potential storylines, but Ms. Rivera is going to have to slow down and mind her pacing on some of these stories. It’s okay to crank them out, but don’t crank out so many that readers no longer have any idea what’s going on or how we got there. That’s sorta how I felt after issue #2, even if I really did like it.
Art: This is also a mixed bag. The art drawn in the present was more than adequate, but the 1940’s stuff wasn’t up to standard. Peggy Carter looked she’d been drawn with pastels and created using South Park’s Cut Studio animation. Agreeing upon an artistic style or fine-tuning the ones set out for the issue would go a long way toward bringing this comic back down to reality.
Verdict: America has much more to give than this issue presented. It wasn’t the finest and it certainly wasn’t the follow up fans were hoping for after such a strong opening issue. Rivera is still learning what it means to be a writer in this world and there is no reason to think she can’t improve and learn from this outing. I truly think this comic has the ability to the next Ms. Marvel, but only time and better stories will help it achieve maximum potential. — JW
Rating: 2.75/5 Stars