Entertainment

Here Are Some Of Latin America’s Most Popular Comic Books That All Comic Book Fans Should Know

Even though Marvel and DC Comics superhero comics are obviously very popular in Latin America (as they are in the rest of the world), the region has developed its own comic book industry. This industry has given birth to iconic characters. These characters and stories speak directly to Latin American reality and identity. They deal with challenges such as economic crisis, class division, racism, and State repression. Of course, they do this in an often funny way. Other comics have achieved cult status even if their quality is, well, not of the highest standards. These are ten titles that speak of the depth and breathe of Latin American creativity. 

Title: Condorito
Country of origin: Chile
So when was it first published? It has been published since 1949
Created by: René Ríos, known as Pepo

Credit: condoritooficial / Instagram

The adventures of a Chilean condor that lives among humans is told in short vignettes that always end with a character passing out and the iconic word PLOP. Simple stories deal, however, with issues such as unemployment, the military dictatorship in Chile and class division. Condorito is a working-class everyman who faces class discrimination. Before Pinochet took power the comic was a bit conservative, mocking hippies and left-wing politicians, but after the coup, it changed and silently denounced the dictatorship. A 3D animated movie was released in 2017, with iconic characters such as Cabeza de Huevo, Garganta de Lata and Pepe Cortisona. 

Title: La familia Burrón
Country of origin: Mexico
So when was it first published? 1948
Created by: Gabriel Vargas

Credit: peltre.cuina.mexicana / Instagram

It was published for 60 years and told half a million copies, a huge number by Mexican publishing standards. Cuevas got into the hearts and minds of a lower-class Mexico City family. It is a linguistic jewel: it used slang, Prehispanic words and invented words that appealed to the creativity of chilango vernacular. Vargas’s main influence was American comics, but he soon developed a style that was unique and influences generations of Latin American comic book artists. 

And this family is a true icon of Mexico City

Credit: yosoymims / Instagram

Up until today, this family is venerated by Mexicans. There are multiple murals, toys and museum exhibitions dedicated to the Burrones. A true representation of 20th century Mexican idiosyncrasy. 

Title: Las aventuras de Capulina
Country of origin: Mexico
So when was it first published? 1970s
Created by: Oscar González Guerrero on a character created by Gaspar Henaine Pérez

Comic books in the U.S. are an internationally known community of superheroes but Latin America boasts its own impressive rooster of comic superheroes.
Credit: mexicoretro / Instagram

Gaspar Henaine Pérez, better known as Capulina, was a comedian that became iconic on the 1970s and 1980s. He had a television show and a very successful duo with Marco Antonio Campos, better known as Viruta. The character of Capulina gained huge popularity in a comic book series with stories by comic artist Oscar González Guerrero and art by his son Oscar Gonzalez Loyo. 

Title: El libro vaquero
Country of origin: Mexico
So when was it first published? 1978
Created by: Mario de la Torre Barrón, c

Credit: 99.hawells / Instagram

A classic of Mexican kitsch! NSFW content that has plenty of blood and plenty of sex. It was considered mass entertainment for the lower classes but is now being reinterpreted as an important cultural icon that deals with gender, sex and national identity. As the title suggests, it all happens in a microcosm of cowboys and saloons. This comic book has enrolled some famous writers, such as Jordi Soler, to write stories, as it is now a cultural icon, popular among hipsters. 

Title: Memín Pinguín (yes, this one is quite problematic)
Country of origin: Mexico
So when was it first published? 1962-2010
Created by: Yolanda Vargas Dulché

Credit: miguelf039 / Instagram

First things first: this is a very controversial title because of how the Afro-Mexican main character is drawn, and because of the ways in which other characters refer to him. There are plenty of stereotypes here, but also a denouncement of racism. The class division in Mexico is also referred to when a rich student is enrolled in a public school and faces the wrath of the proletariat. An interesting object of study that makes us think of how representations of race that might have been seen as innocent at the time gain new dimensions as the effects of stereotypes are better understood. 

Title: Kaliman
Country of origin: Mexico
So when was it first published? 1965 (previously a radio show from 1963)
Created by: Modesto Vázquez González (radio show), Hector González Dueñas (Víctor Fox) y Clemente Uribe Ugarte (comic book)

Credit: valenzrc / Instagram

During the 1960s Mexico was a cultural powerhouse in the continent and Kaliman is good proof of this. The superhero was originally just a voice on the radio, but then became a comic book that was published for 26 uninterrupted years, which spanned 1351 issues. Kaliman is a superhero of unknown origin who was raised in India and fights alongside an Egyptian kid named Solin. Kaliman practices multiple martial arts and goes to mystical places like Tibet! A true transnational creation generated in Latin America

Title: Mafalda (but of course we couldn’t possibly forget her!)
Country of origin: Argentina
So when was it first published? 1964-1973
Created by: Quino

Credit: Giphy

More of a comic strip rather than a comic book, Mafalda is a young girl who hates soup, loves her family and despairs at the state of the world. Argentina’s answer to Charlie Brown and the Peanuts series is a funny, nostalgic and thought-provoking universe in which childhood’s point of view reveals the idiocy of the adult world. Mafalda is a symbol of pacifism and a true icon of Argentina. 

Title: Love and Rockets
Country of origin: United States
So when was it first published? 1981
Created by:the Hernandez brothers: Gilbert, Jaime, and Mario.

Credit: Love and Rockets / Fantagraphics Books

Perhaps the most daring and iconic comic book to come out of the Latino community in the United States. This universe of interrelated storylines have traits that make it uniquely Latino: some stories take place in the Central American fictional village of Palomar, while others have magical realism elements. The Locas series focuses on Maggie and Hopey, one of the first queer couples in the American comic book tradition. 

Title: Turey El Taíno
Country of origin: Puerto Rico
So when was it first published? 1989
Created by: Ricardo Álvarez-Rivón

Credit: n-14515802384n8gk. Digital image. Ilustra.org

A unique comic book in that it shows how an indigenous community, the Tainos of what is now Puerto Rico, lived before colonization by the Spanish. It shows the cultural richness of the island in pre-Columbus days and brings back indigenous words and tools. A real standout! 

Title: Elpidio Valdés
Country of origin: Cuba
So when was it first published? 1970
Created by: Juan Padrón

Credit: elpidio4(1). Digital image. Cuba Literaria

A true Cuban classic and perhaps the most famous comic book to come out of the island. In a truly nationalistic spirit (some might argue that these comic books are in fact propaganda), the story takes place in the nineteenth-century war of independence that Cubans waged against Spain. Elpidio Valdés is a multiplatform narrative, as there are movies and cartoons about this historical character.

READ: ‘La Borinqueña’ Is The Afro-Latina Superhero The Comic Book World Has Been Missing

Netflix’s ‘The Baby-Sitters Club’ Reboot Is A Millennial Fan Girl’s Dream

Entertainment

Netflix’s ‘The Baby-Sitters Club’ Reboot Is A Millennial Fan Girl’s Dream

Netflix

Get ready, mi gente! The Netflix version of “The Baby-Sitters Club” is about to totally shake up your views on reboots.

That’s right, Netflix has given the beloved series, based on the books of the 80s, a new makeover and it has all of the updates you have been begging for. Slightly edgier and loads more diverse, the new series features the same characters written by Ann M. Martin decades ago. This time however the series comes with twists that make the babysitters’ little fictional town of Stony Brook, Connecticut all the more exciting.

From Kristy and Mary Anne to Claudia, Stacey, and even Dawn the gang’s all here!

Check them out below!

Dawn Schafer

“The Baby-Sitters Club”/ Netflix

Played by Xochitl Gomez (“Gentefied,” “You’re the Worst,” and “Raven’s Home”), Dawn is featured in the new series as Mary Anne’s new Latina friend who recently moved to Stoneybrook from Los Angeles. Dawn is the club’s alternate officer and an eco-conscious Latina who joins in a few episodes into the season. Speaking about her role as a character who had initially been blonde and blue-eyed in the books, Gomez told The Los Angeles Times that “it’s really important that there is representation for girls that look like me. When I was younger, I didn’t see many characters on TV shows that I could see myself in. And it really matters that TV reflects the world.”

Claudia Kishi

“The Baby-Sitters Club”/ Netflix

Momona Tamada plays the series’ beloved character, Claudia. As one of the only characters of color in the OG series, Claudia became a fan favorite for readers due to her many talents, beauty and smarts. In this series, not much has changed. She’s still the style-conscious vice president with a passion for art who loves her Japanese-American roots despite never having learned to speak Japanese.

Stacey McGill

“The Baby-Sitters Club”/ Netflix

Stacey is still the treasurer of club. She comes from the Upper West Side of Manhattan and has quite the thumb for style. In the Netflix series she is played by Shay Rudolph. One of the most exciting changes in this new series is that Stacey (who in the books struggled with hiding her diagnosis with Type 1 Diabetes) is open and proud of her disorder. “I knew I had a lot of responsibility playing Stacey,” Rudolph told LA Times in an interview before explaining that she herself interviewed teens with diabetes to prepare for her role. “I asked the people I talked to what it feels like when blood sugar is dropping and what they can and can’t do without an insulin pump. I want it to be empowering to younger kids when they see Stacey is still so loved and accepted by her friends even though she has this thing she is self-conscious about.”

Mary Anne Spier

“The Baby-Sitters Club”/ Netflix

For her role as Mary Anne, Malia Baker does a pretty spot-on job as the shy club secretary of the OG series who is also Kristy’s best friend. “I haven’t read a lot of books about shy girls,” Baker told the LA Times. “I know that’s kind of weird to say, but I connected with Mary Anne the most because deep down I am a shy person. But I also connected with all of the characters in different ways. And that’s one of the great things about ‘The Baby-Sitters Club’; you can connect with at least one of the characters.”

In this new series, Mary Anne’s character eventually proves to be just one example of the show’s effort to push for diversity. In one of her most defining moments in the new series, Mary Anne babysits for and stands up for a young transgender kid when they’re misgendered.

Kristy Thomas

“The Baby-Sitters Club”/ Netflix

And finally, there’s the club’s leader: Kristy. Played by Sophie Grace, Kristy in this series remains the president of the club. In this series, she’s quick to call out social injustices and loves her gals more than ever. “I’m so honored to be a part of a series like this that gives kids someone to relate to,” Sophie Grace explained. “Kristy has her family struggles. Her parents are divorced. That’s really hard for kids, and we see how she’s finding her way through that.”

Check out the show’s trailer below!

Naya Rivera’s Most Powerful Performances On Glee Will Make You Llorar

Entertainment

Naya Rivera’s Most Powerful Performances On Glee Will Make You Llorar

FOX

As Naya Rivera fans mourn her death, we wanted to pay tribute to the beautiful singer whose voice made such a difference to girls and boys watching her on “Glee.” For all of her performances, Rivera manages to give her full heart and often made her fans cry.

Here’s to the Afro-Latina beauty and her legacy.

“Landslide”

For her performance of the Fleetwood Mac version of “Landslide,” Rivera delivered another emotional performance alongside her co-stars Gwyneth Paltrow and Heather Morris. In the episode, Santana chooses the song to tell Brittany how she feels about her. Despite her performance, Santana tells her classmate Rachel Berry that just because she sang a song with Brittany, it doesn’t mean that anyone, can put a label on her.

“If I Die Young”

In the episode honoring the death of her former co-star Cory Monteith, Rivera as Santana reveals how hurt she is by his character Finn’s death.

”River Deep, Mountain

High” 

Originally performed by Ike & Tina Turner, Santana sings this song alongside her peer Mercedes for the Glee Club’s the duet competition to win a free meal Breadstix. Which we all know Santana loved.

“Valerie”

In the Season Two and ninth episode of Glee, Santana gave a soulful performance of Valerie by The Zutons (Mark Ronson feat. Amy Winehouse version

“Girl On Fire”

In Season Four, Santana sang “Girl on Fire” by Alicia Keys while making the decision to move on from her life and to New York.

“Don’t Rain On My Parade”

In season 5 of “Glee” Santana’s performance of “Don’t Rain on My Parade” quite literally stunned everyone.

“Rumor Has It / Someone Like You”

In the final song of the season 3, Santana sings “Rumour Has It/Someone Like You” by Adele as a mash-up.

“Survivor/ I Will Survive”

For her big performance, Santana sang the Destiny’s Child/Gloria Gaynor mashup in the eighth episode of Season Three.

“Mine”

Santana broke just about every heart, including Brittany’s when she breaks up with her while singing “Mine” by Taylor Swift.