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If Super Heroes Were Mesoamerican or South American Gods

In Bryan Singer’s upcoming “X-Men: Apocalypse,” the powerful mutant Apocalypse (played by the Internet’s boyfriend, Oscar Isaac) casually mentions that he’s also the Egyptian sun god Ra, The Hindu deity Krishna and Yahweh, the Israelite god. It’s certainly an interesting premise — the gods of past civilizations being a mutant superhero or, in this case a, supervillain — but why stop there? Why not tap into the diety-rich cultures of Mesoamerica and South America to find more Gods that could actually double as superheroes or vice versa? Well, true believer, we did just that.

Loki is Huehuecoyotl

loki
Credit: @Katekcne/Twitter/ Ptcamn~commonswiki/Wikimedia

Marvel’s Loki is inspired by the Norse god of the same name. Loki is known as for being a mischief, deception, and being a general troublemaker. That sounds an awful lot like Huehuecoyotl, the Aztec god whose name literally means “old coyote.” Much like Loki, Huehuecoyotl is kind of a d*ck.

The Incredible Hulk is Cabrakan

hulk
Credit: @Hulk/Twitter/ @TylerValleGGWP/Twitter

Not that he needs any introduction, but The Incredible Hulk is the Mr. Hyde to mild-mannered scientist Bruce Banner’s Dr. Jekyll. The Hulk is basically a green wrecking ball with torn pants and anger issues. That sounds a lot like Cabrakan, the Mayan mountain god with a penchant for destruction.

Storm is Tlaloc

storm
Credit: @David.K.C./Instagram/ Giggette/Wikimedia

We almost went with Thor for Tlaloc, but Storm from X-Men was a much better fit. Like Storm, the Aztec god Tlaloc controls the wind and the rains. Tlaloc is also a god of fertility, an attribute Storm was given by her followers.

Professor Charles Xavier is Bochica

professorx
Credit: @Comics420/Instagram/ Colombia.com

Professor Charles Xavier is the mentor and moral compass of the X-Men, guiding the team of mutants to fight for the forces of good. Bochica serves the same purpose for the Muisca (a pre-Hispanic tribe found in Colombia’s mountain). Like Professor X, Bochica stressed the importance of serving good over evil. And like Professor X (born and raised in New York City), Bochica came from the East.

Aquaman is Ngueruvilu

aquaman
Credit: @AquamanShrine/Twitter/ Myth-lord/Tumblr

In the DC Universe, Aquaman is the King of the Seven Seas and ruler of Atlantis. In the mythology of the Mapuche (indigenous group from Chile), Ngueruvilu is the master of all things water-related. The difference is that Ngueuvilu, a serpent-like fox whose tail is a claw (sorta like a trident, tbh), is actually a bad dude who loves to create whirlpools to kill people.

Angel/Archangel is Quetzalcoatl

archangel angel
Credit: @xmenfanbase/Instagram/ Giggette/Wikimedia

Quetzalcoatl is one of the most important and most recognized gods in Aztec mythology. He was a feathered serpent with the ability to fly. Quetzalcoatl was also said to have blonde hair and blue eyes, which many believe is one of the main reasons why Hernan Cortes was welcomed by the Aztecs. These traits are also shared by X-Men member Warren Worthington III, whose super hero moniker is Angel (and later on, Archangel).

Batman is Piquete-Ziña

batman
Credit: @detective.bruce/Instagram/ Gwendal Uguen/ Flickr

You best believe that we weren’t going to exclude Bruce Wayne — a.k.a. the Dark Knight, a.k.a. the Caped Crusader, a.k.a. the best super hero of all time (I will fight you on this) — from this list. Piquete–Ziña is a the bat god for the Zapoteca, indigenous tribe found in the southern portion of Mexico (mainly Oaxaca). Piquete-Ziña is often characterized as a violent and vengeful deity. Batman is certainly vengeful (like seriously, his origin story is that he’s seeking revenge for the murder of his parents) and he’s most definitely violent (though he tries not to be the murderous type of violent.

READ: Here Are 7 Latino Superheroes (Or Villains) You Should Know

Did we forget anyone? Which one is your favorite? Make sure you hit that share button below and hit us up in the comments!

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

These Are The Top 11 Gods And Goddesses Of The Aztec Empire That You Should Know About

Culture

These Are The Top 11 Gods And Goddesses Of The Aztec Empire That You Should Know About

Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Mexico’s Aztec community, whom the Spanish conquistadors met in Mexico during the 16th Century, believed in a complex and diverse realm of gods and goddesses. Many experts have identified at least 200 different gods/goddesses, divided into three groups: the heaven or the sky; the rain, fertility and agriculture; and, finally, war and sacrifice.

It was in 1325 that the Aztec people moved from their legendary one of Aztalan to an island in Lake Texcoco – where present-day Mexico City stands. Legend has it that the Aztecas saw an eagle holding a rattlesnake in its talons, perched on a cactus. Believing this vision was a prophesy sent by the god Huitzilopochtli, they decided to build their new home on that exact site. And so the city of Tenochtitlán was founded.

To this day, this story of their great migration from their legendary home of Aztalan is pictured on the coat of arms of Mexico. It is clear, then, that mythology and religion played a key role in Aztec culture. So we’ve rounded up eleven of the most important gods and goddesses that you should know about.

1.) Huitzilopochtli – Father Of The Aztecs

Credit: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Huitzilopochtli (pronounced Weetz-ee-loh-POSHT-lee) was the patron god of the Aztecs. During the great migration from their legendary home of Aztalan, Huitzilopochtli told the Aztecs where they should establish their capital city of Tenochtitlan and urged them on their way. His name means “Hummingbird of the Left” and he was the patron of war and sacrifice. His shrine, on top of the pyramid of the Templo Mayor in Tenochtitlan, was decorated with skulls and painted red to represent blood.

2.) Quetzalcoatl – God of Light and Wind

Credit: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Counted among the most important of Aztec gods (and Mesoamerican divine entities), Quetzalcoatl, regarded as the son of the primordial god Ometecuhtli, was venerated as the creator of mankind and earth.

Also known as Kukulkán to the Maya and Gucumatz to the Quiché (of Guatemala), etymologically, the very name ‘Quetzalcoatl’ comes from the combination of the Nahuatl words for the quetzal – the emerald plumed bird, and coatl or serpent. As for his aspects, often considered as the Aztec god of wind and rain, Quetzalcoatl also espoused a variety of avenues like science, agriculture, crafts, and even merchants. 

3.) Tlaloc – God of Rain and Storms

Credit: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Tlaloc (pronounced Tláh-lock), the rain god, is one of the most ancient deities in all Mesoamerica. Associated with fertility and agriculture, his origins can be traced back to Teotihuacan, the Olmec and the Maya civilizations.

Tlaloc’s main shrine was the second shrine after Huitzilopochtli’s, located on top of the Templo Mayor, the Great Temple of Tenochtitlan. His shrine was decorated with blue bands representing rain and water. The Aztec believed that the cries and tears of newborn children were sacred to the god, and, therefore, many ceremonies for Tlaloc involved the sacrifice of children.

4.) Tezcatlipoca – God of The Night

Credit: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Tezcatlipoca (pronounced Tez-cah-tlee-poh-ka)’s name means “Smoking Mirror” and he is often represented as an evil power, associated with death and cold. Tezcatlipoca was the patron of the night, of the north, and in many aspects represented the opposite of his brother, Quetzalcoatl. His image has black stripes on his face and he carries an obsidian mirror.

The Aztec god was also associated with a range of various concepts, including north, hurricanes, war, rulership, eternal youth, divination, sorcery, and jaguars.

5.) Xipe Totec – God of Fertility and Sacrifice

Credit: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

A deity of agricultural renewal, vegetation, seasons, goldsmiths, and liberation, Xipe Totec was counted among one of the major Aztec gods and goddesses. And while his related concepts and powers seem fairly innocuous, the worship (and its mode) of Xipe Totec was anything but. This is somewhat discerned from his ominous name roughly meaning – ‘our lord with the flayed skin’.

The Nahuatl moniker comes from the mythical narrative where the Aztec god flayed his own skin to feed humanity, thus symbolizing how maize sheds its outer skin cover before germination (‘rebirth’).

6.) Coatlicue – The Mother Of Gods

Credit: Museo Nacional de Antropología / UNAM

Venerated as the “mother of gods and mortals”, Coatlicue was the feminine god who gave birth to the stars and moon. Her face was made up of two fanged serpents, her skirt of interwoven snakes and she wore a necklace of hands, hearts and a skull.

Coatlicue was as feared as she was beloved, symbolising the antiquity of earth worship and of childbirth. She was also associated with warfare, governance and agriculture.

7.) Tonatiuh – God of The Sun

Credit: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Tonatiuh (pronounced Toh-nah-tee-uh) was the Aztec sun god. He was a nourishing god who provided warmth and fertility to the people. In order to do so, he needed sacrificial blood. Tonatiuh was also the patron of warriors. In Aztec mythology, Tonatiuh governed the era under which the Aztec believed to live, the era of the Fifth Sun; and it is Tonatiuh’s face in the center of the Aztec sun stone.

8.) Centeotl – God of Maize

Credit: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Centeotl (pronounced Cen-teh-otl) was the god of maize, and as such he was based on a pan-Mesoamerican god shared by Olmec and Maya religions. His name means “Maize cob Lord”. He was closely related to Tlaloc and is usually represented as a young man with a maize cob sprouting from his headdress.

9.) Chalchiuhtlicue – Goddess of Running Water

Credit: @KaneLadit / Twitter

The wife (or sometimes sister) of Tlaloc, Chalchiuhtlicue was the goddess of running water and all aquatic elements. Like other water deities, Chalchiuhtlicue was often associated with serpents. She was mostly depicted wearing a green or blue skirt from which flows a stream of water.

Chalchiuhtlicue was also the patroness of childbirth and a protector of newborn babies.

10.) Mayahuel – Goddess of The Maguey

Credit: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Mayahuel (pronounced My-ya-whale) is the Aztec goddess of the maguey plant, the sweet sap of which (aguamiel) was considered her blood. Mayahuel is also known as “the woman of the 400 breasts” to feed her children, the Centzon Totochtin or “400 rabbits”.

11.) Mictlantecuhtli – God of The Underworld

Credit: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Among the major Aztec gods and goddesses, Mictlantecuhtli was the deity of death and the underworld and was usually associated with creatures like owls, spiders, and bats (along with the direction of the south).

In the mythical narrative, Mictlantecuhtli played his role in delaying the Feathered Serpent from gathering the bones of humans in his underworld realm Mictlán. And it was only after Quetzalcoatl tricked him that humanity was ‘revived’ from bones and blood of the gods.

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Latinos Make Up A Large Portion Of ‘Essential Workers’ And This Latino Comic Book Is Honoring Them In The Best Way Possible

Culture

Latinos Make Up A Large Portion Of ‘Essential Workers’ And This Latino Comic Book Is Honoring Them In The Best Way Possible

El Paso Hero / Rio Bravo Comics

If the Coronavirus pandemic has shown us anything, it’s that real-life heroes can be found all over. During the global crisis, regular people have realized that everyone from a fast food restaurant worker to a farmworker is a hero in their own way. It’s these people, many of whom are minorities, who have helped keep the country going during these unprecedented times. To so many of us, these front-line ‘essential workers’ are indeed heroes.

One Mexican-American comic book creator, Hector Rodriguez (of El Peso Hero) decided to put these real-life superheroes on the pages of his popular comic book and we couldn’t be more excited.

The best-selling comic book now features America’s front-line workers as the real heroes who are keeping the country running.

Credit: El Peso Hero / Rio Bravo Comics

Comic books are known for telling larger than life stories and inspiring their audiences – and that’s exactly what El Peso Hero is doing with his latest edition. Rodriguez is using El Peso Hero to tell the story of thousands of invisible workers – many of whom are undocumented Latino workers holding America together.

“Comic books are a great way to help people connect,” Rodríguez told NBC News. “But very few stories focus on the people who are feeding us.”

In this special pandemic issue, which is available for free, “El Peso Hero” takes a supporting role to a nurse and other essential workers facing tough day-to-day challenges as the country struggles to combat Covid-19.

In his interview with NBC News, Rodriguez said he hopes his comic can inspire Americans to reimagine themselves in the stories of millions of invisible workers who serve their communities.

It’s more important than ever to shine a light on the often invisible workers who are so vital to this country.

Credit: Salud America / Twitter

For Rodriguez, he hopes this edition will help shed light on the hard work and dedication of millions of invisible workers. People from all backgrounds can find common ground with these front-line workers who like so many Americans are simply trying to create a better life for themselves and their families.

“This is definitely a contrast from “El Peso Hero” fighting corruption, drug cartels, and racism on the border,” Rodríguez said. “Fans will see him in a supporting role to real-life heroes, helping a nurse bring medical masks to agricultural workers, and deliver a much needed message of solidarity and positivity to a community that is often marginalized in the shadows.”

Rodríguez himself comes from a family of immigrants — his grandfather moved from Mexico to Montana in the 1940s as a part of the Bracero Program, which brought in millions of authorized workers from Mexico to the U.S. to work on farms.

What inspired the El Peso Hero comic book series to begin with?

Credit: Rio Bravo Comics

El Peso Hero is a rogue hero standing up to Mexico’s cartels, corrupt border officials, and human traffickers.

Rodriguez told NBC News, “I wanted to create someone like Luke Cage in Harlem, but living in between southwest Texas and north Mexico, who fights cartels, and defends unaccompanied minors and families crossing the perilous border.”

It was stories his grandfather told about drug traffickers attacking vulnerable immigrants on the border that inspired him to create “El Peso Hero.”

“El Peso Hero” started off as a web comic in 2011, and is now scheduled to make its movie screen debut in 2021. The comic gained cross-border fame in 2015 after the Mexican superhero took on then presidential candidate Donald Trump — who started his campaign by saying Mexicans coming to the U.S. were rapists and criminals

This edition of El Peso Hero is so important and special given the bravery and selflessness of front-line workers.

Credit: Tom Barton / Getty

Across the country, millions of Latino workers, many of whom are undocumented, are working on farms, in meat packing plants and govern stores as “essential workers,” while much of the country is shut down for quarantine. Unlike many workers, they don’t have the privilege to work from home and instead are putting themselves and their families at risk to keep the country going.

Historically they are marginalized as outsiders and live in constant fear of deportation. But now the pandemic is showing how vital they really are to society.

The U.S. government calculates that roughly half of all crop farmworkers—1.18 million in 2019—are undocumented. A recent article from The New York Times reports that growers and labor contractors think it could be closer to 75 percent.

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