REVIEW: ‘America Chavez: Made in the USA,’ Issue #2

Reading Time: 3 minutes

America Chavez Made in America #2 - But Why Tho?

America Chavez: Made in the USA #2 is published by Marvel Comics, written by Kalinda Vazquez, with art by Carlos Gómez, colors by Jesus Aburtov, and letters by Travis Lanham. Having secured her family’s home from its would-be assailant, Chavez faces the awkward task of a long-delayed reunion with her estranged adoptive kin. And while America has come to often rely on her fists for solving the challenges in front of her, this problem won’t be so simple. 

Family. From the biological to found, the only constant about family is how deeply, and profoundly it shapes us and who we are likely to become. And while we generally want to think of family as a permanent source of support in our lives, the reality is rarely so simple. This would seem to be especially true for would-be teenage superheroes.

America Chavez: Made in the USA #2 opens with another flashback to young America as she confronts a bully over the family tree she shared in class. It seems America has regained her memories, and now remembers coming from someplace called The Utopian Parallel. For some, this is a bit much to swallow. But as America’s powers begin to manifest it is impossible to deny that this girl is different.

Meanwhile, in modern-day, America is putting the finishing touches on the immediate situation with the continued help of Spider-man. Once the last of the minor emergencies are taken care of America heads off to check on her family. After a two-year absence, I’m sure things will go smoothly. 

As you might’ve surmised by my intro, this family reunion is the heart of America Chavez: Made in the USA #2’s story. America’s unique nature, her desire to do superhero work, and what trouble that could bring, coupled with her new knowledge of her biological parentage all made for complicated family life. On top of all these superhero/interdimensional struggles, writer Vazquez keeps the situation grounded in the real by compounding it with the particular social struggles that come with her family’s heritage.

The deepest concern America’s family has over her burgeoning superhero work is that it will imperil her, and her larger family, due to their Puerterican heritage. This concern is born of lifetimes of mistreatment at the hands of the system. While they refuse to accept what America wants to become, as noble as her goal may be, their concern is firstly for their family. While America’s focus is on a larger scale. Given the book’s clear indicators of how little support this community gets from the system, America mentions to Spider-man he’ll be hard-pressed to find police around despite the recent meta-human attack, and one can understand why they might bear a more family-oriented worldview. Since that world has taught them it won’t look out for them, they’ll just have to do it themselves. 

The art in America Chavez: Made in the USA #2 delivers the drama of the book’s story well. Artist Gómez captures these moments with skill. Emphasizing the intensity of the family drama, Gómez captures the intensity of the feelings of all those involved. The colorwork by Aburtov brings the family drama of the issue to further life through its strong colors. Some great contrasts between scenes keep the book’s various moments clearly defined. Rounding out the presentation is Lanham’s lettering. The letters convey the story clearly, and in an easy-to-follow manner. I would’ve liked to have seen a bit more emotion portrayed visually within the lettering, but overall Lanham delivers a solid performance.

Taling it all together America Chavez: Made in the USA #2 delivers an emotionally complicated story about family. It manages to balance the superheroic problems of America’s world with the real-life struggles of people in ours. 

America Chavez: Made in the USA #2 is available now wherever comics are sold.

 

America Chavez: Made in the USA #2
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TL;DR

Taling it all together America Chavez: Made in the USA #2 delivers an emotionally complicated story about family. It manages to balance the superheroic problems of America’s world with the real-life struggles of people in ours.