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Comic Book / America (2017)

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America is a 2017 comic book starring the eponymous America Chavez. America is a queer Latina superhero, who's been on multiple hero teams and saved countless worlds. But now, she's hanging up the cape to focus on her studies at Sotomayor University.

Unfortunately, danger is always around the corner. And it seems to be specifically targeting her. To make matters more complicated, America is dealing with a break-up, the evolution of her powers, her own past, her flaws, and a mysterious ally in the form of a woman called the Madrimar. Luckily for her, past team mates and old friends are there to help her figure things out.

The series is written by Gabby Rivera. Gabby has also written an LGBT novel, Juliet Takes a Breath, which, like this comic, deals with a brown lesbian figuring out her life on a journey of self-discovery.

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America provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Academy of Adventure: Satomayor University has a ridiculous amount of amenities, despite apparently being an arts college. This includes a chamber that can create Hard Light technology for simulations. The school also accepts people from other dimensions, as well as people with superpowers.
  • Author Appeal: Gabby likes women of color, particularly if they're Latina. Nearly every single issue introduces one.
  • "Blind Idiot" Translation: The book throws in a lot of Spanish. While it usually makes sense, the grammar is often shoddy.
  • Boxing Lessons for Superman: Issue #5 establishes that America trained as a boxer for several years, even though she's a Flying Brick and doesn't strictly need such skills.
  • Cast Full of Gay: America, her family, X'andria, Monae (and possibly the rest of the Betas) are all lesbians, while Prodigy is bisexual.
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  • Childhood Friend Romance: Issue #5 shows that America developed feelings for her childhood friend, Magdalena. Although it seemed like it wasn't reciprocated, it was later revealed that Magdalena did have feelings for her, and still does.
  • Creator Cameo: There's a woman on the first page of the first issue who looks just like the author. She praises America Chavez, stating that "America is our future."
  • Dance Battler: The girls of Leelumultipass Phi Theta Beta are dancers. They're shown using dance moves to fight off an army of evil robots.
  • Forced Prize Fight: In issue #6, America is forced into a deadly boxing match against Magdalena, her childhood friend.
  • Forgot About Her Powers:
    • America breaks up with Lisa in the first issue because she doesn't want to do a long distance relationship. However, she has portals, which would not make this an issue.
    • America has to fight Magdalena in order to appease the villains, because they are using Magdalena's father as a hostage. They have to fight, because they can't rescue her dad when they don't even know where he is, and they could kill him long before they could ever find him. Which would be a legitimate cause for concern, except America recently gained and mastered the ability to find missing people through thought and feelings, and can time travel with no problem.
  • Gratuitous Spanish: Granted, America is latina, but the Spanish in the book is actually pretty bad at times, with serious grammar or spelling errors.
  • Hitler's Time Travel Exemption Act: When she travels back in time to World War II, America is quick to assault Hitler the first chance she gets. This ends up ruining Peggy Carter's plan to capture Hitler and end the war.
  • Hypocrite: The eleventh issue has David preach for the removal of security cameras in the school, because the villains were able to hack them and use them against the students. He says that he knew this when he hacked into the security cameras, which he then used to help save the school. He decries cameras as a tool for evil, despite praising them in the same breath as a tool for good. Somehow, the fact that they helped the students doesn't matter in the slightest to his argument.
  • Not Evil, Just Misunderstood: Every non-white antagonist is only acting in a negative manner because of circumstances - the Guerillas only kidnapped Lisa to get America's attention and have her save Malixta, and Magdalena only kidnapped America because Arcade was using her father as leverage. This even extends to La Legion, whose presence on Fuertona was not meant to be malicious, and simply lacked the ability to communicate their goals to the natives.
  • Off-Model: Due to the revolving cast of artists, pencilers and inkers, most issues tend to draw America contrary to her canon appearance. Her face usually has strong, sharp facial features, but some artists will draw her with a more feminine appearance. Other artists exaggerate her features and make her look very masculine. This is most obvious in the seventh issue, where the pages are divided between six different artists.
    • It's most prominent with the issues done by Ramon Villalobos, where America's face varies heavily between pages. Characters also suffer from bouts of poor anatomy, incorrect body sizes and varying heights.
    • The first issue features America effortlessly backhanding a bomb. But her image is cut off before reaching the panel, making it look like she's doesn't have anything below her waist.
  • Plot Hole: The crux of La Legion's plight is that they had no way of communicating their peaceful wishes with the natives of Fuertonas, as they didn't speak the same language. The same issue that revealed this earlier showed them possessing Madrimar and communicating in plain English through her. So they have no way to communicate with others, except for their way of communicating with others.
  • Shout-Out: The name Leelumultipass Phi Theta Beta is a reference to the Multipass scene in The Fifth Element.
  • Stern Teacher: Professor Douglas is critical of America, and says that she only cares about the effort America puts out in class. But she just wants America to prove that she takes her classes seriously, and is shown to care deeply for America outside of class.
  • Token White: So far, Kate Bishop is the only major white character to appear and not be an antagonist.
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