In case you didn’t know, Marvel has gone a long way from cookie-cutter superheroes. Among their new blood is Miss America Chavez, a queer woman of color with super strength. Now, the comics overlord has upped its game once again by tapping local artist Betsy Cola for its “America Chavez” variant cover.
The artist recently announced the project on her social media channels, attached with a sneak peek of “America Chavez: Made in the USA” issue number three. Betsy’s variant cover takes a page out of her portfolio’s distinctive style, which explores queer and feminine themes as ’50s and ’70s-styled art. The Marvel cover has the queer Latina heroine sporting a Rosie the Riveter-esque sideways pose, decked in her Americana red, blue and white color scheme.
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According to Betsy, the project all started with an email she spotted in her inbox. “I was told that they saw some of my artworks online and they were interested in working with me on a variant cover,” she tells us. “Having the opportunity to illustrate an official variant cover for Marvel was something I didn’t foresee in my career. As I was working on the illustration though, it just felt right. I love strong women characters and I love drawing them.”
Outside of her rep as a heavy hitter, America Chavez possesses flight powers and the ability to smash open portals to different dimensions. She’s been a member of her fair share of superhero clubs from the Young Avengers to A-Force, and she’s set to debut on the big screen in the “Doctor Strange” sequel. Plus, America’s also a lesbian—and canonically, at that.
“This representation means a lot to me and other queer fans and readers,” says Betsy. “I live for her brown skin, her curly hair and her iconic red, white and blue athleisure wear. These are all important elements to her character but I think it’s just as important to showcase her as the strong and confident person that she is. I’m happy with how the cover came out because I think I was able to achieve that.”
Written by Kalinda Vasquez and penciled by Carlos Gomez, “America Chavez: Made in the USA” issue number three will be available at comic book stores online on May 5. In the meantime, take a peek at these 10 comics for a quick fix (of the horror kind).
Header from Marvel Comics