Chevere Marvel has made an impressive decision to shake things up a little bit, and add a little sabor to its Ultimate Spider-Man comic series. In Ultimate Fallout Issue number four–in stores Wednesday–a half-black, half-latino (Afro-Latino) kid named Miles Morales will be unveiled as the new Ultimate Spider-Man. Ya se armo, mi gente!
Revealed in Marvel Comics’ Ultimate Fallout Issue 4, out Wednesday, the new Spider-Man in the Ultimate universe is a half-black, half-Hispanic teen named Miles Morales. He takes over the gig held by Peter Parker, who was killed in Ultimate Spider-Man Issue 160 in June.
In his first appearance, he simply breaks up a fight. But readers will learn the true origin of Morales and how he became the new Spider-Man when Ultimate Spider-Man relaunches in September with a new No. 1 issue.
Morales’ journey will be a similar vehicle for today’s fans, says Marvel’s editor in chief, Axel Alonso.
“What you have is a Spider-Man for the 21st century who’s reflective of our culture and diversity. We think that readers will fall in love with Miles Morales the same way they fell in love with Peter Parker.”
I’m really happy about this. I’ve got mini-geeks of my own, and they come from the same background as Miles–except that they also have Caucasian in the mix. This is such a positive thing for latino geeks and geeks of color because we also want to see characters that look like us. Some people don’t have anything good to say. Geekdom isn’t always this one big happy family and some people are threatened at the prospect, real or imagined, of having traditionally white characters changed. Remember the drama around Superman no longer identifying as American? Even though he was from Krypton, but that’s another post.
Peter Parker still lives in the original Spider-Man series. Ultimate Spider-Man is an offshoot for a lack of better words. The hegemony is not under attack and I get tired of people using the term “PC” or “politically correct” to explain just how uncomfortable they are with diversity. It’s not politically correct to change things up. It’s called progress. It’s not about pandering when it’s time to redefine old tropes about what the standard is.
When I look at the picture of Miles Morales, I literally see a picture of my hijo (son). He looks everything like Geekito #1 and it makes me proud that Marvel thought about kids like him and thought to give them an opportunity to see themselves in a superhero.
Look, us geeks should be a much more open-minded community just based on our intellectual pursuits and the things we appreciate. Most of us have been told to our face that we were not acceptable because we were not the standard; not like everyone else. Why aren’t we the first ones embracing this? The comic book universe has plenty of space to have different points of view on new stories and old ones. This is not an attack. It is keeping with the times. In a country where people who identify themselves today as a minority will become the new majority in future, this Spider-Man is not some PR move. It is overdue.
I don’t know about you, but I will be at the store buying my first issue over the weekend with bells and whistles on.
By John Austin, originally posted at GeekMundo.net!