Well, it’s a day late, but better late than never!
Last week I went on a shopping spree for superhero graphic novels, after getting requests from multiple students for some new story lines and characters. I’ll confess that while I LOVE pretty much every movie based on superhero comics (The Avengers, Ant Man, The Dark Knight trilogy, Watchmen, etc…), I have never read many of the actual comics. Lucky for me, the first four books I ordered came in yesterday afternoon, and I picked up Nova: Origin to read for my post this week.
Having adored Guardians of the Galaxy as a movie, I was thrilled to discover that Nova is a part of that story line (yes- I am woefully ignorant.. mea culpa). I think my reaction was something like, “Wait a second – that’s Gamora! And that’s Rocket! Is Nova actually Chris Pratt??” 🙂 Then I got into the story itself, which was very entertaining.
Growing up, Sam Alexander heard his dad tell stories of space travel, saving the galaxy, and being part of a group of intergalactic heroes. Lately, he’s found these stories harder and harder to believe, seeing that his dad is now an alcoholic school janitor. When his dad disappears, though, Sam is reluctantly recruited by Rocket and Gamora to wear his dad’s helmet and become the new Nova in order to save the universe. Awesome.
Also awesome is the fact that Sam’s mom is Latina, and there is a panel where she yells at Sam in Spanish and they don’t translate it for English-only readers. (See this post by Malinda Lo and go to the section called “A Lot to Decode”. She does a great job explaining why non-translation is a positive thing.) If you aren’t a Spanish speaker, the rest of the panel bails you out because Sam doesn’t understand what his mom says either, so he sums it up with, “…I get it. You’re mad.” But if you’re like me and NEED to know what she said for real, you can do a little online Spanish-English research to figure it out. My main point is: it’s good to see another diverse protagonist in the comic universes, joining the recently released Ms. Marvel, Ultimate Spider-Man and Blue Beetle, and the soon to be released Black Panther (which will be written by Ta-Nehisi Coates) and Totally Awesome Hulk.
Finally, if you’re curious about our new superhero additions to the collection, here’s what will be available soon: