40 Superheroes of Color that Michelle Rodriguez has never heard of (Part 4)
Happy Friday FanBros! Alas, we have reached an end. I would love to spend my days introducing Michelle Rodriguez to the fact that heroes of color are flourishing in the printed media we call comics. However, I’ve got cartoons to get back to. To close this list I’ve decided to double up and give you an extra ten characters to sink your teeth into and learn about. Enjoy our the last Michelle Rodriguez, hopefully I won’t have to mention your name until the next Fast & Furious film. Or until you swallow your pride and decide to portray Renee Montoya in the next batman film. Here are 20 more heroes of color that Michelle Rodriguez has never heard of.
Surge is a young mutant with electricity-based powers that also give her super speed. She wears metallic gauntlets developed by fellow mutant Forge to regulate her electricity output so that she can control her powers. Born in Tokyo, Noriko Ashida left her home at the age of 13 after her powers began to manifest. She found her way to the United States and was discovered living on the streets of Salem Center, New York. After a minor debacle with other young mutants, Noriko was welcomed into the Xavier Institute of Higher Learning. Considered to be one of the natural leaders of the young mutants, she now resides at the Jean Grey School for Higher Learning. And no, her blue hair is not apart of her mutation, “it came in a bottle.”
Required Reading: New Mutants Vol. 2, New X-men: Academy X, New X-men: Childhood’s End
Venus Dee Milo was a young African-American hero, and former member of X-Statix. After the death of U-Go Girl, Dee Milo was brought onto X-Statix as the resident teleporter. Her powers manifested when she was 11 years old, sadly killing her family and turning her body into pure energy. The transformation to pure energy gave her the ability to teleport herself and others. Charles Xavier helped develop a containment suit to allow her some modicum of normalcy, after which she became a full time member of X-Statix.
Required Reading: X-Statix
Born in Puerto Rico, Hector Ayala attended college at Empire State University in New York City. There he found the tiger amulets that had been discarded by the Sons of The tiger. By wearing all three of the Jade Tiger Amulets, he discovered he could transofrm into the superhuman White Tiger. As the White Tiger, Hector possessed enhanced strength and superhuman ability in the martial arts. Eventually his sister, Ava Ayala, took the amulets and adopted the mantle of White Tiger, attending the expanded Avengers Academy in California. She has come to blows with Reptil about why he has not chosen to be a more active role model for the latino community.
Required Reading: The Deadly Hands of Kung-Fu Vol. 1, Avengers Academy Vol. 1, White Tiger Vol. 1, Captan America And The Mighty Avengers Vol. 1
Karen Beecher was DC Comic’s first African-American superhero. Her boyfriend, Mal Duncan a.k.a. The Herald, was a member of the Teen Titans. To help him impress the Titans, Karen built a bumblebee inspired supersuit and attacked the titans. She managed to escape without her identity or deception being discovered. Once the ruse was revealed to the Titans, they were impressed by her skills, asking her to join the Teen Titans. Throughout her history Bumblebee has been a member of the Teen Titans, Doom Patrol, and Titans West. She’s also appeared in television as a supporting character on Teen Titans, Teen Titans Go!, and Young Justice. All under the Bumblebee moniker.
Required Reading: Teen Titans, Doom Patrol Vol. 5
Rocket has an inertia belt that allows her to fly and form shields of kinetic energy. She is an outspoken hero, a liberal, and one of the first instances of a teenage mother in comics. Created for Milestone Media by Dwayne McDuffie, Raquel Irvin was a gifted young woman who desired to be like her idol, Tori Morrison, a writer. After meeting Augustus Freeman IV, and inspiring him to become the superhero Icon, she decides to become his sidekick. Raquel also appeared in the televison show Young Justice, as Icon’s former sidekick, a member of the Young Justice team, and an eventual member of the Justice League.
Required Reading: Icon Vol. 1
Born in Brooklyn, New York, Anya Corazón was a normal girl living with her father Gil Corazón, until everything changed one night when she went out to a bridge in Central Park to fight a boy from school. By the time Anya showed up, a fight broke out in the park between a group named “Sisterhood of The Wasps” and a group called “The Spider Society”. In the aftermath of the fight, Anya had spider like abilities and was recruited to be a hunter for the Spider Society. Eventually she is freed of the Spider Society, and goes out on her own to become Spider-Girl.
Required Reading: Araña Vol. 1, Spider-Girl Vol. 1
A founding member and leader of the Young Avengers, Elijah Bradley is the grandson of Isaiah Bradley, the first Captain America. When Iron Lad began his search for the next generation of Avengers, he came to the Bradley household in search of Isaiah’s son Josiah (Josiah X of The Crew). However, Josiah had been missing for several months, and Iron Lad met Eli instead. Eli originally joined the Young Avengers without any superpowers, simply joining to take up the good fight, taking the name Patriot. He was critically wounded by taking a blow meant for Captain America, and after receiving a blood transfusion from his grandfather, Elijah gains the abilities of a Super Soilder. Currently he is retired.
Required Reading: Young Avengers Vol. 1, Avengers: Children’s Crusade.
Since enrolling at the Xavier Institute of Higher Learning, Hisako Ichiki‘s goal was to become an X-Man. After the death of her friend and fellow mutant Wing she finds herself winding up on adventures with the X-Men, giving herself the codename Armor. Eventually being welcomed as a full fledged member of the X-men by Wolverine and Cyclops. She has since graduated the Jean Grey School of Higher Learning and is now assisting the school as a X-Man and educator. Hisako’s mutant ability give her a psionic armor that acts as an extension of her own body, which enhances her strength level and resistance to injury. Her armor is powered by the memory of her family members, it grew in size and power after the death of her mother and father.
Required Reading: Astonishing X-men, X-Men: Pixie Strikes Back, Wolverine And The X-Men Vol. 2
After being exposed to extra-dimensional energy, Lieutenant Monica Rambeau gained the ability to manipulate various energies of the electromagnetic spectrum. She has gone by man codenames over the years whilst utilizing these abilities as a crime fighter. Monica has served alongside the Avengers in various incarnations and has previously operated as their leader for a time. Initially known as Captain Marvel, she has used the codenames Photon and Pulsar and is now known as Spectrum.
Required Reading: Nextwave Vol. 1, Mighty Avengers Vol. 2
Misty Knight was a dedicated officer of the law before she was seriously wounded as a result of a terrorist bombing, and rather than continue on with a desk job she felt as if she could make more of a difference on the streets. After being involved with the Heroes for Hire operation for years, she is now a part of Valkyrie’s team of Lady Liberators where Misty continues to kick butt with style and sass. She also has an on and off again relationship with Danny Rand, also known as The Iron Fist.
Required Reading: Powerman & Ironfist, Heroes For Hire Vol. 2, Fearless Defenders Vol. 1
It’s so hard to believe we’re done. It feels like just last week that Benhameen and countless others were kicking Michelle Rodriguez’s name through the mud of the internet for saying something so ignorant. “Stop stealing the white man’s characters.” Maybe she’ll think twice before speaking to paparazzi while drunk in the wee hours of the morning. Or maybe she’ll just stop speaking about a topic she doesn’t have an understanding of.
There are many more characters I wanted to include on this list, so come back tomorrow for some honorable mentions. I won’t be listing their required reading because… research… But I will be listing off a series of heroes that you can learn about on your own time.