America has returned home after learning her family history from her grandmother, Madrimar. Unfortunately, there have been some changes at Sotomayor University, among which is a new professor in charge of relations between the faculty and students. Things get a bit weirder from there and not in the good way, at least, not for America Chavez.
This issue of America is really smart, using its premise and platform to talk about entrapment and the conflict as old as free societies: liberty vs. security.
The new professor is distrustful of our lead character, and she goads her into breaking the rules she has set up for the school.
Needless to say, this story touches on the subject of race. This is especially apparent in how the new professor leads America into the situations in which she gets in trouble with the school. In turn, this professor uses these conflicts as an excuse to impose harsher and harsher rules on the student body and America especially.
It’s a tale that is unnerving in its realism. The grounded nature of this issue allows for more of an impact. Furthermore, the lighthearted and optimistic qualities of Sotomayor University make its degradation through authoritarianism and racial profiling all the more disheartening. Gabby Rivera accomplishes a very relevant and engaging story here.
As you may be able to guess from the plot, it is a very text-heavy comic. There is a lot of dialogue and few action sequences. However, as opposed to the previous issue of America or the verbose tendencies of Blue Beetle, there is a palpable tension to America that helps keep it interesting. I’m not saying that makes up for all of the text walls, but it does justify many.
Joe Quinones artwork is as expressive and unique as ever with a style that perfectly fits America herself. Its detailed yet light-hearted, and he can use visual language to tell you everything you need to know about a character before you even read the dialogue.
America #8 shows a social conscience, which has been in much of the series but is more emphasized here. The titular character remains an engaging protagonist with a likable supporting cast, and this issue definitely worth a read. I highly recommend it.
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