The Marvel Universe is broad, filled with thousands of characters, and it feels like every other day there’s a new casting announcement. Even more often than that, there’s rumors, speculation, or simply an actor wishing to bring a specific hero or villain to life. “Jane the Virgin” star Gina Rodriguez is the latest actor to have a dream role in the MCU, and her self-fan-cast is a really good one.
Asked on a SXSW panel with “Doctor Strange” writer Jon Spaihts who she’d like to play, Rodriguez picked America Chavez, reports via Geeks of Color. Rodriguez said she’s been waiting for Marvel to put out the casting call for a Latina superhero, and since America Chavez is currently seeing a surge of popularity, she feels she’d be a great role. Rodriguez even cited the recent Gabby Rivera penned “America” #1, indicating that this is something she has been actually thinking about.
America Chavez is, in a word, weird. She grew up in the Utopian Parallel, a pocket dimension created by a future wizard. She can fly and is so super-strong that she can kick star-shaped holes between worlds. She rolled with the Young Avengers for a while, and is now starring in her own solo series, where she attends Sotomayor University, a school between dimensions for super-students. In short, she doesn’t exactly fit the current aesthetic of the MCU.
Which is exactly why she’s the kind of character that Marvel should turn to. Injecting strange characters into the enormous cross-media franchise is exactly what Marvel Studios and Marvel Televison has done to keep things fresh. After seasons of espionage and Inhumans, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. took a left turn and did a series of episodes about Ghost Rider, and Ant-Man and the gUardian of the Galaxy weren’t exactly no-brainer superhero characters to helm big screen blockbusters.
In “Jane the Virgin,” Rodriguez has shown she can bring a sense of charm to a character in even the most offbeat situation, so maybe her casting idea has merit. America Chavez found new levels of popularity in the pages of “Young Avengers,” and with “Runaways” on the way, maybe it’s time to start thinking about Marvel’s other popular team of young heroes.