“The very DNA of my existence comes from my Puerto Rican identity,” Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez told The Washington Post when discussing his new superhero character, La Borinqueña. And seeing the art director’s body of work, it’s obvious that he takes any chance he can to rep his PR roots. Go on his website, and you’ll be greeted with Puerto Rican flags. Check out his debut issue for Marvel, Guardians of Infinity #3, and you’ll see Puerto Rico’s past. He and business partner Darryl “DMC” McDaniels (of Run DMC) imagined a conflict between characters Thing, a.k.a Benjamin Grimm, and Groot. And though there’s not really anything in The Guardians universe that speaks to our Latinidad, Miranda-Rodriguez found a link through the Ceiba tree he grew up seeing in Puerto Rico and the alien, tree-like Groot.
Just three months later, Miranda-Rodriguez’s latest project is another love letter to La Isla de Encanto. Teaming up with the organizers of the Puerto Rican Day Parade, he’s created a superhero for the event. “I pitched it to the parade and said: ‘What if we did an original comic book, and it was a collaboration between my studio [Somos Arte] and the parade?’ And they loved it,” he said. “It was something that had never been done before.”