It’s been 24 years since actor John Leguizamo starred as the overweight and demonic clown and supervillain known as The Violator in 1997’s Spawn, a superhero film based on comic book creator Todd McFarlane’s horror-fantasy series of the same name.
Now, Leguizamo and McFarlane are ready to release their new comic book series, PhenomX, which follows the adventures of Max Gómez, a wrongfully accused prisoner who gains superpowers after he allows the government to experiment on him in exchange for his freedom.
Besides the Latine lead with superpowers, what’s also noteworthy about PhenomX is the all-Latine creative team behind the project. They include La Boriqueña creator Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez, who PhenomX’s editor and creative director.
“The genesis of this story is the psycho-social erasure of Latinx people,” Leguizamo told Forbes. “We’ve been in America for 500 years, we contribute significantly to the economy and the culture, but we’ve largely been invisible in popular entertainment.”
Leguizamo hopes that PhenomX can be as groundbreaking as McFarlane’s past work. “This guy reinvented the comic book industry,” Leguizamo told Comic Book Resources. “To see him again at Comic-Con so many years later, the affection just came back. He’s such a generous, kind guy and so easy to restart and rekindle that friendship.”
It was an especially easy reunion knowing they would be doing something in the comic book industry that would help create more Latine representation. “To bring a Latinx character into the world is so important,” Leguizamo added. “I’m hoping to create a little balance and equity there and give little kids the opportunity to see themselves reflected back.”
The first issue of PhenomX will debut on November 3, 2021.