Blue Beetle’s Best Attribute Is Immersing Audiences In Mexican Culture

Unlike most superhero families (the ones that aren’t dead or in prison), the Reyes family in “Blue Beetle” is incredibly close, so much so that the only times they are not all together on screen is when the plot needs to split them up momentarily. 

The movie avoids the trope of the hero struggling to keep his secret identity secret. Instead, the family is right there just as Jaime first gets his powers, and they continue to be with him the whole way. They are as scared as he is, they embrace his role as a hero as he does, and they always support him. Not just that, but they even get involved in the story rather than stay at home worrying. When Jaime is in trouble, the family gathers to rescue him, even after they had just faced an enormous loss.

And they are capable of fighting, like Nana, who has a secret past as a revolutionary. Indeed, the team took inspiration from real history, from the female Soldaderas who fought in the Mexican revolution, with Nana’s braids taken straight from photos of the real thing.

This is the key to “Blue Beetle” and how it handles authenticity. It is a movie that, within the fantasy of a superhero story, pulls in from real history. This is what the best modern superhero movies do, like “Black Panther” taking from the colonization of the Americas, or how “Ms. Marvel” portrays the Partition of India.

Leave a Comment