Love and rockets (and music): Comic-book pioneers Gil & Jaime Hernandez (Audio)
Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez are Mexican-American baby boomers from Oxnard, Calif., whose mother loved Elvis and comic books. The boys inherited their mom’s love of comics while their own musical preferences gravitated toward rock — until they eventually fell under the spell of Southern California punk music.
They are the typically bicultural California Mexican-Americans or Chicanos who grew up speaking English, and whose favorite music was played with electric guitars rather than accordions. They’re also pioneers in the world of comics: an intellectual frontier of words and art that not only amuse, but also teach us lessons about the world and ourselves.
In 1982, we met Margarita Luisa “Maggie” Chascarrillo and Esperanza Leticia “Hopey” Glass, two fictional Mexican-Americans created by the Hernandez brothers, who grew up on rock and not rancheras. Love and Rockets, along with Hopey and Maggie, revolutionized the world of comics. With the Hernandez brothers behind their thoughts and actions, there was no way the characters could end up as anything but bicultural.
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