Marvel has thousands of superheroes, but did you know about these niche few? In this episode we talk about a few different indigenous themes in the Marvel Universe– the Cheyenne tribe, and the Sherpa people.
Most Unique and Underrated Marvel Superheroes – Cozy Rainbow Podcast
Lockjaw is an Inhuman dog with the power of teleportation through time and space. Lockjaw the dog’s other superpowers are empathy, super strength, the ability to digest anything (up to 90 tons), and super smell. He first appeared in the Fantastic Four in December 1965. He served as a pet for the Thing and for Ms. Marvel.
The Year 1965
In the year 1965, not only did Lockjaw the dog come to exist, but the Voting Rights Act of 1965 passed. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 was designed to allow African-Americans and other minorities to vote. African-Americans received the right to vote in the 15th amendment of the constitution about 100 years prior. However, until Voting Rights Act of 1965, many barriers prevented minority populations from being able to vote. After the act was passed, voters in Mississippi grew from 6% to 59%. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 was a very successful movement towards increasing voter turnout.
2. Thin Man
Thin Man has the super power of stretching super thin, similar to the mom in the Incredibles, or Mr. Fantastic. He obtained his powers in 1930 by climbing the Himalayas where he met a lost civilization that gave him superpowers. Besides just being super stretchy, he actually alters his molecules’ structure to change, meaning that he can travel through all states of matter.
The Himalayan mountains are located in Asia. They are in the countries India, Nepal, China and Bhutan. In the 1930s, people were attempting to climb Mount Everest for the very first time. People did not know what was at the top of the mountain, or about the effects of being at such a high altitude. The first people to climb Mount Everest were successful in 1953.
The Sherpa People
In Marvel lore, “Thin Man” gained his powers from a tribe in the Himalayas. A real group of people live in the high altitudes of the Himalayan mountains, called the Sherpa people. The Sherpa people are genetically better suited to withstand the high altitude. Their mitochondria (the powerhouse of the cell) are able to convert more oxygen into energy. At a normal altitude, Sherpa people and the rest of our mitochondria operate at the same level.
Echo is a memorable and unique superhero from the Marvel universe because she was born deaf, and she is Native American. Her powers manifested while she was in boarding school due to her disability. Echo has the superpower of being super smart, instantly memorizing anything and mimicking others’ exact movements. Due to her abilities, she is an olympic-level athlete, concert-level pianist, gifted acrobat and talented in the art of ballet.
Echo is on Disney+ in Hawkeye. She is a member of the Cheyenne Nation. Although she first appeared in comics in 1999, she is getting her own spinoff on Disney+ in the future.
Moonstar is another Native American Marvel superhero from the Cheyenne Nation. She is a mutant with the power to project images of people’s greatest fears in front of them. She can also attack people with energy arrows and can communicate with animals.
The Cheyenne Tribe
The Cheyenne tribe (or “Tsitsistas” meaning “the people”) comes from the Great Plains area in Minnesota and Illinois. They were pushed further and further west as white settlers continued to move west. The Cheyenne tribe today is merged with the Arapaho tribe. The Cheyenne tribe speaks two different languages: Arapaho and Cheyenne. One issue that the Cheyenne tribe is facing, as well as many other Native American tribes, is the death of their language. Today, the Cheyenne tribe reservations are in Oklahoma and Montana.
This week’s creative challenge is to draw a picture of a superhero.