Doctor Strange 2: Who Is America Chavez? Powers & Origins Explained

WARNING: The following contains SPOILERS for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

Here’s everything known about Xochitl Gomez’s America Chavez, the MCU’s first Latin-American LGBTQ+ character, who’s making her debut in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. The last decade has seen Marvel become one of the dominant forces in Hollywood, but the studio is not without its critics, and one major issue has been the notable lack of diversity. Although things are improving, Marvel still has a long way to go. Still, president Kevin Feige clearly believes diversity should be the gold standard going forward, and he’s promised there will be out LGBTQ characters in the MCU.

Teenage actress Xochitl Gomez, best known for Netflix’s The Baby-Sitters Club, joined the cast of Doctor Strange 2 as Ms. America, aka America Chavez, and she perfectly fits the bill. In Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, America plays a key role in restoring balance to the multiverse. After an octopus demon chases her out of a portal into Earth-616, Strange saves her. She explains that she’s being hunted because she holds the power to travel through universes. This power doesn’t go unnoticed by the Scarlet Witch, who wants to harness it to return to her sons Billy and Tommy. America Chavez acts as a guide for Doctor Strange through the multiverse, while trying to find the Book of Vishanti. In the meantime, Wanda remains hot on their tails. In the end, Ms. America ends up training as a sorcerer in Kamar-Taj, giving her an explosive introduction into the MCU.

Advertisement

Related: All 12 MCU Movies Releasing After Doctor Strange 2 (& When)

America Chavez joining the MCU could say a lot about where the franchise is headed. She’s a lot less well-known than previous MCU superstars like Iron Man, Spider-Man, and Captain America. That being said, Ms. America boasts some truly impressive powers that work well alongside Doctor Strange. So who is the MCU’s potential new powerhouse? Here are America Chavez’s powers and origins explained, along with how she will affect the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe going forward.

Xochitl Gomez’s America Chavez is one of the Multiverse’s greatest champions, originating from a mysterious dimension called the “Utopian Parallel.” That realm was dominated by the Demiurge, one of the mystical architects of creation. Because Ms. America grew up in the Demiurge’s presence, she absorbed its ambient mystical power and thus became one of the most powerful beings in the entire Multiverse. Chavez desired to prove her heroism, and so began bouncing around the Multiverse, visiting world after world. She first appeared in the mainstream Marvel Universe when she joined the Teen Brigade and enjoyed a brief fling with the team leader, the Ultimate Nullifier. She later admitted this was just an experiment, and she identifies as a lesbian.

Advertisement

In the comics, Ms. America has been at the center of many of the most important Multiversal stories. She was tricked by Loki into joining the Young Avengers in order to protect Wiccan, a young sorcerer destined to actually become the Demiurge itself. When the Multiverse collapsed in 2015’s “Secret Wars,” she found herself a resident of Arcadia, a paradisiacal realm on Battleworld that was ruled entirely by women. When the Multiverse was restored, America became part of a new cosmic team called the Ultimates, who were unwittingly battling to preserve all of creation.

America Chavez is easily one of the most powerful beings in the entire Marvel Multiverse, with Loki describing her as “a nearly indestructible woman who can throw tanks at the Moon.” She can tap into the ambient energy of creation to boost her own physical powers, and consequently, she’s been able to trade blows with Asgardians and neutralize cosmic entities with apparent ease. Most intriguing of all, America Chavez is one of the few heroes who can traverse the Multiverse at will, opening star-shaped portals between the dimensions. There do seem to be limits to this ability — she couldn’t jump out of a realm called the Sixth Dimension, and in Doctor Strange 2 she couldn’t outrun Wanda — but those are not clearly defined.

Related: How Much Doctor Strange 2 Cost (& How Much For Box Office Success)

Advertisement

Like many of Marvel’s cosmic heroes, America Chavez has a gift called “Cosmic Awareness.” That means she can sense disruptions in space and time and is inevitably drawn to the greatest cosmic events. While America shares this power with the likes of Thor and the Silver Surfer, her cosmic awareness seems to be heightened, because she uses it to navigate the Multiverse. She’s jokingly referred to this as a Multiversal GPS.

Xochitl Gomez plays America Chavez in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, having auditioned at 13 years old. She’s appeared in a number of TV shows over the years but is now most well-known for playing Dawn Shafer in Netflix’s The Baby-Sitters Club. While many praised the young Doctor Strange 2 actress for her contribution, some trolls online crudely targeted her over her character’s lesbian identity, being branded “cowards” by co-star Benedict Wong. Internet bullies aside, Xochitl Gomez’s place as America Chavez has been solidified within the MCU.

Marvel subtly introduced the Multiverse in the Thor films and committed to it in Avengers: Endgame, when Earth’s Mightiest Heroes began creating parallel dimensions due to time travel. The Multiverse is central to the plot of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, with its title neatly explaining why America Chavez is there in the first place. Doctor Strange is dealing with demons from alternate universes and must find the Book of Vishanti. Outside of universe hopping and being hunted by beasts, it’s likely that Ms. America came to Earth-616 because she sensed the open door with her cosmic awareness.

Advertisement

Scarlet Witch also appears in Doctor Strange 2, and that creates another intriguing link. In the comics, Wanda Maximoff wields a power called “Chaos Magic,” which affects the nature of reality itself. Since the MCU explores the same idea, America Chavez is crucial. Several of her stories have seen Ms. America drawn to sites of Multiversal anarchy, where she fought to preserve the balance between chaos and order, although she didn’t always quite understand how things were playing out.

Related: All 18 MCU Shows Releasing After Doctor Strange 2 (& When)

Several pieces of previous MCU content are necessary to understanding America Chavez’s role in Doctor Strange 2 — namely, WandaVision. Knowledge of Ms. America’s powers is also integral to understanding her part in the film. In the movie, the Scarlet Witch is after her abilities. Wanda wants to return to her life with her children Billy and Tommy, but cannot do so without Chavez’s power to jump around through the Multiverse. Therefore, Ms. America acts as both a hunter and the hunted as she assists Doctor Strange on his quest to find the Book of Vishanti while facing the wrath of Wanda and the Darkhold. People can expect to see her portal-creating abilities throughout the movie, along with some of the brute force she exudes in her superhero role. While not all of her powers are on display in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, she definitely acts as the muscle of the team.

Advertisement

America Chavez is an important addition to the MCU for two key reasons., the first being diversity. While the franchise has been skewered for lacking representation in the past, Marvel has tried to change that as of late. America Chavez is a Latinx character who, in the comics, is open about being a lesbian. It’s unknown if this will be included in her storyline moving forward, but the MCU would reach an underserved audience by displaying America Chavez’s full story, even in the face of controversies like Doctor Strange 2‘s Saudi Arabia ban over the portrayal of an LGBTQ+ character. The second reason encompasses the exciting changes that she can usher into the franchise, essentially keeping it alive. Xochitl Gomez’s America Chavez stars in the Young Avengers in Marvel Comics. With other Young Avengers roster members like Kate Bishop and Kid Loki already in-universe, this could mean that a Young Avengers movie or television show is on the way. This would effectively reboot the franchise once other superheroes age out of the MCU. For now, people can see Xochitl Gomez take on the role of America Chavez in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.

Next: Doctor Strange 2 Rewatch Guide: Essential MCU Movies & Shows To Watch

Advertisement
x