A Peruvian superhero saves a beloved Chilean cartoon

March 03, 2010 | 4:37 p.m.


Mire, en el cielo! It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s…Supervivian, the Peruvian comics character modeled after national-team volleyball star Vivian Baella. To her fellow Peruvians, Baella already is a larger-than-life figure, able to leap tall nets in a single bound.

But this week, cartoonist Mauricio Céspedes, who created the Supervivian alter ego, enlisted the heroine to lend a helping hand to victims of the horrific Chilean earthquake. The 8.8-magnitude temblor that leveled parts of Chile was so strong it was felt in neighboring Peru, so in the spirit of hemispheric support, Céspedes whipped up some illustrations showing Supervivian coming to the rescue of the rascally Chilean cartoon character Condorito (“Little Condor“), an anthropomorphic bird who dates back to 1949. The feathered rascal is well-loved throughout Latin America, despite his sometimes vaguely off-color and politically incorrect sensibility (which makes Condorito’s rescue by Supervivian all the more poignant).

According to a story in the Lima newspaper El Comercio, Céspedes said of his drawings: “This is an artistic manner of making solidarity with the Chilean people that have suffered a great crisis.”

— Reed Johnson


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