Story: Henry Barajas
Art: J. Gonzo
Editor: Claire Napier
Letterer: Bernardo Brice
What They Say:
La Voz de M.A.Y.O.: Tata Rambo is based on the oral history of Ramon Jaurigue, an orphan and WWII veteran who co-founded the Mexican, American, Yaqui, and Others (M.A.Y.O.) organization, which successfully lobbied the Tucson City Council to improve living and working conditions for members of the Pascua Yaqui tribe—paving the way to their federal recognition. Meanwhile, Ramon’s home life suffered as his focus was pulled from his family to the wider community, and from domesticity to the adrenaline of the campaign.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
There are many moments in history that are specifically left out of the textbooks. This book takes a step back in history and seeks to restore a missing page and commemorate a specific person in the textbooks. Ramon is a man who sacrificed so much for his community in hopes of a better future.
One of my favorite pages is 47 because it paints a woeful image of what Ramon and others were fighting for. The expression “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure” comes into the surface as the book paints a clear image of how Yaqui houses were built. I also liked that the artist decided to use a different color just for this page. It makes stand out and grabs your attention.
This book is meant to cover the past but i feel that there is a section that it just briefly mentions and doesn’t look too much into. The book starts with Ramon waking up to a nightmare due to his time in the war but doesn’t go further into that. I would like to see how his time in the war has impacted his views on the situation that he deals with in the book.
One element that this book could do a better job in portraying the sacrifices of Ramon. I feel that there are moments that could be expanded on to further humanize Ramon Jaurique. He gives up his family in order to provide for his community. There is the instance with the affair with the intern and when his son is dealing with the reality of having a baby. It’s a missed opportunity to cover his thoughts and humanize him. These moments just happen and the story quickly moves on from them.
I am glad that the book doesn’t shy away from portraying him as a human with many faults. It shows him when he has a relationship with that intern and misses many bonding moments with his son. He wants to do good for his community but there are times where he should focus on his family. He is human and this book wants to make a statement of that. He wants to do good but isn’t perfect.
I enjoyed reading past the end of the story and looking at the old newspapers and M.A.YO newsletters. It tells about how M.A.Y.O was founded and what they were doing in the community. The M.A.YO newsletters might be a challenge to read because they are presented in English, Spanish, and the Yaqui language but it’s best to read what you can because it’s valuable information to understand Ramon and the Yaqui struggles and successes.
History is brought out of the shadows into the light in this wonderful autobiography of a man with delightful aspirations. Ramon is a human and this book goes far and wide to demonstrate the good and the bad of his humanity. This is a tale worth reading to understand what people have to go through when they’re fighting for something they believe is worth fighting for.
Age Rating: Teen
Released By: Image Comics/Top Cow
Release Date: November 13, 2019 for Comic Books Stores/November 19, 2019 for Bookstores.