For its annual Pride Month celebration, this year Marvel Comics will introduce a brand new character in Marvel's Voices: Pride #1 – Shela Sexton, aka Escapade, a trans mutant with a really cool power. Co-created by writer Charlie Jane Anders and artists Ro Stein and Ted Brandt, Escapade can instantaneously switch locations or trade any specific physical or abstract attribute with another person, including items, powers, and skills.
However, Escapade can't use her powers at will. She can only maintain her powers for a few hours and has to be within seven feet of her target, which is a very short range. Plus, there's every opportunity for things to go awry – the more complicated the switch, the more likely the flub.
But Escapade isn't acting alone. She has a super stocked tool belt and a very tech-savvy best friend, Morgan Red. The pair are professional thieves on a winning streak, but in Marvel's Voices: Pride #1, Shela meets Emma Frost and Destiny, and everything changes.
"I have loved the Marvel Universe for as long as I can remember, and may or may not sing the Spider-Man cartoon theme in the shower on a regular basis. So I was so thrilled to be able to introduce a brand-new hero to stand alongside all of my favorites," Anders says in Escapades' reveal announcement. "I hope that Escapade and Morgan Red will inspire trans and non-binary people everywhere to believe that they, too, can fight for justice with the power of creativity and chosen family."
"Now more than ever, we need a hero like Shela Sexton for people to look up to," Brandt adds. "It was a real honor and a privilege to be a part of her creation process!"
Stein agrees, stating, "It's very exciting to be part of bringing a new character into Marvel comics. Working with Charlie Jane's script was a lot of fun, and I hope people enjoy reading about Escapade as much as we did putting together her first outing on the page."
Marvel's Voices: Pride #1 will introduce Escapade and Morgan Red, and set the pair up to join the broader Marvel Universe through the X-Men. Marvel says there's a deadly prophecy involved, and Escapade will be joining New Mutants through a special arc written by Anders.
In a Twitter thread following the announcement, Anders says, "Shela is a thief and a trickster, who uses gadgets to pull off her heists. She doesn't like to rely on her mutant power, for reasons that will become obvious once you've read the story. She identifies as a supervillain — but a supervillain who only helps people."
She also adds that Shela and Morgan live with a genetically modified flying turtle named Hibbert, whom they seemingly acquired on a heist.
In addition to writing by Anders and art by Stein and Brandt, Escapade's tale in Marvel's Voices: Pride #1 will feature colors by Tamra Bonvillain. Additional contributors to the anthology-style issue include Christopher Cantwell, Andrew Wheeler, Alyssa Wong, Grace Freud, Ira Madison III, Danny Lore, Stephen Byrne, Lorenzo Suzi, Brittney Williams, Kei Zama, Scott B. Henderson, and Lucas Werneck.
Marvel's Voices: Pride #1 will be released June 22, with a main cover by Nick Robles.
What we want to know is where Escapade falls in the four major X-Men mutant classifications.