This is another of the Loteria cards that I designed digitally for my Loteria Card Lesson plan based on the book House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer. The first card was called Durango, and the second was called Property of the Alacran Estate. Each card is meant to represent an aspect of the story – and I have read this book and listened to it on CD over 50 times, so my references can be pretty detailed.
This card represents El Latigo Negro. When Matt Alacran (the clone) was left alone at the Alacran Estate – when the other children were away at boarding school – he relied on a rich fantasy life to entertain himself. He would often pretend to be one of a few television heroes that were played on the estate television. Since El Patron insisted that life at the Estate be kept the same as when he was a child, these TV series were rather vintage – maybe from the 1950’s or 1960’s.
El Latigo Negro was the only character I was able to find on the internet. He was a Zorro-like character who wielded a long whip instead of a gun, I think. That actually makes me think of a great George Hamilton film called Zorro, The Gay Blade because the gay brother used a whip…
But I don’t think that this is what Mrs. Farmer was referring to when she referenced the character. 😉 I don’t even know if she had anyone specific in mind.
It is difficult to find information on El Latigo Negro, but I found a very interesting blog post here written by an aficionado of old B movies. According to that post, El Latigo Negro was honored in two series. The one referenced in the post – I think – was part of a trilogy made in the late seventies. But there was also a trilogy of films made in the 1950’s, as well as a series of comic books based on the character.
The other two heroes mentioned were Don Segundo Sombra (Sir Second Shadow) and El Sacerdote Volante (The Flying Priest). The Don Segundo Sombra I found was based on a 1926 novel about a gaucho, so I don’t think that was who Matt admired. The description in the book says that Matt’s Don Segundo drove sports cars and seemed more like a James Bond character.
As for The Flying Priest, I think she made him up, but it makes a great visual – a flying priest who flings holy water on demons and burns them like acid. Hee hee.