Chili Storm got her start in the Millie the Model comics in 1945. She was Millie Collins’ sometimes competitor, sometimes enemy, sometimes companion, and sometimes friend. Filling in whatever role the writers needed to put her in.
Chili started out as a modern model stereotype and the antithesis of Millie. When Millie was kind, Chili was self-serving. When Millie was humble about being a model, Chili was vain. In the race for jobs, Chili often lost out to Millie because of her personality flaws. Chili was quite quick witted, and her and Millie’s back and forth served as the comic book’s humor.
Chili was popular enough to continue through the Millie comics, and in 1969, she had her own series, which lasted 26 issues. However, in the mid-70s, most of the model and other “girl” books fell out of favor compared to Marvel’s main superhero comics. Every once in a while, Chili (and Millie) made appearances in the Marvel universe in titles like Dazzler. There was a brief attempt in the ’80s to bring the character back and revive the models in a miniseries about a teenager named Misty (Millie).
However, recently, Chili and the other models were brought back in Models, Inc. a limited miniseries about the lives of Millie, Chili, Hedy Wolfe, Patsy Walker, and Mary Jane Watson. Chili also appeared in Marvel Divas through her connection with Patsy. In these books, Chili maintains her sassy personality.
However, while she once was competing for the same dates as Millie, modern Chili is an out and proud lesbian. Freely admitting to all her crushes. I think it’s awesome that Marvel brought a character who’s been around since the ’40s, weaved her back into the main Marvel-verse, and had her come out. Hopefully, Chili won’t settle into the background again.
Check out modern Chili and support this blog, buy Models, Inc. by Paul Tobin.