August is here and it’s probably the hottest month of the year! I don’t know where you are, but where I am, it’s been smokin’! My birthday is coming up this month (the 11th) and I’m much looking forward to it. I’m not looking forward to the heat, though. I don’t much like the extreme heat. For someone with a Summer birthday, you’d think I would, but I can’t stand it. I get so uncomfortable. In a strange bit of serendipity, it’s time to talk about somebody who loves the heat, our resident firestarter, Omar Brutton. Omar was the third main character to pop up in the books, but in some ways, he was the most fun to create.
Omar Francisco Brutton came into the world June 12, 1995 in Los Angeles. He was born to a witch and a normal human man. His father, who was unaware of his girlfriend’s magical lineage, left both her and his infant son when he found out. This left a big impact on Omar for the rest of his childhood. He did have an older brother who he looked up to as that father figure. His mother, Esperanza, would tell him of stories from her native Puerto Rico. He even went back there a few times to meet family there. Omar went to Million Oaks Elementary, where he was a decent enough student. Towards the end of his time there, he would frequently get into fights due to the turmoil of his home life.
In Junior High, he was introduced to basketball. He was a natural and quickly became one of the best players in the area. It helped give him an outlet for his emotional issues and escape from the difficulties of his life. He was a varsity starter his freshman year, which had never been done before at his high school, Rancho Carosella High School. Wanting to partake in a completely new lifestyle, he decided to apply to schools on the East Coast, Word University amongst them. He was offered a full scholarship to attend Word University. Excited to experience a different climate, different people, and different culture, he accepted the full ride with gusto.
Fans of Avatar: The Last Air Bender (of which I am also) would describe Omar as a firebender. He has the magical ability of pyrokinesis. He can control fire! Think of how dangerous that power is! It is one of the most destructive powers around. I actually based Omar’s powers on another character: Pyro, from X-Men fame. Pyro was a mutant that could control fire and created constructs out of that fire for a myriad of purposes. Omar gained his powers as a kid. Due to the power and destructiveness of his abilities, he found it hard to control them and that lack of control cost him dearly. There was an incident where he inadvertently started a fire. He nearly burned down his house and killed himself in the process! He was saved, but his family grimoire wasn’t so lucky. Wracked with guilt, he worked overtime to gain control of his powers so something like that would never happen again. He accomplishes that goal and then some, eventually becoming the most dangerously powerful member of the diamond.
Omar has the typical height and size of a Division I quality point guard. He is 6’3” and 190 lbs., with shoulder length locs. He has a darker brown complexion, which has played a complicated role in his identity. Omar is the darkest person in his immediate family. Being the shade that he is, nobody ever assumes he is half latino. He has also dealt with a great deal of colorism, what with dealing with people’s preconceived notions of what a Puerto Rican looks like. It doesn’t help that his father—who he gets most of his looks from—was African-American, but he never got to meet or know him due to his father’s walking out on his family when Omar was a baby. This has created a passionate, defiant, temperamental persona in Omar that runs as hot as the fire that runs in his blood. He feels the need to constantly prove himself and value his pride above all else.
Omar may have been the third of the warlocks to be introduced, but in some ways, he was the most fun one to create and write for. Omar lets his passions run high. He can be a bit of a hot head and headstrong. It’s a perfect match with his powers. I can see how he also can play into some cliches about the “hot latin” character, but Omar has a complicated backstory that gives good reason for him being the way he is. It is very natural. He isn’t that way just because. Omar is the character that is the most conflicted of the group. He is dealing with more internal struggles than the others. And because of that, his journey through the series will be the most intriguing to watch unfold.
Next month: Tre’Vell Hinton