Juan Padron, creator of Elpidio Valdes. Colonel Valdés is as popular in Cuba as Bugs Bunny is here. As a recurring character in cartoons, comic books, and stories, he symbolizes the people of the “indomitable Cubans, ever and again resistant to the Spanish invader.” His country calls upon him for educating minds in history and in civics. Juan Padron’s precise drawings in El Libro del Mambí (1985) were of invaluable assistance to me in understanding the daily life of Mambis and the way they fight back.
Elpidio Valdes and Juan Padrón
Elpidio Valdes is a character from cartoons and comics, starring in a number of features, shorts and strips of the same name. It was created in 1970 by Cuban cartoonist and filmmaker Juan Padrón, considered the father of Cuban film animation and directed the first three animated feature films produced by the Cuban Institute of Cinematographic Art and Industry.
Elpidio Valdes is a colonel commanding a squadron of cavalry soldiers in the Cuban peasant army known as the Mambises or "Mambi" fighting for the liberation of their country from colonial Spain. Nineteenth century slaves along with landowners joined together to form the Mambi Liberation Army.