Marvel and DC to release LGBTQ+ Pride themed comics

David Ferguson of Irish Comic News gives us the low down on all the queer happenings in the world of superheroes.

Two cartoon superhero women embrace

Comics expert David Ferguson is back to give us the latest from the world of queer superheroes, especially in Marvel and DC land.

There have been a number of items of interest coming from comics’ Big Two (DC and Marvel) in relation to LGBTQ+ content and creators in the last month or so. I thought I’d give an update with some of the highlights.

Both DC and Marvel seem to want to make a splash for Pride this year with various books coming out featuring LGBTQ+ characters and creators in June. 

DC will be releasing an anthology of stories called DC Pride. Of interest will be the Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy story. Fans have been lobbying for Harley to move from her somewhat toxic relationship with the Joker to one with Poison Ivy. The anthology will feature other popular LGBTQ+ characters like Batwoman as well as Green Lantern – Alan Scott. 

Fans of the Supergirl TV show will be happy to see the first comic book appearance of Dreamer, a trans woman superhero, in a story written by actor Nicole Maines, who plays Nia Nal/Dreamer on Supergirl. Personally, I am looking forward to seeing Stephen Byrne’s art on a Midnighter story written by Steve Orlando.

DC will also release a number of Pride-themed variant covers for the month of June with titles like Batman and Wonder Woman included. June will also see Poison Ivy’s origin story getting a graphic novel reimagining which includes an LGBTQ+ love interest in Poison Ivy: Thorns. It is written by New York Times bestselling author, Kody Keplinger (The DUFF) with art by Sara Kipin.

Back to DC’s Green Lantern – once again, he’s gay. The aforementioned Alan Scott, the original Golden Age Green Lantern who debuted in 1940, came out in DC Infinite Frontier #0, released earlier this month. The character coming out later in life makes a lot of sense from a continuity point of view. His story started in a time when coming out was pretty much impossible. Speaking with his children, he explains how this led to a lot of failed relationships with women. Alan does reveal he had a lot of “friends” along the way, however. It is kind of interesting as his son is gay too and I hope to see this explored in the future.

The DC Infinite Frontier issue sets up the new status quo for the DC Universe and the series is a good jump-on point for new or, in my case, lapsed readers. I’ll be interested to see where Alan Scott’s story will go. The Green Lantern story in DC Infinite Frontier #0 is by Irish artist Stephen Byrne and writer James Tynion IV. This is probably the most notable coming out since Ice-man in 2015. For those wondering, Bobby Drake is living it up going to gay clubs and living his best gay life in the pages of Marauders (a new X-men book established in 2019).

Marvel will also be releasing an anthology in June, called Marvel Voices: Pride. Characters featured include Ice-man, Draken (Wolverine’s bisexual son) and another important LGBTQ+ couple, Destiny and Mystique. Mystique will be known to people who follow the X-men movies but her relationship with Destiny, an important one in the X-men comics, was not included in the film. Another couple to note, especially to fans of WandaVision, are Scarlet Witch’s son Billy, aka Wiccan, and Hulkling (no relation to the Hulk). The couple debuted in Young Avengers and the duo that created them, writer Allan Heinberg and artist Jim Cheung, are returning to write the latest chapter of their love-story.

Marvel will also be producing variant covers. One of them being Ice-man drawn by Phil Jimenez on June’s issue of Marauders. Interestingly, Marvel’s variants will extend to the Star Wars books they produce. Some of these covers have yet to be released and both companies may have more plans yet to be announced.

Keep up to date with the fine folk at Irish Comic News here.

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