The Gay Bloggers Union has officially requested that I weigh on an issue I have been punting on, one of the truly novel phenomena in contemporary comics: the sudden proliferation of gay legacy characters.
Now, we have had gay characters before in the DCU, and not just fly-by-night ones.
|Not quite what I meant. Besides, Mr. & Mr. Estate-Sale are hardly "in the DCU" as much as they are "owned by DC now and kept in the attic". You know it's true.|
|She had an immediate, widespread, and lasting impact on lesbian fashion.|
|That awkwardness when your date intercepts and misinterprets a hologram message from your actual dad, who happens to be a serious zaddy.|
|Who wouldn't want THAT thrilling opportunity to watch Hal stare at his own beautiful hands?|
Nowadays we're not just talking about Odd Man's nephew, Queer Fellow, or Woozy Winks adopted pansexual son Flirty, or even some Black Canary-lite with short dark hair, butch skillz, big boots, a motorcycle, and a leather jacket, who immediate pair-bonds with literally the first available person she meets.
That IS Black Canary.
No. Now, we are talking about the "heirs apparent". We are talking about:
Batman's protégé, Tim Drake. A long-standing character (1989) who served as Robin--many believe as the best Robin--for twenty years. He's been buried in the background for years since Bruce Wayne's son Damian began his reign of terror as Robin (2009). His recent emergence from Damian's shadow has coincided with the reveal of his bisexuality.
13 does NOT look like the minimum age for that ride.
Aquaman's protégé, Jackson Hyde. A comparative new character (2016), son of Black Manta and a Xebellian rebel, Jackson was introduced as a gay teenager. He seems to have had some trouble gaining traction, probably because his look, power set, and origin are clearly based on the "Kaldur'am" character in the Young Justice cartoon and yet... he is very much NOT that character.
|For one thing, Jackson understands how important it is that Aquaman-characters have fabulous hair.|
and Superman's instant-son, Jon Kent. Through temporal shenanigans driven by fan-service, Clark Kent and Lois Lane wound up with a pre-pubescent 10 year-old son after some reboot (Convergence 2015) without they or readers having to slog through the real-world tedium of, you know, pregnancy and infancy and toddlerhood and childhood.
|I mean, any SILVER AGE writer knows those are the FUN part. Aren't those playsuits ADORABLE?|
Jon's principal narrative function in the DCU seemed to be as saccharine poured over Damian Wayne stories to make them less bitter and easier to swallow. As previously discussed, Damian's clearly on his way out of favor as l'enfant terrible among DC's editorship, so some more temporal shenanigans were employed to have Jon suddenly become a POST-pubescent 17-year-old son of Superman. Puberty came with the reveal of bisexuality (his love interest is male; that he is bisexual and not gay is known only through external evidence from the creator and publisher, not internal story evidence).
|You know, Jon, I'm sure Jackson would be glad to go through a stylebook with you at Supercuts.|
Heroes are here to help those in need, after all.
How do I feel about all this?
Let's discuss that tomorrow; but feel free to tell me your thoughts today.