When Minor Characters Do Major Things


A few weeks ago, DC Comics announced that a major character was going to be reintroduced as gay. So comic fans speculated which major character it was going to be. I thought it should be Captain Marvel because he didn’t really have any serious romantic entanglements in the previous continuity (ignoring for a second that he’s really a pre-teen but that might have made it more awesome and influential).

It was revealed this week that the now gay character is Alan Scott. If you just said, “who?”, I rest my case. Scott is DC’s original Green Lantern (before they came up with the Guardians, Oa and the entire mythology that spawned Hal Jordan) and was a member of Justice Society of America. This is HARDLY a major character. Adding insult to injury, Scott is going to be in Earth-2 so he’s not even in the current continuity that the average person is aware of. Why couldn’t it have been Martian Manhunter, one of the Robins or one of the more recognizable Green Lanterns like Kyle Rayner or John Stewart? It’s great that DC is adding a LGBT character but given the fanfare, I wanted more. This was just too safe.

DC Comics already has gay characters – Batwoman/Kate Kane, Renee Montoya/The Question, Obsidian (coincidentally Alan Scott’s son from the previous continuity) – so one more shouldn’t be a big deal (actually they could use a few more). DC Comics trying to ride the wave of Obama coming out in support of gay marriages to try and push a few more issues.

I wish I could say Marvel, which has a better history with gay characters, was totally innocent in trying to cash in but it just happens to be having X-Man Northstar get married in Astonishing X-Men #51. Northstar is another non-major character who’s coming out was publicized the same way as Alan Scott’s is but it was 1992 and much more significant at the time. While it is important as the first gay wedding in the major universes, let’s be real, this many X-Men would not be attending his wedding because Northstar is kind of a dick:


I am glad that there are more gay characters in the major comic universes. Its taken too long to get here. I wish we were at the point where these things could happen in Marvel and DC without requiring a press release at every juncture but it looks like we have a long way to go.


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