With the Supreme Court’s landmark decision on marriage equality today, members of the LGBTQ community can now legally marry a same-sex partner and be legally recognized in every state. This decision is also incredibly important because it allows for younger generations of LGBTQ people to have the reassurance that their identity is accepted and loved in our country. To celebrate, I have compiled a list of comics that have excellent queer representation and feature main characters who identify as LGBTQ!
1. The Pride
Published by Queer Comix in the submit section of Comixology, this entire comic book is about a group of LGBTQ superheroes who team up to provide representation and prove that they aren’t jokes in a super world. Featuring heroes such as FabMan, The Bear, White Trash and Twink, this comic embraces queer identities and thrusts them into the same kinds of situations as the Avengers or the Justice League.
One of the Bat-Family, Kate Kane defends the streets of Gotham alongside Batman, Robin, Nightwing and Batgirl. In the comic, Kate identifies as a lesbian who is dating a Gotham City police officer, Maggie Sawyer. Some fans might remember this title from a controversy two year ago when it was reported that the editorial team at DC wouldn’t allow the creative team on the book to write in a wedding for Kate and Maggie. This caused the creative team to leave the comic and a new team to step in to continue the title.
3. All-New X-Men
While it hasn’t been explicit for a while, in one of the latest issues of this title, Iceman, Bobby Drake, was revealed as being gay by Jean Grey. Bobby has been a canonically straight character in the past few decades, but it is not uncommon for writers and creative teams to change characteristics and traits of their characters. All-New X-Men isn’t the only X-Men team to feature queer characters, many of the X-Men titles feature queer characters.
4. Young Avengers
One of the more popular gay couples lives in the pages of the Young Avengers series that was most recently written by Kieron Gillen and drawn by Jamie McKelvie. Wiccan and Hulkling have been a couple since they first appeared on the page in 2005. They have experienced ups and downs and break ups but the two have captured the hearts of many readers and can be found occasionally in different Avengers storylines when Young Avengers is not on the shelf.
One of the best gay cliffhangers was when Rictor and Shatterstar closed X-Factor no. 45 with a large kiss in front of the X-Factor team.This comic features a team of mutants who are brought together to form a mutant investigative agency by Madrox the Multiple Man. The comic was immensely popular and enjoyed a ten-year-long run from 2005 to 2015. There have been more iterations of X-Factor to be published after the fact, but this is the run featuring Rictor and Shatterstar.
In a much more recent development, the artistic team of Catwoman over at DC revealed in issue no. 39 that Selina Kyle is in fact bisexual. Kyle no longer plays the role of Catwoman and now leads a mob as a crime lord. Catwoman has been taken over by Eiko Hasigawa who is seen kissing Kyle at the end of the issue. Catwoman was a title that started with DC’s New 52 initiative in 2011 and has continued to be published through the Convergence event that wrapped this month.
7. Kevin Keller
Archie Comics had its first gay character when Kevin came on the scene. Since he has appeared in the pages of Archie, he has since broken out and achieved a comic of his own. The comic was released in 2012 and since has added 15 issues to its list. Kevin has proven to be one of the most popular characters in the Archie world. His stories have featured celebrities such as Ellen Degeneres and George Takei. Kevin was also the first Archie character to have the first same-sex kiss depicted in the Archie Comics.
8. Y: The Last Man
Written by Eisner Award winning author Brian K. Vaughan with art by Pia Guerra and Jose Marzan, this story follows the path of the last man on Earth after all other men have been wiped away. While the protagonist of the story is a heterosexual male, one of the most unforgettable characters was Allison Mann, a scientist and lesbian accompanying the man to discover humanities only chance of survival.
This character was originally created in 1995 and has been out the entire time he has been on the page. A new series has been launched by DC written by gay writer Steve Orlando and will update Midnighter’s story for a modern world. The new issues of this series feature Midnighter using Grindr, a popular gay dating app, and dating a black man named Jason after having split with his longtime husband, Apollo.
10. Fun Home
This Time Magazine No. 1 Book of the Year features the story of gay writer and cartoonist Alison Bechdel and her time growing up in Pennsylvania. The story features her gay father, Bruce, heavily as Bechdel writes about his obsession with renovating their old home and discovers the similarities between herself and her father. The story was adapted for the stage as the musical Fun Home that won a Tony Award this month for Best New Musical, watch a performance from the show below.
While these are only a few of the comics that feature queer characters, I am always interested in finding more. Leave some suggestions of your favorites in the comments and happy reading.