Superheroes Who Are Openly LGBTQ+
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Superheroes Who Are Openly LGBTQ+

If you’re not familiar with the inner workings
of the comic book world, there’s a fair chance there are more LGBTQ+ superheroes out there
than you realize. From the big screen to the small to the panels
themselves, here are some of the LGBTQ+ superheroes out there saving the world for all of us. In 2017, the hit movie Thor: Ragnarok revitalized
the thunder god’s franchise with a new brand of irresistible humor and a huge gladiator
battle with the Hulk, of course. Among the new characters introduced in Ragnarok
was the tough, unapologetic binge drinker Valkyrie, played by Tessa Thompson. She reprised the role as one of the leaders
of New Asgard in 2019’s Avengers: Endgame, eventually being named leader of Asgard at
the end of the film. And fans will be seeing her again in 2021’s
Thor: Love & Thunder. “The Lord of Thunder sends his best.” “The revolution has begun!” Valkyrie’s sexuality isn’t addressed in the
theatrical versions of either Ragnarok or Endgame, but shortly after Love & Thunder
was announced at the 2019 San Diego Comic Con, Marvel Studios confirmed Valkyrie would
be the MCU’s first openly LGBTQ+ superhero and that this would be addressed in the 2021
sequel. Thompson even said Valkyrie was bisexual as
early as 2017, lining the character up with her comic book counterpart. Ragnarok had originally highlighted Valkyrie’s
sexuality, but this scene was sadly left on the cutting room floor. Unfortunately, the comic book version of Valkyrie
on which Thompson’s character is based is no longer around. That hero, Brunnhilde, was killed by the dark
elf Malekith in the line-wide event War of the Realms. The role of Valkyrie has since been taken
up by Jane Foster, who Natalie Portman portrayed in the first two Thor films and who is also
set to appear in Love & Thunder, as Thor herself. In the comics it’s no secret that Wade Wilson,
also known as Deadpool, is pansexual. Longtime Deadpool writer Gerry Duggan has
gone on record as saying the Merc with a Mouth sets his romantic boundaries at “anything
with a pulse.” So far, that hasn’t really been reflected
in his big-screen appearances, though Deadpool 2 certainly ramps up Wade’s fixation on the
ironclad mutant Colossus. Since Ryan Reynolds has confirmed as much,
it seems that Deadpool’s new owners over at Disney are working on a new movie featuring
the character. And if we do get a Deadpool 3, there’s a fair
chance Wade Wilson’s pansexuality will be expressed more explicitly in the films. Reynolds himself has even said that he wants
to see that side of Wade come out more on the big screen. At the 2018 San Diego Comic Con, the actor
said one of the things he loves about the Deadpool films is that they can go places
other superhero movies can’t or won’t, and he suggested LGBTQ+ representation as one
of those places adding that he specifically wanted to explore that through Wade. Marvel Studios has made some truly unforgettable
superhero films in the past decade. And while opinions will always vary, the uneven
quality of the X-Men franchise and the failure of the last couple of Fantastic Four movies
meant that a lot of fans were very happy when Disney acquired Fox Studios in 2019. Still, there’s at least one important landmark
the Fox films hit before Marvel producing a movie featuring Marvel’s first on-screen
same-sex couple. In 2018’s Deadpool 2, it’s revealed that Negasonic
Teenage Warhead is in a relationship with a young X-Men member named Yukio. Not a lot is shown of their relationship,
but the duo joins Wade and the rest of the heroes in the film’s climax. The pair appear just in time to save Colossus
from Juggernaut, and later contribute to the latter’s less-than-pleasant fate. Curtis Holt, played by Echo Kellum, has been
an openly gay man since his first appearance on CW’s Arrow but he wasn’t always a superhero. Holt has appeared regularly on Arrow since
its fourth season, though initially he was content to be the “guy in the chair,” coordinating
things from Oliver Queen’s “Arrowcave,” and generally hacking into whatever needed to
be hacked into. But after he is attacked by street thugs in
the show’s fifth season, Curtis asks Oliver to train him for some more hands-on work. Borrowing the ring name of his favorite wrestler
and using his ingenious gadgets to help fight crime, Holt becomes Mr. Terrific. But Holt’s time as a vigilante doesn’t come
without cost. Later in Arrow’s fifth season, Curtis’ husband
Paul leaves him after discovering his hidden crime-fighting life. Fortunately, love finds Curitis once more
in the form of Star City police officer Nick Anastas. Holt has since given up crime-fighting, but
still helps Team Arrow in a guy-in-the-chair capacity when they need it. Presumed drowned after the wreck of the Queen’s
Gambit, Sara Lance barely survives and is taken prisoner aboard the ship Amazo property
of the mad scientist Dr. Ivo, who trains Sara to become his assistant. After reuniting with her former lover Oliver
Queen and being presumed drowned a second time, Sara is rescued by Nyssa al Ghul of
the League of Assassins and recruited into the secret organization of silent killers. Nyssa and Sara soon become lovers. “I’ve had better greetings.” “Sorry I just didn’t know what you were
going to do.” “To be honest neither did I.” Sara has had both male and female partners
since returning to Star City on Arrow. She has also since become one of the regular
characters on Legends of Tomorrow, and took over the Captain’s chair of the series’ central
time and space ship, the Waverider.and also is in a long-term relationship with Ava Sharpe
a genetically engineered clone from the 23rd century. The fourth season of the CW’s Supergirl made
a huge stride in LGBTQ+ representation by introducing TV’s first transgender superhero. “I am both human and alien. And I am a transwoman.” Nia Nal, also known as Dreamer, is a trans
woman of mixed human and alien heritage who inherits her powers, which include being able
to see the future, after her mother’s death. Nia’s mother Isabel was from the planet Naltor,
and used the title of Dreamer before Nia. Naltorian Dreamers are women of extraordinary
abilities, including often receiving precognitive visions in their dreams. A Naltorian Dreamer’s power passes to her
daughters, so when Nia’s mother dies, Nia is initially confused about the Dreamer abilities
beginning to manifest in her because she wasn’t biologically born female. It soon becomes clear that Isabel always knew
it would be Nia, and not her sister Maeve, who would inherit her powers. Sadly, while Nia’s family has appeared to
be accepting towards her transgender identity so far, the revelation that Maeve won’t inherit
her mother’s abilities causes a lot of ugliness to come out. Meanwhile, Dreamer has been a close friend
and ally to Supergirl since obtaining her abilities, and has also enjoyed a somewhat
rocky romantic relationship with Supergirl’s ally from the future, Brainy. The CW’s Arrowverse consists of a vast multiverse
of various alternate realities. One of those realities is Earth-X, where the
Nazis won World War II. The Earth-X alternates of the Arrowverse’s
heroes tend to be villains serving the Reich on Earth-X: such as Overgirl instead of Supergirl,
and Dark Arrow rather than Green Arrow. In the 2017 CW crossover Crisis on Earth-X,
characters from The Flash, Arrow, Legends of Tomorrow, and Supergirl are brought to
Earth-X. Most are freed from a concentration camp by
the Freedom Fighters made up of The Ray and Leo Snart, also known as Citizen Cold. It soon becomes apparent that Ray and Leo
are in love, and that their relationship made them a target of the Nazis. In season 4 of The Flash, the heroes ask for
Snart’s help in transporting a metahuman to A.R.G.U.S. Upon arriving on Earth-1 and reuniting with
his old comrades, Leo is met with cheers and congratulations when he announces that back
on Earth-X, he and the Ray are planning to get married. October 2019 saw the premiere of CW’s Batwoman. Set in the same narrative as “Arrowverse”
shows that include Arrow, The Flash, and Legends of Tomorrow, the new series stars Ruby Rose
as the titular hero. Behind the mask is Kate Kane, cousin to Bruce
Wayne. One of the more noteworthy differences between
Batwoman and other superhero TV shows and movies is that, in a crowded field, Ruby Rose
is playing the first openly lesbian superhero in a leading role. The character first shows up in the Arrowverse
in the 2018 crossover Elseworlds. In the following year’s massive crossover,
Crisis on Infinite Earths, Batwoman takes a prominent role in the conflict as the multiverse’s
Paragon of Courage. This version of Batwoman was first introduced
in the comics toward the end of the 2005 line-wide event Infinite Crisis, though at first fans
weren’t sure who she was. She was soon given her own solo series and
became a prominent part of the Bat Family, though Batwoman and Batman don’t often get
along. Shortly after DC’s 2016 relaunch, Batman invited
Batwoman to lead his new group of “Batmen,” in Detective Comics, though he gave his cousin
her walking papers after she killed the reformed villain Clayface. The first time the bisexuality of John Constantine, whose name should be pronounced Constantine
if you’re talking about the comics version, “John Constantine.” “Constantine.” “Is it? I don’t care.” is brought up is in 1992’s Hellblazer #51,
and the reveal doesn’t come with a lot of fanfare. Speaking of how he doesn’t maintain many long-term
relationships, Constantine’s narration reads: “Girlfriends, the odd boyfriend… They all have the nasty habit of walking out
on me.” Neither the 2005 film Constantine nor the
2014 TV series of the same name make any mention of Constantine’s bisexuality. But when Matt Ryan’s version of Constantine
became part of CW’s Arrowverse, his bisexuality was explicitly addressed. Constantine becomes a recurring character
on Legends of Tomorrow in the show’s third season, and he is depicted in romantic situations
with both men and women. He and Sara Lance have a one-night stand,
and later it’s revealed that he and the Time Bureau goofball Gary have had some kind of
brief fling. “Yeah, Constantine let me down easy too.. Something about a balance between good and
evil.” Years earlier, Constantine was also in a relationship
with a male bartender named Desmond. In fact, Constantine is plagued with guilt
over memories of his old lover, who he was forced to send to Hell in order to banish
the demon Neron from Earth. When the DC Universe streaming service revived
the Young Justice animated series, it included the reveal that the show’s new version of
Aquaman was in a same-sex relationship. Orin, the original Aquaman you may be more
familiar with, retires from all things “super,” and Kaldur, formerly Aqualad, assumes the
name Aquaman as well as the leadership of the Justice League. In Young Justice: Outsiders, Kaldur is depicted
as being in a same-sex relationship with the Atlantean Wyynd. It isn’t clear whether Kaldur identifies as
gay or bisexual. In earlier seasons of Young Justice, Kaldur
is shown to have romantic feelings for female characters. In particular, while still using the name
Aqualad, Kaldur holds a torch for Tula, also known as Aquagirl, and is heartbroken when
she gets involved with his best friend Tempest. It could be that he’s bisexual, or that in
those earlier instances he hadn’t yet come to accept his sexuality. For a long time, it was one of DC Comics’
worst kept secrets that Harley Quinn was both bisexual and in a non-monogamous relationship
with fellow Gotham City anti-hero Poison Ivy. They’d been friends and more in comics, cartoons,
and even video games for years trading innuendo and hints all the time but for a long time
there was no official word on the pairing. But then Harley Quinn writers Jimmy Palmiotti
and Amanda Conner confirmed Harley and Ivy’s relationship status in 2015, and fans finally
got to see the pair share a kiss in 2017’s Harley Quinn #25. Harley was understandably devastated when
Poison Ivy died during the 2018/2019 DC miniseries Heroes in Crisis. Thankfully, by the end of the series, it’s
shown that Ivy had prepared for the potential of her death by creating a plant-based clone
of herself who then goes on to team up with Harley in the Harley Quinn & Poison Ivy miniseries. In 1992, Marvel Comics made history with its
first openly gay superhero. In Alpha Flight #106, during a battle with
the World War II-era superhero Major Mapleleaf, Northstar admits that he’s gay. Shortly after the fight, he opens up to the
world at large, and his coming out is soon on the front page of the Canadian newspapers. Northstar’s visibility in Marvel Comics has
had its ups and downs ever since. He eventually left Alpha Flight for the more
well-known X-Men. Northstar was a teacher at Xavier’s Institute
and was famously killed by a mind-controlled Wolverine in 2005’s Wolverine #25. He got better, and more recently, Northstar
and his sister Aurora joined the mutants of Marvel on the island haven of Krakoa as part
of Marvel’s Dawn of X storyline. Still, while he may not be a Marvel A-lister,
his 1992 coming out issue wasn’t the last time the character made history. Same-sex marriage became legal in the Marvel
Universe’s New York and the real world in 2011, and Northstar and his partner Kyle were
wed in Marvel’s first same-sex superhero nuptials during 2012’s Astonishing X-Men #51. In 2015, Marvel Comics readers learned that
Iceman, also known as Bobby Drake and one of the original X-Men, was a gay man and the
reveal unfolded in a manner only a comic book could pull off. When All-New X-Men was launched in 2012, the
title was more than a little ironic. The series opens with the original five X-men,
including Iceman, being brought from the time of their origin into the present, while they’re
still teenagers. So when the teenage Jean Grey takes the teen
Iceman aside in 2015’s All-New X-Men #40 to reveal that she knows he’s gay, there is also
an older version of Iceman out there in the world who has been dating women for his entire
adult life. In fact, part of the reason teen Iceman has
trouble accepting his sexuality is because his older counterpart appears to be straight. How could he be gay if his future counterpart
isn’t? In Uncanny X-Men #600, the adult Bobby is
confronted by the younger versions of Iceman and Jean Grey, and admits he’s been in the
closet for years. Since coming out, Iceman has enjoyed a number
of short-lived solo series, and took on an important role helping oppressed mutants escape
to Krakoa in Marauders. Like Harley Quinn, Renee Montoya made her
first appearance not in the comics, but in the ’90s cartoon Batman: The Animated Series. But it would be over a decade before the former
Gotham detective would become a bona fide superhero. Montoya’s first appearance in the comics was
in 1992’s Batman #475, in which she is introduced working with Harvey Bullock inside Gotham’s
Major Crimes Unit. She then stepped into the spotlight in 2002
with Gotham Central a comic focusing on the Gotham City Police Department. Fed up with the force’s corruption, Montoya
quits the GCPD and falls on hard times. She drinks habitually and loses her girlfriend
Daria. The vigilante Vic Sage, also known as the
Question, then recruits Montoya during the series 52 to help him fight the criminal organization
Intergang. By the time that series is over, Sage has
succumbed to cancer and Montoya has taken up the mantle of the Question. Despite a few revamps and reboots here and
there, Montoya has remained the Question in the comics. More recently, Montoya has helped Superman’s
wife in the espionage thriller miniseries Lois Lane. Rosie Perez brought Montoya to life
in the 2020 film Birds of Prey, and remaining comic accurate her character was indeed a
lesbian. America Chavez is a lesbian raised by a gay
couple and she’s also one of Marvel’s most powerful superheroes. She’s super strong, she can fly, she has super
speed, and she’s nearly invulnerable. And when her series America launched in 2017,
she became the first LGBTQ+ person of color to lead her own ongoing title in the history
of Marvel Comics. Originally known as Miss America – based on
the character of the same name from the 1940s – the present America… (the character) first
appearing in the 2011 miniseries Vengeance, Chavez gained a lot more attention as a member
of the Young Avengers and during the 2015 line-wide event Secret Wars, when she was
part of the all-female A-Force. Along with her solo series, America joined
the Ultimates and eventually became the team’s leader. More recently, she was part of a new incarnation
of the West Coast Avengers, led by the group’s founding member Hawkeye. The heroes Hulkling and Wiccan enjoy one of
the longest-running same-sex relationships in comics. They were introduced in Young Avengers #1,
when both the heroes seemed to be younger versions of the classic Avengers line-up,
whose origins were shrouded in mystery. What’s particularly interesting is the actual
characters these two were based on. Hulkling, as his codename suggests, looks
like a younger and smaller version of the Hulk. Wiccan, on the other hand, goes by the name
“Asgardian” when he’s introduced, suggesting a connection to Thor. So it was particularly interesting to base
these two young gay men on heroes who are known to regularly beat the tar out of one
another. But in the end, neither Hulkling nor Wiccan
proved to have any significant connection to those classic Avengers. Hulkling’s physical appearance is due to his
mixed Skrull and Kree ancestry, and has nothing to do with gamma rays. Wiccan, meanwhile, eventually learns he’s
one of the twin sons born to the mutant Scarlet Witch and the android hero Vision. Hulkling and Wiccan have never strayed far
from the spotlight of Marvel Comics since their introduction. Both recently appeared in the 2019 Death’s
Head miniseries, and Wiccan is one of the members of the new team Strikeforce, which
includes a number of occult-themed or otherwise non-traditional heroes such as Blade, the
Winter Soldier and Angela. Check out one of our newest videos right here! Plus, even more Looper videos about your favorite
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