The Great Coming Out Party… DC Edition!
posted at 8:51 pm on May 21, 2012 by Mike Rathbone
Not DC as in District of Columbia but DC as in DC Comics, Inc. It seems like DC has “evolved” along with the President and decided to change a previously straight character’s sexual orientation. Now, I hate the fact that a significant minority of my posts here have been related to homosexuality in one way or another (there are other things I’d much rather blog about). However, this development cannot be ignored for a comics fan like me.
It may turn out a relatively minor character is the one they change. However, if they decide to mess with the top tier, like Superman, Batman, or Flash, then we are going to have some problems. These are important characters that have established histories and personalities and you can’t go changing them on a dime. A key part of Superman is his relationship with Lois Lane. It won’t work the same if he suddenly becomes interested in Jimmy Olsen.
Now I can see how they could change Batman into liking dudes (I mean, the Wertham Commission thought he was having “improper relations” with Robin), but despite that, some of Batman’s key subplots involve his flirtatious interactions with Catwoman and his issues with Talia al Ghul. A gay Batman wouldn’t work the same and he’d be a less effective character.
I think DC is just trying to garner publicity with this gimmick and that is what this is, a gimmick. I have no problem with a homosexual superhero character if it serves the story and he/she is interesting, but this is an attempt to get headlines. You attract and KEEP readers with well written, well-thought out stories and characters (gay or straight) that we share a connection with. You do NOT keep readers with gimmicks. Spider-Man’s black costume, while initially a gimmick, actually served to further the story (see Venom). Wonder Woman’s costume change (the one in the 70s) did not.