Anyone with two brain cells to rub together knows that the person you take to bed in no way determines your ability to kick some serious butt. Yet, this revelation is still something of a new concept to a large portion of society. Thankfully, that’s changing. As more and more artists represent LGBT people who take up the reigns of justice (or set out to destroy society), the obviously false notion that gay people can’t throw down is slowly going out the window. And that’s good for everybody, but mostly fans of comics. So here, for your consideration, are some superheroes and villains who are proud to be both homosexual and super-powered. Excelsior!
1. Batwoman is a Jewish Lesbian. How’s That for Diversity?
It’s funny to think that — for the longest time — there were rumors swirling around the nature of Batman and Robin’s relationship when they weren’t fighting crime. While those rumors have never panned out (but no one’s discounting them), the Dynamic Duo have a lesbian friend named Kate Kane, a former soldier who shares the cape and cowl with Bruce Wayne.
2. The Iceman Cometh, but it’s Complicated
Okay, there’s some debate surrounding the exact details of the X-Man’s sexuality. However, in one particularly telling story, Iceman and teammate Jean Grey are thrown into an alternate reality in which Iceman is able to speak to his older self, an older self that is gay. The elder Iceman explains that he attempted to act straight for several years in the hope that his actions might lead to him actually becoming straight.
3. Canary Swings Both Ways
One of the most popular recurring characters on the CW’s Arrow, Sarah Lance, is a martial arts expert who goes by the extremely unthreatening moniker Canary. She’s also a bisexual, having dated the show’s star, Oliver Queen and Nyssa Raatko.
4. Midnighter and Apollo Have Lots of Pride
Midnighter and Apollo are often considered a homosexual counterpart to Batman and Superman. Apollo uses the sun’s energy to fly as well as gain super strength and heat vision. Midnighter has heightened perception that allows him to anticipate his opponent’s moves before they strike (he’s also a ruthless killer). Together, the couple could probably give Supes and the Bat a run for their money.
5. Free-spirited Harley Quinn has Bicurious Tendencies
Okay, so Harley Quinn isn’t strictly a gay person. She’s just the kind of free spirit who will follow her heart no matter where it takes her. At various points in her criminal career, her heart has taken her into the arms of plant-sprouting villainess, Poison Ivy. And to be honest, that’s probably a much more productive relationship than Harley and the Joker.
6. Ultimate Colossus Likes X-Men
In Marvel’s Ultimate timeline, Piotr Rasputin is still the genial giant with metal skin and a heart of gold. He also happens to be one of the few gay members of the X-Men, which has caused this action hero to suffer some feelings of isolation and loneliness. Of course, it probably doesn’t help matters when you briefly set your sights on teammate Wolverine. While Colossus still hasn’t found love just yet, he remains an invaluable member of the Ultimate X-Men.
7. Xavin Explores All Possibilities
Comics sometimes allow writers to really explore the identity of gender in a way few other mediums allow. Xavin is one example of that ability. A Skrull, Xavin has — in addition to super strength and elasticity — the ability to change shapes. This power means that Xavin’s gender is fluid; the alien appears as a man, a woman, and in her original Skrull form.
8. Shatterstar Hearts Rictor
When it comes to finding a romantic partner, Shatterstar still has some learning to do. He was born on a planet that existed solely to produced intergalactic television. Forced to fight in a televised battle arena, Shatterstar developed the austere demeanor of a noble warrior. Once he got to Earth, however, this asexual warrior found himself falling in love with male teammate Rictor.
9. Northstar Breaks Down Barriers with a Gay Wedding
Once one of the most popular members of Canadian superhero team Alpha Flight, Northstar also has the distinction of being Marvel’s first-ever openly gay character. In fact, Northstar has another distinction. Not too long ago, Northstar became the first superhero in comics to participate in a gay wedding when he married his longtime beau, Kyle Jinadu.
10. Moondragon Has a Wide Range of Lovers
Sporting a shaven head and an inimitable personality, Heather Douglas (aka, Moondragon), is a bisexual woman who’s at the height of human evolution. Based solely on the benefits of her personal regimen, Douglas has gained power as a telepath, a martial artist, and a minor telekinetic. In addition, she’s a geneticist and she’s been linked to such high profile heroes as Daredevil, Thor, and Phyla-Vell.
11. Wiccan and the Hulkling Are a Strong Twosome
Often referred to as Marvel’s most powerful gay couple, Wiccan and Hulkling strengthen their relationship as they help save the world in Young Avengers. Both Avengers are second generation (Wiccan is the son of the Scarlet Witch and Hulkling is the son of Captain Marvel and a Skrull princess), and both have repeatedly distinguished themselves on the battlefield.
12. The Question Doesn’t Question her Lesbian Sexuality
Batman is only one guy; he can’t get to all of the crimes perpetrated in Gotham City. So, for the ones that slip through the cracks, there is The Question, a former lesbian detective named Renee Montoya, who takes down criminals on the strength of her superior sleuthing ability and her wicked martial arts abilities.
13. Mystique, the Bisexual Shape-shifter
The shape-shifter known as Mystique really just wants someone to love. You know when she attempted to settle down with Nightcrawler’s dad, she only ran off because he (and the rest of the town) chased her and her blue-skinned kid out of town. In the character’s quest to find love, she’s also spent long years with Destiny, while they raised future X-Men member Rogue.
14. Sera Brings a Transgender Character to the Comics
Sera is a relatively new character in the Marvel comic universe who is the companion to Angela, Asgard’s Assasin. She also happens to be Marvel’s only real transgender character. The character is not a gender bending shape shifter like Mystique. Sera was biologically born male and consciously transitioned towards a female identity, so truly represents the trans experience, although she isn’t defined by her trans status. It’s good to see comics representing the wide spectrum of fans with LGBT characters like this.
15. Deadpool is Flexible with his Sexuality
One of Deadpool’s comic writers described the spandex-clad mercenary as “omnisexual.” Tim Miller, the movie’s director, described him as “pansexual.” Whatever the label, he seems to swing every which way with no discrimination. So far, his actual dalliances have all been heterosexual, with a sprinkling of same-sex flirtations mostly played for laughs (at least on film). Rumor has it they’re going to delve more into his homoerotic side of his nature in the sequel, but don’t expect Wade Wilson to go out and catch feelings any time soon. Some have criticized this as mere “gay baiting,” but it will be interesting to see how far they go to break boundaries with this R-rated character.
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