First Marvel Gay Superhero Movie: Things To Expect
Marvel’s Production Chief Victoria Alonso was spotted at the Los Angeles premiere of ‘Captain Marvel’ where she told Variety that “the world is ready” for a gay superhero in the MCU. There were several rumors about Marvel’s next project, ‘The Eternals’, possibly including a gay actor as a homosexual character like Hercules or Eros. Let’s analyze this in detail because many took her comments as confirmation.
A MORE INCLUSIVE MCU
Marvel already revealed that transgender actor Zach Barack was cast in ‘Spider-Man: Far From Home’ as a friend of Peter, and the comments from Alonzo seem to confirm that superheroes could finally become more inclusive. Marvel boss Kevin Feige even promised that an already established character would come out of the closet.
“Why wouldn’t we be?” Alonso said. “I’m so passionate about this, I’ve got to tell you. Our entire success is based on people that are incredibly different. Why wouldn’t we? Why would we only want to be recognized by only one type of person? Our audience is global, is diverse, is inclusive. If we don’t do it that way for them, we will fail.”
“If we don’t put the pedal to the metal on the diversity and the inclusivity, we will not have continued success. Our determination is to have that for all of the people out there watching our movies.”
Fans are certainly waiting for this happen, especially if it’s revealed that Valkyrie is a lesbian, although they did not address that in ‘Thor: Ragnarok’. Furthermore, Drax could potentially be bisexual if his interest in Thor during ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ was any indication. While it would certainly be a welcomed change, Marvel has taken too long to make this move.
They just released their first female solo film, ‘Captain Marvel’, which should not have taken this long in this modern era. Moreover, it’s safe to say that the world has been waiting for a gay or LGBTQ+ representative character for a long time. Comic books started including diverse people in the 90s with Pied Piper and Northstar from DC and Marvel.
OTHER QUEER CHARACTERS
They continued with Apollo, Midnighter, Wiccan, Hulking, and more. There are plenty of characters to choose from for any film. It’s time for them to hit the big screen. Fortunately, the world of television superheroes has accepted much more inclusiveness. The CW’s ‘Arrowverse’ has been very diverse with queer heroes.
‘Batwoman’ is the most famous DC lesbian character, and she will get a TV series with Ruby Rose in the lead. Even Marvel Television has done a better job with LGBTQ representation than the Marvel Cinematic Universe. ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ presented a gay Inhuman called Joey Gutierrez on its third season.
Jeri Hogarth, the lesbian lawyer, has appeared in several of their Netflix shows, and Karolina Dean and Nico Minoru started a romance during the first season of ‘Runaways’. Meanwhile, the MCU has not allowed this diversity at all, even when it seemed most natural. Taika Waititi shot a scene with Valkyrie in bed with a woman, but it was ultimately cut of the final version of ‘Thor: Ragnarok’.
Other ‘Thor’ films could have said something about Loki’s persuasion and talked about Korg’s gayness, which was featured in the comics. Additionally, Disney revealed a scene from ‘Black Panther’ to the press where Ayo and Okoye flirted, but again, they cut it out of the film. However, this is not just a Marvel problem.
THE INDUSTRY IS STILL PREJUDICED
This is not an issue of just one production company, and it’s still very much the nature of Hollywood. GLAAD makes annual reports in LGBTQ characters in television and films. In the 2018-2019 season, prime time scripted shows included 8.8% of LGBTQ representation. Of course, some people criticized the roles themselves, but that’s a whole other subject.
In comparison, only 12.8% of 2017 films from big studios included a bit of representation, and out of thousands of characters, only 28 were LGBTQ. The general excuse is that television shows can be created for certain audiences and appeal to a specific group of people, but movies focus on pleasing everyone that goes to the theater.
One of their main concerns is the international box office, mainly China and Russia that are major markets. Both these countries have laws against LGBTQ people. However, China also bans movies with ghost and time travel, but those things are still included in many films. The U.S. might not have outright censorship laws in this matter, but there are big homophobes in positions of power.
The China excuse only goes to a certain extent. Studios might be concern about groups such as “One Million Moms” boycotting their movies, but there is honestly not backlash that will stop a Marvel film from succeeding right now. Many Americans have been in favor of gay marriage since 2012, but it was finally legalized in 2015.
Furthermore, motion pictures with LGBTQ characters have been praised in the past couple of years. ‘Moonlight’ was the first Academy Award Best Picture winner which focused on a gay man. ‘Green Book’, this year’s winner, did not address the subject of Don Shirley’s sexuality for long or in-depth, but its win can still be considered impressive.
That’s because any inclusion of the most minor suggestion of an LGBTQ person could basically disqualify the film from the running. Additionally, three of out all the prizes for acting at the Oscars were given to actors in queer roles. Mahershala Ali was Don Shirley in ‘Green Book’, Olivia Coleman was Queen Anne in ‘The Favourite’, and Rami Malek was Freddie Mercury in ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’.
Read more: 20 Major Characters Marvel "Borrowed" From DC With Big Success (For Some Of Them At Least)
‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ was criticized for its depiction of Mercury’s bisexuality, but it still made $800 million around the world, which proves that adding a gay character will not negatively affect the success of a film. Several superhero movies have added certain queer aspects and managed to be adored by fans. The unidentified hero of ‘V For Vendetta’ was in favor of gay rights.
‘Deadpool 2’ included Negasonic Teenage Warhead’s girlfriend and also suggested that she was pansexual. While ‘Deadpool’ is Marvel, it’s not part of the MCU. The problem is that these films were R rated, and it seems that Hollywood still sees LGBTQ inclusions as “too mature” for younger audiences. Fox even released ‘Once Upon A Deadpool’, a PG-13 version of the original, intended for China.
However, the film refused to cut out any LGBTQ suggestions, and therefore, Hollywood’s excuse was deemed worthless. The best thing Marvel could do is add these characters and their stories in a positive way just like their heterosexual heroes. The inclusion of them will help more people all over the world so that, one day, homophobia will disappear.
‘The Eternals’ is planned for a November 6, 2020 release. Let us know if you would to see a queer character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. If you liked this article, share it with your friends who have been clamoring for more diversity in superhero stories. See you next time!