Queer Comic Characters: Aruna Shende (Oct 30th)

Aruna Shende’s an intersexed woman from DC’s Bat-verse. She’s also another shapeshifter, which makes most qualify her as transgendered, though since she has no biological sex, I think intersexed is a better classification for her. Aruna was introduced in Scott Peterson and Mike Deodato’s Batgirl Annual # 1 (August 2000).

Aruna Shende

Aruna Shende

Sometimes Batman and Batgirl III need to take a vacation. Of course, their vacations are working ones where they fight crime and solve the kidnapping of Indian actor Ashok, who’d recently moved to Gotham City. This takes them to Mumbai, India, home of Bollywood. Continue reading “Queer Comic Characters: Aruna Shende (Oct 30th)”

Queer Comic Characters: Rose Copen (Oct 29th)

Argh. To continue, a theme, Rose Copen’s yet another lesbian pirate. Okay, she’s actually in the Australian Navy, but she has an eye patch from a gun fight.

Rose Copen

Rose Copen

From Brian K. Vaughn and Pia Guerra’s Y: The Last Man, Rose is introduced toward the middle of comics when Yorick Brown, Dr. Allison Mann, and Agent 355 need water transportation from San Fransisco to Australia. Continue reading “Queer Comic Characters: Rose Copen (Oct 29th)”

Queer Comic Characters: Pride High (Oct 28th)

Sometimes, you need to tell your own story about people who are like you, and that’s what writer Tommy Roddy did. He created a comic book called Pride High, which features Poseidon Preparatory Academy for Heroic Youth, a boarding school for super-powered teenagers, and stars a diverse group of young LGBT youth and their allies, enemies, mentors, and teachers.

In the comic’s first arc, the students divide themselves into teams and the teams compete against each other in battle simulations in the Inter-Squad Championship. The comics about one five-member team, based on a gay-straight alliance and formed by a group of close friends, that call themselves Pride High. Meet the members: Craig Newman (Mindsweeper), Jorge Ponce (Kid Mischief), Claire Aedhamair (Scotch Bonnet), Suravi Small, and Chippendale Chesterfield (Chip Cheetah).

Pride High: Scotch Bonnet, Chip, Mindsweeper, Suravi, & Kid Mischief

Pride High

Continue reading “Queer Comic Characters: Pride High (Oct 28th)”

Queer Comic Characters: Anole (Oct 27th)

The United States government did a study on youth suicide, which reported that LGBT youth are two to three times as likely their heterosexual peers to attempt suicide. Such depressing facts often get reflected on the page and become yet another gay stereotype in literature. Victor Borkowski (Anole) almost became a fictional X-Men statistic and bad cliche.

Victor Borkowski (Anole)

Anole

Initially a background character in the relaunch of the New Mutants, Anole’s young, openly gay, and looks like a reptile. He has superhuman speed, agility, and reflexes. His tongue’s sticky; he can crawl walls; and he can camouflage himself. Anole’s 16-years-old when he joins the Xavier Institute. Continue reading “Queer Comic Characters: Anole (Oct 27th)”

Queer Comic Characters: Rictor (Oct 26)

One of the most interesting things about Julio Esteban “Ric” Richter (Rictor) is that he’s been in comic books since he was a teenager and has grown to adulthood in them. Rictor first appears in X-Factor #17 in June 1987, created by writer Louise Simonson and artist Walter Simonson.

Julio Esteban “Ric” Richter (Rictor)

Rictor

Rictor first becomes part of the X-Factor after he’s captured by the anti-mutant organization, the Right. The Right wants to use Rictor’s seismic powers to create an earthquake in San Fransisco in order incite hate against mutants. However, X-Factor foils their plans and rescues Rictor before any harm’s done. Rictor ends up joining the team and being trained by them. Continue reading “Queer Comic Characters: Rictor (Oct 26)”

Queer Comic Characters: Jenny Sparks (Oct 25th)

Jenny Sparks is probably the member of the Authority I miss Warren Ellis writing her the most. Jenny’s the Spirit of the 20th Century, and for every century humankind has lived through, there has been a Jenny.

The 20th Century’s Jenny is Jenny Sparks, a foul-mouthed, chain-smoking, bisexual with the power of electricity. Electricity being the biggest innovator of the 20th Century. Jenny can control it, but not create it, and she can also travel along power lines like electricity. She is a protector of humanity.

Jenny Sparks

Jenny Sparks

Continue reading “Queer Comic Characters: Jenny Sparks (Oct 25th)”

Queer Comic Characters: Captain Janet McSapphic (Oct 24th)

I was going to do an entire entry devoted to all the Lesbian Pirates of I Was Kidnapped By Lesbian Pirates From Outer Space!!!. Then I considered doing separate entries for each, but they would take up a large part of the month. So instead, I decide to focus on my favorite Lesbian Pirate:

Janet McSapphic or The Captain

Captain Janet McSapphic

Full warning: I have only read the first arc, so please don’t spoil me for the rest. Yes, I know there are more available online. (Read I Was Kidnapped By Lesbian Pirates From Outer Space!!!) However, I want to support writer and artist Megan Rose Gedris and buy her comics in print. That and print will be good for re-reading when I’m 50+ and thinking about how awesome lesbian pirates in space are. I don’t want to relay on the Wayback Archive and my memory, especially to say “D’oh, it was deleted in the Great Google Disaster of 2032.” Continue reading “Queer Comic Characters: Captain Janet McSapphic (Oct 24th)”

Queer Comic Characters: Northstar (Oct 23rd)

Jean-Paul Beaubier (Northstar) is technically the first openly gay character in the Marvel universe. Created by Chris Claremont and John Byrne, Byrne says he always meant for Northstar to be gay; he just wasn’t allowed to say so due to Marvel editor Jim Shooter seeing an openly gay character as a “political position” and the Comics Code Authority.

Jean-Paul Beaubier (Northstar)

Northstar

If you’ve never heard of Northstar, that’s probably because you’ve never read Alpha Flight. Alpha Flight’s Canada’s premiere superhero team, government-run like all those socialist programs in Canada. 😉 And Northstar’s their requisite snobby French-Canadian champion skier turned superhero. Okay, you might’ve also heard of Northstar from this little title called X-Men where he also appears. Continue reading “Queer Comic Characters: Northstar (Oct 23rd)”

Queer Comic Characters: Maggie Sawyer (Oct 22)

Maggie Sawyer first appeared in John Byrne’s Superman Vol. 2 #4 in April 1987, which was the same year the Comics Code Authority dropped its ban on LGBT characters in comics. She’s a no-nonsense detective who started out on the Metropolis PD and has since moved to Gotham. And Maggie’s just awesome enough to ride out on a horse in her formal wear from a biodome being poisoned by a bad guy (long story).

Maggie Sawyer

Maggie Sawyer

Continue reading “Queer Comic Characters: Maggie Sawyer (Oct 22)”

Queer Comic Book Characters: Hulkling (Oct 21st)

The struggle with identity can be a great one, especially for queer youth. However, Theodore “Teddy” Altman’s (Hulkling) struggle isn’t about his sexuality, but his heritage. Struggling with heritage seems to be a popular stand in for sexual orientation identity struggles in the Marvel universe.

Theodore “Teddy” Altman (Hulkling)

Teddy first appears in Young Avengers where everyone assumes he’s a Hulk, hence his name. In fact, Teddy himself assumes this is where his bulky green powered-up appearance comes from. But Teddy’s not gamma-radiated, instead he’s a Kree-Skrull hybrid with super strength, super healing, and shape-shifting abilities. He’s also romantically involved with teammate Billy Kaplan (Wiccan). Continue reading “Queer Comic Book Characters: Hulkling (Oct 21st)”