Tag Archives: Kevin Keller

Compulsory Comic-Con Blog Post About Race [And Archie Comics!]

The amount that’s going on today, let alone just this week, has been overwhelming. From the Pan Am Games starting tonight here in Toronto [which we only care about more than you do because it directly affects inconveniences our lives] to, as mentioned in the title, the second day of Comic-Con International in San Diego to the Confederate Flag being taken down from the South Carolina Capitol grounds.

I need to take a short paragraph just to state how immensely important this is for America, and the only reason I’m not covering it today is because I don’t want add what few drops I have to offer to an already overflowing new cycle. That being said, for any who are further interested in the topic of the Confederate flag and all it stands for I have a few articles that are over 150 years old for you to look over. Enjoy.

To get to the actual content of this post allow me to inform everyone that I am all about Archie Comics. I dug them before middle school, when my dad bought me sixty or so assorted digests and double digests at a garage sale, and I love them now years after having misplaced every single one. To put that more simply I have been into tales about a group of all-American teenagers before and after my actual teen years. Considering the fact that they’ve been around for almost three quarters of a century the titular Archie and the other residents of Riverdale have managed to perform the not unimpressive feat of telling timeless stories that appeal to generation after generation.

The thing is, a rolling stone gathers no moss and all that.

Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, the publisher’s Chief Creative Officer, has been making strides to ensure that the world doesn’t forget about Archie Andrews. Non-comics-obsessives may not be aware of Afterlife With Archie, a series that he is writing himself which features the dead rising and the gang doing what they have to not to get eaten. Art by the immensely talented Franco Francavilla [who also illustrated the cover on the right] aside it’s good, with conventional tropes being carried out by characters we know like the backs of our hands. Crossovers with other franchises include GleePredator, and, somehow, Sharknado. Anywhere teens could potentially be found has the potential to host Betty, Jughead, Dilton, and the rest of them- Continue reading

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Homosexuality In Comics As Of July 26th

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At Comic-Con this year Peter Parker/Spider-Man actor Andrew Garfield announced that the character would not, in fact, be gay in the upcoming films. 

Now if you didn’t know, and if you don’t frequent the same news sites I do it may have completely passed you, Garfield actually expressed some interest earlier this month in portraying a flexible aspect of Peter Parker’s sexuality. I’ll let him speak for himself, of course:

“What if MJ is a dude? Why can’t we discover that Peter is exploring his sexuality?  It’s hardly even groundbreaking!…So why can’t he be gay? Why can’t he be into boys?”

While at Comic-Con he  was also able to follow-up these comments with the following statement: 

“It would be illogical for me in the third movie to be like, “You know what? I’m kind of attracted to guys.” That’s just not going to work. It’s clear. It was just more a philosophical question.” Continue reading

Homosexuality In Comics As Of May 20th

hulklingwiccankissIn the series following superhero team The Authority Batman/Superman analogues Midnighter and Apollo shared a kiss in 2000. A decade later Kevin Keller premiered in an issue of Veronica, the first openly gay character in Archie Comics history; he meets his future husband in a military hospital after being wounded in action. This year Young Avengers Hulking and Wiccan shared their first kiss, the result of the former proposing to the latter. Not to be outdone, fellow Marvel character Northstar will actually be beating the couple to the altar with his fiance this June.

Two days ago, May 20th, DC Senior VP Publicity Courtney Simmons announced that “One of the major iconic DC characters will reveal that he is gay in a storyline in June.”

As far as the Big Two go, Marvel’s ahead of the game. In this case, “the game” refers to “positive representations of homosexuals in comics.” Northstar announced “I am gay” in 1992, and since then has been followed by characters such as X-Man Graymalkin, Avengers Academy member Striker, and alternate-universe versions of many, many characters. In comparison, “new” Batwoman Katherine Kane is a lesbian, and is currently heading her own ongoing series, something Marvel can’t claim.

To be more specific, DC is going to reintroduce a previously existing character (previously straight) as “one of [their] most prominent gay characters.” This means that the character will not be Batman or Superman. As someone who can’t really get behind the company’s New 52 2011 relaunch I cannot speculate on what remaining characters may be coming out as gay. What I can state, however, is why other “major, iconic” characters could never be rebooted in this way.

It’s not because of fan outrage, though that’s a factor. So many of the really iconic DC characters have rich histories which involve their heterosexual love interests. It’s difficult to imagine Clark Kent without Lois Lane and her reporting on the Big Blue Boy Scout, and basically every male hero has a girlfriend who has played a significant part in their formation as a character. Batman is a character whose sexuality defines him almost not at all, though in his case his long-questioned relationship with the Boy Wonder may prove iffy.

That being said, I don’t see how major and/or iconic this gay DC character can be. To be that said character will have to have been around for a number of years. Fans are always complaining about something, but to retcon years of history will be a very messy process. I’m looking forward to finding out who it is, but am skeptical about how much clout the person will really have in the grand scheme of things.