I'm 50% superheroes, 35% maths, 10% pansexual and I'm not sure about the remaining 5%.
This tumblr, though, is 95% superheroes.
It’s Tony’s plan to introduce Steve to the 21st century media through a morning show.
“Last weekend, my boyfriend and I were trying to figure out how to….”
She interrupts him and Steve can tell the ever constant smile on her face has become forced.
“Nowadays we don’t say boy friends when we refer to our friends. That’s something only women say.” She laughs loudly.
Steve refrains from flinching because not only will it come off badly in light of how the rest of this conversation is sure to go, but also because Tony will mock him for being afraid of the press.
Her co-host picks up after the audience laughs, “We’ve heard that’s something you have to adjust to—modern day slang. Even I struggle to keep up with all this new-fangled slang.”
Steve returns the man’s smile though he’s sure his has a lot more exasperation hidden in it. He doesn’t roll his eyes though so he counts that as a win.
“Sure has been an adjustment.” Steve says. The hosts settle back down with relief and…
He’s talked about it with Sam—about coming out to America and he’s had Sam’s go ahead for months. And the way these co-hosts on the top rated morning show are relieved that he’s just confused about ‘modern slang’.
And fuck it.
“Like I was saying, last weekend, my lover and I were trying to figure out this new recipe…”
The studio erupts into chaos.
12/03/13 edit: Tonight on Twitter, Deadpool writer Gerry Duggan confirmed that Deadpool is queer, describing him as being omnisexual which is often used interchangeably with pansexual (a more inclusive form of bisexuality) so the following should now be read in the context of how this aspect of Deadpool’s character was presented before an official statement was made…Also, this current team has been openly promoting Spideypool (the Deadpool/Spiderman ship) outside of the comic by making a Spideypool companion video and even their own fanfic.
02/20/14 edit: In the last day fellow Deadpool writers Christopher Hastings and Gail Simone have confirmed that Deadpool is pansexual/omnisexual. Hastings also announced that the upcoming Deadpool annual was written for Spideypool fans, the release is set for May 21st 2014 but no other details are known.
Deadpool debuted as a stock villain in New Mutants #98 in 1991 and was not given his own series until 1993’s four-part series The Circle Chase; between these two milestones, in Deadpool’s 9th ever appearance, is the first time we see Deadpool flirt with the man in Nomad #4
Obviously, this is not a serious come on, but it set the groundwork for what would be Deadpool’s canon interest in men.
There are inumerous examples of this type of behavior throughout the entire publication of Deadpool’s self-titled series, spinoff series, and guest spot appearances. Here are a few to demonstrate the variety of occurrences:
He even flirts with well-established gay characters
some of his most sexually explicit jokes tend to be directed toward men
and when he self identifies his sexuality he is very vague
"But he’s only joking"
The fact of the matter is that almost everything Deadpool does and says is framed in a comedic fashion, and yet the only canon aspects of this character that are systematically denied or questioned (with the excuse of it being comedy) are his “queer” tendencies.
The fans that deny these aspects of Deadpool are the same ones that deny he was raped by Typhoid Mary although the comic leaves no question as to the fact that she had sex with him without his consent and he became depressed and ashamed of himself because of it.
These fans get mad when you suggest that it was rape. They feel personally insulted because to them, the heterosexual male, Deadpool being raped makes him weak and unmanly. I suspect that this false view of weakness and unmanly behavior (or femininity) is rejected by these heterosexual male fans because they look up to Deadpool and this “weakness” threatens to reflect back on them. The same line of thinking goes to why they are so adamantly deny that he would never seriously wear women’s clothes.
(For more information on his being a transvestite, read this article)
It is this ignorance and homophobia of the majority of Deadpool fans, or, at least of his targeted market, that to address this character’s sexuality we have to first analyze the subtext involved.
Subtext is buttsex
- The implicit meaning or theme of a literary text.
- The underlying personality of a dramatic character as implied or indicated by a script or text and interpreted by an actor in performance.
In layman’s terms, subtest is a literary style to demonstrate an aspect of the character without explicitly saying to the audience. Subtext has often been used as a way to portray queer characters in a socially acceptable manner, commonly done through flirting jokingly
exaggerated stereotypes (also in the context of a joke)
(It should be noted that the picture above takes place after Deadpool has an epiphany to put aside his mask and to be his true self. Immediately afterward we see him in San Francisco like this and his internal dialogue suggests he may appear to stereotypical; this of course meaning that his true self is stereotypically flamboyantly gay.)
and cross-dressing (you guessed it, in the context of a joke)
It seems unnecessary to depend on this literary tool when Western society seems to be so progressive and accepting of the wide array of sexual expressions and practices that humans exhibit, but the comic book/geek community is a subculture and as the study of sociology will show you, a subculture tends to reject mainstream normality, especially when that subculture is build upon alienation from society.
"But Deadpool has only been in relationships with women"
Technically, that isn’t true.
Aside from Copycat, Death is Deadpool’s most intense and long-lasting romantic partner. Although the entity is usually depicted to be feminine and has reproduced, it has no gender and has also manifested as a masculine figure.
Deadpool has also only been officially married once (and happily, for that matter) and that was to an alien creature of a completely different species. Although appeared effeminate it was not technically a human and therefore an argument of gender would be irrelevant.
He has also been shown to be attracted to people who don’t fit within gender norms.
And then we have Cable.
As we discussed in the previous section, subtext is an important aspect of defining Deadpool’s sexuality and his relationship with Cable pushed the envelope for what could be considered subtext.
At one point Deadpool is is forced to visualize his deepest, darkest desire and he sees himself rubbing lotion on Cable while at the beach.
The characters themselves considered themselves married (conveyed in our handy literary tool of humorous subtext) and is even acknowledged on Marvel’s website
Their final separation with the “death” of Cable was highlighted in what appears to be a confirmation on the extent of their sexual relationship:
"But there are gay characters within the Marvel universe, so if Deadpool wasn’t straight they would just say so"
Let us talk about Mystique. An iconic figure who is one of Marvel’s most popular queer characters. Mystique has the ability to change her physical appearance to that of any person she chooses and she uses this ability in various ways to impersonate and manipulate people; in doing so she has seduced people regardless of gender, the justification always being a nefarious purpose.
The relation between this and Deadpool is that despite the given intentions of their behaving outside what we would define as heterosexuality it doesn’t change the fact that it does occur and it is a part of that characters canon.
It was only recently revealed that the friendship between Mystique and Destiny, her teammate in Brotherhood of Mutants, was actually a domestic partnership in which the two openly raised Rogue as their child, and Nightcrawler was even originally intended to be their biological child (through Mystique’s ability to transform into a male.) But the characters continued to be written as seemingly heterosexual, caring for each other to the extent that would be appropriate in a friendship and they were never shown to have any intimate or overtly flirtatious interactions.
Of course these characters were originally written at an earlier time in which subtext had to be far more subtle than it is now, but this demonstrates that Marvel has and does implement subtext to establish imperative and far-reaching aspects of canon.
A more recent and lateral comparison would be between Deadpool and Daken; Daken having first debuted in 2007 and being a well-known pansexual, as I would argue Deadpool is.
Daken has only had semi-serious romantic interest in a woman and is seen sexual situations with men only to manipulate them for his nefarious purposes (exactly as we have seen with Mystique.)
Despite the underwhelming evidence of his bisexuality it was questioned until it was confirmed in 2009 by Marjorie Liu who said he “will do anyone and anything [to achieve his goals and he’s] past that kind of identification. He’s beyond it.” Daniel Way (longtime writer of Deadpool in many titles and of his video game) confirmed what is now established as Daken’s pansexuality by saying, “He’s no more homosexual than he is heterosexual. It’s about control.”
What does this have to do with Deadpool? Simply that a well-established pansexual character who debuted in a much more tolerant time has less evidence of his pansexuality then Deadpool does.
Deal with it.
Thank you to everyone who came to this year’s queer superheroes panel at Montreal Comic Con. This year’s panel was something a bit new for me because I only talked about things that made me happy and that I could rec, which limited the more historical part of the panel, and cut down the number of DC and Marvel titles drastically. I enjoyed this format greatly and I had a very good time :)
I’ll order the titles I talked about in categories and tried to link to places to buy those, which will give you the books’ ISBNs if you want to buy them elsewhere.
Daken: (In order, complete, italics are crossovers with other series) Dark Wolverine vol 1, Dark Wolverine vol 2, Siege: X-Men, Wolverine Origins: Reckoning, Punisher: Franken-Castle, Daken: Dark Wolverine 1, Daken/X-23: Collision (and then there are volumes 2, 3 and 4, but watch me not adding them to the list). Fair warning: some of these are very hard to find and sold out in the Amazon link I’m giving. The link will mostly be for reference.
Tiny Titans: Tiny Titans has 8 volumes, but you don’t need to read them in any kind of order. Just have fun. Also it’s probably pushing to put this title in this list but more people should read Tiny Titans.
Other printed comics
The Authority: Authority 1, Authority 2 are the easiest to find and also the start of the series. Then you quickly get into books that are sold out. The complete list of collected books is on Wikipedia.
Hellblazer: Hellblazer has more than 300 issues. The Wikipedia page on all the books published is pretty complete.
Enigma: OMG! OMG PEOPLE THERE IS A NEW EDITION OF ENIGMA COMING OUT IN DECEMBER! I LIED YOU CAN BUY IT AGAIN, NOW! I’LL BUY IT TO EVERYONE I KNOW, IT WILL BE GREAT. So exciting!
The Posterchildren, by Kitty Burroughs
Hero, by Perry Moore
Webcomics (these are free!)
I also have a list of recs given by people in the attendance that I will look up soon: Failure to Fire, Fearless Defenders, Questionable Content (that I have listed recently in my webcomic list!), Girls with Slingshots.
Thank you again to everyone who came, and if you participated in the contest to win copies of Posterchildren, you’ll hear from me soon by email!
EDIT: I had forgotten X-Treme X-Men
Montreal Comiccon starts today! I’m hosting one panel for this convention.
Where Are the Queer Superheroes?
The popularity of superheroes has been inscreasing steadily in the last decade. However, even though DC and Marvel have put out more than fifty movies since 2000, none of them starred a queer superheroes - or even had one in the background. Are the comics any better? Where should we be looking for those rare gems?
Sep 14th at 5:00 PM until 5:45 PM | Room 512a
I am going to try running the panel differently than I have in the past with this one. It should still be great, though, of course, as nothing can be greater than talking about queer superheroes!
(And I’ll be giving away prints and comics. *hinthintnudgenudge*)
I’ve received 4 asks since yesterday that asked me variations of “how?” concerning the Tim/Kon kiss. Here’s the post I wrote a while back on that topic.
So I was thinking about how to answer an ask I got and I ended up deciding to write a sort of how-to on commissioning interesting (read: gay) commissions, because more people need to start doing it (and then post scans on tumblr). So this post is just a bunch of tips I’ve gathered to help get slash commissions from artists at conventions.
- Know exactly what you want to ask and to whom. Don’t just have a vague idea of “Steve/Tony slash” because then you’ll probably have to explain what slash is to one of your favourite artists and you’ll die on the spot. Make it something you can describe in a short sentence, like a prompt. “Tony hurt in a bed and Steve watching over him”, “Dick and Tim pillow fighting in boxers” (heh), that kind of thing. Having a ready prompt is also going to help if you’re nervous about talking to the artist because you’ll be able to, like, practice asking in your mind. Yes this sounds ridiculous but this really helped me with some artists.
- “x and x kissing” is not a good prompt. It will most likely get you an outright refusal that might be insulting because some artists make faces and stuff. I’ve ended up asking straight-out for kisses a lot anyway, and, honestly, the vast majority of artists are very professional and don’t sneer or anything, but they still all say no (except if you’re requesting a canon gay couple). The point of this is: ask for subtext, symbolism and romance. Have something in mind that is clearly shippy but stays within the plausible deniability spectrum. And symbolism can be fandom insides, which can be fun to play with.
- Have back up plans in case artists say no to your first request because of technicalities like “this is too complicated”. Even if you want something with two characters, have an alternative with only one character. Even if you want a full-body, have a back-up plan with a bust. Asking for two characters is probably either going to cost twice as much (and, uh, commissions aren’t cheap, but honestly that one rarely stops me) or the artist is simply going to refuse drawing two characters. Many artists do one-character only commissions, so be ready for that. Just so you all know, Marcus To is one of them. It’s pretty rare that he’ll say yes to two-character commissions. This is why I have “Tim sitting on a bed wearing Kon’s shirt; he’s looking at a form on the bed but we can’t see who it is.” Full-bodies are also potentially bad on our wallets. There are ways to get implied slash out of a one-character bust shot. If you can figure out a prompt that requires only one character, bust up, your commission won’t cost you a million dollars, and you will increase the chances of the artist not turning you down.
- You will have more success if you ask for two women than if you ask for two men. Yay, homophobia and sexism?
- Don’t get down because artists say no. They will. I’ve had more artists turn me down than the opposite. DON’T QUIT! We should make a list of artists who will draw slash and/or slash subtext somewhere available…
- Smile a lot. No, seriously, smiling works wonder! Just be nice, really. If you show up with a request they might be on the edge about, being nice or not is what is going to make it or break it.
And this is everything that comes to mind. Now go forth and conquer!
I’ll add something, though: except in cases of canon pairings, I never got full-out slash out of a first commission from a pro artist. With time, I got closer to some artists and not so much to others, and there are definitely people I wouldn’t even try to get anything non-gen from. Obviously, some artists have different limitations than others, and what they like/don’t like to do varies. It’s kind of a process, and part of it is dumb luck.