Ok. So I read the first issue of Young Avengers and was annoyed with how much of the book was devoted to Hulkling and Wiccan's relationship.
Don't get me wrong, I see the need for a company like Marvel to give all their readers characters they can relate to, and that people of all races and sexual orientations be represented.
The problem is that it's so forced, transparent, and unnecessary. Wiccan and Hulkling are peripheral characters that, at least in my opinion, many readers have no interest in. I don't care about ANY aspect of Hulkling, so filling two-thirds of a launch title with details about his love-life really disappointed me. Noh-varr and Loki are clearly the standouts in this roster, yet they have very little page-time. Why? To set up a ho-hum story where a female skrull is the primary antagonist? No. To make sure we understand that these 2 jobbers are madly in love and that we see them make out.
Ok Marvel, we get it, you're very open-minded. There's no need to force-feed us page after page of two 17 year-old's gay relationship. It's just boring. I don't think I've ever read an X-men title where more than half the book dealt with Scott's feelings for Jean (or Emma), or an issue of Thor with 15 pages of romance-novel banter with Jane Foster or Lady Sif.
Northstar's marriage is a perfect example.Let's face it, Northstar isn't the most popular character, but his wedding was hyped for months. Marvel spent more time and effort promoting his wedding than they did the wedding of Storm and the Black Panther. If you ask a casual comics reader who Storm and the Black Panther are, they're almost certainly going to know Storm, and there's a good chance they'll be familiar with the Black Panther. Ask the same reader who Northstar is, and their response will invariably be "Who?".
So why all the build-up? It's not an important event in the Marvel universe, or for mutants, or even for the X-men. It's just a way for Marvel to pat themselves on the back and to thump their chests about how progressive they are.
I liked the roster and bits of the story in the relatively short-lived Avengers Academy, though it was ultimately disappointing. Really interesting characters like Lyra and Loa were completely pushed to the side; rarely seen and NEVER given dialogue, but the writers made sure that readers got 3-4 pages in each issue of Striker or Lightspeed rambling about how hard it was to be gay AND a superhero. Who cares?
Sure, if you want to make compelling characters, they can't be one-dimensional, they can't simply be fighting all the time; you want to explore their feelings, uncover their backstory, put them in relationships, etc. But there has to be a balance, and instead of their actions, Marvel seems to use gay characters' sexual orientation as their identities, as the singular trait that defines them. It's gratuitous, and boring.