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#1 Posted by ripcurl (535 posts) - - Show Bio

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.

#2 Posted by Timandm (3374 posts) - - Show Bio

I get what you're saying. There are gay super heroes out there just as there are gay people. That's normal. Just don't make their being gay the center of the story and don't make that the only significant thing about them.... and yes, to be honest, I've been wondering that lately myself. I wonder if Marvel is trying to make up for lost time. Having gay super heroes is still a relatively recent development in the cosmic scheme of things. Hopefully it'll all level off eventually.

#3 Posted by PrinceIMC (5422 posts) - - Show Bio

See I kinda feel like Hulkling and Wiccan have been the core of Young Avengers since the start, so it makes sense to me how much their relationship was in the new Young Avengers. I also find their characters very interesting individually. I do sort of wish they fought occasionally though, at least little relationship stuff. They're like that perfect couple in High School who seemed kinda too perfect.

#4 Posted by cattlebattle (13040 posts) - - Show Bio

Its exploitation to attract attention and readers. Its a common marketing tactic.
 
I always find it funny Northstar was a character they decided to turn homosexual seeing as the first ever panel he appears in he surrounded by fawning women.....irony!

#5 Posted by evilvegeta74 (4530 posts) - - Show Bio

@cattlebattle: I will go back in my first issue of Alpha Flight and check that out, that's an excellent point.

#6 Edited by Superguy0009e (2265 posts) - - Show Bio

Meh, it happens everywhere. It's just a sign that people are trying harder to be more accepting and level headed about their culture.

@ripcurl: I will admit, I never liked nor believed in Wiccan and Hulking's relationship. Just feels forced.

#7 Posted by callsignneptune (112 posts) - - Show Bio

Surely by Marvel placing such emphasis on having gay characters then they are singling homosexuality out as something that is different or out of the ordinary. I appreciate what they've tried to do with the inclusion of gay characters but they seem to be undermining their own cause by making this such a big deal. Gay characters should be treated exactly the same as straight characters and by Marvel hyping them up so much, that concept of them being different to straight characters is being further emphasized rather than challenged.

#8 Posted by Blood1991 (8098 posts) - - Show Bio

It may just be the first arc, then again they are the only duo that are established together already. Kate, and Noh Varr, Miss America and Kid Loki are just being characterized together versus those two who already have so much history. Regardless I enjoyed the issue.

#9 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29510 posts) - - Show Bio

You don't know the meaning of the word "overboard" if you're complaining about one issue and a not-even-semi event that was hyped last year.

#10 Posted by cattlebattle (13040 posts) - - Show Bio
@evilvegeta74 said:

@cattlebattle: I will go back in my first issue of Alpha Flight and check that out, that's an excellent point.

It was in an issue of Uncanny X-Men actually, #120 I believe
#11 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (34018 posts) - - Show Bio

@ripcurl: Your reading a Young Avengers book with no interest in Hulkling and Wiccan? Wut?

Online
#12 Posted by Vance Astro (91291 posts) - - Show Bio
@callsignneptune said:

Surely by Marvel placing such emphasis on having gay characters then they are singling homosexuality out as something that is different or out of the ordinary. I appreciate what they've tried to do with the inclusion of gay characters but they seem to be undermining their own cause by making this such a big deal. Gay characters should be treated exactly the same as straight characters and by Marvel hyping them up so much, that concept of them being different to straight characters is being further emphasized rather than challenged.

Marvel didn't really hype any of their gay characters though. The only thing that was hyped from Marvel as far as gay characters is concerned was Northstar's wedding and the first gay marriage in comics IS a big deal.
Moderator
#13 Posted by CerealKiller (161 posts) - - Show Bio

Ive only gotten into comics in the last year, and the only reason i even know who northstar is is because he's 'the gay one'. I've barely seen him in any of the recent main x-titles aside from cameos, (the exception being when i knew he was on astonishing, but i haven't read those issues) .to hype up his big wedding they had all these postcards/free-leaflets/advertising-thingies at my local comic shop and i picked it up and asked the guy at the register as i was paying who he even was and he just said "Northstar from the x-men.He's gay and he's having a wedding and its a big deal"

Which i suppose it is, since its the first gay wedding in comics, but is that the best reason to marry off two characters? just so you can reach a milestone? It feels so forced. Does anybody even care about the guy he's married to, because i know i cant even name him without looking it up. I dont want to sound too critical since i havent read much at all with the characters, but then i feel like that says something. as if marvel doesn't actually care if they have these guys showcased in a popular series or get any good storyline, as long as theyre around somewhere being gay for the sake of having a gay characters.

Hulkling and wiccan i like as they're pretty interesting characters, and even if they were straight they would be fun to read about and would still be pretty standout on the young avengers team.

tldr: Sexuality shouldn't be used as a marketing gimmick.

#14 Posted by Vance Astro (91291 posts) - - Show Bio
@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@ripcurl: Your reading a Young Avengers book with no interest in Hulkling and Wiccan? Wut?

The thing is Hulkling and Wiccan were together for like 5-6 years now, why would anyone think they wouldn't devote any time to their relationship? That to me just sounds like the OP has a problem with gay relationships. You don't think that other Avengers books ever devoted pages to relationships? Every team book does this. This isn't even a gay thing, it's just two characters in a relationship that the writer is continuing to develop.
Moderator
#15 Posted by Sovereign91001 (4728 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't really see the problem with Northstar's marriage. It seems that hyping a marriage is S.O.P for DC and Marvel whenever (marketable) heroes tie the knot (I'm not debating the rightness or wrongness of that practice, just commenting on it). Plus their is the whole social commentary aspect of his relationship...

It's not a gay thing, it's just a comic thing.

#16 Posted by Billy Batson (58206 posts) - - Show Bio

@Vance Astro said:

@callsignneptune said:

Surely by Marvel placing such emphasis on having gay characters then they are singling homosexuality out as something that is different or out of the ordinary. I appreciate what they've tried to do with the inclusion of gay characters but they seem to be undermining their own cause by making this such a big deal. Gay characters should be treated exactly the same as straight characters and by Marvel hyping them up so much, that concept of them being different to straight characters is being further emphasized rather than challenged.

Marvel didn't really hype any of their gay characters though. The only thing that was hyped from Marvel as far as gay characters is concerned was Northstar's wedding and the first gay marriage in comics IS a big deal.

Vance pls, DC/Wildstorm did it ten years ago.

BB

#17 Posted by JimTheSurfer (560 posts) - - Show Bio

Yeah, man, that's pretty gay...

#18 Posted by impossibilly (892 posts) - - Show Bio

So...Four gay characters is "going overboard"?

#19 Posted by Vance Astro (91291 posts) - - Show Bio
@Billy Batson said:

Vance pls, DC/Wildstorm did it ten years ago.

BB

I guess I should have said the first gay wedding in Marvel history is a big deal.  
Moderator
#20 Posted by callsignneptune (112 posts) - - Show Bio

@Vance Astro: The 'hyping' I was only trusting OP on, I didn't follow anything leading up to the wedding so was simply addressing what they had stated in my reply. I do understand the importance and significance of having a gay wedding, I just feel think there may be a thin line between Marvel praising it/attempting to show their open mindedness and turning the affair into a bit of a sideshow and something to be viewed as abnormal...which it shouldn't be.

#21 Posted by gravitypress (2069 posts) - - Show Bio

I will say concentrating too much time is annoying. Just look at Luke Cage and his baby momma.

#22 Posted by John Valentine (16318 posts) - - Show Bio

The worst thing about gay characters is that their sexuality defines them almost entirely. No, thanks.

#23 Posted by V_Scarlotte_Rose (6474 posts) - - Show Bio

@John Valentine said:

The worst thing about gay characters is that their sexuality defines them almost entirely. No, thanks.

Not all gay characters though. Batwoman for example.

#24 Posted by John Valentine (16318 posts) - - Show Bio

@V_Scarlotte_Rose said:

@John Valentine said:

The worst thing about gay characters is that their sexuality defines them almost entirely. No, thanks.

Not all gay characters though. Batwoman for example.

Yeah, that was a generalisation on my part. DC is a lot better for it than Marvel is.

#25 Posted by V_Scarlotte_Rose (6474 posts) - - Show Bio

@John Valentine: I have heard that.

I read The Childrens' Crusade, and Wiccan and Hulkings relationship wasn't overhyped as far as I remember. Maybe it just depends on who's writing it.

#26 Posted by Shamelesslysupportinaznballers (553 posts) - - Show Bio

Did we not forget DC & their Earth 2 gay green lantern? And as forced as Wiccan & Hulking's relationship is, it's no more forced than Mary Jane & Peter Parker, Susan Storm & Mr Fantastic, Lois Lane & Superman or any other comic duo. Or heck, how about Kate Bishop & Marvel Boy in the same issue. Isn't that forced? How come nobody made a stink about that?

Wiccan could've been a girl & the story would have made just as much sense.

#27 Posted by dondave (38631 posts) - - Show Bio

@Vance Astro said:

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@ripcurl: Your reading a Young Avengers book with no interest in Hulkling and Wiccan? Wut?

The thing is Hulkling and Wiccan were together for like 5-6 years now, why would anyone think they wouldn't devote any time to their relationship? That to me just sounds like the OP has a problem with gay relationships. You don't think that other Avengers books ever devoted pages to relationships? Every team book does this. This isn't even a gay thing, it's just two characters in a relationship that the writer is continuing to develop.

QFT

#28 Posted by lawrencefair (8 posts) - - Show Bio

I have just gotten back into comics and I am mostly rereading Spawn right now. I thought the first run of the Young Avengers was designed somewhat for teenagers/pre-teens and having two of the team be boyfriends, I would guess it was geared to gay or open minded readers who would be interested in that continuing as a major plot point.

I am not sure if they kept going with it but at the time I read Runaways which had the same feel without two gay characters. Maybe the Young Avengers comic was just not made with you in mind.

#29 Posted by ripcurl (535 posts) - - Show Bio

@John Valentine said:

The worst thing about gay characters is that their sexuality defines them almost entirely. No, thanks.

^ This was my point.

It's not that the book spends time exploring their relationship that I have a problem with.

My problem is that it takes up the majority of the issue, the premier issue!

Noh-varr had little page time, and Loki was treated as an afterthought.

I was trying to convey my opinion that Marvel beats the issue to death, but predictably, a bunch of TARDS think the thread is about homophobia...

#30 Posted by ripcurl (535 posts) - - Show Bio

@impossibilly:

Those were just the characters that came to mind, but there are plenty more gay and bisexual characters in the Marvel Universe; Anole, Moondragon, Phyla-Vell, Victoria Hand, and Rick Jones' wife Marlo, and many more.

Besides, if you read the OP, my issue isn't with the amount of gay characters, but how they're written.

#31 Posted by NewComicGuy (131 posts) - - Show Bio

Being new to comics and not knowing a lot of the past relationships, I thought DC handled the relationship between Midnighter and Apollo very well in the New 52. They made it known that they were hooked up, they would have panels dedicated to it here and there, but for the most part they were just superheroes fighting crime/evil.

#32 Posted by impossibilly (892 posts) - - Show Bio

@ripcurl: I just reread your original post, and I think I did misunderstand your main point when I read it it yesterday. I agree that a character's sexual orientation shouldn't be the main crux of the character, gay or straight.

#33 Posted by John Valentine (16318 posts) - - Show Bio

@ripcurl said:

I also wish that Noh-Varr and Loki had more panel time, but it was only the first issue.

Hopefully Gillen won't focus too much on Wiccan and Hulkling's relationship in future issues. He's a better writer than having to focus on a gimmicky sell-point like that.

#34 Edited by Vance Astro (91291 posts) - - Show Bio
@V_Scarlotte_Rose said:

Not all gay characters though. Batwoman for example.

Wiccan and Hulkling's sexuality doesn't define them either. Young Avengers has NEVER been about the fact that they are in a relationship. Between their first series, Young Avengers\Runaways, & Avengers: Children's Crusade..it's not even talked about much.  
 
@gravitypress said:

I will say concentrating too much time is annoying. Just look at Luke Cage and his baby momma.

She's not his "baby momma", she's his wife.
Moderator
#35 Posted by Vance Astro (91291 posts) - - Show Bio
@Shamelesslysupportinaznballers said:

Did we not forget DC & their Earth 2 gay green lantern? And as forced as Wiccan & Hulking's relationship is, it's no more forced than Mary Jane & Peter Parker, Susan Storm & Mr Fantastic, Lois Lane & Superman or any other comic duo. Or heck, how about Kate Bishop & Marvel Boy in the same issue. Isn't that forced? How come nobody made a stink about that?

Wiccan could've been a girl & the story would have made just as much sense.

I don't think any of those relationships were "forced". Some characters are just made for each other. 
Moderator
#36 Posted by Shamelesslysupportinaznballers (553 posts) - - Show Bio

@Vance Astro: A Wonder Woman & Superman couple I could see as being forced. Storm & Black Panther too. These characters were independent originally and some writer or editor decided to put them together.

But a Wiccan & Hulking coupling? I see no difference between that and Mr. Fantastic & Sue Storm or Mary Jane & Peter Parker. They were written as a couple right from the start or one person was introduced specifically to be a love interest for the other.

#37 Posted by Vance Astro (91291 posts) - - Show Bio
@Shamelesslysupportinaznballers said:

@Vance Astro: A Wonder Woman & Superman couple I could see as being forced. Storm & Black Panther too. These characters were independent originally and some writer or editor decided to put them together.

Yea, those are kind of forced but Hulkling & Wiccan,Clark & Lois,Reed & Sue, I think those characters were just made for each other.Storm & Black Panther was definitely forced, I believe by Hudlin's own admission. I'm not sure about Wonder Woman & Supes, I can't imagine the thought process on that one.
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#38 Posted by muhabba (301 posts) - - Show Bio

I think my favorite characterization of a gay individual in just about any medium was Capt. Jack Harkness from Torchwood. Being gay was just one part of the characterization and not his whole identity. I loved how they handed it. My favorite gay couple of any medium was Willow and Tara from BTVS. I think Hulkling and Wiccan's (his name was going to be Asgardian) relationship isn't just Marvel shoving a gay relationship at us, I think it's just an overly dramatic relationship that happens to be gay.

#39 Posted by V_Scarlotte_Rose (6474 posts) - - Show Bio

@Vance Astro said:

@V_Scarlotte_Rose said:

Not all gay characters though. Batwoman for example.

Wiccan and Hulkling's sexuality doesn't define them either. Young Avengers has NEVER been about the fact that they are in a relationship. Between their first series, Young Avengers\Runaways, & Avengers: Children's Crusade..it's not even talked about much.

Fair enough. As I said, "I read The Childrens' Crusade, and Wiccan and Hulkings relationship wasn't overhyped as far as I remember. Maybe it just depends on who's writing it."

I don't read the current Young Avengers, so I only know anything about it from what's been said here.

Glad to hear they're not being defined by it. :)

#40 Edited by Timandm (3374 posts) - - Show Bio

@impossibilly said:

So...Four gay characters is "going overboard"?

Pretty sure there are more than four...

Wiccan, Hulking, Karma, Striker, Anole, Northstar, Karoline Dean, Julie Powers, Phyla Vell, Union Jack, Rictor, Shatterstar, Victoria Hand, Greymalkin, Captain Flame (I'm not making this one up), Marcus Roston.... there are probably more than I can't remember at the moment....

@PrinceIMC said:

See I kinda feel like Hulkling and Wiccan have been the core of Young Avengers since the start, so it makes sense to me how much their relationship was in the new Young Avengers. I also find their characters very interesting individually. I do sort of wish they fought occasionally though, at least little relationship stuff. They're like that perfect couple in High School who seemed kinda too perfect.

Well, they did have an argument in issue 1 of "Young Avengers." Although, they made up rather quickly... Course, it did lead to an evil being entering our reality, so....

#41 Edited by kiss_lamia (1247 posts) - - Show Bio

sorry but i think its a bit sh!t to say its going overboard i mean plenty of str8 relationships get plenty of comic space in the past and present and no one whines when they get it, so now the gay one gets 15 mins everyones like oooh there shoving it in our faces, get over your selves please!

#42 Edited by Mini_Bat (102 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't get your point on Young Avengers, the issue open up with Kate waking up in Noh-Varr's bed, no one gives a crap. Which is great but why all the hate on Billy and Teddy's relationship. Also, Loki is mean to be shown less, that was easy to tell that, we don't know what he have to with Billy or what his plan is, that Loki mystery and tricks. As for Hulking and Wiccan their fight and the out come is part of the plot of the book. We know what Kate been up to after the Children Cruasude. Kieron address what Bily and Teddy been doing, why Speed not there, and why Billy causes, what I'm sure is one of the main conflicts of the book. And if he didn't address this stuff in the first issue, what time will we have for action in later ones. Last it a teen superhero book, if you didn't expect a couple of pages just for relationships, you pick picked the wrong genre.

#43 Posted by lykopis (10746 posts) - - Show Bio

@kiss_lamia said:

sorry but i think its a bit sh!t to say its going overboard i mean plenty of str8 relationships get plenty of comic space in the past and present and no one whines when they get it, so now the gay one gets 15 mins everyones like oooh there shoving it in our faces, get over your selves please!

Pretty much this.

I just read the issue so I can weigh in on this fairly and I don't see the problem? Not at all. I see a lot more focus on private one on one time with Cyclops and Emma and more -- this read perfectly and organically into the story-line. It wasn't presented in a gimicky way, far from.

If this was an established hetero relationship, no one would have noticed or batted an eyelash. My opinion, of course.

#44 Posted by satyrgod (2115 posts) - - Show Bio
@ripcurl: I find it curious that you don't wonder if they ever went "overboard" with the hetero characters.  As though homosexual youth don't need heroes?  What's your next question, "are they going overboard with the black characters"?
#45 Posted by ripcurl (535 posts) - - Show Bio

@satyrgod:

Either you didn't read the OP or you're incapable of understanding.

#46 Posted by satyrgod (2115 posts) - - Show Bio
@ripcurl: Or perhaps the OP failed to get his point across.  Please explain, I'm listening.
#47 Edited by NeonGameWave (8042 posts) - - Show Bio

I think so.

#48 Posted by quirky_anecdotes (344 posts) - - Show Bio

No.

That's one of those questions that can just be answer in a single resounding no and doesn't need to be debated.

#49 Posted by Decoy Elite (30041 posts) - - Show Bio

Read Young Avengers and I don't really see what you were talking about. I mean yeah they get the most screen time but that's because they seem to be the most plot important.

#50 Posted by satyrgod (2115 posts) - - Show Bio
@NeonGameWave: "I think so."
 
You think what, exactly?  And why?